The poor are always with us

What do I think of the Tory majority in the UK?

Pal Hariod Brawn asked me this so I thought I would give a somewhat superficial answer as that is all I can manage.

I’m not surprised.

Most people are racist, selfish and not interested in philanthropy. By and large the Tory party appeals to that point of view.

And, while my principles/beliefs lean somewhat to the left, in my lifetime I can’t remember a good/successful Labour government.

‘I’d vote Labour but I’m a socialist’ always comes to mind. Certainly I remember the euphoria around the Blair victory. And the disenchantment. The disillusionment. A Labour prime minister who modelled himself on Margaret Thatcher.

Which brings me neatly onto a nice feministy thing. (Sorry Hariod, that’s it on politics, for the most part.)

I have read recently some real arse about backwards comments about women and feminism.

One of the most common fallacies is that being a woman means a woman

  • a) is a feminist, or at the least can speak on women’s and feminist issues

and

  • b) a woman will do her all-out best to ensure other women receive at least equal treatment, if not preferential, to address the power imbalance in society.

Queen Bees

Many women in positions of power (well, the few in positions of power) exhibit the Queen Bee syndrome.

Thatcher was a classic example of not wanting to aid other women.

One of the chairs of my board was a similar example (also Tory incidentally). At a time when there was a government push to get a gender-balanced board of directors, my chair plaintively said: ‘But I’m the chair (she probably said chairman), surely we don’t need any more women on the board?’ On a board of eleven directors?

Erroneous credibility

More recently on religious blogs, I have noticed a trend for religious women to approve of sexist language, defend it, and criticise people (me, and others) for pointing out that gender-specific language is no longer appropriate.

This goes back to the fallacious belief above that says, I am a woman, therefore I can comment because I know what I am talking about.

Well, sure. If you have a relevant qualification in the use of language and thirty years of experience, go ahead. And that’s not just discussing use of sexist language, that’s often discussing the potential insult of a lot of words and trying to find appropriate and accurate ones.

For example, one of my journalist colleagues wanted to describe a group of protesters as ragamuffins and I stood my ground. I felt it was demeaning and inappropriate and inaccurate.

‘I am a woman’ doesn’t cut it when it comes to determining sexist language.

After my comment about policemen, Tricia kindly made a post about it, InsanityBites made a confusing follow-up. Don’t go there if you want to retain your sanity.

Insanity seems to think she is qualified to comment as she used to be a True Feminist (TM). Well, I’m not sure she really was … as the saying goes. Tricia is qualified because she is a woman.

Anti-feminist distractions

Tricia, on her post about my one blog comment elsewhere, said:

If you’re going to be mad about something, at least go after real outrages like the horrible oppression experienced daily by women around the world, or the disastrous way we are failing those in need of mental health services here in the U.S.

But I have mentioned that too. On more than one occasion. Readers of roughseas will have seen a number of posts about it, invariably on what is laughably called International Women’s Day.

I plead guilty to not campaigning for the state of the health service in America. I’m more interested in health and education for women in poorer countries than in the inglorious insurance-based health care system of the leader of the western world. Which, incidentally has nothing to do with women’s rights per se. Nor can I do fuck all about it.

Quite frankly, America has a shit health care system and that is neither my fault or my problem. But if you want my view, it fails because it is based on money. America is based on money and corporate greed. I know nice Americans, well, I think they are nice, but any country that resents paying into a communal pot for health care and is willing to see people out of house and home to pay for medical bills is living in the dark ages. But, that’s a new country for you.

So having pointed out that I can do Jack. Shit. Nada about the state of American health care or health and education for women in Africa, Asia, Central and South America, poor parts of the USA, what I can do is write about language.

And by writing about language, if I only open one person’s eyes as to how influential and discriminatory it is, I will have achieved something.

There are none so blind as those who will not see.

Or for those with a biblical preference:

They have mouths, but do not speak;
eyes but do not see
They have ears, but do not hear

Etc

Psalm 115: 5, 6

Glorious sexism

Let’s finish on a discriminatory and trivial high, ie one that bans women from exercising personal choice and personifies them as sex objects.

Oh yes.

The Cannes Film Festival Dress Code.

Got ankle problems? Over fifty? No darling. Go away. We just want the young skinny leggy bits of stuff. Because, after all, we only really want to look at those sort of women anyway. It’s not as though women serve any other purpose. Apart from breeding and cleaning.

Breed before you’re fifty? Maybe become the old cleaning woman afterwards? Just keep out of sight.

And people wonder why I comment on gender specific language? Women have a long way to go, throughout the world.

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About roughseasinthemed

I write about my life as an English person living in Spain and Gibraltar, on Roughseas, subjects range from politics and current developments in Gib to book reviews, cooking and getting on with life. My views and thoughts on a variety of topics - depending on my mood of the day - can be found over on Clouds. A few pix are over on Everypic - although it is not a photoblog. And of course my dog had his own blog, but most of you knew that anyway. Pippadogblog etc
This entry was posted in Atheism, christianity, feminism, gender-specific language, life, politics, Religion, UK. Bookmark the permalink.

69 Responses to The poor are always with us

  1. Hariod Brawn says:

    On the political bit:

    All is not lost Roughseas; okay, it is for the next 5 or 10 years, although it’s worth having a squint at the voting stats from the recent election:

    Total eligible electorate: 46,425,386
    Total voting Conservative: 11,334,920
    Increase in Conservative vote this election: 0.8%
    Conservative as %age of electorate: 24.41%
    Electoral turnout: 66.1%

    Clearly, if there is mainstream, it is not a Conservative one. In fact, the ‘politically apathetic’ [i.e. non-voters] are the single largest bloc, representing 33.9% of the total eligible electorate. Whilst it may be true that “most people are racist, selfish and not interested in philanthropy”, I’m keeping faith in the notion that they won’t all vote Tory next time around, especially when they see the devastation of public services and how, yet again, the rich got richer.

    Source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/election/2015/results

    Like

    • I think British politics have been in disarray for years. There are no savvy politicians of stature. Arsey Labour Party Hampstead Islington dinner parties circuits don’t do it. You can’t tell the difference between the two. I’m ignoring libs as they value little as the last election demonstrated.

      Floating voters, of which I quickly became one, are the determinant, but when everything is the same? And when the rich get richer under Labour? And when Labour privatised NHS hospitals?

      Seriously, it is all a crock of disgusting shit. As it is here in Gibraltar. Sack politicians. Institute a *****cracy.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. davidprosser says:

    While I’m hiding under this table from the fallout I thought I might mention that I honestly don’t think I’m racist, selfish nor uninterested in philanthropy. I have voted Conservative most of my life but not always, I’ve changed my vote where another party has better policies for the country.I have to say that’s only ever led to me voting Labour once though, one of those silly moments where you believe a politician. Way before Blair’s time. That man wasn’t just a disaster for the people of the UK he was a disaster for his own party. At least you knew where you stood with Margaret Thatcher.
    I’m not going to claim not to be sexist since something I read very recently proved I still use terms and do things that I shouldn’t. But I do believe in equal pay for the same job and equal rights completely.even if I do still stand up to offer a seat or open a door for a woman. ( It should be noted I didn’t say Lady this time).
    It must be said I’m pleased about the result of the election mainly because I want to see if promises are honoured without the excuse that they’ve had to drop them at the insistence of the joint partner in a coalition. I admit to being a total Eurosceptic and want the promised referendum so the people can speak, no matter the result. If that doesn’t happen and the Tories continue to hit the disabled as they are I’m voting Plaid Cymru from now on .
    xxx Massive Hugs xxx

    Liked by 1 person

    • I think there are a lot of conservatives who hold old fashioned party values. But that isn’t the current face of the party. And let’s be honest about Thatcher, she decimated British industry and tried to privatise the NHS. Would you like that? I wouldn’t.

      I mostly voted green or flying yoga party. Or anything but mainstream politicians.

      When I was a kid, we would have table discussions about home rule for Yorkshire. Of course post Thatcher, and no mine or steel industries left, it was a non-starter. I came back from Australia to see a local butchers shop with two pork chops in the window. People couldn’t afford meat.

      Love your learning 🙂 I also stood up and opened doors for anyone really.

      The referendum. Ah. Think what that will mean for Gibraltar in your spare time?

      Partner would vote Plaid. As I would vote White Rose. If I had a Spanish vote it would prob go to Partido Andalucista.

      Liked by 2 people

  3. pinkagendist says:

    It’s tough. The human animal is by nature self-interested; And the vast majority don’t have anywhere near the skills required to understand what you’re saying. Everyday I read another article on the Islamic State and the ‘Muslim’ problem, which means many don’t even understand that it’s a political/power issue rather than one of religion.

    The same applies to Thatcher or these religious women (and most of the PP female politicians, who are generally happy to eat each other alive i.e. Aguirre vs. Botella.) What compounds the problem with the religious ones is they don’t even have reasonable parameters of what is fact and what is fiction. The result is the convoluted-isms of the bright young things you mentioned above.

    I mean this in the nicest possible way, but I can foresee an instance where insanitybites has difficulties understanding how to use an airsickness bag. If her god existed, I’m sure many years ago he would have taken a hammer to her fingers to ensure her nonsense never again polluted screens anywhere.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I read this on the little box thing and nearly choked when I got to the end. Seriously. I have tears. Insanity mixes sense and nonsense amazingly. With no logical connection. Weird. I do hope Violet doesn’t read your nicest possible comment.

      I’m not sure whether it matters what political party the women are, although I was impressed with your French women, sorry, read and meant to comment later.

      I’m commenting on yours here in reverse order, but yes, isn’t everything a political/power issue? And that’s why religion morphs helpfully into it all to blur the edges and provide justification. History needs a clear analytical mind. Not one full of emotion. The same applies to political studies. And whilever people refuse to step back, we will never get anywhere.

      Liked by 2 people

  4. disperser says:

    . . . wait . . . you guys also have politicians? I thought you just did what we told you.

    . . . learn something every day, I do . . .

    Like

  5. Tricia says:

    Well thank you Rough Seas, for the link to my post on the alarming epidemic of “being offended” and the increasing trend of using this as an excuse to shut down debate. I have no wish to go down the gender neutral language rabbit hole with you again, you know where I stand and anyone else who is curious can read the post. Even though I could not possibly disagree with you more on this subject, I’m quite glad to see you write about it. I say if it’s your passion, say it loud and say it proud!

    Your personal observations, experiences and analysis combine to form a unique perspective that no one else can offer, just as do mine, and everybody else’s, male, or female. Saying someone doesn’t have the “right to comment” because you don’t deem them sufficiently expert enough ignores this individuality and I believe takes much away from productive conversation.

    I really don’t know what to say in regards to the comments on Insanity Bytes and you being brought to tears at the thought of her fingers being smashed so hard she could no longer hold a vomit bag. Much more hurtful words there I would say in my non expert opinion than a woman cop being called a policeman.

    Like

    • Well you did get a lively debate on it 🙂

      I have no wish, for example to engage in a discussion on the bible with you because I am not sufficiently informed about it. Or, just because I can add up doesn’t qualify me to talk about string theory.

      Language constantly evolves and changes, and use of gender neutral language, a title such as Ms that doesn’t denote marital status, are all examples of this. Whether you like it or accept it isn’t the case, it happens. If it makes you feel any better I used to think Madam Chairman was perfectly acceptable, and that chairs were only for sitting on. But then I grew up.

      I do think it’s important to at least learn a little about the topic under discussion before opening one’s mouth. If you genuinely don’t understand the impact of gender specific language, or do and disbelieve it, that’s your choice. I happen to think that’s a wrong choice and plenty of studies show that language does have a profound effect on society. Do you call someone a nigger or coloured? Yet, it was previously acceptable. But it’s still ok to call a woman a man? Or he as a catch all pronoun? No. It no longer washes. However religious people are notoriously sexist, so it’s not surprising.

      Actually it was the airsickness bag that was making me laugh. Pink has a sense of humour and turn of phrase that doesn’t appeal to everyone. However, for the most part, we get on well, and with one extreme exception, have some similar blogging pals in common. And the truth is, we both consider IB to talk a load of tosh. The internet is what it is. We put ourselves out there, we can expect criticism mixed in with the praise unless we stick to posting flower photos all the time.

      But to comment on your non-expert opinion, there is a big difference between a denigrating comment about one person’s (lack of) intelligence, and language use that continues to perpetuate the male default thereby subliminally affecting expectations and views, and making it harder for women to be seen in those positions. Neither Pink’s nor my view of IB has any actual impact on anyone, and it’s nothing he hasn’t said before elsewhere which you may not have seen.

      Language does have an impact, and that’s why people call for change. That’s also why I got paid as a journalist, paid as a government information officer, paid as a public relations manager, paid as a communications manager, paid as a public affairs manager etc etc because I used the right words at the right time. I don’t get paid to blog, or I would write very differently if I was in PR mode.

      Having said that, some people have said they have learned things from my posts, whether about language or other topics. And, because of my profession, I do offer free advice to blogging pals. For example, I’ve got some chapters of a book to look at this morning to give advice on writing style and editing. Unlike you, some people do accept I know what I’m talking about.

      Liked by 2 people

      • makagutu says:

        I didn’t think Pink’s comment on airsickness bags was sexist. Neither was it made because IB is a woman. On the contrary, it is a comment on her intelligence[ or lack of mainly] that is the issue of the comment.

        Liked by 2 people

      • Tricia says:

        Aww yes, language indeed does have an impact and in many cases words can hurt more than physical acts, we would both agree on that I would imagine. I just don’t believe in the cause of gender neutral language and in fact think it disempowers women by infantilizing them, denying their maturity and ability to reason and see situations for what they are.

        Thank goodness for the freedom to blog and write our respective opinions on such things!

        Like

        • Well, your reasoning there is totally flawed in terms of gender neutral language. What infantilises women is being sucked into patriarchy. That makes women dependent on men. There is no correlation between gender neutral language and infantilising women. I really think you should leave this topic alone as the more you say the more you expose your lack of knowledge.

          Liked by 1 person

          • pinkagendist says:

            My books and files are all still in boxes, but once they’re unpacked I MUST find you the Juez article. I can’t remember which paper it was from but the argument (circa 1960’s in Spain) was that women couldn’t be judges because Juez was a masculine word. That shows the influence of language in the most basic, simplistic form- but unfortunately effective. Society shapes language but language also shapes society. Juez masculine, costurera feminine. The implications are endless. It’s no accident that in latin languages words to refer to gay men are generally in the feminine/with feminine connotations or the diminutive. Mariquita, mariposa, loca- or even flor (in Colombia) and so forth.

            Liked by 1 person

          • And interestingly polla and picha (correct spelling?) a conversation partner had yesterday re, well, you can work it out.

            Mariquita, mariposa yes, but also mariposos. There was a spanish song a few years back about maricon, maricones. It’s not so clear.

            It would make an interesting blog post, although you may need to translate it. Otherwise, whenever, scan and send across as is.

            Like

      • Tricia says:

        Btw, I don’t think Pink’s comment was sexist and of course it was loaded with sarcasm. The irony though is what fascinates me and I see it over and over in comment sections where people argue against some perceived injustice on how someone was treated poorly using the most vile language. Forest trees type of thing they miss entirely.

        Like

    • pinkagendist says:

      Darling,
      Did no one teach you the meaning of punctuation? I didn’t say “the thought of her fingers being smashed so hard she could no longer hold a vomit bag.” The full stop/period means a sentence is over. That means that not having the intellectual ability to work an airsickness bag is one sentence, one idea; a god smashing her fingers to stop her from typing is a separate idea.
      That’s called sarcasm or banter. Most people, even many of mediocre intelligence, are capable of inferring that the speaker doesn’t actually desire someone’s fingers to be broken, hence the humorous aspect. I realize people with black and white thinking, including those with prefrontal cortex damage, have a hard time understanding sarcasm – no matter how obvious it may be. So before screaming offence next time, ask yourself the simple question: is it plausible that the speaker means this literally, or is it simply a linguistic device?

      Liked by 1 person

      • You are funny. Reading your imaginative acidity is like reading young Kate (I’m too idle these days) which is probably why I enjoy your comments. The only people who criticise sarcasm are those unable to grasp the concept, let alone use it.

        And, because we’ve known each other a while, I’m also better placed than Tricia to know that you are a compassionate, generous person. Nothing I have seen of you would suggest you would want Insanity’s fingers to be literally smashed, however desirable the resulting outcome regarding the flow of rubbish might be.

        It’s my day for cliches. One can lead a horse to water … It doesn’t matter how we point it out, what methods we use, people will hone in (inaccurately) on something that they can grasp while ignoring the serious points of your comment. Sad huh?

        It’s also interesting how few people answer you back. I’m not sure whether that’s because they find you intimidating or whether they can’t gauge you. Or maybe they think it’s not worth their while/time/effort 😀

        Liked by 2 people

      • Tricia says:

        You are right Pink, I did misread your comment and yes suggesting God will smash her fingers to prevent her from typing sounds so much better. You do protest a bit much though, no? With not one but two responses filled with all sorts of assumptions about my intelligence level, the way I think, my ability to understand sarcasm, etc….My goodness those are some large leaps you take about someone you’ve never met. Some day perhaps you will look inside and understand where your darkness flows from. I really do hope and pray you do.

        Like

        • pinkagendist says:

          My comment was based exclusively on your words. No more, no less. You failed to comprehend a comment phrased in a rather basic manner. Your writing is puerile as is your thought process.

          As for my alleged darkness, is it not you who’s making assumptions? What do you even mean by darkness? Dark humour? Is that a bad thing?

          And btw, no prayers necessary, my dear. The suggestion of prayers in this sort of exchange, in case you don’t already know, is a psychological tactic used to denote you have some sort of magical superiority or connection that the people who you’re praying for do not.

          Fact of the matter is I highly doubt you’re more successful than me in any area of life whatsoever- so you should really focus your time on improving your own life, rather than wasting time with passive aggressive prayer threats.

          Like

        • Tricia, check the tenses. IF her God existed, he WOULD have taken. This is a totally hypothetical scenario using conditional tenses. Not a suggestion that it WILL happen. Or that it is wished to happen.

          Did you read my comment about how Pink is a warm caring person? I see no darkness in him. Sure he’s sarcastic and critical, but does that make him dark? Whatever that means?

          I welcome your comments and appreciate you replying. I don’t mind what you say. I have a fairly loose policy in place. And while my commenters have their own voice, I would like to point out when I think they are being maligned.

          Liked by 1 person

    • pinkagendist says:

      Furthermore, having a (pseudo)individual opinion doesn’t mean the opinion is worth the air it took to pronounce it. Regarding that matter, what you or IB express is by no means individual. It’s the result of religious dogma and groupthink and your need to conform and fit in with that sort of ideology. You’re simply reinforcing your position within a group as is typical for many primates. A macaque would do it by grooming other members of their group, you do it by towing the patriarchal line- trust me, you didn’t individually invent that.

      Like

      • Lol. That’s the end of me having any religious pals then 😀

        That first sentence is a scorcher. The trouble is, you are absolutely accurate. Although a) I give macaques more credit for intelligence and b) they make no pretence about their status.

        Incidentally, someone was telling us about them opening a water tap in someone’s garden. The owner/gardener found some way of closing it off, whereupon macaques applied some lateral thinking and managed to open it again. Now, that is intelligence and applied thought rarely seen in indoctrinated lemmings.

        Like

  6. makagutu says:

    I like the title of this post. Were you thinking of Jeebus retort to his disciples when they complained about the perfume being used to anoint hos feet and hair?
    IB is in a class of her own.

    Like

    • I was just thinking of the overall quote, but figured it must have been in the bible somewhere. I wasn’t prepared to wade through it to find it though. But in reality, it matters little who is elected to govern, it rarely affects the ones at the bottom of the heap. The ones in the middle might go slightly up or down. Although mostly down, while the rich get ever richer. Hence, the poor will always be poor.

      It’s the way she adds a and b together and comes up with x and y. And she never runs out of words or topics. The show must go on.

      Like

  7. I didn’t link to IB’s post that you referenced precisely because I wanted to avoid blowback for being a man talking about gender equality. Posts like Tricia’s and IB’s are standard fodder for what I heard from church women growing up. Don’t get me wrong; they enjoy voting, reading, and being able to take care of themselves in a pinch.

    It seems like a game now. They have their husbands, their children, and their lives just the way they want it. It has to be the way they want it. Their husbands would be lost without them, some of them say. Destinies fulfilled, life needs to value what they value to keep its importance.

    Maybe it’s tied into the Queen Bee syndrome you linked? I know it exists; many women lawyers complained about how women judges were harsher than judges who were men. Status seems more valuable to women than men. There ought to be an equal distribution of people who value it.

    Like

    • I have no issue with men talking about gender equality. The more the merrier so long as they have a good understanding of the topic and aren’t just parroting lines. There is also a blur about the terminology. Some radfems prefer the term ally rather than feminist, as I’m sure you know. It’s a minefield. Before you get into the issues there’s no agreement about definitions!

      Yes. It’s easy to decry feminism from a comfortable position. From the aspirational norm that women are led to believe is their goal in life. It was certainly my mother’s. To have a husband, cook and clean for him, provide for his every need. And then to become a good mother too. Perfect bliss. Except …

      Now women realise they can aspire to more. To achieve more. To not give up a career. To not need to entrap a man to provide for them. We don’t have to compete for the best provider. Financial independence and bodily autonomy (contraception, abortion) have really removed the shackles for women. Well, for some women. There is no need to be a chattel, passed from one man to another. With independence comes responsibility and the chance of an equal relationship with a partner. Responsibilities are shared, not according to gender, but divided equally on merit and ability. Partners do what they can to contribute to a relationship and make it successful.

      But these women are stuck in a time warp. And can’t see it. And want to drag other women back. I think it’s valid to suggest it’s another tangent of QB syndrome. Their position is precarious. Where would they be without their husbands? Divorced. Rejected. Spurned by the church! Loss of status. As you say, it matters more to *some* women.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. EllaDee says:

    From where I stand, way back… this post and the comments have been edifying and entertaining.
    I too believe “most people are racist, selfish and not interested in philanthropy” which is why I enjoy reading your posts and the comments. I can always benefit from exposure to opinion and discussion. I never think I can’t be improved. Your topics are so very different to what I usually consider and you never fail to provide food for thought.
    At least you, we and all the commenters are thinking. We all have a long way to go, and with many issues, and we all need to be thinking and saying about those things we know about, that matter to us. As you do.

    Like

    • Thanks EllaDee. I do have some varied commenters with interesting opinions who aren’t frightened to voice them!

      Tricia is the exception as she only commented because I referenced her post where she had made a whole post out of one comment of mine elsewhere. And on yet another blog, she has accused me of ‘baiting’ her by linking back to her post. I ask you.

      I think I’ll write a post about it.

      But to return to your point. Yes blogs are useful for learning factually and from discussion. Although when we tend to gravitate to those of us with similar views, if not in everything, then there tends to be more agreement than anything else. There is little debate to be had when people hold extreme opposing views.

      Like

  9. Your post reminds me that the premier-elect in the province of Alberta, Rachel Notley, is proving to be something of an iconoclast. Not only is she a woman in a province that, frankly, has at times seemed a bit “nineteen fiftiesish father-knows-best” – like, but, just as importantly her party (the New democratic party) has traditionally leaned to the left–a thing that even a few years ago would have seemed unimaginable! (In the last election the extreme right Wild Rose party was figured to win; it didn’t). All that said I should go on to note three things: 1-Ms. Notley has not, to my knowledge, played the feminist card and 2-I am pretty sure that the incoming government will shift it’s leanings more toward the centre. and, of course, 3-Alberta has not always been Conservative, just for the past 40 years. It was for a long time, rather socialist. Put together, though, it all paints a decent picture for me; a woman who is just taken to be a good leader, regardless of gender and a party that is willing to move to a position that is more socially acceptable rather than to try and ram its views down everyone’s gut. Let’s see what happens.
    As for the British Government, I am reminded of what my old friend, Lloyd Gill, used to say, “It doesn’t matter who you vote for, the Government always gets in.”

    Like

    • In reverse order, that saying is true. I think the other one on the same lines, referred to the Civil Service always being in power. Although having worked in the civil service I’m not totally convinced of that.

      Pink, who commented up above, posted a fascinating clip of two French women politicians, who took issue with the fact that their appearance was being commented upon, and said they wished to discuss policy, I paraphrase but you get the idea.

      I think Canada is pretty broad minded though. I saw a post about Ms Notley doing her signing in thing elsewhere the other day, so let’s hope she lives up to expectations. As much as politicians do …

      Like

  10. Pingback: With reference to ‘baiting’ and ‘playing games’ | Clouds moving in

  11. Ruth says:

    Oh my goodness, all this arguing over ideas that serve to lower women’s status as human beings. I saw Tricia’s comment up the board here about gender neutralizing language infantilizing women. What?

    What infantilizes women is the constant need to be referred to, if one has any level of expertise or skill in a male dominated world, as a male adjective. It’s saying the the men are so very smart or skilled and that any woman who is is thus comparable to a man. I just don’t think that those who advocate that it’s not a problem or that we’re making hay over nothing get the bigger picture of just exactly why the use of gender neutral language is important in the first place. I’m not sure how one disagrees when one doesn’t even understand the basic underlying issue in the first place. And to say something along the lines of, “there are so many more important things for us to be blogging about?” I don’t think for one minute anyone is placing gender neutral language on the same plane as women in the middle east being oppressed or having their genitals mutilated. But does that mean that nothing that is less grotesque and inhumane should be addressed? Well go ahead and shut the damned internet down because people talk about the most trivial shit, like that parking space their god opened up for them at the local Wal-Mart on the daily.

    Like

    • Search me? It infantilises me to be called a police officer compared with a policeman. Because you know why? Yawn. It’s really important to be equal to a man, etc etc etc. not a police officer. This is real head banging stuff. I had dropped this crap twenty fucking years ago.

      Thanks Ruth. That pretty well sums it up. And as I said above, I do talk about lack of women’s rights throughout the world (on Roughseas usually). But anyone thinking that there is gender equality in the western world lives in lala land.

      About 15 years ago, I was going for an internal director’s job. Two other (external) candidates. One man, one woman. My (male) director told me, you know the CE doesn’t like women directors, don’t you? Do you really want to apply? I did. You can guess which candidate got the job.

      Like

  12. What a romp here today ( will be back to go through comments – they are always good, but rushing a bit right now)
    Not really up to speed on Brit politics. Was surprised at the election, but what do I know?
    Here none of the politicians seem to be working for anyone but themselves – and no matter the party name, they are pretty much the same once in office. Citizens are just the drudges that send money for elected politicians to spend on their own whims – not what the majority of the people want. (Health care is a huge mess right now thanks to a poorly written, poorly designed shallow law that was influenced greatly by insurance companies, hospital corporations, and Big Pharm. They are the big winners. Average person loses.
    Managed to destroy individual state’s initiatives that we had here: like family clinics in elementary schools (worked really well), cheap insurance for all children, and regulations that hospitals had to treat anyone who walked in the ER no matter what they had – and each hospital had to forgive some patients’ bills no matter what ( but the people had to ask and go through the process here). Not all states handled med care the same way before the new law. Some places much worse than others.
    Now there’s a lot more “dumping” of patients, tossing patients out of hospitals according to “insurance guidelines” instead of patient needs, and refusals by insurance companies to allow treatments or to allow doctors and patients to choose what they think is the best treatment/course of action. If you have to deal with big illnesses/cancer be prepared to fight everyday. Better have a tough advocate in your corner if you get sick. Best option is stay as well as possible as long as possible. What we pay for insurance/drug plan health coverage is horrendous now and they say it is only going to go up. Way to go politicians (who have their own wonderful government plan for life subsidized by taxpayers). Higher costs – worst treatment and much lower level of care for the ordinary person. Backwards world. Totally discouraged today
    Great quotes. People see what they want to see and hear what they want. Can lead a horse to water, but can’t make it drink kind of thing. (Today I’m just shrugging. Tired of pushing uphill.)
    But must agree: Charles? Bah

    Like

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