Friday, October 24, 2008

Man Down

The Apex Fallacy: An Interview with Dr. Helen Smith | MND: Your Daily Dose of Counter-Theory:

BC: In contrast, what are your impressions of the male sex?

Dr. Helen Smith: More men tend to be at the high end or low end in our society and because of this, people mistakenly believe that all men dominate in our culture because they see a few men at the top. Professor Roy F. Baumeister explained this in an invited address to the American Psychological Association:

“When I say I am researching how culture exploits men, the first reaction is usually ‘How can you say culture exploits men, when men are in charge of everything?’ This is a fair objection and needs to be taken seriously. It invokes the feminist critique of society. This critique started when some women systematically looked up at the top of society and saw men everywhere: most world rulers, presidents, prime ministers, most members of Congress and parliaments, most CEOs of major corporations, and so forth — these are mostly men. Seeing all this, the feminists thought, wow, men dominate everything, so society is set up to favor men. It must be great to be a man. The mistake in that way of thinking is to look only at the top. If one were to look downward to the bottom of society instead, one finds mostly men there too. Who’s in prison, all over the world, as criminals or political prisoners? The population on Death Row has never approached 51% female. Who’s homeless? Again, mostly men. Whom does society use for bad or dangerous jobs? US Department of Labor statistics report that 93% of the people killed on the job are men. Likewise, who gets killed in battle? Even in today’s American army, which has made much of integrating the sexes and putting women into combat, the risks aren’t equal. This year we passed the milestone of 3,000 deaths in Iraq, and of those, 2,938 were men, 62 were women.”

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