Are Men Really This Bad? Probably.

Patriarchy

Image courtesy of Christianity Today (believe it or not!)

Harvey Weinstein. Jeffrey Tambour. Roy Moore. Al Franken. Charlie Rose. Kevin Spacey. Bill Cosby. Danny Masterson. Louis CK. Donald Trump. Matt Lauer…and so on and so on.

These are but a few of the names that have recently been spotlighted as sexual predators.  We see their names in the news every day – a growing list of men who have embarrassed themselves, humiliated and abused women and have made our sex look incredibly vile. And there doesn’t seem to be many people who are surprised by this.  I feel like I have been finally been awakened but I’m really groggy.

I was going to write a post about how confused I am about this whole thing; that I wonder how these men have gotten away with these acts of perversion for so long and how they even had the gall to even do them in the first place.  I was even going to compare the acts of one perv to another to gain some personal perspective, but after I read it, I realized how much of an apologist I looked like. I hate apologists.

Then I thought about my own past and if there was ever anything I did that may have put some poor woman in a humiliating situation.  Did I take advantage of someone? Sure, I’m no Hollywood scumbag, but there are plenty of men who are normal Joes that are also guilty of these crimes, although they aren’t the headline du jour.  After reflecting for a while, I didn’t recall anything.

I then realized this was a useless exercise.  What if Louis CK thought to himself, “Hey, I asked and they said ‘yes’, so no harm, no foul, right?” Maybe Matt Lauer just thought he was being flirty?

The point is that we, as men, cannot judge our actions through our own eyes.  We cannot be trusted. Obviously. So we have to listen to the parties, the women, we have offended and we have to take their accusations seriously.  To say that they should have come forward sooner or to say that they acquiesced is to excuse our own abhorrent behavior.  The truth of the matter is that we should not have put them in that position in the first place.  Louis should have never even asked.  Roy should never have looked at a 14 year old (allegedly), Bill should have never cheated on his wife and therefore, never even have gotten in the position where he would slip women roofies.  Harvey should have kept his bathrobe in the closet and wore normal clothes and jerked off in the privacy of his own home – alone.  Just to name a few…

Are men really this bad? Perhaps we are.  Maybe we are addicted to the patriarchy.  Dr. Joseph Pleck seems to think that we can’t help ourselves from buying into it. He posits that men not only express power over women, but among each other.  We have ranks in the military for this purpose, for example.  Straight men seek to wield power over gay men by humiliating them and by trying to take away their rights.

And what do we do to encourage it, knowingly or not?  Is it as simple as painting the room blue for a baby boy and pink for a baby girl?  Does it happen as early as childhood – boys play with toy trucks and girls play with toy dolls? Or are we still so young in our evolution that we think we still need to be the Alpha Male, spear the largest buffalo, and assume power over our tribe?

I am hopeful that this is a watershed moment for our society.  I am hopeful that we are humble enough to reflect on ourselves as a sex as a whole and not just blame a “few bad apples”.  This time in our history has exposed us (no pun intended) as the insecure sex, not the stronger sex.  We need to let this happen to ourselves and be open to the changes that are coming. We need to evolve socially if we aren’t going to do it biologically.

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I Want to be a Tardigrade

tardigrade

(Credit image to atronoo.com)

Look at that little guy up there.  That is the tardigrade, which is also known as the “water bear” or “moss piglet”.  They are virtually immune to heat and cold and can even survive in space for a brief period of time.  I want to be a tardigrade and so should you. After all, they will be the last creatures on earth.  They will be there to shut the lights out or watch as the sun’s light flickers into complete and utter darkness – or a huge explosion that pretty much incinerates everything for millions of miles.

They will be here when the floodwaters come.  When you have an ice shelf twice the size of Luxemburg fall off into the ocean, you need to be a little concerned. That piece of ice is so big, we actually need to redraw maps.  But, the tardigrade don’t care.  He’ll be around.

If a comet or asteroid crashes into the planet, that’s not a problem for the water bear. He’ll just keep on truckin’.

If the apocalypse comes this time, for realsies, the tardigrade don’t give a flying fuck.  He’ll still be here doing what he does…tardigrading, I guess.

Tardigrades are meant to adapt to any environment.  They can live in boiling water and radiation.  Meanwhile, humans will still try to adapt to the planet we continue to destroy even though the Defense Department says that climate change is a direct national security threat. Yet, we are gutting the EPA and pulled out of the Paris Accord.  Our President has stated that Climate Change is a Chinese hoax.

The planet will be here long after we’re done, folks.  Eventually, we will run out of tricks and all that will be left is the tardigrade.  Bully for us.

Agnotology: We Are So Ignorant…

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Apparently, we are so ignorant, that there is actually an “ology” to study exactly how ignorant we are and how that ignorance is used against us. In fact, there is a whole book on it called “Agnotology: The Making and Unmaking of Ignorance” by Robert N. Proctor and Londa Schiebinger. Proctor actually coined the term. Hooray!

The definition of agnotology, as per Wikipedia, is “the study of culturally induced ignorance or doubt, particularly the publication of inaccurate or misleading scientific data.”

What does it say about our culture that we have a whole study on how incredibly gullible we are?  The storm of “fake news” has made us gun shy in trying to find the truth and the age of the internet is leading us down rabbit holes filled with traps – by our own design.

While Trump continues to use our ignorance against us and for him, his supporters don’t seem to mind.  His approval rating went up two points since his meeting with Vladimir Putin. Yeah, Vladimir Putin – the guy responsible for interfering in our 2016 election by using hackers to mislead the American public.  Trump supporters in Michigan believe that the Russia investigation is fake news. I wonder what these people thought of Clinton and Nixon.

What’s sad is that this assault on our intelligence is working.  During his campaign, Trump stated that he loved “the poorly educated”.  And he should since they voted for him. Exit polls showed whites without a college degree voted overwhelmingly for Trump by a margin of 67-28. The question is – what does this bode for the American public?

Sadly, I see one direction if we cannot shake out the sillies.  Idiocracy.  Sorry, folks, but we’re heading in that direction.

This Ain’t No Free Speech Zone!

free-speech-zone-reaction

(Image courtesy of hennesyview.com)

I recently had someone submit a comment on my last blog post and, due to its content, I denied publishing the test.  Basically, it was anti-Semitic, neo-Nazi bullshit and was totally unrelated to my “Divorce is Messy” post, so I marked the user as spam and moved on.

Let me be clear – This Ain’t No Free Speech Zone.  I don’t have to allow you to post wicked or unrelated comments.  I am not the government, so I don’t have to afford you that right.  In fact, that disclaimer is on my home page:

Disclaimer

This site is of the person, for the person and by the person and is, therefore, owned and operated solely by that person. That person is me, TJ. If you make any comments that I don’t like, I will remove them. This is not a free speech zone for everybody. So nana nana na na, poopface!

I purposely make it mandatory that all posts get approved by me for specifically this scenario. The troll scenario.  I don’t like trolls and I refuse to feed them here.  So, go elsewhere if you’re hungry.

And I don’t care if you don’t like it.  Tough shit.  If you want to have an honest debate, then let’s have it.  If you want to peddle your alternative facts or bigotry, then I ain’t buying and there is nothing that says I have to.