“it’s all about neutralization of maleness”
We have noted here many times the war on little boys in elementary school through the absurd application of “zero tolerance” rules, When do we finally stop the harassment of little boys by school administrators?
We also have noted Dr. Helen Smith’s book Men on Strike regarding how similar policies through college and beyond have had a negative impact.
So this recent interview with Camille Paglia in The Wall Street Journal is familiar territory, A Feminist Defense of Masculine Virtues:
‘What you’re seeing is how a civilization commits suicide,” says Camille Paglia. This self-described “notorious Amazon feminist” isn’t telling anyone to Lean In or asking Why Women Still Can’t Have It All. No, her indictment may be as surprising as it is wide-ranging: The military is out of fashion, Americans undervalue manual labor, schools neuter male students, opinion makers deny the biological differences between men and women, and sexiness is dead. And that’s just 20 minutes of our three-hour conversation…..
Ms. Paglia argues that the softening of modern American society begins as early as kindergarten. “Primary-school education is a crock, basically. It’s oppressive to anyone with physical energy, especially guys,” she says, pointing to the most obvious example: the way many schools have cut recess. “They’re making a toxic environment for boys. Primary education does everything in its power to turn boys into neuters.”
She is not the first to make this argument, as Ms. Paglia readily notes. Fellow feminist Christina Hoff Sommers has written about the “war against boys” for more than a decade. The notion was once met with derision, but now data back it up: Almost one in five high-school-age boys has been diagnosed with ADHD, boys get worse grades than girls and are less likely to go to college….
She sees the tacit elevation of “female values”—such as sensitivity, socialization and cooperation—as the main aim of teachers, rather than fostering creative energy and teaching hard geographical and historical facts.
By her lights, things only get worse in higher education. “This PC gender politics thing—the way gender is being taught in the universities—in a very anti-male way, it’s all about neutralization of maleness.”
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i dunno . Today walking back home i saw 2 police in flak jackets & a van walk into the public housing block with an arrest warrant.
i bet you 100 bucks they were there to arrest a male & not a female -even though they are both the same socio – economic status in there.
i had a brother who today may have been diagnosed with an adhd thing & it never left him . Subsequently he was imprisoned for many minor crimes , attracted bad friends & died young.
There has always been these boys . They usually died young due to war or what today is termed Mis -adventure. My brother was extremely adventurous & destructive when he was only 2. He wrecked my parents whole lives .
in earlier societies they would have been culled.
I don’t get your point. The discussion is about boys who try to do the right thing and are squashed.
You are right that it is not new. A Principal slapped me in the face in 2nd grade in 1942 because I tried to explain a situation and she just wanted dumb obeisance.
But, it is much more pervasive, and seemingly more organized now.
If I had a son, I would find a boy’s only school to get him started at least. And I would be alert for attempts to make him into a cookie cutter unisex human.
A percentage of male babies are destined to be superfluous in every society , just as young women were prone to dying in childbirth.
Biology never changes it is just our tools .
This is me, throwing a big, fat, BS flag atcha.
I went to parochial school as a child. In first grade, we had a little boy who couldn’t sit still, and eventually was taken from the classroom.
I could sit still. I had asthma, and I spent my entire elementary school career on strong antihistamines. I wasn’t strong, and I was half-asleep. That, and being a girl all made me just fine with finding a way to get the school out of my hair, which turned out to be by getting good grades, so I could read instead be bored.
That started in 3rd grade. Yeah, I’m smart, but what made me a good student was that I was weak.
Our schools are not arranged to promote, or even allow, physically vigorous children a way to get the motion their bodies quite rightly crave. Further, the ways of learning are very limited: not tactile, not physical, not experimental. Reading is only a part of the learning spectrum.
I agree Valerie – you’re points are spot on. The guy above you …. yea, wtf?
Yes it is easy to get thru school in any capacity eg you doped up., but to excel (eg to gain entry to oxford) from the 12th century boys had to master many things intellectual & physical.
You guys are suddenly giving boys an out as if boys have not been capable of surviving the hurdles since learning started .
In the military they simply demand boys rise to the occasion . iI ww1 & 2 they did . i think even in Vietnam .
School sux for many kids so what?
Admittedly, there are children that have to be medicated in order to be productive. But on the other side there are children that are very intelligent that just need structure and proper control to direct their energies in the correct direction. I was one of those children that was deemed to be difficult and uncontrollable. But my math skills were 2 years ahead of my peers and my reading skills were 6 years ahead of my peers. They tried to place me on Ritalin in 5th grade, my math and reading skills plummeted to a point that I had to repeat 6th grade. My parents took me off the drugs before my second attempt at 6th grade and it took me until high school to recover the lost ground.
The one and only thing our schools are good at is promoting conformity, anything out of the norm that doesn’t fit into some paper pushing pencil necks idea of normal gets pushed out and gotten rid of.
While my 3 year old is already reading and working on 2nd grade math. Mt attorney is already working preparing for the inevitable battles to come.
What ever to the “Men’s Movement” of the late 80’s early 900’s?
There was a lot of crap in there, but at least it was in the right direction.
When nature makes someone something, and you try to suppress it nature often finds a way of forcing it out.
One has to wonder how many of these mass murders ala Colombine are frustrated males made to behave like females by the educational system. how many of them come from some of these schools system and how many are home schooled or sent to some private institution which has not yet succumbed?
Banging drums is not the answer. But I know this, merely questioning the left gets you labeled a homophobe or a racist. It is absolutely nuts.
A frequent feature is broken or breaking homes. Not universally, but frequently.
The Code Of Chivalry was actually a VERY good thing in the main.
The ideal of a “gentle MAN” is still very much to be upheld and taught to boys and adolescent males, IMNHO.
If you don’t know the code, you should learn about it. It had some very Christian components. Could it be perverted? Sure. All ideals CAN. The test is in the main effect…not the aberrations.
It is my firm belief that only a MAN can teach other, younger men by example. And being held a gentleman is one of any man’s highest goals.
Rags, you’re singing Christina Hoff-Somers’s song: “Men: It’s in Their Nature”. Long before Paglia, Hoff-Somers has been sounding the alarm on the neutering of the American male via feminization, arguing that the traditional methods of socializing boys have been quite effective and should be employed. She says that trying to make boys into doll-playing girls with balls (my language) will cause them to revolt and produce exactly what we are seeing now.
I read long ago…decades…that what young men crave most is the approval of older men.
I was struck then that that is true, and have felt it reinforced often since.
Fathers are essential. Really good masculine role models are lacking. If you are one…or could manage to become one…you are needed. There is no lack of young males who need you. Our society certainly does.
Rags, you would be amazed to know how many Asian boys say that their father is their hero. Dad isn’t a rich guy. He’s just some average, everyday Schulz who goes about working hard to support his family, instilling in his son his ideas of manhood. As a consequence, son wants to be dad’s kind of guy. Not a low level worker, but a man of honor and responsibility. Just like dad/granddad or whatever man in the family who spent time with them talking to them and helping themselves to develop a sense of what it means to be a decent man.
Yep, That’s the most important forgotten factor of raising young men. It’s why those without a strong father figure in their youth will spend their lives seeking out father figures, usually of the bad kind. This yearning of boys pretty much explains urban gangs full of testosterone rich and violent youths who have absolutely no father figure in their lives. Instead, a violent 22 year old felon becomes “Daddy.”
Actually . . . Paglia is older than Hoff-Somers and has arguably been banging this particular drum for longer.
I’m curious about the professor’s singling out of zero tolerance as proof of a war on boys. Of course that was a very bad case, but it’s hardly representative. The problem isn’t discipline in schools but a lack of parenting at home. And that extends to parents who go full-helicopter when junior gets disciplined for disobeying and disrupting the classroom by jumping up and down.
Maybe we’d have fewer school administrators carrying on about ADHD is more parents taught their children to be respectful of teachers.
I wish there was more of an effort to not editorialize based on Breitbart-like gotcha headlines. Improves the aim.
I took my older son out of public school in October to home school precisely because of the treatment at the hands of the teachers and school administrators. His teacher wanted a psychiatric evaluation, because he wouldn’t sit still in his seat or would get up and go to the computers. She thinks rocking in one’s chair is a psychiatric disorder and knows that if he is diagnosed with ADHD or some other disorder two things will occur, first he will be medicated and second he will have a IEP (Individual Education Plan) that more than likely will take him out of her classroom for some or most of the day. A win-win for her.
You should have seen me on the day I was informed by the principal that a “file” was being created on a child that had hit my son. The purpose of the file is to remove the child from the mainstream classrooms, potentially the school entirely. Apoplectic is putting it mildly. When did school become adversarial? I could just see a file being created on my son that would follow him through his academic years and possibly longer.
Our family has been on a long road this summer, fall and winter. We started with our pediatrician, but when we told him we would not medicate our son, he was limited in what he could do for us. He recommended a program called Brain Highways, which addresses many issues from a neurological prospective, specifically that the brain can change at any time in life. Basically it involves developing the lower portion of the brain (the pons) and the mid brain. By doing specific physical activities the brain creates more synapses to handle all the information entering the brain through the senses. They have had a lot of success with children and adults who have various diagnosis, including ADHD, ADD, OCD, attachment and reactive disorders, vision problems, autism… the list goes on and on. They are now doing research to address eating disorders and self-harming behaviors.
Oh, one final thing, we later found out that the reason our son fidgets in his chair and wants to get up when doing seat work is actually a vision problem. Many of the behaviors used to diagnose ADHA and ADD are also symptoms of other disorders/problems and children are often misdiagnosed.
This came to mind (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qhgSHiRMubo).
Tony Soprano’s reaction would likely be mild compared to what I would say. Arrogant, do-nothing bureaucrats don’t impress me and don’t command much respect from me.
They have deliberately created a “hostile environment.”
ADHD/ADD is a crock invented to get unmanageable kids out of the classroom.As SC found out, there are or maybe issues physical health underlying the behavior; there may also be parental training issues. Some parents just don’t train their kids to focus on one thing. The kid is eating, takes a bit, runs to play with a toy, comes back, bites, is off again. Train the kid to sit at the table and focus. That prepares him for schooling.
Beyond that, though, there is the feminization of the public schools because men (thanks to the pedophiles and homosexuals, often the same) are regarded as predators. The whiny appeasing note in the voices of some teachers is a bit much for boys, especially as some researcher discovered that men don’t really hear women’s voices well.
Boys should be taught by heterosexual men. Preferably military-trained men and men who can do stuff with their hands, in addition to knowing their disciplines. In this way, the values of the society can be transmitted to them in the language of men and in the way boys can appreciate.
Have you been in the military recently? It’s an uber-PC feminized corps of bureaucrats and cubicle rats. Not a whole lot of “manliness” to go around there, either, unless we’re talking combat arms, USMC.
Abe, I am IN the military and what you are saying is a gross overgeneralization.
What IS happening is a literal purge of officers who are not politically reliable, and an elevation of officers and senior NCOs who are PC.
(btw – yea, this worked out so well for the Soviets when this happened in the 1930’s)
We have proven, no-nonsense combat commanders, those who SHOULD be promoted to the top, who are being passed over and forced out – and the PC police are making every stronger in-roads.
It really started with things like DACOWITS (Defense Advisory Committee on Women in the Services) and the uber elevation of any crime involving gender (harassment and such). Now, do not mistake me here – nothing wrong with gals in the military, and TRUE harassment needs to be addressed. That said there are whole career paths LAID OUT for female only candidates, and while it is damned hard to get a SR Officer in trouble, a single harassment charge can destroy their career.
As to boys in school – in the 90’s when the feminists made their huge strides in education, about the same time girls were actually reaching parity all on their own – they made “typical boy behavior” a disorder.
Instead of adapting schools to fit boys’ needs, as was done for girls, boys behaviors were deemed “wrong” and / or a “disorder” of some type, whereas girls stereotypical bad behavior (whisper campaigns, social isolation, character assassination, & false accusations) were made verboten to even discuss, much less address.
It’s all about leftist indoctrination: because leftists are threatened by American masculinity.
The goal is to make submissive pansies.
In that regrd, they’ve already succeeded with our president and his butch wife.
I, an old fashioned American male with a chivalrous side, would gladly hold the door and carry suitcases for Michele Obama as she leaves the White House.
Class action sex-discrimination lawsuits against targeted left-wing school districts in federal court. Demand that all the teachers and administrators take a few months of sensitivity training and that activities tailored to the needs of boys are added to the curriculum.
Maybe some lazer tag.
I think you are absolutely correct that parents; Fathers and Mothers, of boys should get organized to monitor and challenge some of the policies and practices. I am not a fan of litigation, but if that is what it takes so be it.
The subversion is going on at multiple levels; some overt and some obscured. Most districts have taken “shop” class out of the school. Those classes did more than teach specific skills, they provided a break from the humdrum, and an opportunity for creativity. But, my grandsons took cooking and sewing in middle school for @#%$$% sake. Fortunately, they got over it.
Much of what is happening is justified by “safety” concerns. Funny, during my school years we probably indulged in just about every activity that is now proscribed, including dodge ball at school, and bb gun wars at home. If anyone had worn a bike helmet they would have been laughed out of the neighborhood. I do not recall ever seeing a really serious injury. Of course we did not do the crazy things that you see on bikes, skateboards, snowboards and such, because we did not see those idiotic things glorified, and we learned some sense through trial and error.
One last thought. Some of the most content men I know have been builders, handymen, plumbers, electricians, and so forth. Especially satisfied were those who were self-employed, and those who could envision a project and then complete it with their own skills. I am thinking of one who had a son in graduate school, and a daughter in college. I wonder if those kids will experience the satisfaction that the father does?
” Fortunately they got over it ”
Many men have & have had businesses in food & clothing. i guarantee 90% of what you eat & wear is from a male directed enterprise.
i think they are every bit as proud of their achievements as your chosen male examples. and they are not even gay. every tailor /designer /textile trader i have known in the rag trade was male. One had a button empire of all things.
They are far more numerous than the girls who get through to the male fields.
This weekend, an eight year old boy I tutor, and whose behavior I’ve been observing for several weeks, gave me another part in the ongoing lesson on boyism.This included doing everything I wanted him to do, almost; trying to yank my chain to get out of doing what he didn’t want to; and remaining in constant motion while he was doing stuff both of us wanted.
He jiggered; hopped; screamed with delight (really); used his whole body to express his ecstasy at getting his exercises right; ignored what he didn’t want to hear, flopped on the sofa with his feet on it so he could draw me in, thus enabling him to jet off of it and scoot past; and, while playing his video game during a break, wiggled his head, his arse, his shoulders, and pretty much everything he could wiggle, pumped his fists, and shouted.
The classroom is not oriented towards behavior like this. Stateside, he might be diagnosed with ADD/ADHD. Yet, the boy was eminently productive and quite happy.
Sometimes, Paglia can be a conservative’s best friend. She nailed this dead on and she has never hesitated to criticize democrats.
After all, someone who is a booster of Drudge can’t be all wrong…
Societal incentives for men to be men have been diminishing for decades. Two of the biggest pulls are birth control and the entertainment industry, e.g., TV, pop “music,” and porn. Birth control frees men from responsibility. Rock music has been effeminate from the start, even adulating homo “artists.” The appeal is to the appetite to seek pleasure while prosperity lessens the need for hard work.
Fundamentally it’s a spiritual problem. The family is no longer recognized as divinely instituted, and is militated against. Boys who grow up in broken families are easy prey.
On a side note, but related – have you noticed the multi-level attack on, dismissal of, and derision towards the idea of male birth control?!
Yea, not entirely related – but bear with me for a sec. Each time there appears to be serious research towards, or the attempt to get funding for male birth control, feminist groups FREAK out. They attack the reasons for having it, they try to get the scientists discredited, they try to marginalize the need for it.
Here is where I am going with this: Generally, stereotypically, males are more individualistic than females. (don’t get riled up gals, it’s not a “better than you” comment) – Independence of action, of thought, and spirit is what they want to root out, and in my imperfect example, once again the idea that MEN and not SOLEY women having a say in such an deep area of their lives (reproduction) freaks out the control freak statists.
Condoms have been around for some time. helps not to screw idiot women also.
LSB, it’s her body, her choice, and in the view of the feminazis, she should be the only one who gets to decide what moves in or is thrown out. Besides, if there is birth control for men, then abortion will definitely decline even as STD’s rise. The feminazis insist on having abortion; it’s their holy grail.
Part of the lib/prog social agenda is obviously emasculation of males, accomplished via public school policies to stifle traditional male traits.
Another part that contributes here is that liberals don’t want leaders to emerge on their own merits and efforts – in their Orwellian future leaders are chosen. Therefore, all children must matriculate to adulthood in general conformity with one another and the liberal elites of this dream world will pick and choose who gets leadership positions (the most subservient and easily controlled, of course). This is why they hate the idea of American exceptional-ism, which is based on individualism, self-reliance, and love of liberty. A liberty-loving self-reliant individualist is impossible to control.
It is all about control and it is far easier to break a colt than a stallion.
IMO this all started back in the ’80s when Ritalin was used to drug young boys into submission for merely acting like young boys. This may sound conspiratorial but putting type A personality boys in a drug induced stupor (OK, I might be exaggerating a bit)was a feminist’s delight as it made it easier for girls to appear more competent