Horny Balorney

I read an article at Cracked a few days ago with a few misgivings but basically gave it a pass. Then, earlier today I came across this article.

I still appreciate that David made some good point in his usual fun and accessible style. I’m not aiming to throw it out with the bathwater, but with this kind of subject the nuance can be everything so it won’t keep me from sharing in the critique. Besides, any sincere ally should be at least initially receptive. Having said that…

I’m a little embarrassed for being drawn in.

I believe I was, mainly because he threw in the following points:

“Maybe it’s just a matter of having 10 times as much testosterone in their system, or maybe society has trained us to be like this, or maybe we’re all spoiled children.” (I tend to go with the “training” and “spoiled children arguments”)

“Whatever — nailing down the cause isn’t the point.”

…and then kinda sorta explaining that it’s our responsibility regardless, while still (I have to admit) catered to the “hey bro, *wink* *nudge*” mentality. Nailing it down may not be the point in considering our responsibility to do something about it, but it is important that we follow through with trying to figure it. We need test our hypotheses informed with social awareness and then applied against rationality.

An enticing narrative.

I found the arguement convincing on the surface because I have A.D.D. and a relatively high sex drive and am easily distracted. This combined with the constant media and social programming that make it not only EASY to look past the humanity of women when confronted with sexualized appearances, but indeed very difficult NOT to. It makes this kind of narrative very enticing.

Contrary to common understanding, a person’s gut reactions do not automatically follow one’s ideology. It can take much longer to reprogram our “lizard brain”. For myself, it’s not that I have trouble controlling overt behaviour, but more the subtle ways of how I think and feel and connect to my own sexuality which inevitably must have at least some effect on my personal interactions. There is a great human tendency to protect our egos by rationalizing these reactions at the expense of our ideology, rather than the other way around.

The politics of desire.

I think the author of this critique is pretty bang-on! It’s easy to look at our own struggles and subconsciously (or even consciously) presume that women don’t also have physical desires as strong or even stronger than our own. We wouldn’t necessarily hear about it as much since hetero women aren’t bombarded 100’s of times a day with sexualized depictions of men (and lesbian women are listened to even less than hetero women), indeed women’s sexuality has hardly been allowed much room to explore such things.

Essentially, off-the-mark.

Not to mention this idea that hetero-male sexuality is behind every “great” thing ever accomplished or created. It’s insulting to more than just hetero women. I wonder what trans and gender queer people would have to say about this. I dare say it’s even insulting to men! Is there no altruism? Is there no desire to create for the sake of and the enjoyment of simply creating. Are there no gay or asexual men who accomplish amazing things? It’s insulting, because it’s inaccurate.

Yes of course there is an aspect of male culture that does have us doing impressive or even absurd things (or both) in service of our ego, our desire to dominate, and our desire to mate (which often have a great deal of overlap). Yet, I don’t think hat essentialism is the whole or even majority part of the answer. There is a whole world of possibility outside of this framework.

In fact, I believe that our future lies there…

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Posted on March 30, 2012, in Feminism, Science and Skepticism, Social. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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