[an error occurred while processing this directive] [an error occurred while processing this directive] Sexism issues [an error occurred while processing this directive] [an error occurred while processing this directive]

A Few Points on Sexism


| Why does [using 'he' when talking about a generic person]
| alienate half the populace? 
| ...my wife has never been alienated, by the male pronoun,
| why do we assume that half the population is alienated?.
|
I agree, it's less than half. But (like somebody else reported), I've known women who realized they did feel a bit left out. One friend had read an instruction manual where *every* example was cast in the form of "she" rather than "he"; her response was "Wow! I finally felt i was being talked to, and not just standing on the sideline!" Not all women will feel that way, but enough of a market share that if i ever market a product (fat chance), i'll be as inclusive as possible.

Something else to consider: pyschology studies easily confirm: if you tell somebody something over and over, they tend to start to internalize it. Consider saying to someone, subtly for 20 years, "nurses and maids are 'she'; airline pilots and d&d players are 'he'", and many will let it affect their choices, w/o ever realizing it.

[This can hold even when it's pointed out to people: "i don't pay attention to commercials; they don't affect what i buy." But i suspect advertisers aren't dummies who waste money; commercials *do* cause enough people to spend money, whether they're fully aware of why they decided to buy a certain product or not.]

| To my thinking, female-centric sexism is just as bad as male-centric sexism.
| Replacing one with the other is not desirable.
|
But our society isn't neutral to start with (eg, male:female salaries for comparable jobs are still way out of whack; senator genders 98:2, etc); i'd rather err on the side of the group that's more adversely affected.

But i agree with you, neither is desirable.

|
| he,she ==> it ..
|
The way things seem to be going, using the plural form for unspecified-singular seems to be gaining widespread usage, and is becoming less awkward:
"A person doesn't just have my respect automatically; they have to get on their knees and grovel for it!"
(Yeah, the plural is as incorrect as insinuating that only males are involved, but again i'll err on the side that doesn't reinforce (what i see as) an existing injustice.)

Blah blah -- i'm not trying to force other people to change; just explaining why i see things they way i do. Cheers --

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