How to fuck up your argument in one easy step.

Posted: November 6, 2013 in Uncategorized

‘Gender is a social construct’

The above sentence is something that I keep seeing a lot lately. I haven’t researched exactly what it means, but taking my knowledge of the words ‘gender’, ‘social’ and ‘construct’ I’m pretty sure I can give it a good go – the idea that, while we can’t determine our sex, we are either born with a penis or a vagina, the ‘gender’ with which we identify is fluid and completely determined by social structures. Then you get words like ‘non-binary’ and ‘genderqueer’. From what I can understand there are some people out there that do not identify as completely male or completely female, some people fall between the lines. They may look like men or women and have respective reproductive organs but they do not identify as such.

It’s confusing, I consider myself a pretty enlightened person but I struggle with the idea that, for thousands of years, our societies seemed to function, and thrive, on two particular gender roles – nurturer and provider. Women gave birth and raised babies, men provided food, shelter and protection. I know that’s an extremely over-simplified way of looking at it, and there have always been anomalies over the thousands of years of human existence but, generally speaking, you wouldn’t go too far wrong to look upon gender roles in the past as a necessity for survival.

Obviously, modern day life has eradicated much of the need for traditional gender roles. I’m not using this blog entry to talk about gender roles in 2013 and non-binary feelings towards it. I won’t do that for 2 reasons, 1) I really have no idea, at this moment in time, what I’m talking about, it’s a topic that has found me through Facebook posts and such rather than me finding it, and 2) I have a really good blog shaping up already!

Whilst I appreciate that different people feel strongly about different things, I absolutely hate it when people present something subjective and clearly opinion-based as absolute fact. I teach it in schools, how to present opinions as fact, it’s a legitimate persuasive technique, but that doesn’t mean it makes me any more happy to see it being applied. I hate the arrogance that goes with the usage. The arrogance that suggests one person’s opinion is so important and matters so much that they can present it as an absolute and people will just accept it.

By all means, be confident about your beliefs and be steadfast in your application of them, but don’t automatically assume that I agree with them simply because you like the way it sounds. Don’t be so far up your own arse that you can’t comprehend others have opposing views and, please, for God’s sake, don’t get offended or upset if I choose not to accept your beliefs, even if your oh, so confident preaching of them was up there with The Sermon on the Mount!

One such meme I found on the internet a couple of weeks ago falls foul of what I like to call The Dipshit Factor. Somebody so assertive in their views, somebody so confident that they are right that you can see the smugness dripping off them. It’s a lot harder to see smugness in pictures, but this one just about manages to cover it. It’s dripping with smugness, with a sense of self-indulgence and self-satisfaction. ‘Look at me, I can use all these big words to prove my point, I will put my point in such definitive, absolute fashion that it becomes very clear – if you disagree, you’re a monster who wilfully wishes these gender-confused people a life of misery and heartache.”

Actually, let’s take a look at this particular meme and see why I chose to bring it up when it talks about a subject I freely admit I still haven’t got my head around:

 

http://i1276.photobucket.com/albums/y472/johnsalmonworld/IMG_2599_zps61291d65.jpg

 

Ah, look at all those big words; binary, hierarchy, sadistic, murderous, demarcates, geopolitical and patriarchy. Seriously? Demarcates and Geopolitical? What the fuck, seems like a lot of big words to try and convince us they know what they are talking about.

I would have some level of respect for this meme as it does present a very passionate view of what gender is, it is not male and female, it is not a black and white application of roles within a society, it is much more than that, affected by society as much as anything. But then it says gender splits us in half.

Wait, what? Gender is not binary? But it does split us in half. We know one half of that is male, as it mentions later in the paragraph, so what’s the other half? Women, perhaps? If so, where do all the genderqueer people fit? Seriously confused now. It would appear, in their attempts to explain exactly what gender is, they’ve actually contradicted themselves, and in turn confused anyone who’s reading their message.

But that’s not the best part. They go on to say it splits us in half, which is confusing enough, but then drops this nugget:

“That half is not horizontal, it is vertical. And in case you missed this part, men are always on top.”

Smash the patriarchy, and all that other rubbish. Men are always on top, which means….wait…what? What?

Ignoring the fact that the idea of gender being split horizontally or vertically is ridiculous anyway, it splits up vertically, and men are always on top? Now, maths has never been my strong point, but I’m pretty sure horizontal looks like this:

http://i1276.photobucket.com/albums/y472/johnsalmonworld/horizontal_zpsef01ea72.png

And vertical looks like this:

http://i1276.photobucket.com/albums/y472/johnsalmonworld/vertical_zps1ca361b6.png

 

So, how the fuck can men always be on top if there is no top to begin with? The only way men could always be on top if is gender splits us horizontally, but it doesn’t, it splits us vertically. Ironically, that vertical split is about as close as you’re going to get to gender equality. Two equal size blocks stood next to each other, no one block taking up more space than the other.

So, not only has this person confused themselves, and me, with their rather overly opulent use of perfidious language (see, anyone can beautify their language to sound intellectual), they’ve based the entire crux, the focal point, the absolute ending of their argument on something that, technically, proves the exact opposite of what they were intending. So, gender is non-binary, but splits us only into two groups, one of which is male, which leaves us to assume the other is female. Then, those two halves are not split horizontally, but vertically. Split in such a way that men are always on top, even though the only way men can always be on top if is gender is split horizontally?

Nice going, dipshit.

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Comments
  1. shi oh says:

    do the things you like; let others be wrong.

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