DrP

'Stupid Woman'

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47 minutes ago, MigL said:

I wonder...

If T May had made a good point, and J Corbyn had said "Intelligent woman", would that have applied to ALL women, or Just T May ?

This isn't what happened so the answer to the question, regardless what any of us suspect the answer to be, makes no meaningful difference and is speculative. 

In my opinion "intelligent Woman" would offend some people. I can see it being viewed akin to when minorities are said to be Well Spoken or Articulate. 

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There comes a time in every upwardly mobile Black person’s life when they encounter someone who tells them how “well-spoken” and “articulate” they are. It is usually a white person who is earnest and honest in their admiration of your verbal abilities, and in that moment, you swing between being appreciative and being totally offended. It’s a backhanded compliment at best, but mostly it’s a put-down, because no matter how much you’ve studied, how nice your clothes are, or how impressive your body of work is, people still expect little from you (because: minority).

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1 minute ago, MigL said:

I would not say I'm going to great length to label it an identifier.

I've repeatedly stated "I don't know" and therefore will not judge.
Others, apparently don't need to know to pass judgement.

 

Can I ask who you think is doing that? I'm afraid that we may be misinterpreting what people are trying to say.

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53 minutes ago, MigL said:

If T May had made a good point, and J Corbyn had said "Intelligent woman", would that have applied to ALL women, or Just T May ?
Why is an insult applicable to all womankind, but for a compliment it is just an identifier ?

And (in addition to Phi’s point) that looks like another straw man. I don’t think that anyone is saying it was addressed to all women. (But it may be symptomatic of more general attitudes to women.)

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1 minute ago, Ten oz said:

I can see it being viewed akin to when minorities are said to be Well Spoken or Articulate. 

Someone else: "You're a smart kid."

Me: "How dare you????"

I don't follow. I really don't see the point in getting overly offended about something like that. And I am a minority.

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4 minutes ago, Raider5678 said:

Someone else: "You're a smart kid."

Me: "How dare you????"

I don't follow. I really don't see the point in getting overly offended about something like that. And I am a minority.

If it were "you're a smart boy" would you be offended? 

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Posted (edited)
6 minutes ago, Ten oz said:

If it were "you're a smart boy" would you be offended? 

No. Because I'm smart enough to realize getting offended at something so trivial is ridiculous. Especially if you meant no offense by it. If I get offended by that, imagine how I'll react when somebody tells me something negative.

It'd be like you handing me a lollipop and me getting offended at what color it is. Take the damn lollipop and put up with it, I say.

 

But of course, this is all opinion.

Edited by Raider5678

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8 minutes ago, Raider5678 said:

Someone else: "You're a smart kid."

Me: "How dare you????"

I don't follow. I really don't see the point in getting overly offended about something like that. And I am a minority.

What if the implication appeared to be "you're surprisingly smart for a kid"? (Or, even more so if the implications was "Jewish kid" or "black kid" or "immigrant kind" or "female kid")

And what if you were convinced that was the implication because every day you got people referring to your "kid" status even when it wasn't relevant? 

This example reminds me of the Monty Python sketch with Jon Cleese:

Quote

 

Woman:  Look at him laughing... ooh, he's a chirpy little fellow. Isn't he a chirpy little fellow, eh? eh? Does he talk? Does he talk, eh?

Son: Of course I can talk, I'm Minister for Overseas Development.

 

(Ironically, I had to "censor" the name of the woman as it would not be considered acceptable nowadays!)

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30 minutes ago, MigL said:

I can pull up a couple of posts where you've called me "a fairly intelligent guy", Phi.

Please do so. I like to know where I make my mistakes. If there was no reason to single out your gender, I should have said "person". 

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34 minutes ago, MigL said:

I can pull up a couple of posts where you've called me "a fairly intelligent guy", Phi.

There is a fairly good argument to be made that "guy" has become (fairly) gender neutral. 

We are also limited by the fact that English requires a noun phrase in a sentence like that and there aren't that many good choices (using "one" or even "person" sounds a bit stilted in informal conversation).

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1 minute ago, Strange said:

What if the implication appeared to be "you're surprisingly smart for a kid"? (Or, even more so if the implications was "Jewish kid" or "black kid" or "immigrant kind" or "female kid")

 

I've heard the phrase "You're surprisingly smart for a teenager your age." more times then I can count. I am convinced that the implication is that other teenagers are dumb. I still don't care.

3 minutes ago, Strange said:

 And what if you were convinced that was the implication because every day you got people referring to your "kid" status even when it wasn't relevant

 

Happens more often then you'd think. I still really don't care, and it doesn't bother me. 

However, this is getting offtopic. Mainly, it was in response to the idea that getting offended by a compliment is akin to getting offended by something actually sexist/racist.

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4 minutes ago, Raider5678 said:

It'd be like you handing me a lollipop and me getting offended at what color it is.

Not at all. It'd be like me handing you a lollipop to show what an immature "kid" you are, to put you in your place. That's what we've been really talking about, despite your attempt to mischaracterize it in straw.

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2 minutes ago, Strange said:

We are also limited by the fact that English requires a noun phrase in a sentence like that and there aren't that many good choices (using "one" or even "person" sounds a bit stilted in informal conversation).

Hey, look, there was my original argument as to why I don't consider the saying "stupid woman" sexist.

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2 minutes ago, Strange said:

There is a fairly good argument to be made that "guy" has become (fairly) gender neutral. 

I thought about that, but I think "dude" is the word that fills that role. "Guy" is still masculine, in the US at least.

Words do change. In the US, at least in my area, if you call somebody "pal" it's most often sarcastic. They've probably just done something no "pal" would ever do. But I think women have taken it over, using it to refer to "gal-pals".

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1 minute ago, Phi for All said:

Not at all. It'd be like me handing you a lollipop to show what an immature "kid" you are, to put you in your place.

Right...... Because somebody who says "You're a smart kid." is clearly trying to show me how immature I am, and is trying to put me in my place.

 

Again, I am of the opinion that getting offended over stuff like this is not going to help me, or anybody else, in any way. I'm also of the opinion it's making it worse for others, by drawing ridiculous amounts of attention away from other situations where people actually do have problems with sexism and racism. 

And I acknowledge that we can walk and chew gum at the same time. And I'd be fine if that's what we were doing. But as a collective society, we're pretty simple-minded. So when we're spending days doing news reports on what somebody whispered under their breath, in a way that may or may not be sexist, we're not contributing to the real issues. We're shoving them under the bed.

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5 minutes ago, Raider5678 said:

I've heard the phrase "You're surprisingly smart for a teenager your age." more times then I can count. I am convinced that the implication is that other teenagers are dumb. I still don't care.

Maybe "kid" isn't a good example, because maybe you genuinely are smarter that the other kids around. :) 

But when you are just a member of the adult population, and therefore don't think people should have any particular expectations of you, I imagine it can get frustrating to be constantly either talked down to or praised for doing what any other member of society can do. 

7 minutes ago, Raider5678 said:

However, this is getting offtopic. Mainly, it was in response to the idea that getting offended by a compliment is akin to getting offended by something actually sexist/racist

I think it is exactly on topic. Unnecessary or irrelevant compliments may be just as insulting as explicit insults. Take another look at Ten Oz's post if you still don't get it:

 

10 minutes ago, Raider5678 said:

Hey, look, there was my original argument as to why I don't consider the saying "stupid woman" sexist.

:) 

(Of course, I don't agree with you.)

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10 minutes ago, Raider5678 said:

Right...... Because somebody who says "You're a smart kid." is clearly trying to show me how immature I am, and is trying to put me in my place.

They just might be. Unless you look like you're twelve, a man your age is almost fully grown, might need to shave, and is just a year short of being able to serve in the military. Why would anyone call you a kid unless they were either highlighting a disparity between your ages, or were reminding you of your age (for some reason), or they were trying make you seem less of a person because you're young? Do you really believe it would be to identify who they're talking about?

I'd be willing to bet there are older people where you work that see you as a threat. A young man with a fresh education could easily overstep their boundaries if they aren't put in their place with a few well-placed "kids" and a "youngster" thrown in every now and then. Just to remind everyone of the obvious, that you lack experience and clearly aren't to be taken as seriously as someone older. 

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2 minutes ago, Strange said:

But when you are just a member of the adult population, and therefore don't think people should have any particular expectations of you, I imagine it can get frustrating to be constantly either talked down to or praised for doing what any other member of society can do. 

Ultimately, I can't argue against this from any form of experience because I have yet to be an adult. 

That being said, I can still hear others complimenting people. And it's rarely them being praised for "doing what any other member of society can do." It's typically them being praised for something that not any other member of society can/will do.

Hence why it's a praise. 

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8 minutes ago, Raider5678 said:

Right...... Because somebody who says "You're a smart kid." is clearly trying to show me how immature I am, and is trying to put me in my place.

The problem is, you are a white male (as am I) so you don't experience people constantly putting you down (however subtly) or expressing surprise at your abilities (however subtly) because of the colour of your skin, your gender, your accent, etc.

I have experienced these things (because I have lived in countries where I am the minority) and it brought home to me exactly what female, black, Indian, etc. friends had been saying for years. They experience crap like this every single day. It is very rarely anything you could object to and claim someone is insulting you, but you are constantly being treated as "different" and either undeserving or remarkable for what you do.

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4 minutes ago, Strange said:

(Of course, I don't agree with you.)

Selectively choosing to apply arguments, or do you have a reason for why it doesn't apply here?

Just now, Strange said:

you are a white male

That's news to me. 

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2 minutes ago, Raider5678 said:

Selectively choosing to apply arguments, or do you have a reason for why it doesn't apply here?

I have explained earlier. I don't really want to go over it again.

2 minutes ago, Raider5678 said:

That's news to me. 

See how dangerous it is to make assumptions!

And I apologise if that assumption was in any way offensive... 

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Posted (edited)
8 minutes ago, Phi for All said:

They just might be. Unless you look like you're twelve, a man your age is almost fully grown, might need to shave, and is just a year short of being able to serve in the military. Why would anyone call you a kid unless they were either highlighting a disparity between your ages, or were reminding you of your age (for some reason), or they were trying make you seem less of a person because you're young? Do you really believe it would be to identify who they're talking about?

I'd be willing to bet there are older people where you work that see you as a threat. A young man with a fresh education could easily overstep their boundaries if they aren't put in their place with a few well-placed "kids" and a "youngster" thrown in every now and then. Just to remind everyone of the obvious, that you lack experience and clearly aren't to be taken as seriously as someone older. 

I know people who refer to anyone younger than 30 as kids. Pretty sure it's because they're used to referring to people my age as kids.

There are older people where I work who see me as a threat. I'd agree. I'd also agree that if I was older then them, they'd still see me as a threat. 

And quite frankly, I know of a few people who use my age as an insult, not a compliment, directly. It still doesn't offend me. In my experience, if I start acting butthurt about it they'll just do it more. 

 

5 minutes ago, Strange said:

And I apologise if that assumption was in any way offensive... 

It wasn't. Because I still hold to the opinion that getting offended over stuff like that is pointless. Unless you saw me in person. In which case I'd be slightly phased.

 

Edited by Raider5678

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1 hour ago, zapatos said:

The thing about institutionalized racism and sexism is that those who participate in it often have no idea they are doing so. So it behooves us to examine our behaviors when called out by others to make sure we didn't overlook something.

I think this is the main issue and much of the discussion has been focused on conscious intent. There is no doubt in the broader society that sexism is bad and often carries societal sanctions. It just appears more nowadays as behaviour is now more publicized (even for public persons and celebrities where baseline privacy was lower to begin with). Many do not realize that much of the systematic sexism (or racism or other discriminatory mechanisms) are not put in with a conscious sexism (or other ism) in mind. Rather, often they are intentionally or unintentionally borne of certain unconscious biases (other, often connected mechanisms include ignorance about certain gendered aspects of society). Thus, while there may be no conscious intents, the effects are still sexist in the end.

This does include certain biases against men, for example. To Corbyn's credit he does seem to understand the connotations and while it will be impossible to know his true intents, he does agree that the statement in itself is not ideal can be borne of the type of biases that have been discussed in this thread.

There are interesting studies regarding these biases, btw. Including a simple word association study, in which researchers measured how fast folks connect the term "thug" with photos of either white or black folks. As it turns out, people, even those that assume that they are not biased still connect thug with black folks faster. This is most likely due to cultural exposure where in the past black folks were often represented as gangsters, especially in media. While folks actively counteract these biases, it does show that the subconscious has not discarded this connection.

This, in turn can have real-life effects. For example in situation where deciding between job candidates is down to gut-feeling.

5 minutes ago, Raider5678 said:

I know people who refer to anyone younger than 30 as kids. Pretty sure it's because they're used to referring to people my age as kids.

And can you guess why folks (I do it myself in certain situations) use that phrase instead of addressing them as peers?

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4 minutes ago, CharonY said:

And can you guess why folks (I do it myself in certain situations) use that phrase instead of addressing them as peers?

Because when they get past the word "that", saying "peers" just sounds weird.

And saying "person" seems really awkward. So they say "That kid is pretty smart.".

 

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4 minutes ago, Raider5678 said:

I know people who refer to anyone younger than 30 as kids. Pretty sure it's because they're used to referring to people my age as kids.

I included that in my list of why-would-they. I think it's perfectly legitimate to call someone a kid if you're trying to emphasize a difference in age, unless you're implying something negative. This would include people who call you kid because they knew you when you were a kid.

 

8 minutes ago, Raider5678 said:

There are older people where I work who see me as a threat. I'd agree. I'd also agree that if I was older then them, they'd still see me as a threat. 

So? My point (stop ducking) was people often use a young age to imply a "kid" is less than a full human/worker/person. 

If you were older, how would they imply that your intelligence and expertise were in question? As it sits now, they can just keep calling you "kid" and hope the negative connotations are picked up on.

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16 minutes ago, Strange said:

I have experienced these things (because I have lived in countries where I am the minority) and it brought home to me exactly what female, black, Indian, etc. friends had been saying for years. They experience crap like this every single day. It is very rarely anything you could object to and claim someone is insulting you, but you are constantly being treated as "different" and either undeserving or remarkable for what you do.

I should say that, like Raider5678, I was never offended by these attitudes and experiences (perhaps for similar reasons). But I was bemused to see some other white males get very angry about being treated as "different". I was like, "dude, this is what other people have to put up with all the time where you/we come from". 

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