Your betters are at it again. This time it’s the philosopher kings who think boys can be girls striking a blow against supposedly “harmful” sex stereotypes by banning them in advertisements. Of course, many have asked who will judge what’s harmful, but a more fundamental question is ignored: Are so-called sex stereotypes really bad?
As the Japan Times reports:
Hapless husbands and housework-burdened moms are being banished from British advertising as a crackdown on “harmful” gender stereotypes came into force Friday.
Under new rules, advertisements must not include gender stereotypes that are likely to cause harm or serious or widespread offense.
Examples include depictions of a man failing to change a diaper or a woman to park a car, or ads that suggest women are solely responsible for cooking and cleaning.
Complaints will be assessed by industry watchdog the Advertising Standards Authority. It doesn’t have the power to impose fines, but British broadcasters are bound by the terms of their licenses to comply with its rulings.
Providing further detail, the AFP writes, “‘Harmful gender stereotypes in ads can contribute to inequality in society, with costs for all of us,’ ASA chief executive Guy Parker said in a statement.”
Nonsense. “Inequality,” per se, doesn’t cost society, a good thing since there’s no such thing as equality in society. What does have consequences is a lack of quality, as I’ve explained before. And as elusive equality is emphasized, quality is de-emphasized.
Imparting more wisdom, Parker also stated, “Put simply, we found that some portrayals in ads can, over time, play a part in limiting people’s potential,” the AFP also relates.
This is an interesting concept. Is it possible that “sex stereotyping” (“gender” is the wrong term) is sometimes actually positive sex-specific training that doesn’t limit potential, but guides it? Let’s examine the matter.
Social engineers often warn today about putting children in a “gender straitjacket” (again, misusing the term); they say we mustn’t impose values on kids but let them beat their own path. But consider: Would we likewise warn against placing kids in a species straitjacket? Before answering, know that just as the psychobabblers define “gender dysphoria” — the strong sense you were born in the body of the wrong sex — they also speak of “species dysphoria,” the strong sense you’re an animal stuck in a human body. (Note: A Texan going by the name “Wolfie Blackheart” claimed she was a canine and a Norwegian woman calling herself Nano swore she was a cat.)
But does this mean we shouldn’t put children in clothes, have them eat with utensils, and teach them language, manners, and everything else befitting a human because they may later identify as a ferret?
What if, just as we raise a boy in a species-specific way because he’s not an animal, we should also raise him in a sex-specific way because he’s not a girl?
After all, if a child has a gift for music, do we treat him exactly the same as a kid gifted in golf? Are we constrained by “equality” dogma? Or do we offer one music-specific training and the other golf-specific training?
Likewise, is “sex stereotyping” really a negative force? Or is it just a matter of recognizing boys’ and girls’ characteristic gifts and giving them sex-specific training allowing them to develop those qualities fully?
Note, too, that a person’s “potential” can be realized and exercised in different ways, and this brings us to what’s harmful to women (which is what this is really about). Just as a given man’s potential for great dynamism and bravery could result in his becoming a vicious criminal or a virtuous law-enforcement officer, a given woman’s great mind could be directed toward teaching other people’s kids in college or teaching her own at home. Which is the better choice?
At the societal level, first consider that fertility rates are below replacement level in virtually every Western country and the better part of 100 nations worldwide. Female careerism is implicated in this, as women focused on job success delay having children and sometimes bear none at all. Of course, this may please the misanthropes and Muslim supremacists (“We’ll outbreed Westerners in their own lands”), but it doesn’t perpetuate civilization.
On a personal level, are women really happier ending up spinsters surrounded by cats (so to speak)? For that matter, is childlessness a meaningful course for most men?
As for women, there is, today, this notion that being a housewife is somehow small, trivial, and an inferior status to that of careerist. But G.K. Chesterton refuted this idea beautifully in his 1910 book What's Wrong With the World, writing:
Babies need not to be taught a trade, but to be introduced to a world. To put the matter shortly, woman is generally shut up in a house with a human being at the time when he asks all the questions that there are, and some that there aren’t. It would be odd if she retained any of the narrowness of a specialist.
... To be Queen Elizabeth within a definite area, deciding sales, banquets, labors and holidays; to be [William] Whiteley within a certain area, providing toys, boots, sheets, cakes, and books, to be Aristotle within a certain area, teaching morals, manners, theology, and hygiene; I can understand how this might exhaust the mind, but I cannot imagine how it could narrow it. How can it be a large career to tell other people’s children about the Rule of Three, and a small career to tell one’s own children about the universe? How can it be broad to be the same thing to everyone, and narrow to be everything to someone? No; a woman’s function is laborious, but because it is gigantic, not because it is minute.
Tragically, though, the social engineers would make it minute today, imposing their careerist values on little girls. This phenomenon also reflects our time’s materialism, the perspective of those who know “the price of everything, and the value of nothing,” to quote an Oscar Wilde character. We’re supposed to believe you’re better off being a cog in the economic machinery and making money than being a creator of men and making civilization’s tomorrow.
It’s a strange conception, indeed, of saving people from harm.
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