Obligatory Kenji picture
Plot Twist: The feminists control the world. Only Kenji can see this.
Okay, I’ll just take a moment to express that I love Kenji. I maintain that Katawa Shoujo has only one true ending and that ending is the bathroom scene with Kenji. You give him $20 for… some reason or another… ; ) Everything after that scene is just imagination on how bad life could’ve turned out.
Okay, to the main topic. I happen to be in the unfortunate situation of having many young female friends on Facebook. Many of which (if not all) are liberals. Now this isn’t a bad thing in it of itself. I myself have my own set of social policies that I would like to enact “for the good of us all” despite technically being closer to libertarian on most other issues. For example, I would like to see public transportation expanded drastically and the use of cars for daily commute cut drastically. The hope is that this will reduce emissions and clear the roads up, getting everyone to where they want to be or need to be a little faster. With (hopefully) fewer drunk drivers on the road, there should be less accidents and what few accidents there are should be less lethal because private cars hitting a bus doesn’t end well for the car due to Newton’s Third Law. I think it would be an improvement, feel free to comment or ask questions about it.
So why did I bring up my young liberal female friends? Well, I had posted an article that I had found stating that the wage gap is a myth. I thought that it made things quite clear and simple and I like to spread the word. A fiery one (female friend, that is) commented that it is real, and they have experienced it. Skeptical of the claim, I suggested that she take the company to court. She said that she would not because money? But surely she realizes that she’s sitting on a GOLD MINE for kickstarter or something? Like, if she could conclusively prove that the company was sexist, and unfairly paying their female employees less per hour for the same work then she could get a lot of money from them. She could get a lot of money from female rights activist organizations. She could also set the standard for women, to have them rise up and ‘fight the power’. She could make the nation better. If women are truly being paid less in the way of wages, I would 100% support taking it to ‘the man’. But fine, cases take time and money and it does nothing for her current situation.Fair enough, I quoted some studies and asked her if two independent studies reach the same conclusion, why would she assume that the results of these studies were false. And her response told me something interesting. It told me that she has accepted a reality and refuses to admit any information that contradicts it.
Her response was (paraphrased) “These studies were probably done by men”. The implication being that these studies are lies, designed to maintain a status quote of pinning women down. And what I think this means, is that in her mind the wage gap is an absolute truth, that men are keeping women down. Of course, the best way to discover whether or not this is true is to ask the question. The big question, the win condition. “What would it take, what could I provide that would convince you that the wage gap is a myth?” If the answer to that question is ‘nothing’ then I would be wasting my time. It’s no longer a rational discussion. It’s a religious discussion, and nobody wins those.
It’s a real shame too, because religious mentalities are often detrimental to society. Ludwig Boltzmann, slightly ahead of his time, had the audacity to suggest that matter were composed by many small particles called atoms or molecules. He was mocked by his contemporaries. Existence can be fragile, and despite being married and having children, it seems being mock out of scientific circles was too much for him. He took his family on a beach vacation and while his family was enjoying themselves, he committed suicide. And think that this is tragic. I think life is precious, and when a person is driven to take their own life, it’s unbearable. It’s a sign of failure as humanity. It should not happen. Christ, just thinking about this, writing it out makes me cry.
I’m a student, that’s obvious by now. Students sometimes attend seminars or presentations and the whatnot. I once attended a presentation in which the speaker contrasted Dark Matter and Modified Newtonian Dynamics. The speaker had a slide in which they quoted a Dark Matter advocate. The quote was something like (again, paraphrased), “let the MOND believers waste their time and money. That just means more research for me!”. There’s A LOT wrong with a statement like that. It’s arrogant for sure, but it’s entirely unscientific. I can’t remember if it were a nobel laureate, but it was certainly a Ph.D holder. To claim that those pursuing an alternative model are flat-out ‘wasting their time’, essentially saying that they are wrong, is beyond science. Science should be about crafting models and if the evidence supports these models. If the evidence doesn’t support these models, discard the models. But if you believe there’s a way the evidence could fit the model or a refined model, go for it. Make predictions and test them against reality.
And I wouldn’t care so much if I didn’t feel like such faith was ultimately destructive to society. There’s a great Family Guy scene in which characters Stewie Griffin and Brian Griffin go to an alternate universe and everything looks quote-unquote “futuristic”. Brian asks what year it is and Stewie responds that it’s the current year. The reason the world looks so futuristic is because the dark ages of Christianity never occurred, so the world is 1000 years more advanced from our current year. And this poses an interesting question, is it plausible? We landed on the moon in 1970, could we have done it then in 970? I’m skeptical. I don’t believe that the dark ages stunted scientific progress that much in terms of ideas. No doubt people were working on their own. The question is interesting because it asks the question of how does blind faith affect society, is this blind faith beneficial? Can it be beneficial? I’ll leave that question to ‘the motivated student’.
So where am I really going with this? I don’t really know. I guess what I really want to get across is how this idea of faith should be removed from arguments. Because how do you properly counter these sorts of arguments? When it comes to assumptions, they have to be justifiable. When I discuss voting, and the idea of democracy, I often argue with the assumption of the rational actor, that all voters vote based on their self-interest. Is that a reasonable assumption? Let’s liken it to survival. A being whose focus is on the individual is more likely to… proliferate when given resources. Compare that to one who is more willing to yield these resources to others. Survival scales with available resources. It also makes sense that people with like interests will band together to increase their collective survival rate. This is why animals form pack structures. So in democracy where the largest pack gets the power, being part of that pack by nature of shared interests in oneself is an advantage.
Tangent over now (sorta). I don’t view this overarching conspiracy of women being oppressed to be reasonable. More women are accepted to higher education. Girls in school are graded easier. They suffer less reprimandation for actions in school. They have more scholarships thrown at them for being women (ESPECIALLY IN STEM FIELDS. FEMALE READERS TAKE NOTE). They suffer less jailtime for the same crime. They can destroy a man’s life with the utterance of a single accusation. They can separate fathers from their children. Women have a boatload of power in this system. I have a difficult time believing women will get paid less for the same work when they have all of this other stuff going for them. And the data supports my views.