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Author Topic: Elliquian Atheists  (Read 35555 times)

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Offline Healergirl

Re: Elliquian Atheists
« Reply #950 on: April 09, 2013, 01:45:43 PM »
Kythia,

Your friend's argument is valid.  However... vegetarianism is, from a biological standpoint, a survival-limiting behavior for humans.  We are omnivores by evolution.  Going vegetarian flies in the face of the genetic coding that leads us to consume whatever is available that doesn't actually poison us quickly - and we can learn to avoid foods that poison us slowly if they don't give us a short-term euphoric benefit.  We can choose to go vegetarian, but it is a choice that conflicts with what our digestive systems are designed to do, and what our hindbrains drive us to do.

This is not a statement on the morality  of vegetarianism, it is a statement  of why I think  vegetarianism is rare.

I understand why many feel that regarding sexism as innate is harmful, and it is harmful to a degree, the shellback conservatives will throw the "It's natural" argument in our faces.    But if we don't consider the possibility, in my case, I think probability that sexism has deep seated secure roots  that were sunk far before the modern era that are underestimated at our peril, we are in for an increasingly nasty series of shocks as we strive to eliminate it. And in terms of nasty shocks, as women continue to acquire more economic and political power, I do wonder if the worst is yet to come in terms of counterreaction.

For example:  The current  emerging cultural attitude in the US that belittles college degrees is growing at the same time it is sinking in to more people that women are more likely to get college degrees than men.  I don't think this is a coincidence.

Many innate behaviors become harmful as the physical and social environment of an organism changes, and so  the behaviors must change to make continued survival more likely. But changing a behavior which is a conscious choice is one thing,   Digging  into human hindbrains to chang emore deep-seated behavior is considerably more difficult.  I am not saying it is impossible, and it is certainly desirable but... Well, look at all the fundamentalist religious movements around the world, differing wildly in structure and beliefs - the one thing they all seem to agree on is the common notion that women must be kept down in their place.  An attitude that crosses a great number of social boundaries.

Again, I fully understand the reluctance to call sexism innate.  However, innate is not immutable, it is "just" harder to change.

I freely admit that I am something of a cynic, no doubt this fuels my opinions on this subject.

 But I am also something of an optimist, if sexism is the "I" word many do not want to use, I nonetheless believe it can be a changeable behavior.

Offline Pumpkin Seeds

Re: Elliquian Atheists
« Reply #951 on: April 09, 2013, 03:28:19 PM »
The innate nature of sexism is largely a myth though.  Once more looking at our earliest ancestors and advancing into their first hunter/gatherer societies, we are looking at a largely equalitarian society.  Division of labor was separated into hunting and defense, which largely belonged to the larger males, and then child rearing and food gathering (supplying an estimated 90% of the food) was given over to the women.  There was a division of labor, but both contributed to some aspect of the community.  Among some tribes women did defend the community, wielding weapons to protect their offspring and homes.  So while there is a division of labor, there is not necessarily a division of power.  This is key in understanding sexism.

Agriculture took from women the gathering aspect where a large part of the food was contributed by their efforts.  Men did not have to hunt and so turned toward farming.  Farming, especially at the inception, was very time consuming and difficult work.  Women focused on child rearing and helping around the farm, but helping is always considered secondary to the actual farming.  So women still contributed but the large amount of physical contribution came from the man.  No husband to farm meant no food, no food meant starving children and wife, starving children and wives meant society breaks down.  So then the man becomes the focal point of the economy.  Women did farm, but obviously splitting their time between children and farming would have been disastrous in the early days.  Lack of medical care, lack of technology to make the job more efficient and easier and so on simply made “man farming, woman taking care of the home” an efficient model.

Saria is correct that modern civilization is based off this early agricultural society.  So modern civilization was built off this model of the man does the work and the woman tends to the home.  This model which was very efficient at one point in history has been codified into the psyche of our species as natural.  Men did not wish to give up such power through the ages as no person wants to give up any power.  The model served men well and so time marches forward with women become more and more subjugated.  This came to a head though as the model became inefficient and served to drag down the economy and harm civilization.  From an economics stand point having only half of a given population work is fool hardy.  So in a modern era of industrialization where both partners can contribute financially and own the means of production while tending to children, the model became inefficient.

As for the devaluing of work and accomplishment this is also belongs to the nature of sexism.  Similar fields have also become devalued with the influx of women into the field.  Studies have shown that the prestige of a job rises if a man is seen as being in the field or the field being dominated by men.  For instance, chef vs. cook; professor vs. teacher; tailor vs. seamstress.  Also look at traditionally female dominated fields such as nursing which has seen a massive influx of men while at the same time the power of the field has rapidly expanded along with the educational prestige and requirements.  Contrast this with pharmacology and medicine where women are becoming more prevalent and yet the prestige is at an all-time low.   This is not a “natural” occurrence as much as a result of societal perception and movement.

Offline Healergirl

Re: Elliquian Atheists
« Reply #952 on: April 09, 2013, 03:39:47 PM »
Pumpkin Seeds,

I devoutly hope innate sexism is a myth, the coming generation  of women will face  a much easier row to hoe if that is the case.

Offline Skynet

Re: Elliquian Atheists
« Reply #953 on: April 09, 2013, 04:09:30 PM »

For example:  The current  emerging cultural attitude in the US that belittles college degrees is growing at the same time it is sinking in to more people that women are more likely to get college degrees than men.  I don't think this is a coincidence.

Many innate behaviors become harmful as the physical and social environment of an organism changes, and so  the behaviors must change to make continued survival more likely. But changing a behavior which is a conscious choice is one thing,   Digging  into human hindbrains to chang emore deep-seated behavior is considerably more difficult.  I am not saying it is impossible, and it is certainly desirable but... Well, look at all the fundamentalist religious movements around the world, differing wildly in structure and beliefs - the one thing they all seem to agree on is the common notion that women must be kept down in their place.  An attitude that crosses a great number of social boundaries.

I think that the best way to fight sexism is to combat religious conservatism and anti-intellectualism.

A lot of the most secular nations are also the friendliest towards women, while a lot of the most religious ones have the most oppressive gender-related laws.  And the most religious ones often deny women (and sometimes the whole populace) the opportunity to pursue higher education.

There's also the matter that education exposes people to new ideas and can help prepare them for all manner of careers and jobs.  It's also harder to oppress and trick a well-informed populace.

As for the 'prestige of jobs' statement, I also think it ties back into the education aspect.  More educated women equals a wider labor force, which challenges the status quo for religious conservatives and anti-intellectuals.

Pumpkin Seeds,

I devoutly hope innate sexism is a myth, the coming generation  of women will face  a much easier row to hoe if that is the case.

There are differences between the genders, which are often used as an excuse to restrict womens' behavior (often by political and religious leaders).  But differences do not preclude the possibility of an egalitarian society.  Countries like Sweden have made leaps forward for women in employment, education, and overall independence and freedom.  A lot of the worst forms of sexism come from deeply entrenched social institutions rather than 'innate' behavior.
« Last Edit: April 09, 2013, 11:25:58 PM by Skynet »

Offline Healergirl

Re: Elliquian Atheists
« Reply #954 on: April 09, 2013, 04:21:38 PM »
Skynet,

You are bolstering my hope for the future... the cynic in me hates that.

Offline Skynet

Re: Elliquian Atheists
« Reply #955 on: April 10, 2013, 12:50:01 AM »
Skynet,

You are bolstering my hope for the future... the cynic in me hates that.

But hope is one of the most powerful weapons of all.  You can't win a battle without hope.

Offline Pumpkin Seeds

Re: Elliquian Atheists
« Reply #956 on: April 10, 2013, 04:19:24 AM »
I am not sure if religious conservatism and anti-intellectualism are the true variables to monitor for the suppression of women.  If anything I would say the equality of men and women is more natural than sexism.  The women to follow us will have their own bridges to cross and their own paths to blaze.  There are definitely things that our society, both men and women, will need to handle before equality will truly be there.  Still there are steps taken and must has happened in a short amount of time.

Offline Vanity Evolved

Re: Elliquian Atheists
« Reply #957 on: April 10, 2013, 09:12:02 AM »
I am not sure if religious conservatism and anti-intellectualism are the true variables to monitor for the suppression of women.  If anything I would say the equality of men and women is more natural than sexism.  The women to follow us will have their own bridges to cross and their own paths to blaze.  There are definitely things that our society, both men and women, will need to handle before equality will truly be there.  Still there are steps taken and must has happened in a short amount of time.

Well, for just a couple of examples, England was (and still is, rather) an overly Christian nation, a religion which teaches that women are not leaders, they're not to speak or teach. They are to follow, to be owned by their husband, by their father, by their rapist. They are commodity to be traded, not a person to be respected (but then, in Christianity, everyone is a commodity; no person is worth anything. Original sin, only thing humans should do is try to get into Heaven, etc.)

Also, two of the Asian cultures I'm slightly more familiar with are both heavily steeped in conservatism, a good portion of it if not religious, but philosophical; Japan and China are still largely sexist countries. In Japan, even though in earlier eras, had some form of 'equality' for women (the wives of samurai were owners of the household and keepers of the family earnings), women are still subservient, all through the idea of a religious caste system involving a huge amount of divine trickle down; the Shogun answered to Heaven, who answered to by their Daimyo, who were answered to by their samurai, who were answered to by their wives, and so on. And Chinese households nowadays still cling to hugely traditional notions that the woman is passive and supportive, while the man takes control and owns the family line, to the point still having a culture obsessed with male children to carry the line on and hand down the family ownings. This, however, is more a Confucian ideal (so philosophical more than religious) ideal, but still based on the assumption that (analogy or not) this is the way things are supposed to be, 'all under Heaven'.

Like with homosexuality and the opposition against gay marriage, I can't think of any secular reason why a woman shouldn't treated equally to a man. Multiple religions, -prominent- religions (Christianity and Islam being the two major ones I personally know about) have many things to say on women and their position in life, however, and none of them are particularly pretty or egalitarian.

Skynet,

You are bolstering my hope for the future... the cynic in me hates that.

Hope is the first step on the road to disappointment! :3 Cynicism is deliciously miserable like that. But yeah, I'm pretty certain things will get better for women.

Offline Sethala

Re: Elliquian Atheists
« Reply #958 on: April 12, 2013, 04:54:49 PM »
One statistic I've found recently while looking into this...

In almost all categories based on marital status, age, and children, women earn less on average than men.  However, one notable difference is in young people (I believe in the 20-30 age range, though I don't have the study handy right now) who are single with no children, women tend to earn more than their male counterparts, especially when comparing people with higher earnings.

Looking at people who are single with no children, I think, is the most important factor to focus on because that demographic doesn't have any sort of family dynamic to influence what kind of job people look for.  In families, the general trend is that the husband takes a job where the main concern is higher income, while the wife takes a job where the main concern is convenience, which skews the statistics.  (I'm not trying to say that this is how things should be or how they are in all cases, just what the most common family is like.)  Also, looking at younger people is important to tell where things are going in the future; older demographics tend to echo the status from when they were younger, and aren't as representative of current trends.  So overall, I think things are looking up for equality.

Offline Pumpkin Seeds

Re: Elliquian Atheists
« Reply #959 on: April 12, 2013, 05:47:01 PM »
I would have to see the study, but I would also contend that the study involves certain professions that work to a woman's advantage as they are younger.  Women tend to get larger tips as waitresses, strippers, and bartenders.  The 20-30 bracket is sort of prime for those types of jobs for women.  There are also jobs that have a low entry level that produce good money such as nursing (can be a nurse by 22) and teacher, both of which are female dominated fields.  The problem women face is the escalation and advancement.  Also its not fair to tell women, "oh by the way so long as you don't reproduce you'll be doing good but we still expect you to have babies.  Good luck!" 

Offline Sethala

Re: Elliquian Atheists
« Reply #960 on: April 12, 2013, 09:07:11 PM »
Unfortunately I'm having trouble tracking down the link I found that broke it down even further by education level (short version: men earned more compared to women when both had lower education, but women earned more when both had higher education), but USA Today ran a piece on the study: http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/money/workplace/2010-09-01-single-women_N.htm

Offline Ephiral

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Re: Elliquian Atheists
« Reply #961 on: April 12, 2013, 09:31:32 PM »
Unfortunately I'm having trouble tracking down the link I found that broke it down even further by education level (short version: men earned more compared to women when both had lower education, but women earned more when both had higher education), but USA Today ran a piece on the study: http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/money/workplace/2010-09-01-single-women_N.htm
The article you cite points out a couple of huge holes in your argument, though:

1. If you consider all women in that age group, the pay gap is still 10% in favour of men.
2. It's comparing educated women to uneducated men.

Interestingly, I came across this study earlier today on E, which does specifically attempt to counter that by directly comparing college graduates in the same field. The gap is 18%, in favour of men.

So yeah, women are still way behind here.

Offline SabbyTopic starter

Re: Elliquian Atheists
« Reply #962 on: April 14, 2013, 02:08:20 PM »
I just noticed The Atheist Experiences official Youtube channel has comments disabled.

Because that's just what I needed in my favourite weekly show about free thinking and skepticism. Some good old justified censorship.

Offline Beguile's Mistress

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Re: Elliquian Atheists
« Reply #963 on: April 14, 2013, 02:10:40 PM »
Did they say what prompted them to do that?

Offline SabbyTopic starter

Re: Elliquian Atheists
« Reply #964 on: April 14, 2013, 02:17:33 PM »
A once over of their profile doesn't show anything, but it's Youtube. I really can't find my way around their new design (couldn't send a PM the other day o.O) so it's entirely possible I'm missing something.

If AE follows FTB example and starts going echo chamber, I'll be very disappointed.

Offline Hemingway

Re: Elliquian Atheists
« Reply #965 on: April 14, 2013, 03:24:36 PM »
It seems like the youtube atheist community is currently imploding over feminism and "Atheism+". It might be connected to that. That's just a guess, though.

Offline Sethala

Re: Elliquian Atheists
« Reply #966 on: April 16, 2013, 12:33:04 PM »
The article you cite points out a couple of huge holes in your argument, though:

1. If you consider all women in that age group, the pay gap is still 10% in favour of men.
2. It's comparing educated women to uneducated men.

Interestingly, I came across this study earlier today on E, which does specifically attempt to counter that by directly comparing college graduates in the same field. The gap is 18%, in favour of men.

So yeah, women are still way behind here.

I re-read the article I linked, and I can't find anything suggesting that the pay gap is in favor of men at all.  Mind pointing it out to me?

And, I'm reading through the article you linked, and one paragraph sticks out as odd logic, and I'm hoping you could help clarify what it might mean.  The paragraph in question:

Quote
Because married couples tend to prioritize the career of the higher-earning spouse, the pay gap negatively affects married women’s careers in other ways. Women are more likely than men to relocate for their spouses’ jobs (McKinnish, 2008), and they are more likely to leave the workforce or reduce their work hours after becoming parents (AAUW Educational Foundation, 2007). With each of these decisions, the gap between men’s and women’s current and future earnings widens. In the long run, the pay gap contributes to a higher poverty rate among elderly women, with 11 percent of elderly women compared with 6 percent of elderly men living in poverty in 2011 (DeNavas-Walt et al., 2012). Overall, the pay gap makes achieving economic security more difficult for women and their families.

Now, here's my understanding of family earnings dynamics.  Usually, in a family with children (and sometimes in a family without children), one of the parents works a job that prioritizes high earnings, despite any inconveniences that it places on the family, while the other parent prioritizes a job with high convenience, even though it pays less (either reduced hours, closer to home, working from home, etc); this second parent then does most tasks for maintaining the home and raising children.  Generally, the husband takes the high-earning job and the wife takes the high-convenience job.

Obviously, this ends up affecting the overall statistics.  However, a lot of that is because the wife chooses to work jobs that are lower income in order to focus on family convenience.  This study makes it sound like wives letting their husbands earn most of the money is a cause for the pay gap to be wider for people who don't make such a choice, which seems incredibly faulty.  Am I misreading something here?

Offline Ephiral

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Re: Elliquian Atheists
« Reply #967 on: April 16, 2013, 12:53:03 PM »
I re-read the article I linked, and I can't find anything suggesting that the pay gap is in favor of men at all.  Mind pointing it out to me?
Quote
The shift in earnings power started showing up in a few big cities a few years ago and has become widespread. It isn't true for all women in their 20s working full time — overall, they earn 90% of what all men in their 20s make — just for those who don't marry or have kids.
Emphasis mine.

Now, here's my understanding of family earnings dynamics.  Usually, in a family with children (and sometimes in a family without children), one of the parents works a job that prioritizes high earnings, despite any inconveniences that it places on the family, while the other parent prioritizes a job with high convenience, even though it pays less (either reduced hours, closer to home, working from home, etc); this second parent then does most tasks for maintaining the home and raising children.  Generally, the husband takes the high-earning job and the wife takes the high-convenience job.

Obviously, this ends up affecting the overall statistics.  However, a lot of that is because the wife chooses to work jobs that are lower income in order to focus on family convenience.  This study makes it sound like wives letting their husbands earn most of the money is a cause for the pay gap to be wider for people who don't make such a choice, which seems incredibly faulty.  Am I misreading something here?
Chooses to, or is expected to because "everybody knows that women are better at nurturing"? I would say that there's a very strong background of cultural preconceptions at play here, and you can hardly pretend that this is a rational decision being made in a vacuum.

Offline Kythia

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Re: Elliquian Atheists
« Reply #968 on: April 16, 2013, 01:42:57 PM »
And, I'm reading through the article you linked, and one paragraph sticks out as odd logic, and I'm hoping you could help clarify what it might mean.  The paragraph in question:

Now, here's my understanding of family earnings dynamics.  Usually, in a family with children (and sometimes in a family without children), one of the parents works a job that prioritizes high earnings, despite any inconveniences that it places on the family, while the other parent prioritizes a job with high convenience, even though it pays less (either reduced hours, closer to home, working from home, etc); this second parent then does most tasks for maintaining the home and raising children.  Generally, the husband takes the high-earning job and the wife takes the high-convenience job.

Obviously, this ends up affecting the overall statistics.  However, a lot of that is because the wife chooses to work jobs that are lower income in order to focus on family convenience.  This study makes it sound like wives letting their husbands earn most of the money is a cause for the pay gap to be wider for people who don't make such a choice, which seems incredibly faulty.  Am I misreading something here?

I think its just a badly written paragraph.  Reading it through it does seem to be saying what you think its saying but, yeah, that makes no sense.  So I assume the "men's" and "women's" in the sentence beginning "With each of these decisions...." refers to men and women in relationships that make that decision, not in general.

But yeah, very confusing paragraph.

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Re: Elliquian Atheists
« Reply #969 on: April 16, 2013, 01:53:01 PM »
The question still remains 'Why is it the woman who chooses the high-convenience job instead of the high-paying job?' 

Offline Kythia

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Re: Elliquian Atheists
« Reply #970 on: April 16, 2013, 02:00:08 PM »
Ah, sorry.  I had read Sethala's question as "I don't see how this paragraph makes sense" not as "Why have the factors that lead to this paragraph come about."  Sorry for derailing then.

Offline Healergirl

Re: Elliquian Atheists
« Reply #971 on: April 16, 2013, 02:09:59 PM »
Because  for a whole host of reasons ranging from questionable to utter crap, women are expected to meet this burden.   Society, societies as  a whole
 do damned poor jobs of costing-out the true price of childcare and cannot survive in their present socioeconomic form unless women are convinced to take up the grossly underpaid burden.

 
 Underpaid in terms of currency, I often provide unpaid childcare for my nieces and nephews - which I would never do for the children of strangers.   I get a real payoff from it.  non-financial, but very real.  However, the emotional satisfaction I get from building social and emotional  ties to the younger generation does not pay today's bills. 

Offline Tamhansen

Re: Elliquian Atheists
« Reply #972 on: April 16, 2013, 02:54:45 PM »
Because  for a whole host of reasons ranging from questionable to utter crap, women are expected to meet this burden.   Society, societies as  a whole
 do damned poor jobs of costing-out the true price of childcare and cannot survive in their present socioeconomic form unless women are convinced to take up the grossly underpaid burden.

 
 Underpaid in terms of currency, I often provide unpaid childcare for my nieces and nephews - which I would never do for the children of strangers.   I get a real payoff from it.  non-financial, but very real.  However, the emotional satisfaction I get from building social and emotional  ties to the younger generation does not pay today's bills. 

Actually many societies do a good job at costing out child care. The problem is more with societies that don't want to spend any money on social sectors, of which the US is a prime example. Take for example Sweden, Norway or The Netherlands, where the government finances good affordable childcare, hence many women have gratifying careers. Of course, many still choose to stay at home as they find being with their children more important than having a career. And i think those women should be able to make that choice

Offline Healergirl

Re: Elliquian Atheists
« Reply #973 on: April 16, 2013, 02:58:46 PM »
Katataban,

The US is indeed a prime example.  Many societiesdo a splendid job with this... but many many more d not, the more rational societies are, i think, very much the minority - this is not always from desire or intent of course, it does take quite a bit of money and many societies just do not have it worldwide.

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Re: Elliquian Atheists
« Reply #974 on: April 16, 2013, 04:49:07 PM »
Actually many societies do a good job at costing out child care. The problem is more with societies that don't want to spend any money on social sectors, of which the US is a prime example. Take for example Sweden, Norway or The Netherlands, where the government finances good affordable childcare, hence many women have gratifying careers. Of course, many still choose to stay at home as they find being with their children more important than having a career. And i think those women should be able to make that choice
I don't think anybody is arguing this point - my partner has been a SAH parent in the past, and I am one now. I'm simply saying it should be a choice, not an expectation.