i almost agree with dobson

December 13, 2006

Time magazine has an opinion piece this week by James C. Dobson about Mary Cheney and her female partner, who are now pregnant with their first child.

of course, dobson feels that this is wrong and bad because babies need a mommy and a daddy and it’s been this way for more than 5000 years, and science says so. disregarding the fact that nuclear families are not nearly as traditional as dobson would like to believe, i want to focus on one point that he tries to make.

in trying to create evidence that children need a parent of both sex, he says:

“…researchers have determined that boys are not born with an understanding of ‘maleness.’ They have to learn it, ideally from their fathers.”

although he doesn’t say which researchers have determined this, i am very willing to believe it. however, i think that dobson is conveying something which he is very much not intending and that is: gender and sex are two different things and are not inextricably linked.

little boys are not born knowing how to portray what our society deems masculine behavior, just as little girls are not born knowing how to act “feminine.” they are taught by being told to “act like a lady” or “take it like a man.” They are taught to wear dresses, or not depending on sex* and culture. They are taught to either be emotive or keep their feelings to themselves. They are allowed to manifest physical displays of affection, or not, again depending on sex* and culture.

i’m glad dobson understands this, even if he doesn’t really understand this.

one nit i’ll pick, even with this short statement is that dobson never explains why they have to learn it; or why it’s best that they learn it from their fathers. given that our whole culture is saturated with messages instructing you on how to act in a properly gendered fashion (i.e. your gender matching your sex*) it’s hard to miss this lesson.

*sex here really means perceived sex.

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the return of the poem?

December 11, 2006

i was going to post this poem last week, but it seems even more apropos today.

blk/rhetoric

who’s gonna make all
that beautiful blk/rhetoric
mean something.
like
I mean
who’s gonna take
words
blk/beautiful
and make more of it
than blk/capitalism.
u dig?
i mean
like who’s gonna
take all the young/long/haired/
natural/brothers and sisters
and let them
grow till
all that is
imp’t is them
selves
moving in straight/
revolutionary/lines/toward the enemy
(and we know who that is)
like. man.
who’s gonna give our young
blk people new heros

[. . . .]

( instead of quick/fucks
in the hall/way of
white/america’s
mind)
like. this. is an S.0.S.
me. calling. . . .
calling. . . .
some/one.
pleasereplysoon.

~sonia sanchez

same shit

December 11, 2006

i saw a brief snippet of fox news last night (no, i don’t regularly watch fox news).

it’s about a conservative publication at Tufts University, The Primary Source, changing the words of “oh come all ye faithful” to “oh come all ye blackfolk” in order to “start a discussion” on the issue of race based admissions. (as far as i can tell they have taken it down from their website at least.)

First BU, now Tufts.

according to this, the number of black students in the fall 2006 class was 53 out of over 1300, or about 4% of the class. you know those blackfolk, they are just taking over.

anyway, i like this post that amp put up last week over at his site to the accusation that whites are suffering so.