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RPGWatch Forums » General Forums » Politics & Religion » Has the world put too much emphasis in gender for ones identity?

Default Has the world put too much emphasis in gender for ones identity?

May 19th, 2013, 11:02
I've been thinking about this for a few days. Is it morally wrong of the world to say:

1. How one should behave because of ones gender.
2. How one should think because of ones gender.
3. How one should dress because of ones gender.


Think about it. If a girl behaves like a boy is it society's right to tell her to act differently? What about how they think or dress? Whatever a person does it is surely their own right as long as it harms no one else?

Though how far can we push that ideal however. At what point do we say "hey we think you have a mental illness". Do we ever reach that point?
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May 19th, 2013, 12:01
Redundant debate forthcoming…
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May 19th, 2013, 12:13
Strange discussion. I thought liberals already murdered gender identity?

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May 19th, 2013, 12:15
"The world" as in human beings?

In general, the human mind is both very limited and very clever.

Basically, the brain is really good at "filling gaps" and it needs to be, because we have almost nothing but gaps.

This is what happens when one human being encounters another human being. We know next to nothing about a person when we meet them, but our brain needs a complete image to preserve sanity. So, it fills gaps with an extremely high speed as needed to process the concept of another person - and we end up putting each other into tiny little boxes that match the image we generate.

Only AFTER we have that initial, but surprisingly complete, image - do we start to replace imaginary features with something closer to reality. A lot of people prefer their imagination and will only replace the fantasy with reality when they absolutely have to.

"The world" is a bunch of human beings that function in this way.

When you realise that, you'll get a pretty good idea about the value of how gender is perceived by the average human being.
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May 19th, 2013, 12:27
Originally Posted by DArtagnan View Post
"The world" as in human beings?

In general, the human mind is both very limited and very clever.

Basically, the brain is really good at "filling gaps" and it needs to be, because we have almost nothing but gaps.

This is what happens when one human being encounters another human being. We know next to nothing about a person when we meet them, but our brain needs a complete image to preserve sanity. So, it fills gaps with an extremely high speed as needed to process the concept of another person - and we end up putting each other into tiny little boxes that match the image we generate.

Only AFTER we have that initial, but surprisingly complete, image - do we start to replace imaginary features with something closer to reality. A lot of people prefer their imagination and will only replace the fantasy with reality when they absolutely have to.

"The world" is a bunch of human beings that function in this way.

When you realise that, you'll get a pretty good idea about the value of how gender is perceived by the average human being.
Interesting point. Why is it that way though? As human beings are we incapable of a live and let live policy? I always believed what you said is a learned trait, are we sure that kind fo thing is "hard coded" into a persons psyche?
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May 19th, 2013, 12:37
Originally Posted by Damian View Post
Interesting point. Why is it that way though? As human beings are we incapable of a live and let live policy? I always believed what you said is a learned trait, are we sure that kind fo thing is "hard coded" into a persons psyche?
All human beings have that potential - but it's relatively rare to meet someone who's genuinely capable of living and letting live.

Most people use learning experiences established in early life as principles - again because it's easier than to constantly reflect and re-evaluate. Problem with principles is that they're rigid and they're often based on completely unique experiences that will never happen again in exactly the same way. People prefer the fantasy of a principle being correct in all situations where it could potentially apply - to the reality that most things in the world are complex and extremely hard to establish with certainty.

We're creatures of habit and our habits are the bars in our mental prison.
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May 19th, 2013, 13:08
Hard to argue against good logic. Well played DArt.
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May 19th, 2013, 13:52
Originally Posted by Damian View Post
Hard to argue against good logic. Well played DArt.
Thank you
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May 19th, 2013, 21:45
I always believed what you said is a learned trait, are we sure that kind fo thing is "hard coded" into a persons psyche?
I don't know if 'hard coded' is the term to use. It's just human learning at work.

Say you get a person who has spent the last twenty years in a situation where only a few people had beards and every one of those people were particularly nice and reliable. Another person has only seen mean people with beards. You show each of these people a total stranger that has a beard and you're going to get different reactions.

Or think of the "bad guys" in your favorite TV shows (the human ones - no dinosaurs for this example please). They're just actors, you know very well that their characters have nothing to do with how they actually are. But just try to imagine a few of them at a picnic with their families, playing with the kids. Bizzaro!!

The learning is part of what our brains do. The things that get learned, though, come from our experiences.

P.S. Arg. If B. F. Skinner had a beard I could have used him as the example person. Ah well.
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May 19th, 2013, 22:50
Frankly, I question whether individuals put enough emphasis on their gender for identity.
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May 20th, 2013, 01:50
How much is too much? Gender differences are real, they are necessary and sometimes they are important. Many problems occur because people fail to accept that basic premise. HOWEVER, gender differences have NO impact (or should have NO impact) on the issue of equality. Men and women are different, but equal; neither one is better or worse than the other in their intrinsic worth. To treat either as inferior by either gender is totally unacceptable IMO!!

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May 20th, 2013, 15:32
In the end, it's the PERSON which matters, not its gender, imho.

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May 20th, 2013, 18:02
Gender is part of a person as a whole individual. To ignore/deny that part is what I would call non-acceptance or non-tolerance.
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May 20th, 2013, 20:11
I'd say it is wrong to force someone into a role or limit their opportunities due to gender, but there are differences in the genders.

While there certainly are some things that are determined by culture (for instance prior to the 20th century, pink was considered a male color while blue was female), there's also some evidence that certain things are hard wired in. This study was pretty interesting:

http://io9.com/5879647/do-girls-natu…rimate-studies

I have a near 2 year old and one thing I've found amazing is that despite not trying to force any particular gender stereotypes on her, she seems to have done it herself. For instance:

1) My MIL has bought most of her clothes, often at garage sales. She makes no distinction between boy or girl clothes really and we really don't care, yet even from a very young age, she would grab the pink clothes more than the blue or yellow ones. Now, when we tell her to pick out a dress or something, she almost always goes for pink, same with shoes.

2) We have a fairly big group of friends thankfully with children the same age. As we all visit each others houses, all our kids get to play with a lot of different things. Our daughter goes nuts over two things - musical toys (instruments) and kitchen toys.

She likes matchbox cars a ton too, but she goes nuts anytime she sees a play kitchen, so much that were getting her one for her birthday. Even in our playground where there are dozens of toys just hanging out for the kids, she goes to the play kitchen. I'm sure some, maybe most, of that is from watching my wife and I in the kitchen, but her two male friends of the same age seem to have no interest at all.

I don't feel like we've geared her towards the 'feminine' stuff, if anything the opposite. I'm determined that no matter how femnine she wants to be, she's still going to be the kind of girl that knows how to change her own oil and knows what a socket wrench is (in fact she already likes to hand me tools when I'm working on stuff).

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May 20th, 2013, 20:31
Gender may be affected by things like hormones. However, we all have both gender hormones and we can't tell how much of each. There's a spectrum between those who perfectly captures the stereotypical male/female all the way over to transsexuals. In other words, if people are "hard-wired" we can't see the code on the surface. "Gender roles" fail, because they confuse surface and the "mix". But people who believe gender is 100% socialized tend to have trouble explaining transexuals.

But there's also differences in how much value a person will put on the sex of a person. One extreme will confuse people who have the same sex, while the other will barely see the sex as an attribute to bother about. This naturally have impact on their identity construct, going from people who are extremely concerned with being a stereotypical male/female while others are pretty much blind to the stereotypes.

In general, be wary of categories. Regardless which one we use, categories make us perceive differences where there are none. Experiments have been shown that people when given categories (A, B etc) perceive differences between the categories, even if the categories were assigned at random with no meaning.

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May 20th, 2013, 21:39
Personally I think there are more similarities than differences between the sexes. I was brought up and am surrounded by atheists. I think religion has something to do about how men and women are expected to behave. Pity that most religions nowadays are patriarchal.

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May 20th, 2013, 22:08
Originally Posted by blatantninja View Post
I'd say it is wrong to force someone into a role or limit their opportunities due to gender, but there are differences in the genders.
(…)
I don't feel like we've geared her towards the 'feminine' stuff, if anything the opposite. I'm determined that no matter how femnine she wants to be, she's still going to be the kind of girl that knows how to change her own oil and knows what a socket wrench is (in fact she already likes to hand me tools when I'm working on stuff).
She likes pink. She likes play kitchens. So?
Why is that feminine stuff?

Isn't it so that YOU regard it as being feminine stuff? Why do YOU think women are inclined to fancy cooking in pink pots and pans?
I know loads of women who dislike cooking, who dislike pink, who dislike barbies, especially the immature versions like P. Hilton.

Feminine stuff… If you ask me she seems to be gearing towards the gay version of Gordon Ramsay… But who cares, as long as she's happy.

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May 21st, 2013, 03:28
Originally Posted by Omega View Post
Isn't it so that YOU regard it as being feminine stuff? Why do YOU think women are inclined to fancy cooking in pink pots and pans?
I know loads of women who dislike cooking, who dislike pink, who dislike barbies, especially the immature versions like P. Hilton.

Feminine stuff… If you ask me she seems to be gearing towards the gay version of Gordon Ramsay… But who cares, as long as she's happy.
Surely, we live in a society where now men are feminized and women are mannish. There is a complete inversion of roles and that off course is the reason why families are mostly broken or non-existent.

There is a reason why every well-functioning society in all of recorded history had women and men performing their natural roles. In the case of women, that role is child-rearing and home-making. You take that away and the family dies. The family dies and civilization dies. That is why Europe is bound to be muslim and that is why European civilization has no future.

That people like you fail to realize such basic things is a big part of the problem. I recommend the following reading:

http://williamsonletters.blogspot.co…-children.html
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May 21st, 2013, 04:25
Originally Posted by FretRider View Post
Surely, we live in a society where now men are feminized and women are mannish.
I think that is a result of society trying to make us feel bad because were men. Like when a woman get raped, women say that all men are like this or use men in a general term. And today's society likes to push the power woman thing which i have no issue with.
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May 21st, 2013, 05:10
Originally Posted by FretRider View Post
Surely, we live in a society where now men are feminized and women are mannish. There is a complete inversion of roles and that off course is the reason why families are mostly broken or non-existent.

There is a reason why every well-functioning society in all of recorded history had women and men performing their natural roles. In the case of women, that role is child-rearing and home-making. You take that away and the family dies. The family dies and civilization dies. That is why Europe is bound to be muslim and that is why European civilization has no future.

That people like you fail to realize such basic things is a big part of the problem. I recommend the following reading:

http://williamsonletters.blogspot.co…-children.html
Wow…

Do you realize that these 'natural' gender roles came about because men were more expendable than women? It is 'natural' to have a woman do a safer job because it takes so long for a woman to have a baby. A man can shoot a load into as many woman as he can and then run off - his job is done, he can die now. And as long as women are doing the safe jobs, lets keep the children with them to keep them safe too. Knock out two birds with one stone. This stuff made sense thousands of years ago. But today we have created such a safe environment that these gender roles are no longer important. Men can be just as effective care givers as women and women can go out and 'hunt the meat' (get money and buy food at a store).
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