Saturday, August 29, 2015

Sheeeheeiit, man!

Looks like academia is "recommending" a further cleansing of the language.  Donna Braquet, the University of Tennessee's Pride Center Director,   requested that teachers, rather than calling roll, will instead ask each student to provide the name and pronoun he or she -- or ze -- wishes to be referred by. She says it relieves a burden for people expressing different genders or identities.

"Braquet said if students and faculty cannot use pronouns such as ze, hir, hirs, xe, xem or xyr, they can also politely ask."

Thanks, Donna.  We're glad that the umpteenth Center for Whatever is earning its keep.  

What the culture barons of academia haven't noticed is that amongst the unwashed, a gender neutral pronoun has already evolved: "they". Nobody wanted to keep flogging the unwieldy "he or she" qualifier, so in conversation, most folks use "they", somewhat in the way that the French have a gender/number-free pronoun: "on". Unfortunately, our Jacobin betters prefer to prescribe rather than describe. But that's the point, they like to make regal pronouncements.

This is no different than the Montagnards who wanted to start the world all over with a new calender, "Thermidor", "Fructidor", and all that. 

Dr. Johnson found such prescriptive attempts to be in vain

"When we see men grow old and die at a certain time one after another, from century to century, we laugh at the elixir that promises to prolong life to a thousand years; and with equal justice may the lexicographer be derided, who being able to produce no example of a nation that has preserved their words and phrases from mutability, shall imagine that his dictionary can embalm his language, and secure it from corruption and decay, that it is in his power to change sublunary nature, and clear the world at once from folly, vanity, and affectation.
With this hope, however, academies have been instituted, to guard the avenues of their languages, to retain fugitives, and repulse intruders; but their vigilance and activity have hitherto been vain; sounds are too volatile and subtile for legal restraints; to enchain syllables, and to lash the wind, are equally the undertakings of pride, unwilling to measure its desires by its strength. The French language has visibly changed under the inspection of the academy; the stile of Amelot's translation of Father Paul is observed, by Le Courayer to be un peu passé; and no Italian will maintain that the diction of any modern writer is not perceptibly different from that of Boccace, Machiavel, or Caro."
-Preface to A Dictionary of the English Language"

Johnson scoffs at the idea that it is in the power of the academy to render the language in its image, whether to freeze it in time or render the tongue of the commoners to its tastes and preoccupations. Whatever changes happen to American English will not be due to some nanny busybody.

Suggestion to Donna: We could try another gender-inclusive word: "OK, class, repeat after me.  'SheeHeeIt'!"

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

transgender triumphs over feminism

With all the press surrounding Ronda Rousey, it’s a good time to bring up a persistent would-be challenger whom Jezebel says Rousey is dodging. 
Say hi to Fallon Fox, the transgender MMA starlet:

Fallon responds to Ronda’s claim that such a fight would be unfair:

Fallon Fox is a women’s featherweight MMA fighter with a 5-1 record. The first openly transgender athlete in MMA history, she has been the target of vitriol from many prominent MMA figures, including the UFC’s president Dana White and women’s bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey. Both White and Rousey have publicly insisted that Fox will never fight in the UFC women’s division. White has said, “I’ll leave it up to the athletic commissions, and the doctors and scientists,” to decide which gender divisions transgender athletes should compete in, but also declared, “I don’t think that somebody who used to be a man and became a woman should be able to fight another woman.” Rousey has said of Fox, “She can try hormones, chop her pecker off, but it’s still the same bone structure a man has. It’s an advantage. I don’t think it’s fair.”

Dana White and Rousey seem to have a problem with someone who had the first thirty years of his life to build up a man’s body, including a stint in special ops in the Navy, before spending that One Night in Bangkok under the scalpel, and identifying himself as a woman.  

What’s really going on here is hardly a fight for “equality”, but a kind of culture ranger spirit (rather than culture warrior) that has as much to do with cyberpunk and transhumanist ideas as anything else.  As Steve Sailer has pointed out, there’s definitely something sci-fi in all this, as  millionaires with previously macho backgrounds colonize femininity.   

Though a lot of people are signing off on the “T” part of the LBGT acronym without really thinking of its implications, there’s plenty who have thought this through, and in the interests of intellectual honesty, they need to own it. 

As many are starting to notice, a lot of “feminism” of the last few years is really about the triumph of masculinity in the feminine world.  Thirty years ago, a lot of feminists would have called this an  “invasion of womyns’ space”.

Monday, August 3, 2015

Voting Rights and Responsibilities

The question as to why our society should take the sale of a six pack more seriously than the franchise is one of those questions I can't get anyone to answer.  Show your ID to the beer barn, but in the name of some nebulous "disparate impact", one doesn't.  It's quite telling that a plastic display of maturity to get loaded is demanded, but the cool sobriety that democracy supposedly demands its "citizens" is some kind of tyranny.

Remember this inspiring image?
Billions of US tax dollars went to ensuring the integrity of elections in Iraq three years ago.  Such integrity is under attack here.
You need an ID to get beer, to qualify for EBT, for welfare, for WIC, to drive, for a plethora of cradle to grave social functions.  Why is voting supposed to be an exception to this?

When you vote, you do so because you are presumend to have skin in the game with your polity.  Your polity, in case the voting chaos advocates havent gotten the memo, is a series of concentric circles, not just a presidential election-the largest circle.  Your state and its many offices, your congressional district, you county, your town, and your city or county  districts.

Have these voting chaos advocates ever considered how many of the offices one casts a ballot for hinge on a few hundred, or even few dozen votes?  Do people really want to turn an election into a series of competing rent-a-blocs in corrupt districts?

Yeah, there's that word, corruption.  Does anyone think that an abandonment of standards will not invite the kinds of voting abuse that happens in countries that we police to ensure "fair and peaceful elections"?