Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Women Smarter Than Men? That's Unpossible!

A recent study by James Flynn, a researcher who focuses on intelligence, has shown that for the first time in, well, ever, woman are smarter than men according to IQ tests. This doesn't surprise me at all.

He says that women are being forced to stretch their brains more as they attempt to juggle all of the things that society expects of them: home, children, work, etc. He also speculates that women may simply be intellectually better than men on some biological level. Even though he admits that more research is obviously needed, I think that he's missing the most obvious answer: society asks very little of men.

While extreme societal demands on women undoubtedly have a part to play in all of this, I think that the primary reason for the failing of men is that they are not asked to work. Recently, colleges were caught letting in men who performed only slightly better than average, because if they let in those who truly excelled, they would be letting in almost nothing but women. They tried to explain this by saying that any smart university doesn't accept all qualified people since some set percentage of them will invariably choose to go to another school, but this was a nonsensical excuse for a number of reasons.

Their reasons were, almost humorously, more practical than that. Basically, schools don't want a student body that is overrun with women, because that may drive students away. Top-performing female students don't want to go a school that's filled with other women. They want a mixed crowd. If they don't want a mixed crowd, that's what the Seven Sisters are for.

Think about that. Men are performing so far below women of the same age that men who even slightly stand out are being given acceptance. It's not that society's expectations on women are too high, it's that their expectations on men are too low.

Think about all of the nearly pre-verbal people that you have met in your life. How many of them are men? I'd wager over 90%. That's my number, certainly. There is no reason why 90% of pre-verbal human chimps should be men. But it makes perfect sense when you think about the system of entitlement and absolution provided to men. Boys will be boys is heard when boys do almost anything undesirable. This is ridiculous and is a massive disservice to every male that we raise in this society.

If males fail in school, it's funny. If males act up, it's just what they do. If males reject the system, they're seen as rebels. When we give boys a pass for this sort of behavior, we fail them. In decades past, this worked fine. In decades past, the system was geared toward men, so even if a boy was an idiot, the system would simply grab him and place him somewhere. It was the very root of the factory job. Drop out of high school? No worries! Get a job at the local plants. None of these opportunities existed for women, and were, in fact, actively taken away from women after World War II to be given back to men.

Unfortunately, those systems are starting to fail under the immense weight of increasingly equal women — women who were forced to work so hard to overcome systemic sexism that they now wildly exceed the men that are being raised. My alma mater, Rhode Island College, is nearly 70% female. That is an untenable system. It cannot be maintained. It also completely explains why women exceed men on IQ tests. Because we're raising them to.

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