Imagine if Canada – where hockey is the true religion – were to choose its best and most skilled hockey players from only half of their population.
How dumb. How much talent wasted!
In Malcolm Gladwell’s book, Outliers: The Story of Success, he explains this is exactly what happens. Due to the arbitrary start date of the school year, on January 1st, kids born between January and June are initially bigger and faster than the kids born between July and December. So, they receive all the attention and encouragement from the coaches. By puberty, the difference in size and speed has gone, but by then it is too late, the July to December cohort have moved on to other things. So the result is that all the stars of Canadian hockey are drawn from the 50% of boys born between January and June.
Is that dumb and dumber or what?
Well, that’s exactly what we are doing with how we run planet Earth. Did you see this recent photo of the G20 leaders? There were 36 men lined up. The odd rapist, a few murderers, maybe a genocide or two under their belts…and lots of sticky fingers. You know, boy’s stuff. Oh yes, and 3 women.
Imagine you’re being interviewed by the Martian Times. Like some smartass James Bond figure you hold out your hand, “The name’s Sapiens, Homo sapiens. That is ‘sapiens,’ as in ‘wise.’”
Then you go on to explain that on Planet Earth our brightest people are already putting probability figures on an imminent total collapse of our ecosystem. Not enough water or land to support the current numbers of wise ones, not to mention the additional ones already scheduled to arrive soon, let alone all the animals and trees who also need land and water. Oh, and not content with that, in our wisdom we have developed a lifestyle that poisons both the land we stand on, the water we drink, and the atmosphere we breathe. The resulting droughts, floods, rising sea levels, and heatwaves are going to threaten everything we depend on to survive. Just one other thing: our species is big on killing machines. We can destroy the whole planet in a jiffy if one of those 36 men really get upset about something and decide to hit a button we provide for them that sits on their desk, or close by. It is not surprising people are asking how long do you think we humans have?
Then you explain to your incredulous Martian that we have a system that largely excludes 50% of the available talent to solve these problems and fix all our existing stupidities.
We leave the work of running everything to the 50% of the population who are male.
So, naturally our Martian asks, just to confirm…. These men must have proved themselves to be superior at solving problems, understanding issues and so on? Especially as there are currently so many serious ones to deal with, right?
Actually no. Unless the function is really mechanical, like being a circus weight lifter, there is little evidence that these “men” are superior at anything. In fact, looking at the state of the planet these men have been managing, and the scientific studies on the subject, the ignored half of the population might be rather better than the men at any number of valuable functions.
The poor journalist from the Martian Times is starting realize that this may not be the best planet to study intelligent life forms.
But asks hopefully that if it is already clear that the men who are in charge may be a little retarded in some important aspects of their development, then this oversight must be already under review? So that human life could quickly move in the direction that intelligence (you know “wisdom”) would suggest?
Ah yes, I am glad you asked that. Well at the present rate of wisdom, it will take about 250 years for us to enjoy gender parity in the management of the planet.
Hey what to do? You might as well give the poor Martian journalist the full horror story. Ok. So the thing about these men is that they are really big on competition, and being first, and being better than everyone else…. Frankly, it is a bit tiring, but this endless drive for more and better and so on means we have an economic system based on “Growth.” You know, it is a boy’s thing about size matters….
Anyway, perhaps the biggest irony of this systematic rejection of women’s contribution to the world economy by growth-obsessed men is that advancing women’s economic advancement, rather than preventing it, could add some $12 trillion to the global GDP in 5 years.
That is about the same as the total US GDP in 2001 – at the time of the attack on the World Trade Center.
And talking about 9/11, here is the sick bit: The dumb people whose head are stuck in some ancient groove always go on about how the women’s place is in the home. You know the old German Kinder, Küche, Kirche, children, kitchen, and church! In reality the modern version of “the family” is more like a war-game.
In fact the evidence is that the sickness of man’s mind Is created by the family.
Well, it turns out that since September 11, 2001, more women have been killed by “intimate partners” – the federal jargon for current or former spouses – than all of the victims in the September 11 attacks and the American victims in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan that ensued. When Covid-19 forced everyone to “stay safe” in their homes, guess what that meant for women!
Go figure: the women’s place is in the home…? So it is easier to kill them there?
You have to leave Planet Earth already? It seems to be populated by some wild beasts, you say? Ah yes. And whose idea was it call ourselves “sapiens”? You are right. Another man.