Thursday, June 2, 2011

Watch out, guys!

More than 20 years ago, a young woman biology major wrote a paper listing the arguments and evidence for the idea that human males are increasingly superfluous.  As a human male myself, I had already seen similar expressions before that but I remember questioning whether that would ever happen.  Today, I saw this article.  I am interested in the social changes - maybe progress? - that various groups make.  I expected to find that the Madison, WI police had accepted a recruit from some previously untapped ethnic group.  I certainly had no idea that the point would be that the force now included a MAJORITY of women and a MINORITY of men!  That is a shocker.

I have read several times over the past decade or so that the majority of American college students are women.  I know that in many fields like physicians and lawyers there is or will soon be a majority of women practitioners of that craft.  I saw it repeatedly in recruiting and choosing young professors for the beginning of the academic ladder.  True, in my field, officially called "education" but meaning teacher training and preparation for managing classrooms and instruction, women are often drawn while men are often not.  So, there is a basic bias toward women.

Further, the over-all salaries have not been appealing, especially for men, double-especially for those men who want to stand out, to shine, to secure and wield power.  They are goals that typically attract men almost from birth and one of the best ways to totally WIN is with great buckets of money and teaching, especially K-12 teaching, is not likely to be a path to big bucks.

But still, I saw repeatedly that 8 candidates would apply for a position.  The men had good credentials but the women had credentials that were two or three times as impressive: breadth, depth, steady expected achievements coupled to unusual, imaginative achievements, often while parenting and being a successful wife, too.

So, the signs are there and the alert male should pay attention, learn to minimize his weaknesses, and capitalize on his strengths.  In this age of symbols and symbolic manipulation, being as fluent as possible in all forms of symbols and knowledge is quite important.  In my opinion, he should expect to have to compete with women and he should be able to accept defeat at the hands of capable female competition with good grace and spirit and be able to bounce back.

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