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Thread: Feminism and the Likes

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    Zombie Flesh Eater EvilNed's Avatar
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    Feminism and the Likes

    Hey y'all,

    I thought I might as well create a spin-off topic related to feminism rather than bog down the current Ghostbusters thread with it. The purpose of this thread is to educate people on what feminism and equality actually are, rather than what media sometimes percieve them. And also answer questions as to why the "simplest route" might not be the best route. I'll provide a concrete example below.

    To put it simply, feminism is the notion that all people are equal. In this particular case, we're talking about sexes but feminism is very often associated with things such as equality for people of different colored skins and ethnic backgrounds. This later point is still of interest in the western world because A) In Europe a right wing wave is one the rise, or perhaps peaking as we speak, where more or less every country has a extreme right, downright racist party in their parliament. The posterboy for these are the British National Party in the UK and Jobbik in Hungary. Note: I am not in any way as well versed in British or Hungarian politics as I am in American politics. Futhermore, I am a US citizen currently living in Sweden which is about as egalitarian as it gets (but still has a long way to go) B) The US is struggling with racism and segregation on a massive scale where black and hispanic people have it a lot worse than white people. This is a direct consequence of the nation's history but also of the very conservative mindset of the American public which, I hate to say it, is stunting their intellectual growth. In my view, the US is among the western countries most in danger of lacking behind significally on the ethical, moral and egalitarian scale because of their unwillingness to adapt to new ideas.

    The goal of feminism is to create a society where all people are treated equally. I don't think anyone would argue this point - this is a good idea. The thing is this, we are currently living in very, very sexist societies. Women's rights are under attack in the US, and a great deal of the European countries still view women as "housewifes" rather than potential workforce or members of society. This applies to the US as well - several of my US family members are housewives. The idea of a housewife is nearly non-existant in Sweden - I've met a handfull in my life. Women work and are productive members of society. Men are more likely to take care of kids in Sweden than women (but not AS likely, which is why we need feminism).

    The issue goes further than Women's rights. Women are misrepresented in media, politics and sports. These are all male dominated fields. When women are represented in media, their beauty is often highlighted. Some of us may remember the interview leading up to the Avengers movie. All the actors got questions about their character and acting - except Scarlett Johanson, she got questions about her body and staying in shape. This kind of thing goes on all the time all over. (< two different links)

    You guys get it, right? Women are not equal, because they are not treated equally. They are not allowed the same freedoms or liberties as such. These are not legal but rather societal issues. But the point is, they become legal issues when we need to deal with them... Want to know why? Well, here's why...

    Let's say you run a completely free market. Profit, profit, profit for everyone. The only problem here is that the companies are going to ignore certain issues, such as worker safety rules or enviromental issues. That's why we've put restrictions on the free market. Completely free market would ruin the enviroment - much as it has by the way. The only workaround is to apply rules that these companies have to abide by. In the future, maybe we won't need these rules. Maybe in the future the human race will see the long term benefits of not ruining the planet, but since people are fucking idiots that day is not today.

    The same applies to equality between sexes. I'll take an example. In Sweden, we used to have maternity leave - just like everyone else does I guess. That is, when a woman becomes a mother she is legally allowed to score some dough and stay home with her new baby to take care of it and nurture it. As a parent should (note: as a PARENT should, not as a MOTHER should...)
    This causes problems however - for instance when going to job interviews, women usually get the question "Are you thinking of becoming a mother soon?". The subtext is "Are you planning on becoming a mother - and taking that maternity leave - soon?". Men never get asked this question. Never, ever.
    In Sweden, this law is therefore up for debate. Currently, the maternity leave is - if I remember correctly - something along 18 months. A few of these months, lets say 4, are now reserved for the father. That is, the women can only take 14 months off - the other 4 are earmarked for the father. This is a half-assed attempt to create equality. Therefore, the Swedish Feminist Party - and I agree with them here - is to change it so that 9 months are earmarked for the mother and 9 months are earmarked for the father. "But wait!" says liberal parties (our right, by the way, just to show you how far left we are). "The state can't force it's family issues like that - the father and mother should decide together who gets to stay at home!".

    And the liberal parties aren't wrong - In an ideal world that's what should happen. The state shouldn't have anything to say about who gets to stay at home with their baby. The key words here are "in an ideal world"...'
    As long as we do not keep any restrictions on that, the women are going to keep getting asked "So, planning on having babies soon?" by their bosses or during job interviews. Just like in the free market scenario, we need to put restrictions on this issue to force people to accept a worldview where everyone is equal. Father? Mother? Doesn't matter if I've got a dick or a pussy, I'm obligated to take 9 months out of those maternity leave months. We've just eliminated the need for employers to worry about wether women are going to get kids soon or not - it's suddenly not longer an issue tied to the sex of the person.

    In a hundred years, we can hopefully lift that restriction. Then we will have created our utopia, where everyone is equal. But we're far from that point right now. And until then, we will have to keep fighting to allow women to take a bigger part in our society, in all venues. Women need to be represented on the media and taken seriously as actors, not sex objects. Women need to be made politicians. When are we going to have our first female president? And after that first female president, why not elect another one? Does the next one after that have to be a man? We've had men for 250 years now. Our country is built on male ideals. Would two female presidents in a row hurt us? Or three? You get the point.

    I've got a book for you guys to read. It's called Egalia's Daughters. It's an old 70's book. It's a fantasy book, set in a modern type world where everything is much as it is today but their society evolved as a matriarchy, not a patriarchy. A real interesting read and a light one at that. But reading it will do good to everyone. It should be required reading in all schools until it is no longer needed.

    - - - Updated - - -

    In response to MZ's argument about "positive discrimination still being discrimination" (and im keeping it super short, because I already wrote a lengthy response that got deleted):

    Equality is the end goal, but we have to use our sense of justice to get there.

    Men receive benefits all the time because they're men. To deny women those same benefits and instead call on "fairness" is awfully unfair. Nobody ever makes the same demand whenever a man gets positive treatment for being a man. The problem is that most men either don't recongize that they ge special treatment - or they deny it.

    To put it in a picture:

    image.jpg

    "I worked in a factory owned by Germans, at coal pits owned by Frenchmen, and at a chemical plant owned by Belgians. There I discovered something about capitalists. They are all alike, whatever the nationality. All they wanted from me was the most work for the least money that kept me alive. So I became a Communist." - Ники́та Серге́евич Хрущёв

    "Thanks for Playa Girón. Before the invasion, the revolution was weak. Now it's stronger than ever". - Che Guevara

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    Walking Dead blind2d's Avatar
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    YES!! So much yes on this. I cannot express how much I agree with all of this. Wish I had more to say, but yes!
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    has the velocity Mike70's Avatar
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    The problems with black people in america has far more to do with their inability to do simple things like graduate from high school. Only 47% of black males graduate from Cincinnati's public school system. It isnt much better in most other cities. That is their problem not anyone else's. To be fair black females do quite well in school and are making educational and income advances every year.

    If you fail to graduate from high school, you are doomed.

    As for feminisim- I consider myself a feminist and think that in many ways women have more common sense than any 10 guys put together.
    Last edited by Mike70; 22-Oct-2014 at 03:14 PM. Reason: d
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    Twitching krisvds's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike70 View Post
    The problems with black people in america has far more to do with their inability to do simple things like graduate from high school. Only 47% of black males graduate from Cincinnati's public school system. It isnt much better in most other cities. That is their problem not anyone else's. To be fair black females do quite well in school and are making educational and income advances every year.

    If you fail to graduate from high school, you are doomed.

    As for feminisim- I consider myself a feminist and think that in many ways women have more common sense than any 10 guys put together.
    Wow. That is an amazingly depressing percentage. Why is it that dramatically low?

    In Belgium the problem is even worse: in our universities and high schools ony 10 (10!) % of what is lazily called 'foreigners' (mainly children of third generation immigrants with an African background, so they really should be referred to as Belgians) succeed. I have been teaching for more than sixteen years and witness the problem every day. Context is everything. In our society there is a lot of latent racism. The recent elections saw an uprise in right wing voters. Our current state secretary responsible for refugees and migration is a flemish nationalist who mere days after taking office frequented the birthday party of a 90 year old nazi collaborator and who openly wonders what the economic value of certain nationalities (African as opposed to Asian) is.
    Needless to say many of these so called 'foreigners' have a hard time finding a job. Most of their grandparents came to our country to work in the coalmines. They were payed minimum wages and little to no political effort was made to integrate these people in our society. Their children and grandchildren were and are viewed by a large amount of people as second rate citizens. A lot of these people grow up in (relative, but sometimes extreme) poverty. As a teacher I am a first hand witness to how difficult it is for teenagers to take their life into their own hands and build a better future for themselves when they are stuck in this poverty trap. If the place they grow up in is mainly indifferent to their wellbeing and sometimes hostile and plays the 'you should have some personal accountability' card all the time the problem only grows worse. Hence the fact that percentage wise Belgium has one of the highest number of young muslims travelling to Syria to fight a pointless war of any European country.

    And there I am teaching ethics and philosophy and introducing young Muslims to the teachings of Darwin and the principle of equality (and feminism) every day. A pointless struggle most of the time I might add.
    Last edited by krisvds; 22-Oct-2014 at 05:54 PM. Reason: .

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    Chasing Prey shootemindehead's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EvilNed View Post
    Men receive benefits all the time because they're men. To deny women those same benefits and instead call on "fairness" is awfully unfair. Nobody ever makes the same demand whenever a man gets positive treatment for being a man. The problem is that most men either don't recongize that they ge special treatment - or they deny it.
    Haven't read all the post because frankly "feminism" today means many, many different things to many, many different people.

    However, on your point above (and I've heard it before), I would point out that it's SOME men, not all men. There are plenty of men in society that do not recieve "benefits" at all.

    I would say that equallity (or lack thereof) goes much, much deeper than the simple man v woman divide.

    By far and away the largest "ism" that affects people is classism and that is blind to sex usually.

    As for "positive discrimination", I would firmly be in Min's camp. I don't believe ANYONE should get a position because of what's between their legs and I know quite a few feminists who would agree.
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    Twitching krisvds's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shootemindehead View Post
    Haven't read all the post because frankly "feminism" today means many, many different things to many, many different people.

    However, on your point above (and I've heard it before), I would point out that it's SOME men, not all men. There are plenty of men in society that do not recieve "benefits" at all.

    I would say that equallity (or lack thereof) goes much, much deeper than the simple man v woman divide.

    By far and away the largest "ism" that affects people is classism and that is blind to sex usually.

    As for "positive discrimination", I would firmly be in Min's camp. I don't believe ANYONE should get a position because of what's between their legs and I know quite a few feminists who would agree.



    Positive discrimination (sic?) towards women has been put in place simply because in our so called secularised and liberated western society men have been, and still are (recent studies pointed out that Belgian men are still being paid more than women for doing the exact same job) being put in top positions simply because they are men.
    The problem with positive discrimination is that it fights the pest with cholera.

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    Zombie Flesh Eater EvilNed's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by krisvds View Post
    [/B]

    Positive discrimination (sic?) towards women has been put in place simply because in our so called secularised and liberated western society men have been, and still are (recent studies pointed out that Belgian men are still being paid more than women for doing the exact same job) being put in top positions simply because they are men.
    The problem with positive discrimination is that it fights the pest with cholera.
    You're right. Rejecting positive discrimination for women without acknowledging the bountiful positive discrimination that men receive is ignorance. Even if women are treated well and get ahead, they are still raised in a society were they are sinply deemed a lower class, and it's fully accepted by society,

    @shootem I'd say "classism" is a big problem as well, but underneath that umbrella you'll find that men still get treated. Be it wages or representation or just gender bias you will not find a field were women are treated equally as men. Remember, 50% of the population is female and they're all treated as lesser members.

    To use a super simple exampld: sports. Sports is male dominated to an almost ridiculous degree. It can be viewed as a microcosm of the rest of our society in that regard.

    Currently 20% of politicians in Congress are women. And 0% out of the presidents in the US have been women.

    @mike70, thats like saying that it's poor people's fault that they are poor. It's pure, downright bullshit.

    "I worked in a factory owned by Germans, at coal pits owned by Frenchmen, and at a chemical plant owned by Belgians. There I discovered something about capitalists. They are all alike, whatever the nationality. All they wanted from me was the most work for the least money that kept me alive. So I became a Communist." - Ники́та Серге́евич Хрущёв

    "Thanks for Playa Girón. Before the invasion, the revolution was weak. Now it's stronger than ever". - Che Guevara

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    has the velocity Mike70's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EvilNed View Post
    You're right. Rejecting positive discrimination for women without acknowledging the bountiful positive discrimination that men receive is ignorance. Even if women are treated well and get ahead, they are still raised in a society were they are sinply deemed a lower class, and it's fully accepted by society,

    @shootem I'd say "classism" is a big problem as well, but underneath that umbrella you'll find that men still get treated. Be it wages or representation or just gender bias you will not find a field were women are treated equally as men. Remember, 50% of the population is female and they're all treated as lesser members.

    To use a super simple exampld: sports. Sports is male dominated to an almost ridiculous degree. It can be viewed as a microcosm of the rest of our society in that regard.

    Currently 20% of politicians in Congress are women. And 0% out of the presidents in the US have been women.

    @mike70, thats like saying that it's poor people's fault that they are poor. It's pure, downright bullshit.
    No. It is not. Education is on YOU and your parents. If you cannot summon the interest to complete high school, you have zero chance. Stop being a bleeding heart for two secomds and come back to reality.
    "then one day, the symptoms fade i think i'll throw these fu*king pills away."

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    Walking Dead blind2d's Avatar
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    Lemme just jump in here.
    I agree that it is up to the individual to apply themselves to academics/doing well in the education system. However! Societal factors can play a role in the behavior of said individual in regards to things such as race, class, and gender. But that does not alleviate the burden of personal effort from the shoulders of the student. So! Points can be made on both sides, and indeed should be. It's just harder for some more than others, but really it should be looked at within the context of the individual in question. And parents definitely play a large role too. Or should. Sometimes they play no role, and that is in itself a role. If you know what I mean.
    But it's downright ridiculous that I can't think of one major job market where women are treated equally to or better than men. Like... Seriously, are there any at all?
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    Chasing Prey shootemindehead's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EvilNed View Post
    To use a super simple exampld: sports. Sports is male dominated to an almost ridiculous degree. It can be viewed as a microcosm of the rest of our society in that regard.
    Sorry, the sports example is a terrible example though, Ned. Sports is dominated by males, because males are the primary user, viewer and purchaser of sports related products. Plus, male sports are, in the main, the superior product too. Women's football being a superb example.

    The simple fact is, men watch and engage in more sports than women do, because they are more interested in sports. One can't get around that and often the male product carries the female product financially.

    But, let's have another look at "feminism" (sort of) and sports. In tennis, for decades, there was a debate about women's pay in Grand Slams. Women weren't paid equally to men in prize money for winning a Grand Slam (Australian Open, Roland Garros, Wimbledon, US Open). Now while, on the surface that looks bad, the reason for it was obvious. Women didn't play as much as men. Women's tennis being the best of three, while men's tennis was the best of five. Over the years, women campaigned for level pay, but not necessarily the same amount of game time as men. They won in the end and received the same prize money as the men (the last tournament to comply being Wimbledon), but STILL only have to play the best of three, while men have to STILL play the best of five.

    Now, any way that that's cut, it still comes out as wrong in my eyes and is a prime example of a failure of positive discrimination.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by blind2d View Post
    But it's downright ridiculous that I can't think of one major job market where women are treated equally to or better than men. Like... Seriously, are there any at all?
    Teaching. Nursing.
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    Zombie Flesh Eater EvilNed's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shootemindehead View Post
    Sorry, the sports example is a terrible example though, Ned. Sports is dominated by males, because males are the primary user, viewer and purchaser of sports related products. Plus, male sports are, in the main, the superior product too. Women's football being a superb example.

    The simple fact is, men watch and engage in more sports than women do, because they are more interested in sports. One can't get around that and often the male product carries the female product financially.
    Male are more interested in sports because society teaches them too. We praise males for their athletic skill and women for their beauty. Males get scholarships for performing well in football. Women get scholarships for beauty pageants. Your criticism of the Sports example just shows how much more fucked up society is. We systematicaly indoctrinate our sexes to be interested in different things and it's all pretty fucking obvious to me.

    Your comment about male dominated sports being the superior product is a sexist one, and as I've said I equate that to racism.

    Quote Originally Posted by shootemindehead View Post
    Teaching. Nursing.
    Even further issues. These two occupations are often criticized for being lower paid. And they are lower paid because they're female dominated. That's a worldwide issue, by the way.


    Quote Originally Posted by Mike70 View Post
    No. It is not. Education is on YOU and your parents. If you cannot summon the interest to complete high school, you have zero chance. Stop being a bleeding heart for two secomds and come back to reality.
    First off, kids are idiots. They're never going to make the right choices.
    Second off, why do you think kids are idiots? Because their parents are idiots.
    Why are their parents idiots? Because society doesn't give a shit about them.

    There's black communities out there where only 2% of the elligible voters turn out to vote. They don't believe in the system. Can you blame them, when society keeps treating them like shit?

    You're not wrong in that it's a personal issue, but you can't deny that it goes much deeper than that.

    I attached another snassy comic that breaks down the problem Mike. It's very simple, but it strikes at the core of the issue: Whites are way better off than blacks in the US, and it's not "their own fault"... It's ours.

    Last edited by EvilNed; 23-Oct-2014 at 07:14 PM. Reason: cxdsa

    "I worked in a factory owned by Germans, at coal pits owned by Frenchmen, and at a chemical plant owned by Belgians. There I discovered something about capitalists. They are all alike, whatever the nationality. All they wanted from me was the most work for the least money that kept me alive. So I became a Communist." - Ники́та Серге́евич Хрущёв

    "Thanks for Playa Girón. Before the invasion, the revolution was weak. Now it's stronger than ever". - Che Guevara

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    Walking Dead blind2d's Avatar
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    Nice comic! And teachers and nurses definitely need to be paid more. My dad's a special ed elementary school teacher, and I bet you that the major reason my step-mom earns more than him is because she has a job with the DoD. And still we can't afford to move into a nicer place or anything like that. But enough about me. Racism and sexism definitely have a lot of similarities, and classism cannot be ignored either. I'm really glad we're having this discussion here. It's a nice break from all the zombie. Not that I mind zombie. I love zombie. Y'all know what it is.
    "Because they still believe there's respect in dying." - Ken Foree, Dawn of the Dead
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    Chasing Prey shootemindehead's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EvilNed View Post
    Male are more interested in sports because society teaches them too. We praise males for their athletic skill and women for their beauty. Males get scholarships for performing well in football. Women get scholarships for beauty pageants. Your criticism of the Sports example just shows how much more fucked up society is. We systematicaly indoctrinate our sexes to be interested in different things and it's all pretty fucking obvious to me.

    Your comment about male dominated sports being the superior product is a sexist one, and as I've said I equate that to racism.
    No, it's not a "sexist" one Ned. It's a true one. A case in point being womens football vs mens football, where to ANY honest observer, the male product is the far superior item. Womens football simply cannot compete with it on any level. In the main, the male sports product is the superior one as it stands presently and is, all too often carried by the male product fancially, as is amply shown by the current state of tennis. Again, this may change. but currently it's the facts.

    I also reject your own limited stereotyping regarding society and its attitude to male and female involvement in sports. There are plenty of outlets available for women to get involved in sporting activities in society, right up to professional level. The simple fact, though, is that men are just more interested in sports, regardless of encouragement.

    And no flick of the wrist "ism" slur can alter that.

    As for "scholarships for performing well in football" or "beauty pageants", that's an American societial issue. As far as I'm aware, such a thing doesn't exist within mine, or Britain's, or, I'll wager, most of Europe.

    Quote Originally Posted by EvilNed View Post
    Even further issues. These two occupations are often criticized for being lower paid. And they are lower paid because they're female dominated. That's a worldwide issue, by the way.
    No, they're lower paid because there is and has been for some time a concerted effort to devalue labour among a large range of professional and non-professional positions, not because they are female dominated. In my own country, teaching (mainly primary) and nursing were, effectively, closed shops. If you were a man trying to get into these professions, you had a very difficult time and it remains that way today.
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    Zombie Flesh Eater EvilNed's Avatar
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    You're confusing fact with opinion regarding sports. Your opinion on the matter is that male sports is better, and this deserves to be highlighted. The truth is more likely the opposite: Male sports are highlighted to the extreme and therefore more money goes into it, and therefore you perceive it as better. This is the society you live in, wether you like it or not. As I've already pointed out, male skillness is valued. Female beauty is valued.

    Also, even British society encourages women to be beautiful and men to be skillfull. Or do women in britain not wear makeup? The college / beauty pageant comparison is extreme and american, but similar examples exist within british or swedish culture. Sports being a very clear indication. What you're saying about how male sports are better than female and then calling it a fact is such a red sexist alarm bell going off and proves so many of my points. Had female sports been given the same room, money and coverage as male sports you would find no difference between them. You see the effect as the cause, when in fact it's the other way around. People didnt decide to favour male sporting because it was better - they decided to favour it because women sporting was non-exist and now a hundred years later here we are. It wasn't that long ago women werent even allowed to participate in marathons...

    Also, teaching and nursing are generally female dominated fields of work. They are generally lower paid fields of work. Connect the dots.

    "I worked in a factory owned by Germans, at coal pits owned by Frenchmen, and at a chemical plant owned by Belgians. There I discovered something about capitalists. They are all alike, whatever the nationality. All they wanted from me was the most work for the least money that kept me alive. So I became a Communist." - Ники́та Серге́евич Хрущёв

    "Thanks for Playa Girón. Before the invasion, the revolution was weak. Now it's stronger than ever". - Che Guevara

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    Walking Dead blind2d's Avatar
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    And what's this crap about it being harder for a man to become a teacher than a woman? Maybe decades ago, but in America at least I don't think that's any longer the case. So... Yeah. Go research Wilma Rudolph and tell me women aren't as good at sports as men.
    "Because they still believe there's respect in dying." - Ken Foree, Dawn of the Dead
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