Why Everyone is Married to a Peppermint Patty

In a follow-up comment to my post “But Pants Aren’t in the Bible!” I asked a simple question: “Blue jeans, tee shirt, ball cap, sneakers. Whose outfit is this?”

Derek didn’t get it. Instead of answering the question he tried to be cute:

Wool socks, snow boots, heavy winter coat.

Who’s outfit is this?

But I pressed him back to the question and he explained why he can’t answer it:

@Cane Caldo – “It is a simple question. Why can’t you answer it?”

Because it’s a loaded question, just like mine is. If I change your question to this: “Blue jeans, t-shirt, pink bra, cap, sneakers, hair bow. Whose outfit is this?”, then the answer is immediately different.

It is obvious that what constitutes women’s or men’s garb is subjective to a society. It is also subjective to both the situation and intention. The latter two are more important than the former because they are more specific.

If both my wife and I wear jeans, t-shirt, baseball cap, and sneakers to a baseball game, there isn’t anyone who would ever mistake me for a woman or her for a man.

Ah…the old “But My Wife” trick; coupled to the old “But everyone’s doing it!” gag.

Well, we wouldn’t dare to impede upon a woman’s desire to dress like a man while at a baseball game. After all: watching baseball is strenuous! Every woman in a stadium needs to look like a baseball player, wear brush resistant pants, and strip down to her undershirt to avoid sweat-stains on her blouse.

That’s what baseball caps were for: Men and boys who played baseball, and who identified with their favorite ball players. Blue jeans were invented as hard-wearing pants for men contending with the rugged terrain of the American West. Tee shirts are men’s undergarments. I’ll grant that there have always been athletic shoes for men and women, but even there I bet the trend went: Boys wore them casually first, then girls invaded. Sneakers aside: Ball caps, jeans, and tee shirts are all men’s clothing, and were intended to be so from the beginning.

Unlike those items: Wool socks were invented for both sexes. Snow boots were invented for both sexes. Heavy winter coats were invented for both sexes. Derek thought he was comparing apples to apples. He wasn’t. A ball cap, jeans, tee shirts, and sneakers used to be the casual uniform of the American Working Class Man until the Boomers ruined it with the Sexual Revolution. Now no one knows what women should not wear, and if they do, they won’t say it.

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The Course of Your Paths

My people—infants are their oppressors,
    and women rule over them.
O my people, your guides mislead you
    and they have swallowed up the course of your paths.

In the Men’s Sphere, there are a lot of different men with a lot of different viewpoints. I find that the posts and comments which get my interest and respect don’t hold to a particular pattern except in one way: The comment (and I therefore assume the commenter) admits that we are all lost in the wilderness. I don’t mean that he admits “the society”, or “the culture”, or some other notion of a group of which he is a part of but also somehow apart from. I mean he admits he is lost.

It’s reassuring. I’m no less lost when I find someone else who is lost, but even if nothing else there’s something trustworthy in that confession. That in-and-of-itself means we can have at least one thing: trust. And, very often among the confessors, there is something else which is valuable: He knows which direction not to go. He doesn’t know where we are, but he knows where he came from to get here, and can confirm it wasn’t any better back that way. Otherwise he wouldn’t have left.

The men who pretend to know where we culturally are, and where to go, can’t be trusted. It always turns out that such a man has no idea of what is right in front of his face; much less where we are, where we should go. He doesn’t have a map. He usually doesn’t even know what a map is.

But Pants Aren’t in the Bible!

Repurposed from my comment under Dalrock’s post “Cross Dressing Snuck Up in Our Blind Spot”.

The fundamental issue of restricting men’s clothes from women is about whether or not it is acceptable for men (the heads of society) to exclude women. And the answer from everyone (but most egregiously from Christians) is: “No.”

These comments about women’s pants in Asia, or Roman men’s robes, are totally wrongheaded. Whether legs are wrapped versus draped, and which for whom, is a subjective decision of a society. However, subjective does not mean irrelevant, or unimportant. It means we should use our freedom to orient towards the good, the true, and the beautiful. That orientation is more important than whether or not we can suss out the Natural Law of Pants and Robes.[1] The search for the science of pants is a silly distraction used by the perverse and libertine to discredit and mock sound cultural standards and further the destruction of good order. They are like so-called environmentalists who uproot gardens so that weeds may flourish “naturally”.

The importance of holding subjective standards and symbols which (while themselves not objective truths) do point to objective truths and reality needs to be considered much more thoroughly than it is; even by men who think themselves as “seeing”, “woke” or “Red-Pilled”…including myself.

[1] Probably the natural law of human clothing is, “Be sinless and naked”.

Examining Crime with a Speculum

The other day Zippy Catholic wrote:

The most primal power of men is violence. Therefore the besetting sins of incontinent men tend to be sins of violence primarily, and to involve sex only circumstantially/accidentally.  A violent man will use violence to get sex that he desires, but he will also use violence to get other things that he desires: money, drugs, prestige, etc.  This decreases as individual power decreases: the besetting sins of incontinent men with diminished capacity for violence will tend to be more effeminate or androgynous sins.

[…]

This is reflected in prison populations, which are mostly men, because our society is willing to punish crimes of violence but is not willing to punish crimes of sex.

This is, basically, what I believed for years and it is what I was taught. However, it is a false–but seductive–dichotomy which is not actually true. And is not actually reflected in prison populations; 66.7% of which are non-violent criminals and only 33.3% are.

Criminals Imprisoned for Crimes of Violence

g Homicide, Aggravated Assault, and Kidnapping Offenses 5,596 3.20%
k Robbery 6,565 3.80%
l Sex Offenses 15,873 9.10%
m Weapons, Explosives, Arson 29,881 17.20%
33.30%

Criminals Imprisoned for Non-Violent Crimes

a Banking and Insurance, Counterfeit, Embezzlement 517 0.30%
b Burglary, Larceny, Property Offenses 8,171 4.70%
c Continuing Criminal Enterprise 387 0.20%
d Courts or Corrections 802 0.50%
e Drug Offenses 80,585 46.30%
f Extortion, Fraud, Bribery 11,231 6.40%
h Immigration 13,227 7.60%
i Miscellaneous 1,305 0.70%
j National Security 68 0.00%
66.70%

In fact, the most primal power of men is the ability to produce work, and the besetting sin of incontinent men is avoidance of productive work.  Here are the same stats grouped to reflect that.

Criminals Imprisoned for Unlawful Gain

a Banking and Insurance, Counterfeit, Embezzlement 517 0.30%
b Burglary, Larceny, Property Offenses 8,171 4.70%
c Continuing Criminal Enterprise 387 0.20%
e Drug Offenses 80,585 46.30%
f Extortion, Fraud, Bribery 11,231 6.40%
h Immigration 13,227 7.60%
i Miscellaneous 1,305 0.70%
k Robbery 6,565 3.80%
70.00%

Criminals Imprisoned for Gainless Crimes

d Courts or Corrections 802 0.50%
g Homicide, Aggravated Assault, and Kidnapping Offenses 5,596 3.20%
l Sex Offenses 15,873 9.10%
j National Security 68 0.00%
m Weapons, Explosives, Arson 29,881 17.20%
30.00%

It would be even more skewed than that if we could tease out from “gainless crimes” those crimes which were committed en route to unlawful gain; murder for hire, murder for drug turf control, assault for intimidation, kidnapping for ransom, sale of weapons or explosives, arson for fraud, prostitution, pimping, etc. The split is probably closer to 80/20 unlawful gain/gainless crime and possibly even 90/10.

What Zippy, tough-on-crime politicians, and my younger self were noticing was not “the most primal power of men”, but the most sensational. Violence can be scary to everyone, but it really scares the hell out of women. And the West is one giant gynecology office where every problem is a pussy problem.

 

When Women Will Loom Large

Yesterday I went to watch Blade Runner 2049.

There will be no spoilers in this post, but I can’t guarantee the same for the comments.

I liked it a lot, and if you liked the original then I will guess you’ll like the new one too. It is a beautiful and legitimate science fiction film. It is not message fiction dressed up in sci-fi garb, but a long (164 minutes) visual question of, “What does it mean to be human?”

One of the themes of the film is that women are big players in this vision of the future (both figuratively and literally), but they are not at the very top. At the top is Niander Wallace, a handsome and white man of science who saves the world from starvation. But the lives of everyone under the very top are ruled, tempted, and overwhelmingly influenced by females, or their form.

I thought it quite probable.

Salesmen and Sissy-Slappers

Repurposed from a comment here:


There is, in our effeminate consumerist society, this overarching belief that a good man is a successful man, and the successful man is the man who can sell (things, ideas, even truth), and that the way to do this is to be flattering, and even to be pleasing to the things that come out of the hearts of men, and “empathize”. 1 Cor. 9:19-23 is often mischaracterized in just that way…

19 For though I am free from all, I have made myself a servant to all, that I might win more of them. 20 To the Jews I became as a Jew, in order to win Jews. To those under the law I became as one under the law (though not being myself under the law) that I might win those under the law. 21 To those outside the law I became as one outside the law (not being outside the law of God but under the law of Christ) that I might win those outside the law. 22 To the weak I became weak, that I might win the weak. I have become all things to all people, that by all means I might save some. 23 I do it all for the sake of the gospel, that I may share with them in its blessings.

…so that we are falsely taught that we are to be nice, and that a man who isn’t able to sell the truth to this or that person must have done it wrong. But what Paul said was he became like the person. He did not “empathize”. He lived like those people, and spoke to them in terms they would understand. Well, Wilson is a Christian blogger and his tagline is “Theology that bites back”. What should being like Wilson look like?

We have two problems here. The first is the argument between Wilson and Dalrock. But the second problem is more pressing–if you can believe it–and it is that the great majority of men–especially Christian men–are effeminate consumerists ready to sissy-slap any man who isn’t a nice and empathetic salesman. (Such men don’t sissy-slap women because women are the arbiters of niceness and empathy, and you can’t hit the ref.) Truly it is effeminate and it comes from men. This second problem disgusts me, and I bet I’m not the only one. In fact, I bet that in other circumstances it disgusts some of the very men who are here doing the sissy-slapping.

Over the years I have endured a good amount of criticism and even ridicule, and sometimes from some fairly big fish in our little pond: Novaseeker, Vox Day, Zippy Catholic, Slumlord/Social Pathologist, to name a few. I count those as blessings, and those are all writers I still read because I can learn, and have learned, from them. It would be a gross error to ignore their sometimes rude criticisms of me merely because I felt they were mean to me, or not empathic enough. And the error would be mine; not theirs.

And if I can be foolish a little more: My own criticisms–which have sometimes been rude and bombastic–have cleared the mental landscape for other men to follow behind me, and has allowed them to be more patriarchal with more emotional and mental comfort. You’re welcome.

Can You Imagine?

I think it was when I was eight. My family went to see Grandma and Grandpa. We often did that since we’d moved to their town; from southern California back to my parents’ hometown in Kansas. We’d go visit with them for the day and maybe we’d get some ice cream and then go back to the house my mother had grown-up in to watch Hee Haw. Sometimes we went over there early and drove out to the lake for a picnic and Grandpa would “Aw, Hell!” at me for fishing wrong. He’d taught me, so I was reflecting on him. This was one of those days.

Every time we went somewhere Grandpa always drove and always in his car. Those were the rules. It was in the 1980s, so some cars still had bench seats in front. That day Grandpa said, “Well, c’mon, get in. We ain’t got all day.”

I went towards the open back door to sit next to Grandma before my sister got that prized seat and Grandma said, “Go get up front.”The front seat was for Grandpa and Dad.

“Nuh-uh!” I could not believe my luck.

“Yes, Cane. You sit up front with the men now.” That’s the way it was until the bench was too small for all three of us, Grandpa, Dad, and I.

A Caned Response to the Nashville Statements

Such is the case with the Nashville Statement, and the Nashville Statement Fortified. Read them and then come back.

The first says, basically, that:

  • men are men
  • women are women
  • marriage is only between one man and one woman
  • sex is only to be in marriage
  • homosexuality and transgenderism are not valid expressions of sexuality

I agree.

The second say basically the same things, but with addition declarations against effeminacy. I agree with that also. It is good to be against effeminacy, but a fortified version of a statement on marital and sexual relations is incomplete if it does not speak on how half of only two sexes are to behave! I have searched the NSF and it does say this under Article 3:

Explanation of changes: The original statement affirms the ontological equality of man and woman without also confessing man’s headship. The order in which God created man and woman has ongoing application for the relationship between the sexes, as taught in 1 Corinthians 11:1–9. In an egalitarian age it is not faithful to confess the equality of Adam and Eve without also confessing Adam’s headship.

But where is the directive that wives must choose to obey their heads? Where is the article in which they deny that wives should be irreverent, rebellious, or usurpers? Where do they affirm that wives are to be sexually available to their husbands except for agreement of a limited time? What is more important to marriage than that the wife be submissive to her husband? These are serious and timely issues of marriage worthy of writing in these statements; more so than sodomy and transgenderism.  All the more so because they make us uncomfortable.

Until I see some evidence to the contrary, I am convinced that this current generation of church leaders will always refuse to allow women to be held to account in any way real. And as far as I can tell, this leadership believes that women can only really be guilty of bad feelings and regret.

Her Buck Stops Here

Modified slightly from a comment I made at Scott’s American Dad Web.


I am convinced that if a man wants his sons to enjoy exclusively male spaces and times, then he must set them now in a way which will seem arbitrary and even unfair to his modern and permissive self who just wants to be loved by his little girl.

And he needs to learn to be fine with his decisions as just and good; despite his feelings, or the feelings of others. He needs to accept that sometimes he must just say, “Nope, sorry honey, but that is a man’s business. It’s not because you might get hurt, or because you’re incapable, or because you’ll be frightened. It’s simply that you aren’t a man.” This will need to be done at relatively mundane times and events if he is to teach his children to respect and honor each sex, without rancor, according to their different natures.

We have tried the other way, and now females are on submarines, on the front lines, in football locker rooms, in the hunting party, and everywhere. These pressures are still out there in the world, and will sometimes effect our children, and we’ll have to respond to them. If your son grows up and complains that his hunting buddy wants to bring his girlfriend, what can you say? If your son asks to bring his own wife on your hunting trip, what will you say?

Will he reply, “Well, you took my sister hunting. What’s the big deal? It’s no different.”

Real Men Don’t Impede Her Desires

Men will set expectations for other men. They will say things like, “You’re not a real man if you don’t know how to change your own oil.”, or,  “A real man knows how to harvest game from the field.”, or, “Real men help women first.” They will hold such expectations on a regular basis, and they will invent new ones as needed to make a point about the importance of this thing or the other.

Men will also set limitations for other men. They might say, “A real men would never wear a dress.”, or, “Real men don’t play video games for hours.”, or, “A real man never hits a woman.” I trust you understand the dynamic of expectations and limitations to which I refer. They know that a man is a man. What they mean by real is good; good men will do these things and won’t do those things.

Now, once in a great while a man will set a very general expectation on women. If he is a bold Christian he might say, “The Bible says wives should submit to their husbands.” It’s hard to imagine a safer statement than that. The man himself hasn’t actually placed any expectation on women.  Yet even then he will surround it with quibbles and bromides and caveats and exceptions so that the plain and unoffensive statement has no practical meaning whatsoever; lest some man out there start to actually believe what the Bible says. But at least he made some vague attempt at something that might look like an expectation if it is seen at some distance in a dark alley on a moonless night.

What he will never, ever, do is say, “Women shouldn’t  _________.” You can fill in the blank as you like. It doesn’t matter because whatever it is that you think women shouldn’t do won’t actually be said. You can think of the manliest activity, and ultimately a modern man will reason that a woman must not be forbid to do it because she wants to, and because he refuses to stand in her way. Only jerks do that, they say; only a jerks makes a women forgo something she wants to do. He will marshal all forces of technology or rule available to ensure that she gets to try whatever she wants. Worse: He can’t explain why.

He can explain that he doesn’t allow his son to wear skirts even just once a year because it is unseemly for a man to wear women’s clothes. But he cannot explain why he lets his daughter wear a ballcap, jeans, and sneakers as routine. If his son is given a doll he will throw it out, but if his daughter is given a football then the municipal Pee-Wee league needs to give her a shot on the field. If his son picks up knitting needles his father will sneer and deride, but if his daughter picks up a gun then she will be able to defend herself. If his son puts on shorts he will be corrected to dress respectfully. If his daughter dresses like a slut she is merely expressing herself, and what man would dare to make a concrete pronouncement on modesty anyway? Who does he think he is?

They can’t draw a line anywhere around women; what women are, what women aren’t;  what women are to do, what women are not to do.Any man who can find a reason to let her have her way (any reason will do) is an enlightened hero. But any man who forgets himself and tries to put real material expectations and limitations on a woman is scorned as a misogynist and belittled as a wimp who can’t handle women. He will be told it’s not his place to say what his wife or daughter–or wives and daughters in general–are to do or not do.

This is one of the themes which I have come back to over and over. I talked about it with modest dress in sports, cowgirl crossdressing, pioneer women, women roaming malls and churches in various states of disrobe… Modern Christian men simply will not stomach the idea of actual, real, discriminating expectations and limitations on women; of telling them, “No.”