Irish Setters Write Few Letters

The Economics of Sex

Absolutely young women (and older ones as well) should run an inventory on how biblical their standards are. If their standards are what the law allows them, in which case alpha male or beta male hardly matters anymore, then they are collaborators and not the resistance. Let’s not deceive young men into thinking they can control the ball by being the right kind of man.

John

John, I think you are right about the reality of the challenge. But let’s also not deceive young men into thinking that it doesn’t matter what kind of man they are because the system is rigged against them. Of course it is rigged against them. This is not an absolute, but men control more than they think they do.


Regarding “The Economics of Sexual Purity,” thanks for your consistent and firm messages on this topic. You can’t find the straight stuff anywhere else. It took a while for these things to sink in (I’m stubborn and thick-headed sometimes), but I am joining the resistance on July 21 of this year. I began by taking your advice: I saw her at church, “passed the peace,” and asked her name. Funny how God works like that . . .

Kyle

Kyle, that’s not what passing the peace is for, but I do commend you for the effective multi-tasking.


Could you speak to the dichotomy of “early” marriage and our culture of higher education? It seems that the push for higher education fights against early marriage. It is very hard to pay for an expensive education and support a family at the same time. It would seem that if we had more septic tank pumpers we would have more early marriages, Also I am not saying because something is hard you shouldn’t do it, but as creatures that take the path of least resistance the outcome is one or the other.

Don

Don, living in a college town, I have seen many couples go through school together. If the woman is given to the man to be a helper in his vocation, then why can’t she be a helper during his preparation for that vocation?


On “The Economics of Sexual Purity”: I get what you are saying and largely agree. A call to join the resistance is a good way of putting it. However, you seem to imply that “the natural inclinations of women” in this arena are more virtuous than men’s. On the surface, this might appear to be true, but the marriage structure are meant to tame women’s desires as well, or, to paraphrase Chesterton, provide a fence for wild things to run free. Many women today are perfectly happy to be part of the modern day harem of some alpha male. Not promiscuous like men are promiscuous, but still promiscuous. They will use their beauty to get temporary enjoyment instead of using it to attract a husband. And while there might be some churches with an overabundance of marriageable young women, I haven’t seen that to be the case. They have either been brainwashed to hold out hopes for a perfect Prince Charming, are chasing a career before they want to settle down, and/or have not dedicated themselves to any domestic pursuits. This doesn’t absolve young men, of course. They should always be working to improve themselves. But the situation is pretty dire out there. I’m writing as someone who is happily married and grabbed a good one, but I do sympathize with the plight of young men today.

Matt

Matt, I agree with you that things are pretty bad currently. But the apostle Paul, lamenting the sexual degradation of his culture, also lamented the participation of the women in it, saying “even the women.” We are pretty close to that now. The reason we don’t see it clearly is that we listen to our propaganda more than we listen to Scripture and to nature.


You’ve come this far with the economics. You might as well have a look at sexual market value graphs for men and women. Women are going strike the best deal in a marriage when they are around 20 while men will in their early 30s. You wrote in an earlier post that men should be marrying earlier and I couldn’t tell if that was because you didn’t feel comfortable telling women to marry earlier. You should be matchmaking your high school senior girls with college senior men. Also, warn both sexes about how obesity limits your options.

Barnie

Barnie, yes, obesity limits options, as does being ugly and stupid. And other limitations may become obvious upon further reflection. As to women marrying young, I don’t have any hesitation urging them to marry on the young side, just like the men. I don’t go with your encouragement of college senior/high school senior match-ups though. The level of education your daughter has is likely to be a good predictor of the level of education your grandson will have. As a general rule, I think that men and women should marry in the 21-22-year-old range.


Progress Report

I’m a 25-year-old man who fights homosexual temptations, and the first time I stumbled across your blog I was furious. Your words pissed me off, a lot (specifically, “homo-jihad”). But I kept reading because I sensed that you were onto something. One day it all clicked. I realized how fully I’d sold out to this wishy-washy culture around us. I realized how I’d trained myself to not take ownership of my sin. I realized that I wasn’t engaging in the fight of life. That was about 3 years ago, and I’m fighting pretty damn well these days. I’m becoming the kind of man God created me to be—the kind of man I always wanted to be. I haven’t been reading you much lately, but your blog played a pivotal role in me choosing to stand up and fight. For that, I’ll always be thankful for you.

Ryan

Ryan, thank you very much. Keep fighting.


A Random Request

May I request that you consider writing an autobiography?

Rob

Rob, I have thought about it. And bits and pieces of one can be found under the heading of Autobiographical Fragments.


Alfie, Death Panels, and Our Health Care System

As a trauma surgeon immersed in our current American medical system, I can tell you that one early step that veered off course was taking personal and economic responsibility away from both physicians and patients. Physicians do not have to weigh the cost of care when prescribing and treating, and patients and families are not ultimately required to pay a dime for said care (those who are able, or unable but conscientious, are fleeced). Insurance company’s delving into monthly or yearly premiums for all care instead of actual “insurance against catastrophe” created the illusion of unlimited resources for several generations, and we are living in a culture that still acts as if resources are unlimited . . . though as we can all now see, healthcare economics are fracturing under the weight of such mindsets. Even further back in the deviation would be family and personal guilt. Families and patients strive after every last drop of life, even if it is life worse than death, frequently because they have neglected said family member for decades, and now want to “do everything for them” in a last ditch effort to salve their consciences. The “murderous ways” you mention are not so much engrained in the medical culture, they are engrained in the hatred of unregenerate people for each other—and the associated guilt—patient and physician alike. Repentance, I think, has to start with confessing and forsaking personal and familial relationship sin, followed by loving our neighbors economically (as you so well stated just a few days ago), and then taking personal responsibility to 1) turn down (or stop prescribing) excessive testing or procedures; 2) live in the light of our impending deaths, and 3) recognize that inability to pay for something means exactly that—it is not yours to take (probably the hardest to concede, and the hardest to accept, particularly regarding health). Obviously this is a complex issue with no easy and quick solution . . . but on the ground, lack of personal responsibility appears to be the chief manifestation of our collective error.

Nathan

Nathan, yes. Our problems really are systemic, and almost all of them go back to basic issues of selfishness.


A liberal bureaucracy reacts to a hearty “I toldja so” like a poke in the eye with a pointed stick. They hate it, but they will survive it. Alfie, God bless his soul, is in a hospital bed breathing on his own and refusing to die. That, my friends, is akin to some skinny kid with a sling and a stone standing before a big, foul-mouthed, blaspheming giant. I have no doubt they will eventually kill Alfie, even if they have to starve him or dehydrate him to death, but what they cannot kill is the realization of the truth of who they are and just what this whole “government as god” scenario entails. Eventually, (maybe not in my lifetime) enough people will see the giant for who he really is and cut his head off with his own oversize sword. Either that or Jesus will come back and hey y’all, watch this.

Dan

Dan, thanks.


This story is heart breaking, but the media has not accurately and fairly reported the medical evidence presented to the court (I realize that, even so, that doesn’t change your overall point). This is not a case where treatments to halt or reverse a disease are being deliberately withheld by the National Health Service. According to the medical evidence presented to the court, significant brain death has already occurred and there is nothing more his doctors can do. Three Italian doctors from the hospital to which the parents would like to bring this child have examined him in England, and concur that no treatment will arrest this disease. What the Italian doctors are offering is surgery to help him breathe and eat, thus prolonging his life. I think this is an important point to emphasize. Some media outlets are claiming that Alfie is being denied possibly effective treatments; this is simply untrue. I think that the more salient issue here is parental rights, and in this case I think the courts have overstepped. If it is true that the child is in a semi-vegetative state, it can’t be argued that taking him to Italy would cause him to suffer. I can’t see any legitimate reason to deny him life-prolonging care that any other medical system is wiling to provide. But questions about who gets to make medical treatment decisions on behalf of a child also arise in nations which don’t have single-payer state run health care. Hospitals in the U.S. have also gone to court to challenge parental decisions which they feel are not in the child’s best interest.

Jill

Jill, right. But no one that I know of is blaming the UK health care system for refusing to heal Alfie. It is the hubris of standing in the parents’ way as they seek out responsible medical care. But you also raise an important point—parental rights in this kind of thing are not an absolute. Suppose the parents were opposed to a routine blood transfusion on religious grounds, or charismatic parents wanted to take him from the hospital in order to name it and claim it at home. In other words, sometimes children die because of arrogant physicians—but they can also die because of arrogant parents. But all things considered, in a fallen world like ours, I generally want to go with the parents instead of the death panels.


You’re so right when you say it come down to a bureaucrat’s decision on who gets treatment or not. Healthcare would be managed better if the people had more control and avoidable technological errors like an overclocked CPU. The Western World is facing their penance now.

Dennis

Dennis, I would say that we are just starting to face it.


Chastened Patriotism?

Yes, I’m writing this on an article nearly ten years old, but what can I say. . . I searched from Dan to Beersheba and here I am. Could you consider an article or series of articles on Christian patriotism? I’m reading what your blog has on the topic, but still find myself torn. Perhaps due to coming of age and becoming politically aware in 2007-2008 and having my introduction to our national culture in that environment, I do not strongly identify with the United States. I can’t say I love the country, as all values and leaders are largely antithetical to mine. While I would defend this country were it attacked (I see that as incumbent on all men as part of their duty as protectors), I do not have any particular interest in seeing the current structure persist outside of a preservation of our now lost first principles. Any devotion in my heart is toward principles that are becoming more and more rare. As the current United States becomes more divorced from the principles, my allegiance goes with them and not with this nation-state. Are these just my “private libertarian brain-thoughts” that I’m honoring? To what degree should I be proud of a godless nation? Catch my drift? I don’t say the Pledge, since I think it is idolatrous to pledge allegiance to anything but Christ and His Church or, say, my wife, but I will stand and face the flag with my hand in the required place during the Anthem. This is only because I respect what we once were, those who try to keep it, and generally desire the peace of the realm. I’m not about to go agitating for the overthrow of Washington, in other words, but beyond my support in a hypothetical defensive crisis, I’m not a flag-waving patriot. However when describing that view to a friend, he asked me pointedly, “Well, what are you standing for then? What are you saluting?” I must admit I came up empty. I don’t have any particular pride in this country, don’t identify as “an American” much at all, and generally look suspiciously at anything red, white, and blue. Perhaps that’s odd from a serious fan of our history . . . I’m not sure. I decidedly do not want to see American values exported overseas given where we are now. Is my Church “a floaty thing” as you say? Have I explained it well? In a sense I don’t even understand my own heart on this. Perhaps it all comes down to a need to explain what exactly patriotism is. I’d appreciate any wisdom.

Samuel

Samuel, you are right. I do need to write more about this. In the meantime, the thing to do is “not drift along.” In other words, previous generations found it easy to conform to a thoughtless patriotism—and they were just fitting in. It wasn’t a matter of sturdy principle. Your reaction seems to me also to resemble a conforming to the current generation’s lassitude. So take care that you don’t fit right in, the same way your great-grandparents did.


The Race Thing

The problem with most of these racist oppression outrage stories is that, 90% of the time, there is a backstory to the story. And when that backstory comes out, those of us who want to judge the issue fairly and not be rushed to justice by the mob, find ourselves wondering what all the fuss is about. It is truly a “boy cried wolf” situation, where our sensitivity to true oppression and injustice is being dulled by the repeated outcry over every manufactured crisis. I’m not saying that no injustice was done to the young men in the Starbucks, but that it isn’t always the black and white issue that the media paints for us.

C.

C, right. There is a reason why rushing to judgment is a bad idea.


Is Porn Free Speech?

I’m studying for my First Amendment exam and wrestling with the strong protection the Court has given to pornography. It seems clear to me that porn has deleterious effects on the men who consume it and they often pass along those harms in their interactions with others. Still, that kind of rationale for exempting expression from A1 protection has been rightly rejected in other contexts (e.g., suppressing communist literature for fear it will damage American capitalism) and poses threats to Christian speech (the recent California legislation seems a good example). There is something unsettling about suppressing speech because people might accept its message (though it does seem more attractive in cases like porn where the messages conveyed are uniformly destructive). Does the state have a role in fighting the war on pornography?

Pat

Pat, yes. I believe the problem comes from confusing categories. What is “speech?” First, I don’t think a stripper pole is equivalent to a lectern. And second, if certain sexual activities should be against the law (e.g. adultery), then filming it shouldn’t be against the law. Rather, the film should be used by the prosecution in the trial for the adultery. If a bunch of idiot teenagers took pictures of themselves on a vandalism spree, we wouldn’t think to pass a law against that. Instead we would thank them very much.


Diet and Cancer

From reading your writings, I think you are fairly skeptical about the organic foods and restrictive diets movement and “crunchy” types. And, there are surely some good reasons to be so. However, there are quite a few fairly compelling works that I would commend to you for your consideration as to the importance of diet and environmental factors in the development of cancer. If you have the time or inclination, I think these could be informative: 1. The Case Against Sugar by Gary Taubes 2. The China Study by T. Colin Campbell & Thomas M. Campbell II 3. The Gerson Therapy by Charlotte Gerson & Morton Walker May you keep writing and ministering for many, many years!

BLT

BLT, thanks. I am familiar with Taubes, and have read at least one of his books, and enjoyed it. Thanks for the recommendations.


Starting in California

The Christian is not only being mentally crippled, but Christianity is on the brink of being outlawed in America.

Daniel

Daniel, yes. I think the conflict is going to escalate pretty rapidly now.

Skip to 138 Comments
Letters
Submit A Letter to the Editor. Well-written, fair-minded letters may be interacted with in featured posts. Also, please mention the title of the post which you are addressing.

138
Leave a Reply

avatar
 
8 Comment threads
130 Thread replies
0 Followers
 
Most reacted comment
Hottest comment thread
19 Comment authors
Micael GustavssonlndighostJill SmithJaneOKRickety Recent comment authors

  Subscribe  
newest oldest most voted
Notify of
JP Stewart
Member

As for “Starting in California,” it’s already started:
https://www.summit.org/programs/student-conferences/2018-california-update/

Jill Smith
Member

This bill will pass because Dems have a super majority in both houses. But I doubt that it will survive a court challenge. SCOTUS has twice declined to hear challenges to California’s six-year-old law prohibiting sex conversion therapy with minors, but that law applies only to state-licensed therapists. This bill appears to prohibit any kind of therapy or education where money changes hands, and it is much too broad in its definitions. There is also the problem that it applies to adults. If I want to spend my money on Reiki therapy, who is the state to object?

JP Stewart
Member

Well for now the threat of lawsuits are enough to cancel conferences…in which people have already paid for fees and airfare.

RichardP
Guest
RichardP

“If I want to spend my money on …” Consider that the state requires persons selling their experties in health matters to the general public to be licensed. That is a noble effort to ensure that there is a certain level of competence in the care delivered to the public. “Competence” beind determined by scientific testing as to the results. In theory at least, the results you are selling are supposed to be demonstrable. The licensing helps to ensure at least a certain level of demonstratability So – the state does interfere in what you can spend your money on… Read more »

Jill Smith
Member

One of the problems with the bill is its vagueness. All California counselors and therapists must be licensed by the state. Clergy are exempt from licensing requirements for the counseling they do as part of their work. The purposes of the bill would have been achieved by limiting its scope to state-licensed counselors. While clergy are still free to counsel parishioners, they will now have to be very careful to avoid the slightest appearance that a commercial transaction has taken place. The other thing that struck me is that this bill targets more than reparative therapy as I would have… Read more »

JP Stewart
Member

It’s not very clear what you’re saying, but there seem to be two claims. (1) Competence is or should be based on scientific testing. I’m sure there’s testing, and some of it is worthwhile. But as in any bureaucracy, it’s also based on special interest, politics and keeping bureaucrats employed and well-paid. I say this as someone with many friends and relatives in various medical fields. (2) “Sexual orientation sits squarely in the middle of health matters.” So it’s right up there with cancer-prevention and good dental hygiene? Really? Based on what? Bottom line: it’s a really bad bill, packed… Read more »

Jane
Member

I would base it on the fact that there are some very clear health implications to sexual behaviors.

The Commenter Formerly Known As fp
Guest
The Commenter Formerly Known As fp

And sexual orientation sits squarely in the middle of health matters.

It sure does. Homosexuality, not to mention so-called “transgenderism”, is extremely risky behavior and a burden to the healthcare system. Which is why, if it wants to implement socialized medicine, the State of California is going to have to seriously reconsider its slavering support of homosexuality and stop trying to ban humane efforts to mitigate that risk.

Jill Smith
Member

On the other hand, we must be commended for our apparently successful crusade to outlaw plastic straws.

The Commenter Formerly Known As fp
Guest
The Commenter Formerly Known As fp

Must be nice living in the land of no other problems.

Jill Smith
Member

Canada’s nanny-state has nothing on the California legislature. I await legislation requiring that my cats be fed organic food in porcelain bowls three times each day.

bethyada
Member

Would such a law even challenge your behaviour?

Jill Smith
Member

Certainly not. My cats drink filtered water and eat canapes served on finest Spode. While they dine, I often treat them to a Puccini aria sung at glass-shattering volume as well. They don’t seem to be as appreciative as they ought to be. Except for the Siamese. He loves it.

JP Stewart
Member

“It sure does. Homosexuality, not to mention so-called “transgenderism”, is extremely risky behavior and a burden to the healthcare system. ”

Hey! You weren’t supposed to go there…even with California’s pension system and other economic time bombs.

The Commenter Formerly Known As fp
Guest
The Commenter Formerly Known As fp

Hey! You weren’t supposed to go there…even with California’s pension system and other economic time bombs.

You could be onto something here. Instead of interfering in California’s self-destructive behavior, it might be better to simply step back and watch it burn.

I’ll provide the marshmallows.

kyriosity
Member

Re Don’s question and the response: I’d love to see some stats on how many pregnant women NSA graduates compared to other colleges and universities. I’d bet there’s a significantly higher BQ* underneath NSA’s commencement gowns.

*Bump Quotient

Jsm
Guest
Jsm

I completely agree with you on what I have read of your writings on race issues. However, I believe you should retract and apologize for your contributions to “Southern Slavery as it was” I think you paint a picture that was untrue. I believe you base your conclusions on the slave narratives. Doing this I think you could have made a case claiming Israel’s treatment under the Egyptians was not so bad based on Expdus 16:3. In both Israel and Americas cases the evidence is too strong to the contrary.

http://www.vulture.com/2018/04/zora-neale-hurston-barracoon-excerpt.html

The Commenter Formerly Known As fp
Guest
The Commenter Formerly Known As fp

…I think you are fairly skeptical about the organic foods and restrictive diets movement and “crunchy” types. And, there are surely some good reasons to be so. However, there are quite a few fairly compelling works that I would commend to you for your consideration as to the importance of diet and environmental factors in the development of cancer.

The person who wrote this gave me a sudden hankering for a rather tasty (and possibly unhealthy) sandwich.

Jill Smith
Member

It made me nuke the last slice of (vegetarian) pizza, and drizzle oily cheese over my laptop.

JCharles
Guest
JCharles

I struggle with this. On this Blog Men and women are supposed to be different Gay marriage is not allowed Yet Jonathan Merritt/Rachel Evans etc are all pro gay, pro feminist and a little bit anti- male both proclaim Christ surely someone has to be right or wrong. I am a struggling Christian I hate the fact that I am gay. But at Church I see women choosing their work over their kids and husbands I don’t really see much Male Cheating etc as those men get kicked out quickly Divorce everywhere yet they all look like happy Christians but… Read more »

JP Stewart
Member

JCharles, Merrit/Evans are wrong, and while they may proclaim Christ, they deny him by their self-serving interpretation of Scripture. You’re right about henpecking wives and anti-male tendencies in many modern churches. http://thefederalist.com/2018/04/09/want-men-church-stop-treating-contempt/ My best advice is to find a good, Bible-believing church (yes, there are still good ones, just no perfect ones) and seek help. There are plenty of men who struggle with homosexuality like yourself. And as I mentioned in another post, many heterosexual men have similar struggles. Some desire marriage but haven’t found it. Others are in sexless marriages or have wives who left them without Biblical grounds.… Read more »

JCharles
Guest
JCharles

yeah there are so many debates and questions The most conservative churches where I live and I used to be a part of were training young men to be house husbands to better serve their wives…. I find this silly, you can’t be feminist and anti gay as both are just ignoring what they do not like. It does confuse me because most Christians are way more feminist than 30 years ago, which means most will be pro gay in 30 years so is my sin really sin? Sins seem to change over time Women who did not care for… Read more »

lndighost
Member

JCharles, take heart. Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever. Societies change, civilisations rise and fall, but God’s word is eternal.

I hope you can find a faithful church to help you. Read Job. Read the Psalms. Read Hebrews. Outside the scriptures, Rosaria Butterfield might be helpful if you haven’t read her already.

Remember that nothing can separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

JCharles
Guest
JCharles

I have read her, but its hard to take her seriously.
She does not follow the bible herself.
She claims to be saved yet she is married with kids but spends more time travelling, speaking and teaching than supporting her husband or running her home.

And really there is nothing wrong with Gender role reversal
if gay marriage is fine because then the hermeneutic is consistent.

I don’t agree with that hermeneutic
so am very conflicted
anyways what others do or do not do does not matter, that is their life.
The frustrating thing is how overpowering the sin is

Hate yourself for disappointing God all the time

Barnie
Guest
Barnie

Why focus on early marriage for men? Your previous writings have evinced Victorian notions regarding the dangers of male sexuality vs the moral or amoral nature of female sexuality. I dont deny that locking down male sexuality is a goal in line with scripture but it isn’t the only goal. You also need to lock down female sexuality and keep both locked down in stable marriage. The goal of stable marriage, particularly in the absence of a strong cultural infrastructure, is not advanced by pushing males towards marriage so early that most are unprepared socially and economically to take on… Read more »

Jane
Member

That’s a real shame about your wife’s terrible college education. My ability to homeschool our kids was definitely benefited by my accounting and business management degree.

Barnie
Guest
Barnie

I have scads of postgraduate education but in the end education is a very inefficient method of sorting for IQ, conscientiousness, and ideological conformity. In my work, I regularly identify high IQ, conscientious individuals and assign them work far beyond what is expected for their level of education and credentialling.
I guarantee that my wife has gotten more out of her MRS degree than you’ve gotten out of your BS.

Jill Smith
Member

Well, perhaps being married to you is an education in itself. We must all be happy that marriage has been such a blessing to Mrs. Barnie. Logically that doesn’t lead us to conclude that Jane’s business degree has not benefited her husband and children. And, it is an invalid comparison because both your wife and Jane have college degrees. To make it valid, you would have to say, “My wife who quit school in the tenth grade has gotten more out of her MRS degree etc.” And even then one would have to define “more”. More intellectual stimulation? More skill… Read more »

Justin Parris
Member

“I guarantee that my wife has gotten more out of her MRS degree than you’ve gotten out of your BS.” In my experience with postgraduate education, this probably isn’t true. My wife went to one of the top programs in the country for her field, and the coursework’s usefulness was downright laughable in comparison to even a month actually performing the job. The spectacularly expensive extra two years provided little more than a waste of time in order to provide a paper of “official” competency without providing any actual training. Given that this was one of the top programs in… Read more »

Jill Smith
Member

Justin, I think Barnie meant MRS as in Missus. When I was young, sorority girls said they were at university to get their MRS degree, i.e. find a husband.

OKRickety
Member

Justin,

I’m confused. You suggest that most post-graduate education provides little value (I would not be surprised if this is true), but I see no relevance to Barnie’s claim that his wife’s “Mrs.” degree has more value than someone else’s “BS” degree.

As to the value of a wife’s tertiary education, I am unaware of any benefit to our marriage that my ex-wife’s Business degree provided. I am quite certain I would have gladly traded it for various other “qualifications” she never achieved.

Jill Smith
Member

OKR, that’s what I was trying to get at below. In an ideal world, education makes a woman more rational, fairer-minded, and more self-controlled than she would have been without it. And if it no longer does that, at least it should enable her to earn some money when the family exchequer runs low on funds. If it does neither, I can see your questioning its utility! That being said, I would have found it difficult to live happily with someone whose educational attainments were drastically lower than my own, and I doubt that I could have made such a… Read more »

OKRickety
Member

Jill said: “That being said, I would have found it difficult to live happily with someone whose educational attainments were drastically lower than my own, and I doubt that I could have made such a person a good wife.” That danger of unhappiness is one reason that the current attendance ratios in college is a concern. If most college-educated women respond as you think you would, then it should not be a surprise that fewer women are getting married and so many divorces do occur. In other words, that would be an argument against women going to college. At least… Read more »

demosthenes1d
Member

One of the surprising findings in places with changing sex-ratios is that women are treated much better when there are more men. Probably because they are vying for their attention. Many projected a hell-hole of rape and exploitation with the extreme gender imbalance in China and India, but early returns indicate that it increases male protectiveness and women are more preferentially treated. The same seems true of universities with unbalanced male/female ratios, like CalTech and MIT, though those schools have highly unusual students.

JP Stewart
Member

“That being said, I would have found it difficult to live happily with someone whose educational attainments were drastically lower than my own” What if the said young man chose learn a trade or start a business instead of getting saddled down with huge debt in return for a 4+ year paid vacation? I recently read the average undergrad student spends less than 3 hours a day on academics (class time and studying). In many cases, those who go this route are capable of making a smart cost-benefit analysis at an early age…rather than settling for groupthink. And if they… Read more »

Jill Smith
Member

Well, I should note that I was speaking for myself, and I did say “drastically reduced. ” Perhaps it would be more accurate to say that a woman whose education and interests tend toward the highly academic may not be happy in a marriage with someone who neither shares nor values so major a component of her identity. Obviously this doesn’t rule out the businessman or tradesman whose intelligence and passion for learning may outstrip hers. But commonality of background and interests is important. In my own experience, non-academic men find academic women a little weird!

demosthenes1d
Member

Jilly, when you went to school it was a far more exclusive experience. I still don’t know that the average lady who graduated could be called “academic” but they were a more elite group than today. About 2/3 of high school graduates at least give college a go today, and women are overweight (no pun intended) in that group. I don’t think we could call many of them “academic.”

Jill Smith
Member

That is true, and I was referring to a woman who attends graduate school and has experience working as an academic. Not simply someone who get a four year degree.

demosthenes1d
Member

At which point we are taking about a much more exclusive circumstance. In my experience academics are very high status and assortively mate to an extreme degree. I know a lot of professors and PhDs who are married to other academics.

OKRickety
Member

… academics are very high status and assortively mate to an extreme degree.

Perhaps I’m a wannabe redneck, but I don’t consider them high status, and think those who do get what they deserve.

JP Stewart
Member

“Perhaps I’m a wannabe redneck, but I don’t consider them high status, and think those who do get what they deserve.Join the discussion”

Those who’ve done groundbreaking research in a real field (not “Women’s Studies”) or made waves outside of academia (e.g., Jordan Peterson, Cal Newport) are high-status. The Tier 3 college prof who thinks he’s God’s gift to the Sociology Dept. and puts “Ph.D.” on every email and check he signs…not so much.

Jill Smith
Member

The proliferation of non-academic (and often crackpot) fields of study has certainly diminished status. So has the increasing public perception that some academics are doctrinaire hacks, not fearless pursuers of truth. But academics will continue to be perceived as high status by one another, so Demo’s point about assortive mating will continue to hold.

lndighost
Member

JP, I think the trades are very much undervalued. A young man wanting to get married soon should be focused on the goal of a good job of some kind (whether it’s as a baker or as a surgeon) and not frittering away his time at university for lack of a better idea. It’s a better look to a prospective father-in-law too, if you go to him as a third-year apprentice as opposed to a second-year student of nothing in particular. The problem that sometimes arises is that a tradesman, however unjustly, feels not quite good enough for his more… Read more »

JP Stewart
Member

Indigohost, I used a tradesman as one example, but there are many others. Personally, I’d starve if I had to make money in a trade. However, there are many other possibilities (building websites, other IT not requiring a degree, online marketing for local businesses, e-commerce, etc.). I don’t think these would have the same stigma as a carpenter or mechanic, though some women may still look down on non-degreed men. Having multiple degrees myself, I think they’re pretty worthless unless they’re in a medical, tech/engineering or legal field….or you go to a rigorous school that still teaches liberal arts and… Read more »

lndighost
Member

Absolutely. I’d starve in a trade too, which is why I have so much respect for tradies. I don’t understand the stigma at all. Modern building construction (for example) requires a significant skill set. I’d like to see society placing more value on these types of careers. Young women should be taught to value a good work ethic, strong motivation levels, and the ability to provide, whether or not there are letters after the gentleman’s name.

Justin Parris
Member

Pay no attention. It was a misreading fueled by being under caffeinated while watching lots of kids.

Jane
Member

Well, I have both an MRS and a BA. I use both (assuming I have some idea what you mean by what your wife has gotten out of it.)

The point isn’t to sort people. It’s to learn things. Which I did, in college. The fact that I could possibly somehow by some means have done it on my own doesn’t change the fact that I did, in fact, learn it in college, and therefore that education benefited me in the process of homeschooling, and other aspects of running my home and bringing up my kids.

Justin Parris
Member

“My wife’s ability to homeschool our kids is not in the least benefitted by her advertising degree.”

Statistically speaking, when tested for actual standardized proficiency in English and Math, education majors score near the bottom of the curve amongst all college majors. So odds are if you have any college degree at all you’re in a better position to teach your children than the people who do so professionally.

Jill Smith
Member

Justin, you need to distinguish between teachers who major in education, and those who major in a solid academic subject and then take a one year program to get a state teaching credential. I think there are a lot of teachers who get an MA in English or an MSc in biology, and then decide to teach rather than stay in grad school. My daughter’s high school was selective for both teachers and students, and all her teachers had graduate level degrees in something other than education. You also need to look at the college itself. It may be true… Read more »

Justin Parris
Member

To answer your second point first, naturally a statistic taken as across the entire country will vary from place to place. The national average crime rates for the US are not representative of the crime rates in Chicago. I said “odds are” to allow such variables. As for your first point, I’d be interested in what the actual ratios are on the whole. How many teachers are education majors? I would wager it changes gradually with what grade level is being taught, with the education majors at the younger end of the curve. The younger end of the curve being,… Read more »

Jill Smith
Member

The nature of teacher credentialing pretty much requires that teachers of primary grades take education as a major. In my state, there is no way to convert a graduate degree in English into a multi-subject teaching license. So, if your goal is to teach elementary school, you can only get the necessary multi-subject course work in a faculty of education. But I think that we miss the point when we focus narrowly on skills. Youtube videos explain long division far better than I can. A very good college education should enhance qualities of mind that we think are important. Intellectual… Read more »

OKRickety
Member

Jill,

A very good college education should enhance qualities of mind that we think are important.

Unfortunately, as you have stated yourself before, I don’t think most people today receive a “very good college education” but instead learn bad habits and worse. I don’t know that this happens more to women, but I certainly think it is possible. However, I do suspect the negative impact this has on women’s lives may be far greater than it is on men.

Jill Smith
Member

OKR, I realize my views come from the golden days of my youth. There has been a drastic change even in the idea of what a college education should accomplish. The undergraduate years in a liberal arts faculty were not primarily seen as training you for an occupation but rather as developing the qualities of mind that I mentioned earlier. Upper middle class Catholic families usually insisted that their daughters undergo this education–not because they didn’t hope for early marriage but because they saw the non-cash benefits that an educated woman offers her husband and children. Catholic women’s colleges were… Read more »

Jane
Member

But a man considering marrying a college educated woman isn’t marrying “most people” who attend “most colleges.” She had an education that was either good or it was not, and that can be evaluated. If it was a good education, then it is to her (and his) benefit. If it was not good, it isn’t to their benefit. Writing off the idea of higher education because the execution is often poor doesn’t seem sound. It’s useful for saying, “Don’t just assume that more education is better.” It’s not useful for determining whether education, properly done, is a benefit or not.

OKRickety
Member

Jane,

Perhaps the formal education itself can be evaluated, but I remain skeptical as to its actual value, while recognizing that a degree continues, unfortunately in my opinion, to be considered valuable by those with influence in hiring.

For myself (and perhaps many men today), I consider a woman’s college education to be far less important to her marriage attractiveness than many other aspects of her knowledge and experience. In fact, I would consider a college degree to be a red flag in regard to marriage.

demosthenes1d
Member

This thread started with a discussion whether or not college is beneficial for women (in the context of homeschooling and wifely duties in particular). when providing guidance, working out principles, or testing heuristics “most people” and “most colleges” are the right subjects. Exceptions, nuance or further guidance can come later.

Jane
Member

I disagree, because “most women” don’t decide to go to “most colleges” in an abstract, statistical way. A woman decides to go to A college. A man decides whether to marry that woman. If a woman makes a good decision to go to a good college and gets a good education (by all the proper definitions of “good,”) then that is categorically different from “most people” going to “most colleges” when it comes to deciding whether the process was beneficial or not, if “most people” make poor decisions for the wrong reasons to go to “most colleges.” It would be… Read more »

OKRickety
Member

demo,

This thread started with a discussion whether or not college is beneficial for women (in the context of homeschooling and wifely duties in particular).

If all else is equal, then a wife’s college education probably benefits her marriage and family. However, I think it highly likely that a woman getting a college education removes the possibility that “all else is equal”.

JohnM
Guest
JohnM

Will a very good college education teach a woman to love and respect her husband more than she would if she lacked such an education? Will it give her a gentle and quiet spirit that she would not otherwise have?

I’ve never seen any evidence that is the case.

Jane
Member

Loving and respecting her husband are the foundation of a marriage.

They are not the only qualities you should want in the woman who will educate your children. You want those qualities, AND a mind capable of supervising an education.

Many women manage to capably supervise their children’s education without a good college education. But that does not mean that an education may have no net benefit.

Jill Smith
Member

I think that perhaps there are two separate issues here. Is it true that attending a typical modern four year college can undermine an individual woman’s suitability for traditional Christian marriage? Obviously yes. It might undermine her chastity and her Christian belief while imbuing her with false ideas and unpleasant attitudes. In that sense it might be red flag.

But, if the question is whether even a virtuous higher education lowers a woman’s suitability for marriage, that sends up my red flags.

Jane
Member

“But, if the question is whether even a virtuous higher education lowers a woman’s suitability for marriage, that sends up my red flags.”

Exactly!

OKRickety
Member

Jill said: “But, if the question is whether even a virtuous higher education lowers a woman’s suitability for marriage, that sends up my red flags.

A “virtuous higher education” (whatever that means) might increase a woman’s suitability for marriage, but I do not think it a certainty. Regardless, I suspect the percentage of higher education in the USA that is “virtuous” is quite low, say, 3% or less. In other words, the odds are against it.

JohnM
Guest
JohnM

Jill, I’m too lazy scour the thread and see if anyone has said a virtuous higher education lowers a woman’s suitability for marriage, so I’ll let you tell me if that is the case.

JohnM
Guest
JohnM

Love and respect are what a man should want from his wife. If a woman lives out sincere love and respect for her husband in the ways she is able he has no warrant for complaint or for thinking her deficient as a wife. Neither should anyone else think such a wife deficient.

Being a particularly capable tutor to their children might be the icing, but never the cake. There is more than one kind of icing. Some men like one kind of icing better, some another.

OKRickety
Member

JohnM said: “I’ve never seen any evidence that is the case.

In fact, I suspect the opposite is likely. I strongly doubt any college education, good or bad, teaches a woman to love and respect her husband. Those behaviors, if they do exist, were almost certainly taught in the home, and such teaching is highly unlikely to be related to the formal education of the mother.

Jane
Member

I have no objection to that thought at all.

The question is, must literally everything a woman does, that has value, be something that explicitly teaches her to love and respect her husband?

Or, given that a particular woman has that foundation from other sources, are there valuable pursuits that benefit her, her husband, and her children, in other ways?

OKRickety
Member

Jane said: “Or, given that a particular woman has that foundation from other sources, are there valuable pursuits that benefit her, her husband, and her children, in other ways?” The problem is that it’s not a given that women today have that foundation before attending college. In that scenario, the vast majority of college environments today almost certainly reduce the marriage suitability of most women to an even lower level. If she does, in fact, have that foundation, then there might be other pursuits that would be beneficial. However, the decision to pursue them is not a given but should… Read more »

Jane
Member

I’m not saying it’s a given for all women. I’m saying in the case where it is a given, then there are things that she can learn that do not directly bear on that, that can be advantageous.

Jill Smith
Member

Jane, I don’t understand why this isn’t obvious. No one would argue that my learning to knit, sew, and make hollandaise sauce either promoted or undermined the love and respect I would feel for a future husband. They were useful accomplishments from which he might benefit, especially if he happened to like Eggs Benedict. Why would academic accomplishments fall into a different category? My husband liked my ability to edit his papers and correct his students’ essays even more than he liked my chocolate mousse. I think what is creeping me out a bit is the suggestion that higher education… Read more »

Farinata
Guest
Farinata

Didn’t you already point out that it would be hard to love and respect a husband who was less intellectual than yourself? Or did I misunderstand you?

Jill Smith
Member

Hi Farinata, I didn’t say love and respect. I said be happily married, and I don’t think these are always the same thing. I love and respect all kinds of people whose intellectual interests are different from my own. Love and respect are not identical with compatibility. Love and respect are acts of the will. As I understand Christian teaching, I owe submission to my husband, not because he is cleverer or better educated, but because he is my husband. A man leads in ballroom dancing, not because he dances better, but because those are the rules of the dance.… Read more »

demosthenes1d
Member

There seem to be a several questions being conflated. 1. Is university education helpful for homeschooling? If so how helpful? 2. Is does a university education make a woman a better wife? 3. Are there different categories of education than bear on question 2? Good/virtuous education vs. bad education? 4. Does education have value in it own right? Once again there may be some categories at play here. If you are encouraging people to get an education due to its perceived value in either homeschooling children or being a good and well-adjusted wife then it may not be worth the… Read more »

lndighost
Member

Another question is, ‘Is it possible for university education to make a woman a better woman?’ If so, it seems to me that she will be a better wife than she would otherwise have been, even if her education is in a field not directly related to specific wifely responsibilities. This is not to say that women with degrees are better than women without; but everyone has different gifts that are to be used to God’s glory. The wife of a minister I know came from a very traditional family. She has a PhD in quantum physics that she obtained… Read more »

OKRickety
Member

indighost,

If she has academic gifts, isn’t it her responsibility to develop them, whatever form that may take?

That’s an interesting question. I don’t consider it a given, nor absolutely forbidden. Off the top of my head, I don’t recall that academic gifts are mentioned in the Bible for either sex. Do you have a Biblical argument that they should? And where do academic gifts stand in relation to the gifts of the Spirit?

Jill Smith
Member

The Catholic catechism defines being made in the divine image as primarily the human capacity for reason. “by virtue of his spiritual powers of intellect and will.” Academic gifts are therefore a good thing when used for legitimate purposes, and a wonderful thing when used to glorify God and help one’s neighbor.

Wouldn’t the Parable of the Talents teach us that any God-given gift should be developed, where that is possible?

lndighost
Member

OKR, as Jill says below, the parable of the talents applies very well here. Those servants did not earn the money they started with. It was a gift and they were to invest it as best they could in order to get a return for their master. One does not earn a good head for figures or a fine singing voice; those things are given by God to work in His kingdom. Whether you use your fine singing voice to sing arias in front of a vast audience or lullabies to your children, the thing is to use it wisely… Read more »

demosthenes1d
Member

Indi, I would say a woman who pursues a PhD in physics is almost certainly highly neurally atypical in ways that would make them less suitable to care for and teach small children, and to be engaged in and fulfilled by domestics. Women who are gifted in math and physics are vanishingly rare, and they typically exhibit thing-orientedness over people-orientedness in a way similar to most men. Of course everyone is different, but a PhD in physics for a woman would be a red flag for me. I also think there is a false dichotomy between wasting your fruitful years… Read more »

lndighost
Member

Demo, I agree that there are plenty of productive alternatives to going to uni. The situation I’m trying to address is when a single woman rejects opportunities for personal growth and development (whatever those opportunities are) because she is waiting for a husband. I think it’s better to consider the opportunities that are presently on offer. As for my acquaintance, perhaps she is atypical in other ways as well. She certainly presents as content and competent in her role. Admittedly she places a lower value on housework than some wives might, but her husband doesn’t seem to mind!

Jill Smith
Member

At the very least I would want to see if she forgets a baby in the park as my own husband did!

lndighost
Member

Oh dear! Not to my knowledge. She is very present and pragmatic, without a hint of whimsy. Perhaps those with mathematical gifts are less prone to absent-mindedness than those with a literary or artistic bent? I’ve heard that physicists regard biologists more in that light.

OKRickety
Member

demo,

1. Perhaps. A point that has been missing is that education does not make one a good teacher.

2. Perhaps. It’s not a given, but it could be.

3. It’s not the category, but the baggage associated with attendance at most colleges today that is important.

4. Education solely for education seems rather pointless. It’s like faith without works.

I would consider a woman who values education for its own sake to be a poor choice for a wife

Jill Smith
Member

OKR, with reference to your fourth point. would you feel the same way about a woman who values learning, as opposed to formal education, for its own sake, just because it amuses her and gives her pleasure? I tend to be a compulsive learner when something interests me, and very little of what I learn has practical utility. If the house is clean and the children fed, would it trouble you that your wife takes online Basque language classes in her spare time?

OKRickety
Member

Jill,

Learning for one’s pleasure would be fine if done in moderation (“compulsive” suggests the opposite to me). My concern would be that the husband would be given a lower priority than the learning, making it detrimental to the relationship.

Jill Smith
Member

OKR, of course you’re right about that. Any interest, academic or domestic, that takes priority over a husband is detrimental. If it comes to that, I have gone on dressmaking sprees that led me to neglect my wifely duties. It’s all in getting one’s priorities right.

bethyada
Member

‘Education solely for education seems rather pointless. ‘

Education for education’s sake is its own reward.

demosthenes1d
Member

OKR: 1. Obviously some level of education is required in order to teach. It has not been established that it is only useful to a certain level after which there is no incremental benefit. It has also not been established that the minimum required level to be a good teacher is typically met by homeschooling or public/private high school. 2. This will largely depend on the tastes of the man in question and what constitutes a “help-meet” for him. I would not be happy with an unlettered wife. Others would not be happy with a wife whom enjoys literature, poetry,… Read more »

Jane
Member

Education does not make one a good teacher, but a deeper level of knowledge makes one a better teacher, than one would be without it.

OKRickety
Member

Jill, ““I think what is creeping me out a bit is the suggestion that higher education must undermine respect. Would anyone argue that the respect a woman should feel for her husband should be based on her belief that he is smarter or better educated than she is?” I have tried to make the distinction that achieving a college degree is a different matter than attending college. Having the degree does not necessarily undermine respect (although your second question implies that it could if the wife has more or higher degrees). Attending college today, on the other hand, is quite… Read more »

JohnM
Guest
JohnM

“Would anyone argue that the respect a woman should feel for her husband should be based on her belief that he is smarter or better educated than she is?”

Apparently someone would. See below.

“That being said, I would have found it difficult to live happily with someone whose educational attainments were drastically lower than my own, and I doubt that I could have made such a person a good wife.”

Jill Smith
Member

John, I didn’t say anything about respect (or love). I talked about living happily, and a very important part of daily happiness is compatibility.

Sharing common interests. Liking to discuss the same things. Having the same general tastes in entertainment. Finding the same things important and valuable. This has nothing to do with respect, but rather with the recognition that marriage is easier when two people begin with having a lot in common.

JohnM
Guest
JohnM

What tastes in entertainment do you have that you believe a man less educated than you are could not share? What things do you think are important and valuable that he, with his relative lack of education, would not recognize as valuable and important? What assumptions are you making about men whose educational attainments are lower than yours? If the things you find valuable and important are contingent upon a minimal level of formal education is it possible that you place to much value and importance on those things? How could it be that you could love and respect a… Read more »

Jill Smith
Member

Hi John, fair questions. Certainly I may be making false assumptions, but I am also drawing from my personal dating history. It is entirely possible that someone without higher education would want to join me in going to the opera, taking field trips to study New Deal architecture, and learning foreign languages on line. Of course it is. But my experience has been that the men who like that kind of thing are hard to find anywhere, and especially outside an academic environment. And I think it possible that a man who found those interests foolish might resent his wife’s… Read more »

OKRickety
Member

Jill,

I would say that being highly educated makes a woman less suitable as a wife for some men.

Based on your description of what a highly educated woman might be like, I’d say that very few men would find such a woman suitable as a wife. I know I wouldn’t. From my perspective, you have provided additional reason to consider extensive education to likely be a negative in a potential wife, and thus something that women should avoid if they want to be married and be happy.

demosthenes1d
Member

I wouldn’t say very few men would find such a woman suitable. Particulars aside this is the type of woman my wife is, and it is exactly the type of woman that makes a good helpmeet to me. Though we accommodate each other. She likes the opera, I am not a fan, we both love the symphony, so we go and enjoy it together. We both love to climb mountains, and to visit museums and art galleries, so we have an easy time choosing places to enjoy together. We enjoy roughly similar books, and as we have basically eschewed video… Read more »

OKRickety
Member

demo,

I wouldn’t say very few men would find such a woman suitable.

About what percentage of men would find such a woman suitable? My estimate would be less than 5%.

The interests and behaviors that Jill provided for a well-educated woman are indeed indicators, not necessarily of a deeper compatibility, but of the true character and values of the woman. In your case, that may be compability; In my case, definitely not.

Jill Smith
Member

OKR, I can certainly understand that. It took me a long time to find someone to marry!

demosthenes1d
Member

Yeah, less than 5% sounds good, but that is still many people. My point is simply that traits that may make a woman unsuitable for one mate may make them more suitable for another. I don’t believe there is a platonic archetype of perfect wife.

OKRickety
Member

demo,

I was being generous on the 5%.

If marriage is of greater interest than education (and career?), I think it would be good for women to consider that tertiary education might well reduce the opportunities for a good marriage. I think there is a body of evidence to support that thesis.

I would be surprised to find more than a few men who would want a platonic wife.

demosthenes1d
Member

OKR,

What body of evidence do you refer to? AFAIK college educated women are more likely to be married, less likely to have a divorce, and definitely more likely to have a high status husband. Now, the education may not be causative here, and I’m not going to use an appeal to the modern marriage market as normative. But all of the evidence points to more educated women having better prospects, and being more stable partners (see for instance “Marriage Isnt Dead Yet” at fivethirtyeight).

I think you are misunderstanding my use of platonic.

OKRickety
Member

demo, I thought I had seen that women with post-graduate degrees were more likely to divorce than those with bachelors degrees, but I cannot find it or any other evidence contrary to what you state. I did find, in line with the comments here on this post, that women consider educational achievements to be far more important than men do. In The dating gap: why the odds are stacked against female graduates finding a like-minded man, it says: ‘She says a potential partner’s education level is “usually the first thing any woman specifies. I think people think that if someone… Read more »

Jill Smith
Member

A lower divorce rate could also be attributable to marrying older and having greater economic resources. Among the academic women of my acquaintance, I was the only one who stayed home after having a child. That might also skew the statistics if the group consists primarily of women with advanced degrees who continue to work throughout their marriages.

Jill Smith
Member
Micael Gustavsson
Guest
Micael Gustavsson

I am already married (since 1999), and I must say that while my wife in many ways have a different personality than Jill Smith (guessing of course based on blog comments), I cannot imagine being married to a woman who lacks most of the characteristics she mentioned. I mean, what do people talk about otherwise?

JohnM
Guest
JohnM

Jill, I think somewhere here we’ve noted a distinction between merely having a college degree and being an academic. I think the difference is between people who 1. pursue education only as a means to and end and people who 2. pursue education also, if not mainly, as an end in itself. I do do not disrespect either motive, but you are talking about the second, yes? It would make sense that the academic woman, the type who would value knowledge as it’s own reward, is the type who would incline to academic-ish pastimes all her life. And the man… Read more »

Jill Smith
Member

John, I would take the man with similar interests but no Ph.D. in a heartbeat over someone who had no interests outside inorganic chemistry! I think your last paragraph is true and very well said. And even marrying an academic is no guarantee that a man won’t find a wife like me pretty nerdy.

demosthenes1d
Member

Barnie, Education is a complicated and variegated phenomena which makes it difficult to generalize. I am sensitive to Caplan’s argument that the value of education is at least 50% signalling (and probably much more). And I think Yudkowsky’s metaphor of college as a tower which requires $100,000 and an IQ of greater than 100 to pass through and which lops off 4 years of life is useful. However, signalling and sorting are valuable functions, even for a man selecting a wife. You probably aren’t as good at selecting a mate for intelligence, concientiousness, and dilligence, as a four year degree… Read more »

Barnabas
Guest
Barnabas

I’m suspicious that finely assortative mating is a net negative for society and for a particular marriage. This is one of the causes of the Coming Apart phenomenon. I’m very glad that I met my wife as an undergraduate rather than sorting for a higher IQ by meeting a neuroatypical gal in graduate school. I think I could select for a sufficient level of IQ and conscientiousness with a conversation and save a woman a lot of time and money. Women on this board are just defending their mediocre status signifiers. When I help my daughter with her algebra I’m… Read more »

demosthenes1d
Member

I have mixed feelings about assortive mating in general. To some degree it is inevitable and probably a social good. Countries with more intelligent elites seem to perform better. In Hive Mind Jones claims that the intelligence of the elite is more important for functional institutions than the intelligence of the populace (though that is also extremely important) – although I don’t think he supported the claim well. It is also the case that people enjoy spending time with others who are roughly similar to them in intelligence and refinement – and there is nothing wrong with that. I think… Read more »

JP Stewart
Member

“Women on this board are just defending their mediocre status signifiers.”

Harsh, perhaps, but seeing how pedantic and tangential the comments are getting, I think you’re on to something.

Jill Smith
Member

Obesity is indeed an epidemic, and studies suggest that an obese woman will have a harder time finding a mate than an obese man. On the other hand, studies also suggest that the likelihood of obesity declines with tertiary education. In fact, the thinnest women are statistically those who belong to the professional urban elites.

If higher education confers some protection against obesity, why would we not want women to pursue it?

JP Stewart
Member

“If higher education confers some protection against obesity, why would we not want women to pursue it?”

Because it’s a dang expensive way to protect against obesity…and demographically, every race and class are getting fatter. A book from Dr. Joel Fuhrman ($10-15 or free at the library) is much more cost-effective.

I’d also venture to guess that urban elites’ main weapon against obesity is vanity. So there’s a not-so-good trade-off.

OKRickety
Member

Because it’s a dang expensive way to protect against obesity….

+10 :)  Yes, there certainly are other, cheaper ways to avoid obesity.

Jill Smith
Member

Yes, of course, it is an expensive way and I wasn’t being entirely serious. I was reacting to Barnie’s view on the inutility of educating women. I agree that vanity is a factor for the urban elites, but there are others. Disposable cash making gym memberships possible. A cultural aversion to eating fast food. A greater preoccupation with health in general. And perhaps, most significantly, being around other thin people. The Framingham Heart study showed that being close friends with even one obese person raises your statistical risk for obesity. https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/food-thought/201208/are-your-friends-making-you-fat Why this is, I do not know. But I… Read more »

OKRickety
Member

Jill,

If college attendance increases the amount of sexual activity, even promiscuity, why would we want women to pursue it?

That’s just one example of a likely negative result of college attendance today. Taken as a whole, I question its value for Christian women today.

Jill Smith
Member

OKR, if it were an unavoidable consequence, that would be a serious issue for a Christian parent. But it isn’t. As the nuns used to say, “Virtue has no geography.”

OKRickety
Member

It seems that virtue is a vanishing trait.

The Commenter Formerly Known As fp
Guest
The Commenter Formerly Known As fp

Virtue has no geography.

But vice certainly does. There’s a reason places like Las Vegas, New Orleans, Amsterdam, and the Castro district are famous.

JP Stewart
Member

“But vice certainly does. There’s a reason places like Las Vegas, New Orleans, Amsterdam, and the Castro district are famous.”

It’s too bad, too. My parents used to say the nicest and prettiest places (mountain towns, beaches, port cities, etc.) are filled with some of the flakiest people. Of course the locations have different flavors (hippies, druggies, sexual deviants, gamblers, never-matured-after-college 24-hour partiers, etc.).

demosthenes1d
Member

I don’t believe it to be unavailable, but it is a foolish engineer who removed the guardrails from the most treacherous parts of the road.

Certainly some geography is more conducive to virtue than others. Under my roof is likely more conducive to chastity than a sorority house at UCLA.

Jill Smith
Member

Sleeping in the street might be more conducive to chastity than living in a sorority house! Removing every guardrail has been disastrous. When I attended university, sexual misconduct required a certain amount of effort and ingenuity. The naive rule that three of four feet must be on the floor at all times during visiting hours also required gymnastics! My daughter’s Christian-affiliated college had no rules whatever. But why do some cultures and ethnic groups not struggle with this? Asian American young people lose their virginity later than our current average of 17 for girls. Yet they send their daughters to… Read more »

demosthenes1d
Member

It is likely that much of the effect is reverse causation. Obese teens are less likely to attend college and less likely to graduate. Either they lost the genetic lottery all around, they have confidence/competence issues as a result of their weight, or there are deleterious neurological effects to being fat.

Justin Parris
Member

“Either they lost the genetic lottery all around, they have confidence/competence issues as a result of their weight, or there are deleterious neurological effects to being fat.”

Or the same qualities that lead to the fat, lack of discipline and self control, also lead to failure in academia.

JohnM
Guest
JohnM

More likely that they have weight as a result of confidence/competence issues, and obesity is the result of deleterious neurological issues of a kind that make a person less likely to bother with or succeed at higher education.

Justin Parris
Member

” and studies suggest that an obese woman will have a harder time finding a mate than an obese man.”

I would very heavily wager that this is a factor of the personality traits that lead a woman to becoming fat, rather than the obvious answer that it has something to do with attractiveness. Speaking generally about men, if you’re a woman with a particular trait, there is a whole group of men who find that trait, whether it be a big nose, too tall, too short, whatever, extremely attractive.

OKRickety
Member

Justin, “Speaking generally about men, if you’re a woman with a particular trait, there is a whole group of men who find that trait, whether it be a big nose, too tall, too short, whatever, extremely attractive.” There certainly are men with fixations that I find strange, even disturbing, but one should recognize that any one of those “whole group”s is less than the whole, and, in some cases, significantly smaller. For example, men who find obese women attractive is a much smaller group than those who find non-obese women attractive. I highly doubt that this has much relationship to… Read more »

Justin Parris
Member

It’s pure speculation of course, but I strongly think the ratios aren’t as extreme as you suggest. I think there are far more men who find such things attractive, than there are men who *say* that they find such things attractive. I noticed the trend, and ask my wife a few years ago, if she could count the number of outgoing and nice thin women she knew who were single, and the number of outgoing and nice overweight women she knew who were single, which had the strongest showing. Neither one of us could come up with a single fat… Read more »

Jill Smith
Member

Justin, I think we select subconsciously. I would have denied that I evaluated prospective dates by my fondness for tall men with dark hair, but it can’t be coincidence that those are the ones I said yes to. There are probably many men who don’t exclude for somewhat overweight. I think that being very overweight attracts the kind of hostility and ridicule that would damage even a lovely personality. I have a morbidly obese friend with whom I eat out sometimes, and she gets incredibly nasty remarks from total strangers. “Hey! Leave some food for the rest of us” is… Read more »

Justin Parris
Member

I would suspect Jill, that precisely this kind of treatment to obese women is why (when they don’t become, to put it politely, “catty”) I see them consistently finding a mate. Someone who’s pride has been whittled down, rather than built up, is probably more likely to be attentive and supporting when they do find a mate. Though as I’ve said elsewhere, this is very deep into the world of speculation. I don’t pretend to be making unassailable points.

OKRickety
Member

Justin said: “Neither one of us could come up with a single fat woman we knew who was single who wasn’t deeply unpleasant in some other way.

Which came first? The obesity or the unpleasantness?

Justin Parris
Member

“Which came first? The obesity or the unpleasantness?”

A valid question, though not particularly relevant to the thesis. So long as the unpleasantness is the thing keeping potential spouses away, it’s in keeping with the point I was trying to make.

OKRickety
Member

Justin,

It’s relevant to my thesis that obesity significantly reduces the number of potential spouses. I think it is possible that obesity keeps potential spouses away and the unpleasantness is a result.

I note that my quest for support of my thesis has not yet found substantiation. The most-relevant study did show that obesity had little impact on the number of lifetime sexual partners, not marriage. (Note: The study showed the median number of lifetime sexual partners to be relatively constant (about 6-8) for both men and women from age 16-40+.)

Justin Parris
Member

I think more likely than not I agree with you OKR. I was just trying to draw a distinction in what Jill was saying, which seemed to imply that women are subject to a more superficial selection process in courtship than men. I find, by and large, the opposite to be the case. Women rarely lack at least *some* options in romance. Men are so easily suckers for the appeals of women that it’s hard for a woman to remain single for reasons other than not liking the options available to her (Not a criticism. There are lots of men… Read more »

JP Stewart
Member

“There certainly are men with fixations that I find strange, even disturbing”

Some of that probably (and disturbingly) comes from porn, As I understand it, there are odd fetishes like grannies, obese women, etc. The dopamine response makes some people keep looking for new and novel things. Some heterosexual men have developed homosexual interests because of this…though the “we was born gay” crowd probably doesn’t like hearing that.

OKRickety
Member

JP,

A little research suggests that the internet in general and porn specifically has probably increased fetishism somewhat, but is far from being the primary cause, as some of these fetishes are known to have existed for centuries.

mys
Guest
mys

Not pointed out enough…but when Doug talked about early marriage, he said there were far more qualified young women to marry than young men. This might be true, but he needs to point out why that’s true. Women, still, even in this current year, can just show up, be pretty and get married (be pretty is even optional). In our circles, men are expected to have that money/provider thing locked down, and be mature enough to lead a home, etc. I will note that I don’t disagree with those standards, generally. But that means there are more eligible women because… Read more »

mys
Guest
mys

Cheers also for my wife, like Barnie’s, who homeschools without a college degree. The idea that one is needed for homeschooling, at least up to the middle school level, is laughable.

Jane
Member

When you hear someone say that let me know and I’ll laugh with you.