Does everyone think we’re really that dumb?

Ever since I read Charlotte Allen’s infamous “We Scream, We Swoon. How Dumb Can We Get?” article at the Washington Post last week, I’ve been wondering if it’s possible that there are a lot of people out there, men and women, who still believe women are the “inferior” gender, emotional and illogical by nature.

Allen begins the article by judging other women for “swooning” over Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama, and she seems confused when she quotes one of those women as saying things like, “Every time I hear him speak, I become more hopeful.” I’m not on the Obama bandwagon, but that doesn’t mean I can’t figure out why some Americans might find hope in him as a possible president, considering Bush’s approval ratings over the past few years. He’s campaigning on issues that Democrats, at least, find important, and it doesn’t hurt that he’s very charismatic and not an old white guy. Why shouldn’t his supporters “love” him? I don’t think it means they’re stupid, foolish women. I think it means they probably care about more than the War in Iraq and closing the borders to immigrants and whatever else Republican candidates tend to focus on. Women aren’t swooning over John McCain because he seems like every other Republican candidate who has sought nomination in recent history.

The rest of her article basically says women are bad at math and should stay barefoot and pregnant in the kitchen. Okay, maybe that’s an exaggeration, but I’m sure if she had written that it would illicit the same reaction from women who don’t believe in such a thing as “the weaker sex.”

Sure, we cry. But so do men. Yes, we scream (sometimes). But have you ever been at a sports bar when the Leafs lose in overtime? Some of us even watch Grey’s Anatomy — god forbid! It may not be rocket science like Sunday football or CNN, but some women just like to indulge in a little drama and surgery on their Thursday nights.

Give me a break! I’m quite confident that women are as smart and advanced as men. All I have to do is look around one of my journalism classes at Ryerson (which, if you’re not in journalism at Ryerson, are filled with mostly brilliant women).

Sure, we all have our “dumb” moments, but that’s because we’re people, not because we’re women. Men and women are different, of course, but neither gender is “better” than the other. And how would one measure that, anyway? (Don’t even get me started on genders that don’t fall under the categories of “male” or “female”.)

I’ll end this post with a (sort of) glimmer of hope from the media: “To Appeal to Women, Too, Gadgets Go Beyond ‘Cute’ and ‘Pink'”. It’s a little dated, but I just read it so I wanted to share it. I could take issue with some of the ideas in the article (such as “the longer fingernails that women tend to have” and “the home is largely controlled by women”), but I won’t. I find it interesting that companies are just realizing that while women aren’t as technologically incompetent as we’re made out to be, most of us still want things that make sense and are easy to use.

A lot of us like, and know how to use, computers, cameras and stereos. Even if they’re not pink.


2 thoughts on “Does everyone think we’re really that dumb?

  1. Charlotte Allen is the same woman who asked “Why does feminism have to mean the triumph of the ugly and the surly?”

    I’m not making that up, she really wrote that. If she wasn’t Liberal, she would have made a dandy counterpart to Ann Coulter.

    Margaret Sanger must be rolling in her grave.

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