What is Respect?

May 30, 2010 at 10:22 PM Leave a comment

This article has inspired me to write yet another post today, instead of working on accounting like I should be doing.

So my question is: what, at the fundamental level, is “respect…” (R-E-S-P-E-C-T). It can be a noun or a verb. From “WordWeb” (I am only providing pertinent definitions to this discussion):

The condition of being honoured (esteemed or respected or well-regarded)
An attitude of admiration or esteem
A courteous expression (by word or deed) of esteem or regard
Behaviour intended to please your parents
A feeling of friendship and esteem
Courteous regard for people’s feelings
Regard highly; think much of
Show respect towards

First, I would like to address that many of these female or women of color professors (as opposed to male or white professors) state that they feel they are “disrespected” because male students ask them out on dates or students in general view them “maternally.”  This begs the question that if they treat the female professor like she is “maternal,” isn’t that “respect” by the above definition?  Or, it is at the very least the “respect” the student learned to give to their mothers?

But, at the core issue here are two things:  women professors feel thwarted or that they are regarded as inferior to male professors by students because students may view them as a “mother” who should help them, or as a sex object.  I would just say this to them:  ITS NOT THAT SERIOUS.  It really isn’t that serious.  What I believe from this is that these teachers have led VERY sheltered lives.  They clearly have not worked in a high school or even a middle school because then they’d realize that kids just don’t respect adults these days — maybe it’s because we aren’t allowed to beat them into submission anymore.  But if they think college is bad, they should ask a high school teacher (male or female) about it!  I think the teacher would laugh that they have it that easy to be able to “theorize” about why a student asked them out on a review form — at least they aren’t mugging her or bringing in guns (usually).

But, since they are now at the college level, with PhD’s, and have certain expectations of human beings (based on reading 10,000 theories from 100,000 books) who are falling short of their expectations, I believe these expectations must have come from living a very sheltered life.  For example, if I walk down my block to the store I am leered at and asked out by no less than 4 men usually, they make comments about my body to me, and racial comments, both good and bad.  My ass is too big, my ass is too small.  My hair is good — my hair is not so good.  (?)  Whatever.  Who the hell cares what they think?  If you CARE, you already let them win.

And, guess what, I have lived in a lot of places and this occurs pretty much everywhere you go.  I don’t really know of a place in the world where young men or men in groups (usually in groups) don’t make comments and cat calls to females in general.  Maybe this is true on an Amish farm? However I bet even there, young men discuss these things and make these comments when they aren’t be watched.

Somehow, whether I like this or not, this is the way the world and humans are.  Of course I “don’t like it….” I wish I could walk down the street and people would just leave me the hell alone, but apparently there are at ton of men who need to have sex, want to have sex, and will project that desire onto any female that looks sufficient.  I’m thinking that this behavior in humans won’t really change since it’s the way they are wired, biologically.

And, since there are billions of them and they are everywhere you look, and pretty much you can’t have a job in life without dealing with humans on some level, we really have no choice but to deal with it.  Believe me, if we could just give them all a vasectomy at birth, I’d be all for it, but then again I don’t have a son.  If I did, I might disagree with that.

For me, even though I am 5’2″ and between 100 and 115 pounds, you might think its “hard” for me to deal with men acting so imbecile.  I also can’t hide behind a car like most of you.  Yet — I deal with it and don’t have nearly the hatred of all of them that these teachers seem to have!  Wow, I would rather complain about being manipulated into having my lawn mowed than I would about the daily cat calls I get when walking from the bus stop — maybe that is just so “normal” to me I don’t perceive it as a big affront to my very humanity.

I wonder if years ago male professors used this sort of justification to disallow females to attend a school:  there can’t be co-habitation between men and women, they will lie, manipulate and use sexual leverage (inevitably).  They are still saying that in Iran and Saudi Arabia!  I’m fairly sure that male professors (I know this for a fact because I know some personally) have had to deal with female “seducers” in the classroom.  These females may come on to the guy and try to have sex, he might be weak and actually do it.  Maybe the male professors should use this to justify calling all these girls hoes and saying women should just not attend college because they behave so poorly.  I wonder how many male professors have went home in fear over what some female student may do to him and his career (whether he did anything with the woman or not, and even if he did I would say many times the woman seduced him).  Yeah, we can all cry “sexual harassment” but the fact is, women seduce men until they don’t get what they want anymore, then all of a sudden she had no power and he had all the power he wielded over her, right?

I would bet money that there are more male professors with this dilemma than females with ANY dilemma like their whole career may be ruined by a student’s sexual behavior.  The reason is simple:  women get hit on all the time by men (unless you just don’t look attractive to men for some reason, appearance or age or whatever) and a woman can usually be very selective about any man she wants to date.  So, its easy for a female teacher to say “no” to a male student, she has 100 other guys lined up.

Call it the Bachelorette complex — there is one woman (teacher) and a bunch of horny, 18-year-old men in a classroom.  All of them may want her (or a great number).  This is just a problem of biology for men, they are attracted to females whether they like it or not and especially for YOUNG men, it may be VERY difficult to separate what is “appropriate” in a social situation and what comes naturally.  Why do you think there are dozens or hundreds of female strip clubs catering to male customers, and female prostitutes catering to men exist in the millions — and yet, there are hardly ANY male strip clubs catering to women (and most of those women attending are middle-aged or older), nor ANY prostitutes catering to women?  BECAUSE WOMEN DO NOT NEED TO PAY FOR SEX.  THEY CAN GET IT EASILY WITH LITTLE TO NO EFFORT.

I would not fault a horny 18-year-old for saying something that appears disrespectful, I would fault the “female teacher” for not standing up appropriately in the situation.  She should show her authority and control of the situation.  It seems to me (from having interacted in the world of men and dealt these advances for my employment) that the woman does indeed have the power to stand up and define the terms of the relationship.  And, in her own weakness and “friendliness” she herself has dissolved the power structure that should exist in the relationship.   To me, this is like the kind-hearted and loving woman who repeatedly goes back to her abuser because he manages to manipulate her into doing so by being nice, giving, apologetic, etc., and he plays on her feminine “heart.”  And, she goes right back to the guy then complains that he’s abusive and wonders why she’s in the shelter again (and again, and again, and again).  Guess what, being kind and forgiving doesn’t work.  Men use that as a means of getting sex and getting a woman to do what he desires.  <<<< REALITY CHECK >>>>

As a person who has been hit on by 1000s of men when I worked as a dancer, and in life in general (even at 38 years old they are still leering, I can get no rest unless I stay in my house with the blinds closed), I realize you just have to deal with these people in these situations, strongly and emphatically so they hear you and realize you mean business.  If I was “that” teacher I would have said something long before then about sexual behavior in the classroom and made it abundantly clear that “hitting on” or discussing inappropriate personal things about me was INTOLERABLE and that anyone doing so would be asked to leave the classroom as I considered it sexual harassment.  I mean, what did she say when they asked if her boobs were real?  I would’ve said my personal body is none of your damn business and another question like that will cause me to drop you from my class.   And, I would send the boy out if he did it again — PERIOD.  But then, we have these women who get all jittery and weak spined when anyone addresses them like this, because they too have no life experience, I would guess, going from daddy’s house to a dorm room and coming out with a PhD.  I think what the problem with these women is NOT that they are being targeted and biased behavior  is happening to “poor them…” what I think is that they are not strong enough in their personalities to stand up for themselves and so instead they want to blame the uneducated 18-year-old who has barely any control over himself and no life experience.  We are assuming the teacher here is more knowledgeable about the world, but in many cases college professors are no more knowledgeable about the world than their students.  The only thing they know more about is from the books they’ve read and conferences they’ve attended.

And finally — I wonder how strong, powerful women deal with this?  I mean, do you think anyone in Africa hit on Condoleezza Rice?  I never heard her shouting about how young men were hitting on her and complaining about it.  What do you think the military would have thought of a statement like that? “You boys are being mean to me, why are you commenting about my body… ” (!!)  Women in the military deal with this all the time, the only “option” to dealing with it is to agree that women should not be in the military, because its doubtful men will stop wanting to have sex.

Do you think any of these old men in Afghanistan and Pakistan say things to Hilary behind closed doors during the “spirits” phase of peace talks?  I haven’t heard her talk about the nasty drunk scoundrels who hit on her (and I’m sure they have) because that probably wouldn’t look good for our National Policy.  I wonder how many people hit on Queen Elizabeth or Isabella?  Didn’t they have tons of knights in waiting?  I’m pretty sure men did it…, and have always done it.  In fact, I think the whole troubadour movement was about men “hitting on” women of power through their songs.

It’s amazing to me that these post modern feminists have SO LITTLE KNOWLEDGE about the real gears that make the world of humanity work, that their knowledge of human social structure is so lacking that they actually think a Ph.D. will buy them a pass out of humanity.  When, we all thought the PhD. was the ticket to understanding humanity better?  Hell no.

What they need to do is wake up and realize that “respect” is not a  liquid in a bucket or a bag full of coins that they are “owed”  or they “deserve” simply because they went through the sheltered life of getting a Ph.D. (and it is true:  having been a person on the “skids” in society AND having been a person in the Ivory Loop) that academia really is like living in a shelter — a shelter that makes up all sorts of theories about the way it is and the way it should be — mostly a fantasy world.  And, when they walk out the doors of that shelter back into the real world they are SHOCKED.  The whole world is still ticking on the human time clock rather than the postmodern utopian one.  In the human one, we seem to exist to make love, procreate en masse, create complex social structures and kill or marginalize our perceived enemies.

So, the female (or male) professor really is there for 2 reasons:  to teach, and to afford a series of classes to get a degree.  Why wouldn’t a human being try to manipulate that person to the best of their abilities, to get their needs met?   Here’s a reality check:  a human being will try to manipulate you to the best of his or her ability to get his or her needs met, to the extent of which you will allow him or her to do so.   This is a fact of human reality.  The only thing you can do if you feel that its wrong — is stand up and say HELL NO.  THATS NOT THE WAY I OPERATE.

And then… they will respect you.  You will GAIN their respect through your behavior.  I know of many women who are respected (black, white, hispanic, indian, …)… and the more they are challenged the stronger they get.  The strongest people have faced their adversaries and come out on top.    Those are the people we end up respecting in the end anyway, those are the people who end up in the history books — not the whiners who blame everyone else for their weakness and accuse this or that group of humans (for these teachers of course its “students,” its someone for everyone, after all — that is a “they” compared to the “we/us”) is doing something wrong or is faulty.  So what — men are pigs.  Men will hit on a hot, young teacher.  WHOA CALL THE PRESS!  THIS IS A NEWS EVENT!

Or:  maybe, what the hell are you going to do about it in your own life?  Career? I don’t think there would be a big turnout of students to discuss the theory of why students are sexist, racist imbeciles who “we hate” (and what, they should be disciplined, tortured, sent to concentration camps?)  These postmodern teachers falling so easily and like a puzzle piece into the whole “us/them” stereotyping the minute that they feel they are the victim is amazing to me.  No one can see themselves in their own damn mirror and yet, it is usually about themselves they are talking about all through the day and night.


Entry filed under: social justice.

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