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Casual Sexism: do you speak up?

Discussion in 'Serious' started by boiled_elephant, 7 Feb 2014.

  1. boiled_elephant

    boiled_elephant Merom Celeron 4 lyfe

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    Yeah, that goes back to #1 - is it really sexism, or just banter? I'm giving it some more thought.
     
  2. Quavr

    Quavr Minimodder

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    I wouldn't worry about it at all. I got it all the time at work from people, but the vast majority of the time it is aimed at their partner, close family/friends, and is just a bit of light hearted banter. On the occasion that the person they are referring to is with them, they would happily make a jab back and have a laugh about it.

    It's just a bit of fun between them and as people have said it works well as an icebreaker for some people, no sexism intended.

    The people who do say things that are openly sexist, offensive and are dead serious about it, I think the issues there tend to be a bit deeper than just being sexist, but they are in the minority.

    I would say the difference isn't quite that strong. Although it is a business setting, for a lot of people it is still just a casual conversation. Chatting to customers makes the day far more pleasant and so a bit of joking and the like is generally acceptable, in the same way we would make comments about coworkers to customers at times, and it just gets a laugh and makes the conversation a bit less forced.
     
  3. Pete J

    Pete J Employed scum

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    This.

    I tell racist, homophobic and sexist jokes all the time at work. Do I mean it? Of course f**king not, and I don't hang around people who do either. I once gave a visitor a dressing down at my previous place of employment because he was being rude to a female colleague (the guy was an Arab and I find they tend to have a less enlightened view of women's rights and capabilities).

    To be honest, you can't eliminate this behaviour - and you shouldn't have to either as any decent human being will recognise the right of another to ultimately live their life without unnecessary conflict.

    By the way, does anyone know of any good anti-white or anti-British jokes? I've got loads on other areas.
     
  4. Beasteh

    Beasteh What's a Dremel?

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    Have to disagree with you there. Hope this doesn't violate your "right" to unnecessary conflict.

    It looks like you're placing the responsibility for for what sexists say onto women. It's important that sexists get called on their **** every time they say something out of line. If nothing gets said, nothing will ever get better. It isn't up to the rest of us to just sit there and take it becuase the poor sexists have "rights". If you really hate conflict, then apologise and move on when someone tells you that something you've said is offensive (and don't do it again, ferchrissakes).

    boiled_elephant, I too feel uncomfortable when strangers are casually sexist. Unfortunately, I think in this case, where're you're in a customer service role, you are going to have to just file the comments away under "stupid things customers say" and keep some level of professional detachment. You'd need the support of the management if you wanted to come back with something more substantial than a look askance.

    Would be great if you had women on your staff though - would love to see the customer's face when a woman fixes their PC for them after making the kind of comments you've shared with us :D
     
  5. Pete J

    Pete J Employed scum

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    I don't understand how what I have said could be interpreted in that way - it certainly wasn't what I meant. In fact I gave an example where I did call a sexist out on his behaviour.

    The remarks detailed by the OP aren't truly critical of whoever they are about. I think it was Carrie who pointed it out: generic joke insults where the word 'wife/girlfriend' is easily replaceable by bloke/child/neighbour etc.

    In regards to a 'right' to unnecessary conflict, what I mean is the right to be able to go about normal life without being harassed/mugged/murdered. An example I can best think of is I'm choosing to enter this debate therefore I accept that conflict may arise. However in normal day-to-day life I expect normal human interaction to go without conflict. Some will probably tell me I'm dreaming.
     
  6. Beasteh

    Beasteh What's a Dremel?

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    Sure, but the very act of saying something offensive is itself an invitation to conflict. Honestly, you (and this goes to everyone in general) shoudn't be surprised if someone calls you on something they found inappropriate. As I said before, the best way to defuse the situation is to apologise, but better yet would be to not say it in the first place if you know better.
     
  7. Ending Credits

    Ending Credits Bunned

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    I agree, although personally I try to avoid criticising people unless I really believe what they're doing is seriously wrong. I don't really think challenging people on little things yeilds very good results; generally all you end up doing is putting them on the defensive and irritating them.
     
  8. Tyinsar

    Tyinsar 6 screens 1 card since Nov 17 2007

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    "The problem with stereotypes is not that they are untrue, but that they are incomplete" Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (Link) (it's well worth listening to.)

    Occasionally people need to be reminded that stereotypes often hold some truths but they never define a single person. In your case however, at work, I'd let it go.
     
    Last edited: 10 Feb 2014
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  9. Pliqu3011

    Pliqu3011 all flowers in time bend towards the sun

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    I see a lot of people defending this kind of remarks as light-hearted jokes, but are they really that?
    Where's the surprising twist, the pun, the wit, ...; the elements that make a joke funny?
    In a context without any reason or motivation for a "joke" like this, why is it not just an insult? A light-hearted insult, an insult they're probably not serious about, but still an insult. One could possibly defend this as some kind of satire, but in most cases these jokes certainly aren't meant to be satirical. In my eyes it's nothing but needlessly and pointlessly offensive part of conversation that could just as easily be left out without losing anything of value.

    Don't get me wrong, I love all kinds of humor, ranging from satire to disgusting dead baby jokes, but I just don't see the element of humor that would make these remarks funny in the context of the kind of conversation the OP describes. (A situation like Archtronics described for example is completely different though. The joke actually has a reason to be there and is funny given its context.)
     
  10. Shirty

    Shirty W*nker! Super Moderator

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    You're giving "people" too much credit. A huge swathe of society - whichever country you're in - don't really understand funny. Ergo people who make these comments really do thing they are being funny, either that or they are actually misogynists.
     
  11. hyperion

    hyperion Minimodder

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    Stereotypes can often hold truth but iterating them in a negative way, such as tasteless humor, only causes more harm. You can exchange a few jabs and share a laugh over some light banter, but at the worst possible time when they're in an emotionally dark place, when all the negative stuff comes flooding back all at once, those comments that bared no ill intent could haunt this person.

    The way that men and women treat each other is how children learn to treat each other and expect to be treated. I don't have kids yet, but if I had a daughter I wouldn't want her to believe that she's not supposed to be good with pcs, know how to double-park or be able to change a flat tyre, yet have a god-given talent for ironing and making sandwiches. If I had a son, I wouldn't want him to believe it's ok to call a woman a bitch just because she was born a female, or that if a girl had a few relationships it makes her a ****.

    Sexism is so deeply ingrained that we don't even see anything wrong with it. I saw a video on YT about sexism in online games and all the males thought it was totally ok to call someone a bitch and threaten to rape her, just because it was a female talking in the mic. They even went so far as to tell the interviewer that it's part of the "internet culture" and women just have to accept it if they want to be part of it.

    It's not about making some stupid laws to prevent people from saying something naughty. We have freedom of speech and we can say whatever we want. That doesn't mean that our words don't have consequences and that we're not responsible for them. If men and women want to be sexist it's up to them, but at least acknowledge the potential harm being done. Don't pretend that there's absolutely nothing wrong at all.
     
  12. Porkins' Wingman

    Porkins' Wingman Can't touch this

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    I'd guess it's almost unconscious behaviour. Many people feel an element of social awkwardness when interacting with strangers for brief periods e.g. at the supermarket checkout - so their mechanism for dealing with that feeling of discomfort is to revert to an autopilot style of conversational small talk about the weather and ****, so it's inevitably full of cliche and stereotypical references.
     
  13. Shirty

    Shirty W*nker! Super Moderator

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    Basically. A chunk of our society was raised on Till Death Do Us Part re-runs and haven't quite worked out that humour has moved on.
     
  14. Guinevere

    Guinevere Mega Mom

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    Best compliment ever!
     
  15. Jumeira_Johnny

    Jumeira_Johnny 16032 - High plains drifter

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    Unlike most of you, I do say something.

    "Trouble is, I let the wife use it, you know what they're like." "No, I don't. Why don't you tell me?"

    "Well, it's the missuses laptop, she's got no patience for it, I get it in the ear all the time, she can't work the bloody thing out but she won't let me near it. You know what women are like." "No, I don't. Why don't you tell me?"

    "It's my daughter's computer, really, and you know what girls are like on the internet" "No, I don't. Why don't you tell me?"

    "Me girlfriend's down in the car, I don't wanna keep her waiting, you know how they get." "No, I don't. Why don't you tell me?"

    That's all you have to say. Then watch them stammer like the idiots they are.
     
  16. erratum1

    erratum1 What's a Dremel?

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    Is this really mostly men having a dabate about women and not the good kind!

    Women have never had it so good have you noticed how all pop songs by women are empowering "i'm a survivor" etc and man songs are some wimp begging for his women.

    Dresses and vaginas are available at the door.

    [​IMG]

    Girl power!
     
  17. hyperion

    hyperion Minimodder

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    Did you get lost on your way to 4chan? This isn't the general section. If you're trying to make a point you should express it in a way that doesn't come across as a troll. Other than that, you're proving my point.

    I'm replying to a troll post here but whatever. What do you mean "man songs"? Are you talking about the ones where the word for female has been replaced by ho as standard?
     
  18. Pliqu3011

    Pliqu3011 all flowers in time bend towards the sun

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    [​IMG]
     
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  19. walle

    walle Minimodder

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    First off, there is no such thing as equality, not even between two people of the same sex, secondly, men and women are different, thirdly, learn to enjoy and accept our differences whilst celebrating them.

    Feminists (read: misguided women) are together with the rainbow coalition amongst the most obnoxious bigots in society today. Both groups get carte blanche to say pretty much what they want, as well as act in pretty much anyway they want also. These women aren't looking for "equal" treatment, they are looking for special treatment. That's pretty much it.

    Now I don't mind treating a woman special, as a matter of fact I like to do just that. Heck I'm a man, we men like to do so. But I be damned if I treat the misguided crowd any special, in any case, most of them are more male like then female like anyway, often times acting like drunk sailors on shore leave, and that simply doesn't jive with me as a male. I like women to be women, feminine, warm, nurturing and caring.

    "Sexist"? Just another Social engineered invented term. Just like "homophobe" and "heterophobe", just like "hate speech" and "anti-social", just like "politically correct" et cetera et cetera the list gets rather extensive. Seriously, people need to start to think for themselves and own the language. But I digress...

    For the feminists in here, it must be that time of the month? Well, at least they can't say that that time of month would be a social "construct". :D

    --EDIT--
    No man or woman likes it, you are by no means alone. :)
     
    Last edited: 12 Feb 2014
  20. hyperion

    hyperion Minimodder

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    First, I don't think you know what Orwellian means. Second, sexism is real and predates all the other concepts you listed by a few thousand years. Nobody cares how you like women to be. The whole point of feminism is that you don't abuse them when they don't conform to your stereotypes and expectations. For someone who proposes thinking for one's self, you've only managed to parrot the same things every sexist says about feminism and women.

    Feminists are misguided women? Yes, darn those pesky women for wanting to vote. Can you believe they want equal opportunities? How can they go on the internet and not expect to be called a whore?

    Apparently, if woman even expresses an opinion it can only be the result of her being on her period. You can say "period" by the way, or are you trying to be politically correct?

    You wanna know who likes being like a woman or a man? It's people who want to be themselves without accommodating other people's prejudices. Feminism is an uphill battle for women because not only do they have to fight the sexist establishment, but also other feminists who tear each other down over differences in their ideals.

    If you are the "man" that you claim to be, you should be more aware of the struggles and concerns of the women you care about so much to "treat them special".
     
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