Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Pandagon Attacks the Bell Jar   posted by TangoMan @ 7/04/2006 12:21:00 PM

The cutting edge of feminist thought is being advanced, right over a cliff, over at Pandagon. Amanda starts off her essay with this declaration:

PZ Myers found a literal goldmine of humor for us science-supporting feminists

Yeah, she's a science supporting feminist like The Sausage Casing Girls are exemplars of fashion. The Sausage Casing Girls are along for the ride on the fashion train because they want to make a statement to their peers that they too are hip to the cultural and fashionable touchstones of our times. The fact that they're not actually fashionable in appearance is immaterial. Same too with some of these "science supporting feminists" who, in the evolution vs. creation war, side with evolution when they don't have a clue as to the science underlying evolutionary thought. Their embrace of science is merely show for it reaffirms their cultural identity and self-image. They look at the creationists and they find it easy to reject their particular brand of appeal to custom, superstition, and traditionalism, so by default they embrace the antithesis of the creationist position. What they don't do is embrace the fundamental aspects of a science oriented outlook, to wit:

It's worth noting that there's been plenty of people who have eagerly sought out scientific "proof" to replace the religious justification for racism, in books like The Bell Jar. Unsurprisingly, these attempts suck donkey butt in terms of being good science, but even if these attempts came up with better facts, I don't think that progressives have much to worry about in terms of losing the moral high ground. In order to prove that racism was justified, then evo psych-ers would have to demonstrate that black people are somehow less human than white people-or alternately that we aren't social animals that adapt to our environment-and both those assertions are self-evidently false. Whipping out IQ tests is a perfect example of how a stream of numbers just can't change either the fact that we are social animals or that all people are fully human, since what IQ tests tend to prove more than anything is that if you grew up in an environment that would incline you to do better on a standardized test, you'll do better on standardized tests.

I found the bolded sentence to be the most telling of what really underlies the motivations of these "science loving feminists" - it's posturing. They use science as a cloak, or perhaps a sausage casing, within which they can wrap their ideology and give it the cover of rationalism and enlightenment, rather than using the scientific method to test their premises, inform their thinking, or guide their lives. They use science as a badge to signal to others that they too are along for the ride, and like the Sausage Casing Girls, these "science loving feminists" are blind to how they present themselves.

I'll leave it for the commentariat to disassemble the flaws of reasoning within that paragraph, for it's quite apparent that there is no equation between "science loving feminist" and mastery of writing logical arguments.