Skepchick Quickies, 7.7


Jen is a writer and web designer/developer in Columbus, Ohio. She spends too much time on Twitter at @antiheroine.

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  1. Re: “Bachelor Paradox”

    There’s a much simpler explanation, really… the more educated/sophisticated a person is, the more likely they are to realize that marriage is often not a rational economic and/or social decision – and becomes less so by the day. Hence lower rates in general. Furthermore, the consequences for a failed marriage are, generally speaking, much more severe for a man than for a woman. Therefore, men are less likely to want to get married than women.

    If you want to read a real rant on the topic, I would suggest Fred Reed’s column, “Why Not To Get Married,” here:

    Fred, by the way, will probably horrify most readers of this blog (he occasionally horrifies me) but any honest person will have to admit that he is one of the great skeptics of the age.


  2. I have often commented that it is theistic evolutionists, not fundamentalists, who have convinced me that evolution and Christianity can not be reconciled in any reasonable way. Giberson’s view of the matter requires us to view scripture as a complex cipher that cannot be properly understood without the benefits of some college-level science courses. He has no explanation to offer for why God employs such a savage method of creation. He offers little beyond a declaration of blind faith and his awe at the mystery of it all for why we should believe in anything beyond the physical world.

    Jason Rosenhouse

  3. MarcW–I don’t understand how your hypothesis explains the dearth of women on the West Coast.

    Also, that Fred Reed article bitterly overgeneralizes single women in America, just as Susan Reimer bitterly overgeneralizes single men in America. They’re throwing things back and forth at each other, and it’s pretty stupid to watch. I venture to guess (though I have no data) that there are fewer rabid feminists that Reed believes there are.

    And it’s not even funny to call “Women’s Studies” a course in “disliking men” when he’s actually serious about it.

  4. vreify:

    It doesn’t. I just meant to address the lower incidence of marriage generally. You’re quite correct in that it doesn’t explain local population disparities (which are also obviously going to be a factor to some degree, whether larger or smaller than the discinclination to marry I couldn’t say.)

    And you’re right – Reed is a comedian with the occasional interesting insight. The difference between him and Reimer is that he knows it – which is why he’s offensive but funny and she’s just offensive. :)

    I have never taken a class in Women’s Studies and therefore have no data to evaluate his claim. That said, the women I’ve known who have devoted significant academic endeavor to it give me a trendline that makes me at least willing to consider that he may have a point.


  5. Things do not bode well for us working class heroes in Wyoming. Look at those giant blue dots in Colorado.

  6. A comment on the differences between men and women. I know a few trans people (both male to female and female to male) and they report changing their behavior rather markedly as they transition. Their experiences suggest that both social factors and hormones play a part in this. My friends have said that they believe they change behavior in part because they feel free to be their true selves once they transition. But they also acknowledge that the hormones play a role as well. Hormones are strong drugs! I’ve heard quite a few stories about female-to-male folks who have become aggressive once on testosterone. Similarly, male-to-female people report that they are easily moved to cry or otherwise show emotion.

    The differences may not necessarily be hard-wired but I think there are certainly differences mediated by hormones, at the least.

  7. I confess to never having taken a Women’s Studies class, either. But I do also know women who have taken one (whether this would constitute a significant academic endeavor or not, I don’t know) and are still rational, likeable human beings.

    I may not take a class anytime soon, either. I’d be afraid that a) I will be hated for expressing my ideas or b) I will be terribly unsatisfied with the depth and rigor of the “study.”

  8. My view on “reconciling” evolution (science in general really) and religion, is that the more you learn about the subject, the more your god becomes deistic in nature. A god of ever shrinking gaps.

    In other words, you can be religous and a scientist. You can, however, not remain a fervent believer and an intelactually honest scientist.

    At least if you’re capable of admitting, to others and to yourself, that you have (and sometimes use) this double standard, then I have no issue with the person who is religious, because it doesn’t taint their work.
    People like Behe though, get no such exemption, because they know damn well they’re being intellectually dishonest.

  9. So, does that mean fat men are more likely to find a woman.

    Or are fat women are more likely not to find a guy?

    PErhaps fat guys have lower “standards”?

    Single men work out in hopes to attract women?

    Single women eat too much chocolate ice cream?

    Seems like even correlation is unlikely to yield any usable answers …

  10. Reply to exarch: Re fat

    Having lived in one of the third thinest parts of the land and now living in one of the third fattest I can say that if any of those had anything to them at all it would be the single men work out more to attract women when the pickings are “slim”.

    As for the first one I would guess that men become fat after only finding fat women and not having much of a reason to keep trim.

    But again, it was just a quick correlation that came to mind when I saw that distribution and decided to see if the census had another map for fat distribution an sure enough they did and there is a fair amount of lining up there. Whats it all mean? If someone gives me 20 years and 30 million dollars I will be happy to look into it for them. :)

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