Thursday, February 24, 2011

Gender Differences

"Gender is an essential characteristic of individual premortal, mortal, and eternal identity and purpose."
That comes from the Proclamation to the World on the Family put out by the Church 15 years ago. While in California, I had an interesting conversation with Amy about some of the work I'm doing up here. I was listening to some interviews and some people expressed dismay over why the Church doesn't do more to support the Girl Scouts like it does the Boy Scouts. (Turns out, it has a lot to do with the platforms that the Girls Scouts supports, namely that it is an advocate of same-sex political positions. I didn't know that when we were talking about it then, however. I only just found that out a second ago after looking it up.)

Anyway, the conversation turned toward how some people were upset about how the Girl Scouts don't offer all the same activities and program that the Boy Scouts do, and there is something wrong with that. Amy was advocating that there are some really great things about being female, but that it's a hard concept to explain to some people, and particularly those with different values, namely, equality in every respect of the world at the expense of disregarding those unique characteristics .

I like that line from the Proclamation on the Family. I think that was part of the problem with Sister Julie Beck's talk in conference a few years ago about Mothers Who Know. People didn't like how much it pigeon-holed women into the role of mothers. I don't really want to get into the particulars of that talk, however.

I mention all of this because I came across this article on ESPN about a young man who chose not to wrestle a young woman in the state championship. I'm assuming that the guilty parties misspoke when they were trying to explain their reasoning, or maybe they've just been misrepresented by the writer. The writer points out that if it was to preserve the girl's safety, then they are flawed in their reasoning. This is what the father of the boy said about the incident:
"We believe in the elevation and respect of woman," the father told the Des Moines Register, "and we don't think that wrestling a woman is the right thing to do. Body slamming and takedowns -- full contact sport is not how to do that."
I think that's a different point than what Reilly was getting at. There are some fundamental differences between men and women. This wasn't about discrediting a woman's wrestling abilities, or whether she can take a beating, but it seems more just about wanting to preserve the sanctity of a woman by not competing against her in what is intended to be a violent sport.

I don't really have the time now to fully articulate my thoughts, but I'm just going to let that sit and percolate with you for a bit. This is mostly about how people pass judgment on others assuming that they are operating from the same value systems as their own. This point is central to the debate about same-sex issues. and this is also at the heart of this instance as well.

Just thinking out loud.

1 comment:

Shelli said...

I read that article and thought the guy was clearly a jerk who just didn't get it.

If I were the kid's mom, I would have been ridiculously proud of him.