the new ussr illustrated

welcome to the Urbane Society for Skeptical Romantics, where pretentiousness is as common as muck

women in science, solutions, and why nobody reads my blog, among other things

with 4 comments

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Okay I’ve written facetiously about getting rid of men, or seriously (but facetiously) reducing their proportion of the populace, but in future I want to look at real solutions to a problem that I think is already being addressed but far too patchily and slowly – the problem of male power and dominance. The general solution, of course, is the ascent of woman, to paraphrase Jacob Bronowski via Darwin, and how to promote and quicken it. (Incidentally I’ve just discovered that ‘The Ascent of Woman’ is a four part documentary on women’s history, recently produced for the BBC by Dr Amanda Foreman – look forward to watching it).

However, before continuing I want to issue a plea for help. My blog, which I’ve been writing for many years now, has never had much of a readership, due probably to my inability to network, or even communicate much with others (I’d rather not think it’s anything to do with my writing skills). However, last month even that minuscule readership virtually collapsed, as I recorded my lowest number of hits since my first month of blogging. I’ve soldiered on, but now at the end of September I find this month’s numbers even worse. I feel I need to make a decision about the blog’s future – How do I increase the numbers? Does the blog need a makeover? Can I blame the attention-span of others? I find if I write short pieces, they don’t really cover anything in depth, but I know also that the in-depth pieces, the ones I work on hardest, often get the least attention. Should I just give up and go back to journal writing? At least that way I won’t be faced with the world’s indifference…

Anyway, enough about me – it’s interesting that when you start focusing on an issue, you hear about it everywhere, everybody seems to be talking about it. Today, listening to a podcast of the ABC Science Show, I heard that teenagers are our biggest killers, worldwide, predominantly through motor vehicle accidents. And of course we’re talking largely of male teenagers. The researcher announcing this was female, and, typical female, she was complaining about us tackling this old problem (this has been the global situation for some sixty years) in the same old piecemeal way, rather than though global collaboration in researching and trying to figure out workable solutions to what is clearly a global problem. It was clear from this passionate speaker (and mother of teenage children) that with more females leading research in this and other fields, we’ll get more collaboration and quicker and more effective solutions. And when Robyn Williams, our honourable Science Show anchor, asked the researcher a double-barrelled question – is this teenage problem a male one, and should teenage boys be banned from driving? – her honourable response was ‘yes, and yes’.

The question is – would a law specifically targeting boys/young men as drivers ever be implemented? Of course, many males would describe it as discriminatory. And of course it does discriminate, because the statistics are clear. But why, a young male might ask, should I be treated as a statistic? I’m not like other young men.

It’s a valid point, and I can’t see an obvious way of screening out the potentially safe young men from the potentially dangerous ones. So all we could acceptably do is raise the driving age for all, preferably globally, which would effectively discriminate against the statistically safer drivers, the females. Still, I like the idea of a push, led in the main by women, for a discriminatory driving age policy backed by science. It would raise the profile of the issue, bring women together in an excellent cause, potentially save lives, and feature as another small episode in the ascent of women.

Of course it wouldn’t solve the terrible wee problem of young kids stealing cars and killing and maiming others and themselves for pumped-up kicks…

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Written by stewart henderson

October 1, 2016 at 8:39 am

4 Responses

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  1. If you’ve got 33,941 hits I’d say you’re doing fine as a blogger. I’m no expert but I’ve noticed if I leave comments on others’ sites my stats jump and a few new people follow. Yes, you have to engage if you want people to engage with you. People do come and go, though. The average life-span of a blogger is far less than that of a reckless/wreckless teenage male driver. Maybe blogging is more dangerous than we think.

    Susanne

    October 2, 2016 at 10:28 am

    • Yes I suppose the cumulative figure looks impressive though that’s over a number of years, and I’m prone to comparing myself with ridiculously successful bloggers who occasionally get a thousand comments on a post, let alone hits. You’re the first legit person who’s commented here in a long time.
      Of course you’re right about visiting and commenting on other sites, which I do far less often now, mainly because my job’s full-on these days. So I kind of know the solutions but…
      I’ll try to put myself about a bit more.

      stewart henderson

      October 2, 2016 at 10:38 pm

      • I spent 30 minutes scrolling through posts that popped up when I searched the tag “Feminism” and yours was the first I came across that was coherent, cogent, and lively so I know how much time it takes to find bloggers to read, especially if you work full time. The blogosphere is full of unreadable, horrific dreck but your stuff is good so I don’t know why you haven’t been found and read more widely. Good luck to you.

        Susanne

        October 3, 2016 at 6:55 am

      • Well thanks for that, I really appreciate it. I’m on a week’s holiday starting today so might check out the blogosphere, but my own experience has mirrored yours – it’s hard to find much out there that really inspires.

        stewart henderson

        October 3, 2016 at 8:32 am


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