Saturday, February 25, 2023

How To Take Offense: Gender Studies 101


According to, “a female journalism major at Shippensburg University wants an apology from the school for a photo featuring two male students with the caption: ‘This is what an #engineer looks like.’”

Allyson Ritchey, the assistant PR director for the school’s student paper The Slate, was upset that the official Shippensburg U. Instagram page recently posted a picture of “two male-presenting students” with the aforementioned caption.  The school changed the original caption to “Hands-on learning at the Milton and Doreen Engineering Lab!” less than 24 hours later, but this was not enough to appease Ritchey. No siree.

Ritchey thought a formal apology should have been forthcoming for the apparently egregious original caption and wrote that “Simply changing the caption is like putting a bandage on the situation.”

For good measure, the bitchy Ritchey added: “For a university that, according to its own website, ‘celebrates diversity,’ to make such a claim about engineers is insensitive and discrediting to the students at Shippensburg who do not fall into the stereotype. This brings forth the societal notion that engineering is unfriendly to women and other non-male identifying individuals.” Say what??!!

There was no sexist “claim” in the caption, and it was not an attempt to further a “stereotype.” It was simply a picture of two engineering students with a matching caption.

If one is of the Ritchey mindset, one looks for offense in all matters instead of expressing gratitude. To the eternally oppressed, everything gives offense, everything reeks of insensitivity, intolerance, exclusion.

Come to think of it, I want an apology for an advertisement featuring two women enjoying a glass of wine. I like wine, too. Is the ad trying to imply men don’t drink wine, can’t appreciate it?! And I’m getting increasingly upset with pictures that show several women—or should I say “female-presenting fans”-- attending, say, a football or hockey game. This is clearly marginalizing to men. If there would have been a caption reading “This is what an NFL/NHL fan looks like” I wouldn’t have been responsible for my own actions.

And why are there no pictures of me as President of the United States or even Governor of Florida? This is deeply hurtful to me, and an obvious case of anti-Ericism and heterophobia.

This entitled, infantilized, woe-is-me, the world is against me mindset is tragic and destructive. It is why “squad” members AOC, Corey Bush and Rashida Tlaib ranted, raved, whined and cried after Republicans ousted Ilhan Omar from her seat on the House Intelligence Committee. “Islamophobia” they cried! “Racism!” Misogyny! An attack on women of color! Etc., etc. They did not mention that the other two congresspersons removed from the committee were Eric Swalwell and Adam Schiff, both white males. Never mind that two-thirds of those taken off the committee for security reasons were white (heterosexual) non-Islamic males. “Racism!” “Islamophobia!” “Sexism!”

When a person gets angry when any picture of anything doesn’t include them-- or someone just like them-- it says a great deal more about that person than it does about the picture or those who created it.


No comments:

Post a Comment