Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Why I will never go to Harvard (updated)

I mean, besides for the intelligence thing. Harvard bows to the forces of irrationality:
The Faculty of Arts and Sciences at Harvard approved a resolution on Tuesday expressing a lack of confidence in the leadership of the university's president, Lawrence H. Summers, citing longstanding dissatisfaction with his management style and, to a lesser extent, his remarks in January about women in math and science.
Of course the remarks about dissatisfaction with leadership were just thrown on top--one cannot possibly maintain that if Summers hadn't made the remarks he made about women that he would still be in the same trouble. This is the left's "evolution" issue, that is, the subverting of science in the name of religion--although in this case the religion is the secular religion of radical feminism.

And notice that I speak of "radical" feminism--I believe that feminism, in itself, is a laudable ideology, and one that I believe most American's hold. I consider myself a feminist, in that I think women should be treated equally in civic society, as well as in most other aspects of life.

But, what most people don't seem to realize is that treating women equally is not the same thing as treating them like men in all respects. Women and men are different; it is not equality to treat unlikes the same--equality is not sticking square pegs in round holes, but rather finding the appropriate hole for each.

update: Maybe I shouldn't have sounded so unequivocal here. Maybe equality does require the like treatment of unlikes. In fact, I'm sure it does, at least in some aspects of life. The problem comes in finding in which situations one should opt for same treatment for unlikes (such as allowing all people to seek public office despite what innate characteristics may say about their potential ability to lead) and in which situations one should treat people equally by respecting their differences (not requiring females to register for the draft; not letting men use women's restrooms; allowing women maternity leave).

update 2: A timely coincidence: Keith Burgess-Jackson, the AnalPhilosopher, makes much the same observation regarding a professors remarks on the "equality" justication for same sex marriage:
Do we grant men a right to have an abortion? Of course not, because they can't have an abortion. Do we allow dogs or children to vote? Of course not, because they lack to competence to vote. Every parent of two or more children knows that equal consideration sometimes requires differential treatment—when there are relevant differences between the children. The question the law professor conveniently evades is whether, with respect to marriage, heterosexual and homosexual couples are relevantly similar. They're not, and nothing he says in this column shows that they are. Hence, the principle of equality does not require that they be treated alike. Indeed, it forbids it.


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