[dropshadowbox align=”center” effect=”lifted-both” width=”full” height=”” background_color=”#ffffff” border_width=”1″ border_color=”#dddddd” ]Update 2/8/15: we’ve identified the director of this Montessori school, and the school as well. Stay tuned. [/dropshadowbox]
If there is one thing that men’s advocates tend to do well, it’s make screenshots and keep records of what is said and done. Today I bring you another such example. It’s not one “of my own digging,” so to speak. It comes from Reddit, and it provokes an interesting discussion about the status of male teachers and male role-models in lower education. It also provokes a discussion about “doxxing,” as Reddit and similar sites call it.
Quora – much like Yahoo! Answers, is a website where people can post questions and have the Quora community answer. One day a user posed this question:
“Why aren’t there many men teaching in preschools and elementary schools? Do they hate being around children below the age 10?”
There were many interesting responses, which we’ll get to. But here was the most interesting one by far:
Here this person engages in some Q&A with another commenter:
The comments no longer exist on Quora. Now you are instead given this:
Of course, we could also use stereotypes about women to keep them from having any kind of right to a job or career. “Women are emotional and don’t make good decisions.” And so on. But that of course would be sexist.
Since the screenshots were linked on Reddit, they had to conceal the name of this preschool director. Why? Because of Reddit’s anti-“doxxing” policy. Doxxing was originally a valid concern about cyberstalking because people were posting residential addresses of people they didn’t like, which put others in reasonable fear of their own safety (note: posting the addresses of anyone also against AVFMS policy; that’s also why you won’t see a CV, which often lists a home address, uploaded here).
On Reddit, however, the definition of doxxing was expanded to include simply naming people who say and do horrible things on anything that could be remotely construed as “social media.” Quora is not a social media website, but it does integrate with it.
So what this means is that this preschool director will in all likelihood continue to discriminate against male teachers behind closed doors for the rest of their career as the director, and we have absolutely no way to provide them any form of redress because we don’t know this person’s name.
Note to men’s and boys’ advocates: this is why you submit this kind of thing to A Voice for Male Students if you actually want anything to be done. Reddit is just for talking – that’s it. The admins have clarified this over and over, and the subreddit mods will fall in line. That’s not to say Reddit is “bad”; you just have to take it for what it is – discussion, and little else (which it does that very well) – and go elsewhere for more.
I attempted to look up a historical “snapshot” of the Quora page at the Wayback Machine, a website that collects website snapshots and various points in time. Here is what I got:
Interestingly, if you look at Quora’s robots.txt file you’ll see that it specifically references the Wayback Machine. It says:
Indeed. But some things are not just better left unsaid. They are better left not done.
Still, we are at least able to get some good discussion out of this. Here are some other interesting responses on Quora:
– Michel Clasquin-Johnson
– Steve Black
This brings me to an important point that bears repeating: as much as we criticize administrators and teachers, the problem of misandry is truly a widespread cultural phenomenon. It’s not just schools that have to change; it’s parents that need to change as well.
– Viviane Blais
Although I think the discussion of low teacher pay is generally overexaggerated (usually because they compare pay for their nine-month job to another’s pay for a 12-month job), those who work with children in a professional setting generally are underpaid. Taking care of children is no small responsibility.
And of course, let’s wheel in the obligatory equivator, who compares an apple to an orange and argues that they are the same:
– Aran Johnson
That’s not just a simpler way of looking at it. It’s a shallow way of looking at it. If you’re a female engineering student, what’s the worst you have to fear? The random and rare chance of being undervalued because you’re a woman.
And actually, in all likelihood your work will far more often be overvalued because you are a woman. Why? Because promoters of diversity are always trying to find a way to prop women up. Affirmative action,”positive” discrimination, female-only professional development and networking programs, female-only grants and scholarships, and all that kind of thing.
If you’re a male teacher, what’s the worst you have to fear? Having your entire life ruined by an irrational parent falsely accusing you of molesting children, and a cowardly administration that fails to take any kind of principled stand. It’s not a “temporary stumbling block.” Your career and reputation are over. There is no equivalency.
They really, really, really don’t like it because you’re getting to the truth of the matter. Which is all the reason why they need to be pointed out more strongly, and more often. The degree of your stridency must be equal to the degree of the complacency of your opponents – but just to make your voice equally heard. It needs to exceed that ratio to get anything done.