It’s been happening for some time now, but I recently saw two examples of how standards are being lowered in various places so that women can more easily become a part of the whatever organization, business, or field they’re lowering their standards in.
The places that do lower their standards for women seem to be proud of the fact that they did it, and even go so far as to promote it to the world. While they’re patting themselves on the back, I can only read the media coverage and wonder why women aren’t outraged.
First, there’s the report that the Army Rangers had lowered their standards to get more women through training. Where men would fail out as a squad for not achieving certain goals or meeting requirements, women were given passing grades despite being the reason the rest of the squad failed.
Women were also being given greater rewards for doing common tasks in order for their records to look better.
Then, there was this recent report out of Australia that a University was lowering its core requirements to get into engineering school. The guest on The Today Show out of Syndey was exctatic about it, calling it “positive discrimination.”
— The Today Show (@TheTodayShow) August 28, 2019
As I said, there are tons of other examples of this kind of thing happening throughout various industries and fields, but it seems to be happening more and more and with more cheerleading behind it.
I’m not a woman, but I don’t need to be to see the myriad of problems here, and not just for the industries who are lowering their standards.
Why aren’t women completely insulted by the fact that these fields feel the need to attract them to their side by lowering standards? This is essentially saying “you’re not good enough as it is, but we want you to work here so we’re going to dumb things down for you.”
In my 35 years on this planet, I’ve met plenty of women who are far smarter than I am, and I’ve been told I’m no intellectual slouch. I imagine that when it comes to brainpower, there are plenty of women out there who are more than a match for engineering degrees. In fact, according to Harvard Business Review, women do just as well as men when it comes to obtaining engineering degrees already. The only problem is that they tend to drop out of the field during or after obtaining degrees, and many reports seem to agree that it has a lot to do with the engineering culture, which is male-dominated.
There were other complaints, such as many engineering jobs not being as “socially conscious” as women would like, but I want to focus on the “male domination” aspect.
Male-dominated industries are a thing, but so are women-dominated industries. It typically comes down to what each gender prefers doing. For instance, you won’t find many women and feminist groups complaining that there’s a huge gender-gap in sewage work, or that there are too many men and not enough women in the lumberjack industry.
Engineering can have a lot of the same things. It’s not going to have a lot of emotion attached to it and can be very logistically driven without ever becoming a people-based field. Women tend to thrive in fields where people are the central focus and prefer to work in those kinds of industries.
Nursing and education are a solid example of that. Women tend to choose these fields over others, making them dominated by women. You don’t see many people raising the issue that not enough men work in these fields either. What’s more, these fields develop cultures more suited to women, and there’s nothing wrong with that.
Just like there’s nothing wrong with men creating working environments more suited to men in places that are dominated by men. This doesn’t necessarily mean that women become second-class, but men definitely have a different way of doing things than women, and men creating environments where they operate better in a place with other men isn’t sexist, it’s efficient.
Now, it’d be one thing to try to tweak that culture to make it more welcoming for women, which isn’t necessarily an easy task if we’re being honest. Again, men and women do things differently. It’s not sexism, it’s just gender methodology. Instead, however, these fields are telling women that they’ll lower the requirements.
How is this move not sexist?
You’re telling women they’re not good enough as a sex for a job, so you’ll make things less intellectually rigorous? Women aren’t dumb, but that’s the message this is sending.
Furthermore, how does that solve the culture problem? How does that change the fact that women just aren’t interested in that industry naturally? How does flooding the industry with otherwise unqualified women help anyone? It doesn’t. You could look into how you could make a business culture more welcoming to women, but instead, the focus is on dumbing things down for them?
Speaking of helping anyone, how does lowering the standards for the Army Rangers make our armed forces any more effective, and not only that, make it more attractive for women in the long run. At least in the engineering field, lowering standards may just result in slower, less advanced work. Lowering standards in the armed forces means a higher chance that someone could actually die.
Lowering standards is only sending the message that women are weak, stupid, and not worth as much as a man, and we’re supposed to applaud this?
Moreover, how do the “women are the same as men” crowd justify applauding this when industries and fields are clearly sending the message that they’re not with these lowered standards?
If women truly have a passion for industry women aren’t typically seen in, then they’ll do what it takes to be there. Otherwise, this diversity kick is only going to be cumbersome for these fields, and in worst-case scenarios, get people hurt.