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Is Dilbert’s Scott Adams a Misogynist? — Maybe?

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I’d like to begin this post by disclosing that on every standardized test I’ve taken, my reading comprehension score was very high. Having said that, I’m still struggling to understand the meaning of Scott Adams’ controversial blog post that caused an uproar amongst the feminists. To paraphrase this debacle, Adams wrote a post on his blog addressing the men’s rights movement saying:

“The reality is that women are treated differently by society for exactly the same reason that children and the mentally handicapped are treated differently. It’s just easier this way for everyone. You don’t argue with a four-year old about why he shouldn’t eat candy for dinner. You don’t punch a mentally handicapped guy even if he punches you first. And you don’t argue when a women tells you she’s only making 80 cents to your dollar. It’s the path of least resistance. You save your energy for more important battles.”

When attacked, Adams removed the original post with no explanation, which reeked of guilt. He later wrote a lengthy post entitled, I’m a What?, which was meant to defend himself and explain the misunderstanding. After combing through this follow-up post, I confess that I have no better understanding of his argument, or what he was originally trying to portray. Personally, if I was accused of sexism and misogyny, you better believe I’d cut to the chase.  In fact, I might just say, “I love women” and be done with it. But Scott Adams is different. So here’s what I’ve made of my limited understanding. His original piece was meant to poke fun at the men’s rights movement, which he labeled as a ‘bunch of pussies.” But which part of that original post was a joke? You can certainly oppose the movement on the basis of there being more important things to worry about, while simultaneously believing that women are treated more favorably than men. Furthermore, when he addressed the feminist blogs that attacked him, he said, “I was also labeled an asshole, which I have come to understand is a synonym for male.” This is probably not the best thing to say when trying to worm oneself out of a mess — guilty or not. So what’s the moral of this long, tedious story? Either standardized tests mean nothing, or Scott Adams needs to be more clear when attempting damage control.

  • NoComment

    Maybe he was trying to comment on the multitude of women who would prefer to be coy about sex, and then dole it out at whatever pace allows them to avoid working for a living? These unsung-prostitutes are not acknowledged by society, but that’s what they are. It’s easier to nod along when an upstanding women is spouting crap about life not being fair because she has a vagina. Life isn’t fair, for anyone. Everyone invokes a stigma that makes them less credible to certain others. Life isn’t fair. It is childish when one refuses to acknowledge this. Ignoring them like a child is more socially acceptable than explaining the following:

    Every day that someone goes to work for 80 cents on the dollar, they confirm that perception of their worth. Don’t like it? Go find another job that values you properly. Everyone has this problem. Not just the people with vaginas. Suck it up. Stop complaining like a child and do what an adult needs to do.

    • Certainly those “prostitutes” exist, as do men that bankrupt companies
      because of greed. That doesn’t mean it’s acceptable to apply these
      generalizations to either sex.

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  • Quantumgastronomy

    Scott Adams was not attempting “damage control”. If he were, you’d be right that he was doing a bad job of it. But that’s not what he was doing. He was simply writing for his audience, which largely consists of people who would be amused by his recounting of how irrational people on both sides reacted to his original post.

    • You might be right. But perhaps he should have attempted damage control then. It’s an awfully sticky subject to be smarmy about.

      • Quantumgastronomy

        Do you think a person needs to do “damage control” when the only “damage” was people with an agenda intentionally distorting his blog post? It’s not like he’s running for political office and he needs a lot of people to personally like him. He’s writing a blog for a very small group of people, and the people he writes for understood what he was saying. In other words, he can afford to have principles. He doesn’t need to go into self-flagellation mode just because some people whose only purpose in life seems to be to take umbrage at perceived slights, took umbrage at something he said.

  • George Trosper

    “Wreaked” is a marvelous word, in context. But in the current context, “reeked” is needed.

    Also “treated” rather than “treating”.

    But since neither error MUCH interferes w/ reading comprehension …

    • Thank you. It’s fixed. I blame my editor for that. Oops! I’m the editor.