I missed the part where Charlotte Allen replied to her critics. It’s a treat.
It’s no small thing, of course, to stop a gunman, whatever his size, but there might have been more of a chance with a few men on hand. I asserted that the “feminized setting” that prevails at elementary schools and the education schools that train their personnel creates a culture of “helpless passivity” that puts women and small children at risk when a psychopath like Lanza decides to blow out the doors.
And an admiring audience failed to materialize, so she is explaining it all again.
No, I was not blaming any of the 26 victims or the parents who enrolled their kids at Sandy Hook. I am, however, blaming our culture that denies, dismisses, and denigrates the masculine traits—including size, strength, male aggression and a male facility for strategic thinking–that until recently have been viewed as essential for building a society and protecting its weaker members. We now have Hanna Rosin at Slate urging parents to buy their little boys Easy Bake ovens so they’ll be more like little girls. Women are less aggressive by instinct, and they are typically trained to be nice. I praised and continue to praise the courage of the Sandy Hook principal, Dawn Hochsburg, and the teachers who gave up their lives along with her, but with some men on the scene who knew what to do, some of those lives might have been saved.
Might have been – well sure, but you could say that about anything. If Adam Lanza had tripped and fallen then lots of people could have jumped on top of him, too, and all the lives might have been saved. If things had been different they would have been different. Very true, but we already knew that. There have been other mass shootings where there were men present and many people were still killed, including men. It’s not even clear why Charlotte Allen assumes none of the women present “knew what to do” – and of course it’s completely unclear what she thinks there is “to do” in the face of automatic weapons.
I am also responding to David Weigel, who told me I gotten my facts wrong: that there are actually two men, a custodian and a fourth-grade teacher, on Sandy Hook’s 52-person staff. He’s right, and I stand corrected. This does help prove my point, though: just two adult men in a building containing 500 people — and it’s not clear that both of them were at work that day. Indeed, a visit to Sandy Hook’s staff website is a depressing experience, the sea of women’s names. Why aren’t there more men? Perhaps not enough want the job? But why? Because they are tacitly discouraged from careers in elementary education? It’s certainly not the money, because union rules typically require kindergarten teachers and high-school chemistry teachers to be paid on exactly the same salary scale. Another depressing page on the Sandy Hook website is the “Safe Schools Climate” page. It’s a page of links to “anti-bullying” resources. Yes, the Sandy Hook staff’s idea of a “safe school” was a school where kids didn’t say mean things about each other on Facebook! The Sandy Hook massacre was a tragedy, but it was at least in part a tragedy of the collision between feminist delusions and reality.
Jesus H Christ almighty – what is she talking about?? Is she claiming that feminism keeps men out of elementary schools? Wtf? Since when does feminism claim that elementary school teachers should all be women? The point of feminism is more that university professors should not all be men. And then, she finds a sea of women’s names depressing. I find that depressing. Same old shit – imagine her saying that if you replaced “the sea of women’s names” with “the sea of black faces.”
And then the sneer about anti-bullying – and I feel like throwing up.
Maybe it’s some kind of Sarah Palin “shake up those pesky liberals” shtick. Hooray for bullying.