There was a recent debate on British television between Milo Yiannopoulos and Emily Grossman on Sexism in Science. I have no idea why Yiannopoulos was even invited; he’s got no qualifications at all to be talking about this stuff. I guess he was the representative for sexism, while Grossman was there to represent science.
A very short summary:
Grossman: Hunt’s remarks were irresponsible in fields still afflicted with a serious gender imbalance, science is an environment in which we’re trying to dispel historical stereotypes that discourage women from entering, etc.
Yiannopoulos: Gender essentialism, biological determinism, men’s brains and women’s brains are different, there may be a scientific basis to why women don’t succeed as well in science. Blech, puke, argle-bargle.
Stop right there. The ‘debate’ should have come to a screeching stop the instant Yiannopoulos started babbling lies and nonsense, but I’m just amazed his eyeballs didn’t pop out of his face from all the irony pressure in his skull.
Think about this: Yiannopoulos is arguing that men’s and women’s brains are different, and men are intrinsically better at the science stuff. But Yiannopoulos is a college dropout, twice over, has no background in science at all (just like he has no background in gaming, either, but then no amount of ignorance will stop him from plowing on). It’s not clear what he studied in college, but it seems to have been journalism or English, not science. His male brain seems to be trained in muckracking, lying, and hackery.
Meanwhile, here’s the female brain of Dr Emily Grossman:
I am an expert in molecular biology and genetics, with a Triple First in Natural Sciences from Queens’ College Cambridge and a PhD in cancer research. I also trained and worked as an actress and I now combine my skills in my work as a science communicator and broadcaster; explaining science for a wide range of TV and radio programmes and at live events. I teach all three science subjects and maths at all academic levels (I have taught in two London schools and tutored over 180 private students) and I also work as a freelance communication skills trainer.
I suspect that Mr Yiannopoulos is overcompensating. He’s an ignoramus, but if he yells loud enough about men’s brains he gets to pretend he’s scientifically inclined, as a side-effect of having a penis.
Furthermore, he’s benefitting from the misogynist culture he cultivates. Grossman has been targeted by assholes on Twitter, and strangely enough, the usual suspects are not coming along to deplore the ongoing “witch hunt”. Don’t bother reading the youtube comments; it’s swarming with idiots declaring that he defeated a “fembot” with logic and science, which is weird. Yiannopoulos can declare that women are encouraged and privileged and pushed into science, and when Grossman rightly points out that that makes no sense when only 20% of physics professors are women, he and his acolytes just use that to argue for more gender essentialism, like this bozo:
Only 20% of girls are a level physics students. BECAUSE girls don’t like physics. They are not being pushed out, they are not becoming physicists because they have no interest in it. Well, the 80% that don’t, at any rate.
“girls don’t like physics”. Yeah, sure, that’s science.
Just curious, but is Sky News in the UK like Fox News in the US? Because it makes no sense to have even invited Yiannopoulos to talk about this subject — he has no background in it, his male brain is patently inferior, and his only qualification seems to be a willingness to babble confidently about his ignorance. He’s nothing but a Breitbartian loudmouth, all ego and no expertise, but apparently modern media like that sort of bullshit.