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Japanfan
06-11-2011, 12:38 AM
Well, I personally think that we have it all over rhinoceri. But that's just my opinion. (I haven't googled it or anything.)

But never underestimate the literacy of pigs, who sing to their young.

PeterG
06-11-2011, 12:57 AM
This talk of varying species is engendering a lot of thought within me.

milanessa
06-11-2011, 01:38 AM
This talk of varying species is engendering a lot of thought within me.

Think about alligators.

rjblue
06-11-2011, 01:55 AM
Slime Molds (http://nationalzoo.si.edu/publications/zoogoer/2004/2/wildersideofsex.cfm) have 500 different sexes. Good thing we don't talk about them much.

numbers123
06-11-2011, 03:36 AM
I imagine that the children's parents are aware of these theories and hence, let their children "pick" which ever gender they want. Personally, I feel like the parents are using their children as political statements. I understand fighting gender norms and stereotypes but I somehow feel this is going beyond that.

Me too. I was the only girl in my cousins on my mom's side for 7 years. There were 6 boys an uncle who was 2 years older than my oldest boy cousin, so 7 boys before another girl. Every single toy in my grandparents' house were traditional boy toys. I am the oldest of 4 kids - 2 boys between me and my sister. Again, mostly boy toys in our house. My mother is not what one would consider to be girlie in any sense of the world. Somehow I became one of those girls who wanted to be that girl in dresses, wear pretty shoes, etc. To this day, I can not go anywhere without doing my hair, wearing make-up and doing all those girl things. When I pack for a trip, I usually take one large suitcase or 2 medium ones. I guess I picked my gender stereotype, but don't believe that it really did have to do with exposure to a certain set of toys/clothing etc,

genevieve
06-11-2011, 04:49 AM
But numbers, that meant you were allowed to pick, right?

Japanfan
06-11-2011, 04:53 AM
Originally Posted by modern_muslimah View Post
I imagine that the children's parents are aware of these theories and hence, let their children "pick" which ever gender they want. Personally, I feel like the parents are using their children as political statements. I understand fighting gender norms and stereotypes but I somehow feel this is going beyond that.


But parents who raise a child in accord with gender norms and values are also using a child to make a political statement: the statement that those norms and values are acceptable and desirable. This may be an unconscious process, but it's no less of a statement. It's better to be conscious of the politics you engage in raising your children.

Though I would use the word 'express' rather than 'use'. It is impossible to raise children without expressing your political views or frame of understanding. Think of the many parents who raise their children according to the tenets of a particular religion - this cannot occur without a political sensibility. Much more egregiously, think of all the children used as human shields in war. Or all the children given messages of hate and prejudice.

Even a-polotical people provide a political context in that the absence of a political view supports the status quo.

These parents are asking for others to treat their child as first a person, without overlaying gender norms and values on it. The child will be exposed to those norms and values soon enough anyway, so a constraint has been removed in her/his early years. It will hopefully give the child a better chance to form an authentic identity.

I wish more parents would 'use' their children in this way.

PeterG
06-11-2011, 07:00 AM
But parents who raise a child in accord with gender norms and values are also using a child to make a political statement: the statement that those norms and values are acceptable and desirable. This may be an unconscious process, but it's no less of a statement. It's better to be conscious of the politics you engage in raising your children.

Though I would use the word 'express' rather than 'use'. It is impossible to raise children without expressing your political views or frame of understanding. Think of the many parents who raise their children according to the tenets of a particular religion - this cannot occur without a political sensibility. Much more egregiously, think of all the children used as human shields in war. Or all the children given messages of hate and prejudice.

Even a-polotical people provide a political context in that the absence of a political view supports the status quo.

These parents are asking for others to treat their child as first a person, without overlaying gender norms and values on it. The child will be exposed to those norms and values soon enough anyway, so a constraint has been removed in her/his early years. It will hopefully give the child a better chance to form an authentic identity.

I wish more parents would 'use' their children in this way.

WOW! Rock on sisterfriend! :D :respec: :cheer2: :40beers:

numbers123
06-11-2011, 10:06 AM
But numbers, that meant you were allowed to pick, right?

I never thought about it in those terms. I guess I was - I always thought of myself as not fitting in with my family's expectations of me. My sister is less "girlie-girl" than me and seems to fit into my family structure more than me.

modern_muslimah
06-11-2011, 04:11 PM
But parents who raise a child in accord with gender norms and values are also using a child to make a political statement: the statement that those norms and values are acceptable and desirable. This may be an unconscious process, but it's no less of a statement. It's better to be conscious of the politics you engage in raising your children.

Though I would use the word 'express' rather than 'use'. It is impossible to raise children without expressing your political views or frame of understanding. Think of the many parents who raise their children according to the tenets of a particular religion - this cannot occur without a political sensibility. Much more egregiously, think of all the children used as human shields in war. Or all the children given messages of hate and prejudice.

Even a-polotical people provide a political context in that the absence of a political view supports the status quo.

These parents are asking for others to treat their child as first a person, without overlaying gender norms and values on it. The child will be exposed to those norms and values soon enough anyway, so a constraint has been removed in her/his early years. It will hopefully give the child a better chance to form an authentic identity.

I wish more parents would 'use' their children in this way.

I get this and I'm sure it's impossible to raise your children without at least some of your values. However, I think it's the media attention they're putting on their young children that bothers me and made me say what I did in my previous post.

Perhaps if the children were teenagers or young adults and the parents did an interview on how they raised their children in as genderless a home as possible, I wouldn't care (maybe?). I just don't like the way they handled this at all. It's similar to how I felt about the mother whose son dressed as Daphne and then wrote a blog post about it. It just rubbed me the wrong way.

If I were raising children in a similar way, I'm just not sure I would do interviews and write blog posts about it.

PeterG
06-11-2011, 05:46 PM
...I think it's the media attention they're putting on their young children that bothers me and made me say what I did in my previous post.

How do you feel about parents who put their young children into beauty pageants, which sometimes bring about media attention? Do you feel any differently towards parents who put their children into sports events, piano recitals or spelling bees which bring about media attention?

numbers123
06-11-2011, 06:19 PM
How do you feel about parents who put their young children into beauty pageants, which sometimes bring about media attention? Do you feel any differently towards parents who put their children into sports events, piano recitals or spelling bees which bring about media attention?

I can't answer to mm, but I can answer for me. I don't believe that children should be showcased by parents to attain media attention. Sporting events can happen without media attention, piano recitals and spelling bees too. If a child excels at sports, piano, spelling and they want to pursue that activity which brings media attention at that time, that is different.
We all know skating parents, sports parents, etc. We often complain about them on this forum. There is a difference in the parent being the driving force behind the media attention and the child getting attention because of a skill or other thing.

This child is being pushed into the limelight because the parents are making a socieo-political statement. He/She will be known as the child whose parents used her/him for a social experiment. Oh you are Storm - are you that Storm?

heckles
06-11-2011, 06:27 PM
How do you feel about parents who put their young children into beauty pageants, which sometimes bring about media attention?

Pageant parents are similar to this couple from Canada--they parade their unfortunate kids around for attention, then whine that they're misunderstood and victims of "the media".

PeterG
06-11-2011, 07:58 PM
Pageant parents are similar to this couple from Canada--they parade their unfortunate kids around for attention, then whine that they're misunderstood and victims of "the media".

Do you see parents who enter their child into ongoing beauty pageants the same as parents who were approached and then did one interview for their local newspaper?

MacMadame
06-11-2011, 09:06 PM
Do you see parents who enter their child into ongoing beauty pageants the same as parents who were approached and then did one interview for their local newspaper?

Apparently. :rolleyes: