Common Sense: Men & Women: From Cave to Corporation I

Having looked at the differences in tasks, focus, organizational structure and matters of cooperation and competition between men and women in our review of the life of Mister and Missus Caveman, it is time to translate these understandings to our present day world.  (Please read the last post or you may not grasp what follows).

Keep in mind: this post is not about the differences between men and women so much as an attempt to answer the question: why are women succeeding in this time and day and men are so obviously failing? 

Family:           This is a no-brainer.  If men need to be needed, the modern family gives men one big message:  You aren’t needed.  Women can work, support their own family, and if they are smart they can get the men to pay for some of it (alimony, child-support) without the men having the benefit of a wife or being part of their children’s lives.  You aren’t needed.  Give me your money and go away.  This is what men hear.

Then again, if the women choose not to work, the government (taxpayer) will provide them with public housing, food stamps, and money (added to alimony and child support) and all without any need for a man.  It would seem the perfect solution for those women whose primary drive is a safe and secure home for herself and her children. 

Unfortunately, this culture has produced disenfranchised (you are not needed) young men by the gang-full.  However much they may be loved and wanted by Mama or Grandma, they know they are not needed.  Wanted is not the same thing.  The gangs make them feel needed, important, respected.  Is it any wonder they turn around and prey on and show no respect for those very women who in their eyes have shown them no respect?

What if a woman told her fourteen-year-old son: “I need you to get some kind of job and start bringing in some money to help.  Lord knows I have tried, but I just can’t make ends meet.  Please, son.  I need you.”  That son would beat the bushes, virtually kill himself looking for work and gangs would never enter into it!

Education:     The one room school house was still a viable option for males.  There was enough one on one time and concentrated lessons to focus on so it worked.  It was a little harder for women, distracted by relationships and a multiplicity of other thoughts and concerns.  The turnaround began thanks to the educational philosophers and social engineers of the tens, twenties and thirties. 

Once FDR approved the teachers unions and “accreditation” became the standard requirement for teachers (which was little more than insuring all teachers were indoctrinated into the thinking of the educational philosophers and social engineers of the tens, twenties and thirties), learning became less focused and more compartmentalized.  By that I mean instead of being taught nothing but grammar for two weeks, students suddenly had eight different subjects in the same day and for every week of the school year. 

For women, whose brains are wired for compartmentalization and multi-tasking since cave man days, this was great.  For men, who were wired to focus on one task at a time, this was and is a nightmare.  What is more, success has become less a measurement of information learning as in end or goal focus (having the right answer) where men can excel, and become more process learning, where credit is given for the means one uses to get there (more a woman’s virtue) and having the right answer (arriving at the right place, “winning”) is less important or deemphasized. 

These days, schools use the (female) cooperative learning model, not the (male) competitive model.  Just ask a ten-year-old male what he really thinks of the dreaded “group project.”  Women thrive under this kind of compartmentalized learning because it plays to their strengths.  Men struggle, and the fact that childhood has been extended into at least four years of college where the same basic learning structures continue has only made matters worse. 

Now, let me say this.  The current educational structure and system is fine—for women.  Women are showing every sign of success and I think that is great.  Men, though, need something different.  After age 11 or 12 (after REAL childhood) instead of eight subjects per day, men would do better studying eight subjects per year—one at a time.  By 16?  Certainly by 18, men should be encouraged to focus in on what they want to pursue for their life’s work.  For some it will be carpentry, but it might also be post-graduate work in genetic engineering.  Whatever the case, post “High School” should be the beginning of focus, not four more years of glorified high school, which college has very much become.

I am not advocating we return to the idea of separate boys and girls schools, but it might come to that and it would not be the worst idea in the world.

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