html xmlns="http://www.w3.org/1999/xhtml" xml:lang="en" lang="en"> From the archives: My honor is intact. Sadly, for the most part, so is my virtue.

Monday, November 06, 2006

My honor is intact. Sadly, for the most part, so is my virtue.

You can delete this mean spirited post, but someone has to defend your honor.

No! No one needs to defend my honor. I don’t even need to defend my honor.

Look. Who I am is well represented here. There are many, maybe even hundreds of words here, telling people what I notice and think of things, and what I do. People who need to form a judgment about me have months of my writings to base that on.

My honor is not vested in my weight. Here on the blog, there’s honor in catchy posts with as few errors as possible. There’s honor in creating an atmosphere that makes really neat, smart people want to hang around. There’s honor in being welcoming to all comers, and looking for value in the content or the intent of their comments. In real life, my honor lives in the type of friend, sister, daughter, citizen, teammate, neighbor I am. My weight is a mechanistic function of my eating and my exercise. There is simply no honor in that equation.

You know what puts my honor at risk? Hosting a forum where people single out one person for abuse, or bash women for their weight or their appearance. We demonstrate that we are not savages by not ganging up on outsider opinions; a studied decision that some statement is not worthy of reply is all the response necessary. Like all women, I live under a gaze and judged by my looks in all of my public moments. Perpetuating that here, to the detriment of any other woman, would make me ashamed of myself. I will not have it.

15 Comments:

Anonymous Spungen said...

I missed the previous controversy. When I saw this post, I thought: Who's the awful man who cast aspersions upon Megan's weight?

Silly me, for assuming.

12:15 PM  
Anonymous Mike Jenkins said...

" Like all women, I live under a gaze and judged by my looks in all of my public moments."

This makes me sad. I guess I'm oblivious, but I didn't know this was the common perception.

12:18 PM  
Anonymous justus said...

Like all women, I live under a gaze and judged by my looks in all of my public moments.

I think you meant to write "like all people", as I'm sure fat men would be (un)happy to report. If only the blind watchmaker had left us blind...then we could discriminate (in all senses of the word) based upon one another's malodorous waftings.

1:02 PM  
Blogger Megan said...

Justus:
I thought about that for a while, and decided that although I believe that men and women both are judged on their appearance, the effect is so much stronger for women that it was appropriate to say "like all women".

Because it also happens to men to a milder extent doesn't justify discounting the systemic costs of valuing women based in some part on their appearance.

1:19 PM  
Blogger Dubin said...

What mean-spirited post? Where is there any discussion about your weight? Sorry, but I'm feeling terrible out of it since I can't figure out what all y'all are talking about.

2:02 PM  
Blogger Megan said...

Dubin, honey, don't bother. It isn't interesting, and it will just set you off, and then you'll go squawking and flapping around the office to no useful purpose.

2:04 PM  
Blogger Dubin said...

Too late. I went back and found it.

Look, reacting might seem "unkind" to you, but giving a poorly-socialized person a pass seems unkind to me. I don't go to her blog because I get agita reading her... er... "point of view," so it bums me out that she posts at all here. I find her to be toxic to a civilized environment of amicable debate and dialogue. If you don't allow us socialize her, how will she learn? (Not that I expect her to.)

Bagokk!

2:18 PM  
Blogger CharleyCarp said...

There is a point, Megan, at which one can fairly say that no woman is an island entire unto herself, and that disparagement of any woman diminishes us all. Therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls . . .

I'm offering no judgment as to whether the comment in question crosses any lines of this kind, but only addressing the point that a host's 'honor' is sometimes worth arguing for.

2:45 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Look, reacting might seem "unkind" to you, but giving a poorly-socialized person a pass seems unkind to me. I don't go to her blog because I get agita reading her... er... "point of view," so it bums me out that she posts at all here. I find her to be toxic to a civilized environment of amicable debate and dialogue. If you don't allow us socialize her, how will she learn?

I won't of course mention names due to Megan's stricture about affirmative kindness, but I feel compelled to point out that our favorite Libertarian/sci-fi fan/former resident of Costa Rica/former girlfriend of a poker player/etc. fellow commentor is largely beyond all hope of socialization.

Peter
Iron Rails & Iron Weights

5:24 PM  
Anonymous jens said...

Personally, I enjoy some of JMMP's stuff. She always tells it at least like she THINKS it is, and although she is a bit rougher around the edges than Megan, I kind of like that.

As being judged on appearances goes, that cuts both ways...I think in many ways a girl can get an undeserved POSITIVE judgement that a guy simply wouldn't have a shot at. Maybe that's frustrating for the femmes that would like to be judged on their inner beauty, but it gets 'em more free drinks.

5:59 PM  
Blogger aregon23 said...

Agree with Jens on JMMP, interestingly I stumbled across this blog from a link on hers.

My $0.02 though was that comment by JMMP was uncalled.

*shrug* but who am I to comment on what is called and uncalled? For what it is worth, Megan doesn't look chubby in her pictures and to dispute JMMP's comment, guys (at least some of them) like girls with an opinion. Nothing is a bigger turn off than a dumb person, looks fade fast from the list of desirable things but intellectual curiosity remains forever.

10:37 PM  
Blogger amanda bee said...

I'm with Dubin.

I think it is deeply wrong to leave that kind of nastiness un-remarked upon. To let one person get away with "tick tick tick" and "I'm starting to see why you don't have a boyfriend" is bull hickey. Just because it is directed at you doesn't mean that it doesn't sting other people.

So fine, make a new rule. If JMPP calls you chubby, no one can defend you directly in their response. We can say "what the hell does chubby have to do with it" and "last time I checked, lots of people who think deeply about the moral and ethical implications of their daily consumption do seem to get laid". We just can't say "Megan is too pretty."

But saying that we have to answer all that vicious nastiness with kindness is entirely unfair.

9:05 AM  
Anonymous jens said...

I just don't think it's "vicious nastiness". It is her attempt to offer what she considers helpful advice, delivered with a ruthless indifference to feelings that gives a vicious impression.

That makes it "clumsy kindness", kind of like an elephant trying to remove a splinder from a rabbit with its feet. Fortunately, I think Megan -- while probably twinging a bit occasionally -- is not so fragile that she can't deal with it.

I've known any number of people that seemed worthy of having a meet that spent months or years in loneliness. In almost every case, they eventually find somebody.

That doesn't mean there's NOTHING you can do that would improve your chances, but there are a lot of people that simply can NOT reliably "hook up" given a four hour deadline.

I don't know Megan except as a reader, so she can take my advice for what it's worth (which is not much): unless you're having trouble getting off the ground at Ultimate, don't fuss too much about the weight....unless your behavior in real life is so strident that you can't keep a male even as a "just friend" hold onto your ideals....but get out a bit more, go ahead and FOLLOW UP on some of those contacts even if the first email does not excite you (you can usually tell, though, if you don't click at the first real-life meeting!).

Yes, we men get turned on by visual stimuli...but we are also surprisingly flexible. I have had mad crushes on thin girls, chubby girls, short girls, tall girsl, blondes and brunettes ... when you feel that spark your idea of what looks good is TOTALLY subject to change!

Intelligence and spirit, however, are not negotiable.

9:29 AM  
Blogger amanda bee said...

It is the tick-tick-tick and the threats of shriveled ovaries that I count in the vicous column.

I wish I could just give her the benefit of the doubt and call her poorly socialized, but I don't buy it.

4:49 PM  
Blogger Dubin said...

Yeh, right? That's what you say to people when you want to make them cry, like, "May your ovaries dry up! Tick tick tick!" Doesn't matter one bit if Megan isn't crying. What matters is that JMPP is a bull in a china shop, and someone's got to either force the bull to sit down and have some tea or else show her the door. Feh.

3:45 PM  

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