Saturday, 10 January 2009

I do love Auntie…

That’s the British Broadcasting Corporation in case you don’t know. So named as they are very good at lecturing you in do as I say fitting in with the new labour philosophy of, do as I say not do as I do.

Anyway HM Government propaganda aside there is some interesting journalism on offer so I tend to dart about their site. Oh the power of selection it’s so good. That’s why I prefer the internet to television. Until television offers total programme on demand it isn’t there in my eyes though I can understand the reluctance to allow people to cut out advertising. Still it may happen, as there’s plenty of that (product placement) plus HM Government ideas in the soaps.

Anyway I digress, as the article that caught my eye was “Autism test could hit Maths skills”.

Professor Simon Baron-Cohen warns caution is needed to ensure associated talents, like numerical abilities, are not lost if the test or a "cure" become available.

The good Professor states:

Males are much more likely to apply to university to study maths, and in 2007, three quarters of applicants to read maths at Cambridge were male, as were 90% of applicants for the computer sciences degree and why, in over 100 years of the existence of the Fields Medal, maths' Nobel Prize, have none of the winners have ever been a woman?

Similarly, people with autism are much more likely to be male. Among those with classic autism, which includes a developmental delay in language and a risk of learning difficulties, males outnumber females by four to one and among those with Asperger Syndrome, males outnumber females by nine to one.

Is just me, but I get the feeling some pretty wild assumptions and illogical steps are being made here. Not too male chauvinist a view is it?

The article went on to say that research published this year showed a link between higher levels of the male hormone testosterone in the amniotic fluid surrounding a foetus and autistic traits when the child was eight and animal studies have shown foetal testosterone levels influence brain development, masculinising it.

Yes well any true transsexual could tell you about the effects of testosterone on the brain whilst it’s developing in the womb!

The main concern seemed to be that if a test for autism were developed and foetuses aborted then would we also reduce the number of future great mathematicians?
Then came a classic:

"If reducing the testosterone in a foetus helped that baby's future social development, we would all be delighted."

Oh yes?

Now that smacks too much of State selection of good heterosexual social subservient people to me especially if you look at another BBC article a day later entitled “Should we not dress girls in pink?”

Interestingly the article claims in the 1900s, blue was for girls and pink for boys.

The Women's Journal at that time explained it thus: "That pink being a more decided and stronger colour, is more suitable for the boy, while blue, which is more delicate and dainty, is prettier for the girl.”


Evidently some commentators now believe pink dominates the upbringing of little girls, and this may be damaging. Sue Palmer, author of Toxic Childhood, says the "total obsession" with pink stunts girls' personalities. "I am very worried about it. You can't find girls over the age of three who aren't obsessed with the colour. It's under their skin from a very early age and severely limits choices, and decisions.

But therapist and researcher Michael Gurian, who is based in the United States, says too much pink doesn't have a profound effect biologically - because it can't.

He says humans are programmed in a certain way and no amount of contact with external influences can change that.

"Everyone is hard-wired with four things - gender, a talent set, personality and differing ability to deal with trauma.”


“Scientists all argue the same thing - you cannot have a biological organism without having an environment for it to exist in, but that environment does not change the very basic make-up of that organism.”

Now that is logical LOL

That was rather pleasing as it acknowledges what true transsexuals have always known that our condition is nature not nurture.

I’m tempted now to research the effect of pink or even the preference for pink amongst transgender and transsexuals though I think I know the answer, the dominant colour is black.

Though the reason is that it’s more flattering if you are worried about your shape.

I think I can buy this final quote up to point.

“Girls are more aware of colour than boys - they put more colour in their drawings, for example, and learn colour names more quickly - it is no surprise that toy manufacturers have latched onto a certain shade to pitch at girls.”

I certainly did bright artwork at school LOL

The point however is that the grouping and creation of stereotypes is very dangerous. It’s wonderful for the State and the psychiatrists, psychologists and others they use to ensure conformity to society’s views of normality.

The strength of the human race is it’s diversity not it’s conformity. OK you can manipulate the masses as Hitler proved by propaganda but thankfully the freedoms and rights of the individual can still overcome the totalitarianism of the state.

The URL for the full articles are:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/7736196.stm

and

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/7817496.stm

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