Yet again, the modern feminist continues to astound with her detachment from reality. In an attempt to usurp yet even more power, Sheryl Sandberg, who’s some sort of big-whig at Facebook, started a new social engineering program called Ban Bossy. The premise behind Ban Bossy is that assertive women are called bossy, while assertive men are considered leaders.
I pointed out the website to a friend of mine, who dejectedly messaged me back, saying that in all 4 decades of his life, it was only after receiving the BB message that he’d finally realized that only women were considered bossy in America. The bossy men, otherwise known as assholes, jerks, micromanaging tyrants, and snakes in suits are held in much higher regard than bossy women, or so Sheryl Sandberg would have us believe.
Unfortunately a group of famous and ironically powerful ( a sense of irony is the first thing to go among Utopians) female leaders have taken to the BB podium, urging us all to never remind females that diplomacy, leading by example, respect, and truly caring for others is paramount to not only being a good leader, but having other people believe you’re a good leader. Beyonce throws the word Bitch around in her songs but here, she reminds us she’s not Bossy, by declaring “I’m not bossy, I am the boss.”
If I made such a statement to the men in my platoon in the Army, I would immediately lose all their respect, perhaps irrevocably.
Adam Grant, Ph.D, writes an excellent, though overly PC for my taste, post in Psychology Today, addressing female bossiness. What he has to say matches exactly my own experience. He writes:
We react very differently when power is exercised by high-status and low-status people. In a pair of clever experiments, researchers Alison Fragale, Jennifer Overbeck, and Maggie Neale show that when people with high status also possess power, we perceive them as dominant, but also warm. We hold them in high regard, so we’re willing to follow their commands. When the same commands come from people who lack status, we judge them as dominant and cold. Since they haven’t earned our respect, they don’t have the right to tell us what to do.
When young women get called bossy, it’s often because they’re trying to exercise power without status. It’s not a problem that they’re being dominant; the backlash arises because they’re overstepping their status.
This is precisely my experience in the Army. I have worked for a couple of female leaders, and worked along side others that clearly thought they were leaders. One female 1 SG, who was way over her head, was bossy on steroids, yet could sometimes be seen crying in her office. Clearly, she always tried to exercise power beyond her status and it rubbed many people the wrong way, to the point that several of them wrote letters of complaint to the company commander. I also witnessed on several occasions, females who tried too hard to stand out and succeed, perhaps with the subliminal belief that they had to compete against men. The most competitive female I’ve ever worked with in the Army had virtually no friends at the time I knew her.
This is not to say that leaders should appear weak. Indeed, the opposite, as Machiavelli pointed out, is true. The problem with many women, is that they do not understand that demanding respect is seen as weakness. The second we feel the need to declare ourselves Caesar, we show we doubt ourselves.
Many women find it frustrating that men excel is leadership positions and attribute this to a system that selects men merely because they are men. Again, so out of touch are many women brought up in the age of Girl Power, they cannot perceive the truth of the matter. Men, from day one, are raised in an environment of competition. We are expected to be strong and to win. We quickly learn what works and what does not, and we rarely have some all-powerful or bossy organization, like the US government or a womens’ rights org to turn to if we fail. We don’t even have societal pressures to protect us. Trial and error always trumps academic musings. We learn on the playground that if we are too bossy, we may get punched in the nose. Girls don’t have this learning tool, as we all know from a young age that hitting girls is worse than hitting boys. Thus, we learn diplomacy, and if not we get branded the school bully. Our leadership skills grow organically, and we understand that hierarchy is inherent in nature. Sure we want to be on top, but we understand nothing beats hard work and competence.
Some women become frustrated when they are placed in leadership positions and people fail to respond to them. Studies show that young girls are very concerned with the perception of others, that people will not like them because they are leaders. To me, this shows that women actually do think being bossy is leadership. They believe they must be unlikable to lead. So they try to be friends with some people, and then immediately shift to the bossy side of the spectrum when things don’t go the way they want. I see this sort of thing with modern mothers. they try to be friends to their children instead of parents. They are afraid of offending their child and think the child will not love them if they don’t act like as a peer does. But parents should never be seen as the peers of their children. Many mothers gleefully Facebook and text with their 13 year old daughters, as if they were sisters. The end result of this is that instead of being able to exercise authority by telling the child to be home at a certain time, or doing their homework, squabbles ensue that resemble fights between siblings. In the past my wife has become frustrated with our two daughters, because they unquestionably obey me, but when I leave the house will sometimes even resort to mild forms of physical violence against her, such as a kick to the leg from the 4 year old when she doesn’t want to get dressed. The 4 year old won’t display such aggression around me, let alone direct it at me. My wife believes this is some sort of magic which the universe has unjustly bestowed upon men. But I think it’s because men grow up in a world that asks more of them.
The more women believe and tout the mythology that they have it tougher than men, the less likely they will be received as leaders in this world. They should stop and consider why the ultimate act of despair, suicide, should be so overwhelmingly a male phenomena. Out of the 110 countries listed in Wikipedia under “List of countries by suicide rate”, only in one is the rate higher for women than men. In many other countries the rate for men is double or triple that of women.
The feminists are bringing even more scorn upon women in leadership positions with the Ban Bossy movement, without even proving a problem. Respect and the title of leader is always earned. We can earn rank and titles, but status comes with accomplishment. The more women stomp their feet in protest, the more they damage their position.