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I recently watched the above video of a Demi Lovato song. I like Michelle Rodriguez’s stomach as much as the next guy (OK, perhaps more), but one thing that struck me in particular is that throughout the whole narrative arc Lovato, a 5’3 tall female, beats the crap out of many much larger men. Obviously this is a stylized fantasy, and the trope of “butt-kicking babes” is pretty well established in our culture now that we can slot it into the appropriate schema (Lara Croft?). But, recently I’ve been made aware of the magnitude of the strength differences between men and women, so these sorts of scenes are even more fantastical than were before. It’s almost as strange to me as an episode of Sailor Moon. It starts to violate the need for a “minimally counter-intuitive” scenario which is the criterion for a good realistic fantasy (yeah, that’s an oxymoron!).

sexdiff The table to the left is from Costs and benefits of fat-free muscle mass in men: relationship to mating success, dietary requirements, and native immunity. I’m not too interested in the evolutionary psychological details at the heart of the paper. Rather, let’s focus on some statistics which are given. The key is to focus on the d column, this is the effect size, which indicates the differences between the means of the two distributions in standard deviation units. The mean ages of the two distributions were the same, 33. So d is naturally 0 for this measure. For height men are 1.75 standard deviations taller, on average, than women. This seems about right. You can see in body fat percentage that women have higher values than men. The d here is negative. It gets interesting once you get to muscles. These are measuring volumes. When it comes to arm muscles the average male has 2.5 standard deviation units more than the average female! I was also surprised by the thigh muscle, as arm musculature differences have always been more salient. Finally, there’s the fat free mass.

Some have pointed out to me before that the standard sexual dimorphism calculation in relation to humans may not be informative in the way we might think. There’s about a 10% size differences between men and women. But as you see in the “fat free mass” row the size difference is much more extreme if you account for the higher body fat of women. This is relevant because fat does not make you strong, it just adds more weight and volume. In terms of upper body muscle mass there’s less than a 10% overlap between the two distributions. The vast majority of men have more muscle mass than all women. 99.9% of females have less upper body muscle mass than the average male. The 61% greater average muscle mass in male upper bodies translates into 90% greater average strength (the respective values for the lower body are 50% and 61%). The authors of the paper note that “The sex difference in upper-body muscle mass in humans is similar in magnitude to the sex difference in lean body mass in gorillas, the most sexually dimorphic primate.” Obviously humans don’t engage in obligate harem building, and males are not totally devoted to agonistic behavior as their raison d’etre. So one should be cautious about extending the analogy too far. But this result will likely surprise many. It surprised me.

k10359 I spent a lot of time fixating on numbers above because I don’t beat women. More pointedly, I’ve never hit a woman. That’s not because of the way I was raised by my parents. Though they don’t countenance beating women, they came as adults to this country from Bangladesh, so their attitudes toward violence are more “liberal” in a literal sense than the average America. The culture in which I grew up though affected me more in regards to proper behavior in this dimension (the United States, and more particularly, middle class mores). I have a cousin who was beaten up by her husband several times (for the record, they both grew up in Bangladesh into their adulthood). She’s about 4’10 and he’s 5’8. Though I abhorred this behavior I didn’t have any concrete understanding of what this might have meant. I’ve gotten into fights, but only with guys, and they weren’t ever that much smaller than me. Now I understand better why a 5’8 man should never get violent with a 4’10 woman. The discrepancy is far greater than height would suggest, because the woman has less muscle mass per pound. I have some intuition about this because my wife is about my height and of athletic disposition for a woman, and when she tried to throw down my sorry out of shape ass it was pretty easy for me to prevent her. How is it possible that despite us being the same height, and her being in shape and me not being in shape*, I could still best her? Because I still had more upper body muscle mass due to being a male.

Now, mind you, there are a small minority of women who are stronger than a small minority of men. The statistics above make it clear. But it is very unlikely that in a pairwise interaction the very strongest females will randomly face the very weakest males. In terms of relationships, where domestic violence occurs, it is very unlikely for reasons of assortative mating that the very strongest females will be paired up with the very weakest of males. On the contrary.

There are two reasons I’m posting this. First, I’m assuming most of my male readers have never beaten a woman, so they too lack good intuition about what they might be capable of if they did do such a thing. There isn’t the sort of thing you really want first-person experience of, so scientific research which can gain you some sense of the shape of reality is useful. Second, the general skepticism and rejectionism of biological differences in behavior between the sexes which is now common on the cultural Left can start to bleed into other domains in the most surreal ways. I’ve had friends with science backgrounds who balk somewhat when I attempt to start any discussion about sex differences with the contention that there is a difference in upper body strength. They don’t necessarily even want to concede this without dispute. In these earlier conversations I didn’t know of any research on the magnitude of the difference, it just seemed “common sense.” But perhaps the positive diminution of domestic violence in some sectors of American society has had the side effect that people forget how strong the magnitude of difference in strength is?

Related: Men Are Stronger Than Women (On Average). In which I report that the average German man has a grip strength more powerful than the majority of the woman’s Olympic level fencing team.

* This was in the past, now that I lift my upper body muscle mass has increased considerably.

 
• Category: Science • Tags: Sex Differences 
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  1. Robert Ford says: • Website

    I guess I’m not *super* surprised only because, at my job, the length that women will go to avoid lifting anything over 5lbs knows no bounds. After a few years, I finally just asked a woman about it and she just admitted that, yes, she and many other women simply can’t stand lifting things (although, these are all office workers.)

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  2. Anon says: • Disclaimer

    Here is an even better argument: http://imgur.com/gallery/BZpVp

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  3. simplicio says:

    Even beyond the (happy) decrease in the average persons experience of domestic violence, I’d say just generally modern industrialized society has made it so the number of tasks in most people lives that require brute strength is pretty low. Even in manual labour jobs I’ve had, things are arranged so that most of the routine lifting of really heavy objects is done by mechanical means. Thinking back, the only times (outside of a gym) where I really need to use most of my strength is the relatively rare instances of moving furniture up stairs.

    So it’s hardly surprising that people don’t have a particularly strong sense of the relative difference in physical strengths between genders. It just doesn’t come up that often, at least in the Industrialized World.

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  4. I also find it dissonant that this notion of female “strength” coincides with an increasing concern toward violence against women (both real and contrived). That the feminist undercurrent in the discourse both requires women to be strong, and vulnerable to abuse, is inconsistent to say the least. But feminism seems committed to demonstrating a correlation between irrationality and femininity. They’re working damned hard at it.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Razib Khan
    That the feminist undercurrent in the discourse both requires women to be strong, and vulnerable to abuse, is inconsistent to say the least.

    yeah, that contrast is dissonant.

    1) men and women aren't different, especially behaviorally

    2) all men are potentially terrifying rapists in some essentialist sense which incredible physical power
    , @namae nanka
    It's the 'all your base are belong to us' strategy. Nothing new under the sun.

    There was, as a general rule, no very noticeable sex partiality in the administration of the law. This state of affairs continued in England till well into the nineteenth century. Thenceforward a change began to take place. Modern Feminism rose slowly above the horizon. Modern Feminism has two distinct sides to it: (1) an articulate political and economic side embracing demands for so-called rights; and (2) a sentimental side which insists in an accentuation of the privileges and immunities which have grown up, not articulately or as the result of definite demands, but as the consequence of sentimental pleading in particular"
     

    As a rule, however, the two sides go together, the vast bulk of the advocates of "Women's Rights" being equally keen on the retention and extension of women's privileges.
     
    - Fraud of Feminism, Belfort Bax, 1913
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  5. notanon says:

    Yes, very important – the taboo has been slowly shifting for a long time and it’s there for a reason.

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  6. Anonymous says: • Disclaimer

    As the joke goes, “I never fight with my girlfriend. She’s a boxer.”

    I just read a book on the English writer G.K. Chesterton by Dale Ahlquist. Ahlquist says that Chesterton believed that the rise of chivalry, starting in the early Middle Ages, came with the veneration of the Virgin Mary. The protection of women, motherhood and the veneration of the Virgin Mary go hand-in-hand. The rise of chivalry spurred the rise of Western civilization itself, which fought against barbarians who didn’t have the same respect for women.

    I found part of this argument in Chesterton’s A Short History of England:

    Chivalry might be called the baptism of Feudalism. It was an attempt to bring the justice and even the logic of the Catholic creed into a military system which already existed; to turn its discipline into an initiation and its inequalities into a hierarchy. To the comparative grace of the new period belongs, of course, that considerable cultus of the dignity of woman, to which the word “chivalry” is often narrowed, or perhaps exalted. This also was a revolt against one of the worst gaps in the more polished civilization of the Saracens. Moslems denied even souls to women; perhaps from the same instinct which recoiled from the sacred birth, with its inevitable glorification of the mother; perhaps merely because, having originally had tents rather than houses, they had slaves rather than housewives. It is false to say that the chivalric view of women was merely an affectation, except in the sense in which there must always be an affectation where there is an ideal. It is the worst sort of superficiality not to see the pressure of a general sentiment merely because it is always broken up by events; the Crusade itself, for example, is more present and potent as a dream even than as a reality. From the first Plantagenet to the last Lancastrian it haunts the minds of English kings, giving as a background to their battles a mirage of Palestine. So a devotion like that of Edward I. to his queen was quite a real motive in the lives of multitudes of his contemporaries. When crowds of enlightened tourists, setting forth to sneer at the superstitions of the continent, are taking tickets and labelling luggage at the large railway station at the west end of the Strand, I do not know whether they all speak to their wives with a more flowing courtesy than their fathers in Edward’s time, or whether they pause to meditate on the legend of a husband’s sorrow, to be found in the very name of Charing Cross.

    But it is a huge historical error to suppose th

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    • Replies: @Razib Khan
    i know Chesterton is super persuasive to a lot of conservatives, catholics in particular. i always have found his analyses superficial and dumb. not a big deal, but he's supposedly so brilliant....
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  7. AG says:

    There are minority women who initiate physical violence against men. Pinching or slapping face are quite common. Occasionally with weapons like nives. At least that is some northern Chinese women are like (often due to lost argument)

    How should men repsond to that? In my case, I just try to get out of situation as soon as possible. Escalation is never my choice.

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    • Replies: @dc.sunsets
    It's pretty well established that women are as frequently the aggressor in domestic battery as are men, and that women are far more likely to use weapons that result in serious injury (knives, striking instruments, etc.)

    Many women also thrive on drama, and inciting a man is kind of the pinnacle of drama.
    , @notanon
    if no choice slap don't punch
    , @guest
    That's not just minority women. It's more common than you think for women in general. They know social conventions restrain men and that the odds that the police will intervene on his side are negligible. Which isn't to say that maybe some of them are hoping the men will put them in their place.
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  8. Cranky says:

    LoL, Razib, thanks to the media, women have long thought they are now the equals of men.

    On the other hand, I see in watching youth basketball the exit of all the girls after age 12 from the basketball teams, where before that age they can play with the boys. They physically can not compete with most of the boys after the beginning of puberty. Indeed most of them are shocked by the rough and tumble in basketball, let alone football or wrestling.

    I further recall in my college days a young lady hitting me with all her strength in my chest, and my laughter at her actions- she stopped when I grabbed her and lifted her off the ground while holding her arms. She was shocked at how easily I stopped her attacks. I weighed twice her weight (1.8 m, 125kg), , and lifted iron at the time. Quite simply 99% of women are overmatched by the same sized man, let alone one larger- and the size disparity can be tremendous.

    Yet the fantasy is played out on a daily basis. Another young lady was quite proud of her black belt, but even then said that she would lose if someone larger managed to grapple with her.

    One of the most interesting things is the realization as a larger youth when my mother the nurse told me that I would have to be careful because I could literally knock out or kill with one blow, and that the number of women seriously hurt fighting with men coming to the Emergency Room was far larger than the number of men.

    The only thing that equalizes in a fight is Mr. Colt’s product.

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  9. Bill P says:

    Practically (rather than morally) speaking, perhaps the post should be titled “Why Women Should Never Hit Men.” That so many women do hit men and get away with it without consequences speaks to men’s deep affection for and tolerance of the weaker sex.

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    • Agree: Jeff77450
    • Replies: @dc.sunsets

    Practically (rather than morally) speaking, perhaps the post should be titled “Why Women Should Never Hit Men.” That so many women do hit men and get away with it without consequences speaks to men’s deep affection for and tolerance of the weaker sex.
     
    The tolerance to which you refer is simply a fad or fashion, a consequence of a very long period of rising social mood that assorts with other social behaviors like "We Are The World" inclusiveness, relatively low crime rates, short skirts, and high/rising stock markets.

    Since social mood is cyclical, patterned and endogenously regulated (see www.socionomics.net) we must assume that when this antebellum period of manic optimism finally ends, as signaled by a stock market heading south in a bigger decline than any of the last 20 years, the relative restraint on the part of men will evaporate, resulting in violent retribution for what previously was peacefully tolerated.

    I don't think I'd want to be a divorce attorney or a women who fully embraced the joy of tormenting her ex (using the courts) when that day comes, and I sure as hell wouldn't sell those gals life insurance. They have yet to invent restraining orders that stop jacketed hollowpoints.
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  10. Polynices says:

    I blame Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

    The show did “small girl beating up big men (and demons, etc.)” pretty early on in the trend (not sure if first) and then everyone copied it. The problem is that Buffy exists in a magical fantasy world and her powers are clearly shown to be derive from magic so they actually make sense in-universe. But then lots of the stories copying her just had “elite training” as a justification with no in-universe magic present. That’s where things get really silly. Now shows just routinely have seemingly normally fit women throwing men around which is hard to watch if you know any of this stuff. It’s too dumb.

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  11. The far poorer hand-eye coordination is disadvantageous to women striking or defending in a fight. The muscle/weight ratio makes lean men (10% body fat) more mobile than lean women (20% body fat)
    Also men have usually more experience fighting because of roughhousing and play fighting and maybe even from watching more martial sports and media.
    There may be some difference even in the quality of muscle, but that’s something I only dimly recall reading.
    For the average woman their upper body strength is so low that even if they land a hit it has little effect even on another woman that’s why they tend to pull hair.
    When I said on Reddit that a man should avoid hitting a woman even if he is provoked I was massively downvoted, so I guess you are right about people becoming naive about strength differences between sexes.

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    • Replies: @notMyUsualName
    you said:
    When I said on Reddit that a man should avoid hitting a woman even if he is provoked I was massively downvoted

    me:
    I think that a noticeable proportion of younger men don't like the idea that women can actually get away with exerting violence on them while they (the men) are in the wrong if they defend themselves.

    Only children and other people who can't be held responsible for their actions should be able to get away with being violent, sometimes. Adult women are not children.

    For a certain number of younger men raised with feminism, treating women as equals means, among other things, holding them responsible if they initiate violence on someone else.
    , @guest
    Ah yes, counterpunching. Few people seem to realize how much faster men are in addition to being so much stronger. Which is why they fantasize about the female UFC flavor of the month taking on Floyd Mayweather, or somesuch nonsense. This is spurred by boxers' limitations in mixed martial arts, of course, and I can't say it's impossible that a lady grappler could get lucky and judo a man on his back. But almost certainly she'd have no defense for his strikes, and her hits wouldn't matter much to him while he could destroy her with one punch.
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  12. This actually sounds like a pretty good argument against women in the military, police or fire departments.

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    • Replies: @Alec Leamas
    That's why it's suppressed and news and entertainment media stress the strength and athleticism of 0.01% of elite female specimens..
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  13. Randal says:

    Always interesting to see common sense reinforced by hard figures, thanks.

    I don’t really need reinforcement of the western cultural taboo against violence against women, having never hit a woman anyway (since my sister and I stopped fighting in early teens). Mostly it just justifies my own constant irritation by the tiresome inevitability in modern fiction (especially US and British tv serials and films) of the ass-kicking aggressive female lead or warrior character, and by the constant ideologically driven attempt to pretend women can do physically demanding jobs as easily as men.

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  14. WillBest says:

    Don’t really understand the title. You might as well have written “Why you should never shoot an unarmed man” or “Why you should never go to war with a middle eastern country”. Or any other situation where there is a dramatic power imbalance. There are plenty of instances where circumstances dictate the strong use force on the weak.

    But you have stumbled upon something rather important that most sane people are aware of, and would be a much better title “Why the military shouldn’t waste time and money training women”

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    • Agree: dc.sunsets
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  15. eric says:

    I’ve been a youth wrestling coach for about 10 years, covering the K-6 group, and work with lots of High School kids too. Up to 2nd or 3rd grade there’s no difference, but then before puberty then girls fall behind. At puberty, you basically have a mismatch, and there are basically a handful (eg, 1 out of 200) women wrestling in High School. It’s not just the strength and quickness, it’s the physical competitiveness: guys like to fight or physically dominate in ways girls don’t.

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  16. Max Payne says:

    Generally speaking most women who have done any form of marital arts with men will know the limits of female strength. There is a reason for having a separate female and male division in almost every tournament from Brazilian Ju-jitsu (grappling, ground fighting) to Tae Kwon Doe (kicks, strikes).

    Guys too will always comment “I’m gonna just train with the girls” when they are too tired from a long day of work.

    This is why “cardio kick-boxing” is so popular with women. It’s not really fighting, its like BS moves that just get you to sweat and men are detracted by the highly choreographed actions which leave you exposed to counterattack. Though oddly enough I’ve started to notice more men in those type of classes though I assume they’re there to meet ladies as opposed to training on their techniques (3 men to 35 women a class is good odds I suppose).

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    • Replies: @dc.sunsets
    I was figuratively lynched on a comments section for suggesting that men, on average, are better at combat-style shooting with pistols than are women, even though I added the qualifier that women are generally good enough with pistols to defend themselves (if they get a modicum of training and practice, same as men.)

    I cited the IDPA and USPSA 2014 national competitions as proof; men and women compete on the same courses of fire, and some of the women are industry-sponsored, so they get a lot more trigger-time than some of the male competitors who place well ahead of them in the competitions. Men clearly dominated both of these competitive stand-ins for armed combat.

    A (presumed) woman who took offense to my "misogyny" suggested Serena Williams as a strong woman who could kick men's asses in tennis, so I linked to a Wikipedia article on top speeds of the serves for various male and female tennis pros, showing that Serena Williams wasn't even remotely competitive with any male listed (and she'd probably lose matches to talented college tennis players.) After that, I got called every name in the book.

    Women, apparently not satisfied to be women, are now outraged at any notion that they can't excel more at being men than actual men.

    , @Grace Jones
    (Snicker) "... marital arts with men..." no, those are something altogether different. (Sorry, I couldn't resist.)
    , @Dave Pinsen
    UFC world champ Holly Holm was discovered in a cardio kickboxing class.
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  17. @Boy, that's lame
    I also find it dissonant that this notion of female "strength" coincides with an increasing concern toward violence against women (both real and contrived). That the feminist undercurrent in the discourse both requires women to be strong, and vulnerable to abuse, is inconsistent to say the least. But feminism seems committed to demonstrating a correlation between irrationality and femininity. They're working damned hard at it.

    That the feminist undercurrent in the discourse both requires women to be strong, and vulnerable to abuse, is inconsistent to say the least.

    yeah, that contrast is dissonant.

    1) men and women aren’t different, especially behaviorally

    2) all men are potentially terrifying rapists in some essentialist sense which incredible physical power

    Read More
    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar
    Male feminism is easily explained: a wimp is flattered that anyone would mistake him for a thug.
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  18. @Anonymous
    As the joke goes, "I never fight with my girlfriend. She's a boxer."

    I just read a book on the English writer G.K. Chesterton by Dale Ahlquist. Ahlquist says that Chesterton believed that the rise of chivalry, starting in the early Middle Ages, came with the veneration of the Virgin Mary. The protection of women, motherhood and the veneration of the Virgin Mary go hand-in-hand. The rise of chivalry spurred the rise of Western civilization itself, which fought against barbarians who didn't have the same respect for women.

    I found part of this argument in Chesterton's A Short History of England:

    Chivalry might be called the baptism of Feudalism. It was an attempt to bring the justice and even the logic of the Catholic creed into a military system which already existed; to turn its discipline into an initiation and its inequalities into a hierarchy. To the comparative grace of the new period belongs, of course, that considerable cultus of the dignity of woman, to which the word "chivalry" is often narrowed, or perhaps exalted. This also was a revolt against one of the worst gaps in the more polished civilization of the Saracens. Moslems denied even souls to women; perhaps from the same instinct which recoiled from the sacred birth, with its inevitable glorification of the mother; perhaps merely because, having originally had tents rather than houses, they had slaves rather than housewives. It is false to say that the chivalric view of women was merely an affectation, except in the sense in which there must always be an affectation where there is an ideal. It is the worst sort of superficiality not to see the pressure of a general sentiment merely because it is always broken up by events; the Crusade itself, for example, is more present and potent as a dream even than as a reality. From the first Plantagenet to the last Lancastrian it haunts the minds of English kings, giving as a background to their battles a mirage of Palestine. So a devotion like that of Edward I. to his queen was quite a real motive in the lives of multitudes of his contemporaries. When crowds of enlightened tourists, setting forth to sneer at the superstitions of the continent, are taking tickets and labelling luggage at the large railway station at the west end of the Strand, I do not know whether they all speak to their wives with a more flowing courtesy than their fathers in Edward's time, or whether they pause to meditate on the legend of a husband's sorrow, to be found in the very name of Charing Cross.

    But it is a huge historical error to suppose th

    i know Chesterton is super persuasive to a lot of conservatives, catholics in particular. i always have found his analyses superficial and dumb. not a big deal, but he’s supposedly so brilliant….

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    • Agree: Wizard of Oz
    • Replies: @Doug Jones
    "Mr. Chesterton’s brain swarms with ideas. I see no evidence that it thinks." T. S. Eliot
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  19. i should add, one thing that does somewhat bother me is that demi lovato looks a bit “soft”. at least michelle rodriguez “looks the part” (she’s pretty thin though too, but we’re used to that from movies like *resident evil*).

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  20. 1. I’ve been in a fights, and don’t like it. I’ve been sucker-punched to the ground yet the only effect was to enrage me. I’ve landed full-force fist-stikes on an opponent’s testicles, which had absolutely zero effect because he, too, was fully enraged (and drunk.) Think about that…and consider that as a man (well over 6′ tall, over 200 lbs and well above average in muscle mass even for my size) I’m not only vastly stronger than nearly any woman, I have demonstrated that short of being knocked unconscious or sustaining a crippling injury I just get madder if assaulted. This is actually the rule for males, not the exception, whereas a 3rd party informs me that essentially all women fold like a house of cards if struck by a man in a boxing or MMA sparring session.

    2. Unless a woman has had 1st hand experience being on the losing side of a physical assault, she probably has less than no clue just how vulnerable she is. For certain, few women using the Divorce and/or Family Court industry to torture ex-spouses would do so if they realized the degree to which they were poking an adult tiger with a stick and the only bars on the cage are self-imposed by the man’s acquiescence to the current FAD of peaceful docility. The most dangerous animal on Planet Earth is an adult male human, far more dangerous than a Bengal Tiger, yet women taunt and torture men every hour of the day using tools given them by feminist misandrist dykes. I can only shake my head in wonder at the folly of tormenting men, and fully expect a tidal wave of ex-spouse slaughter should the economy slide far enough to remove what self-restraint men harbor.

    3. My conclusion: today’s “grrrl power” Narrative is going to get a lot of stupid women beaten senseless (or even killed, if she’s stupid enough to grossly overestimate her ability to best an actual violent criminal, or if she stupidly thinks an order of protection will stop a man she has tormented beyond the boundaries of sanity…hers or his.)

    Women might want to let that sink in; every man she walks by, interacts with at work, in a store or a bar could, if he so chose, grab her by the throat, slam her a few times into a hard surface, and treat her like an inanimate object (because at that point she’d be inanimate.) The self-restraint on the part of men these days, given the incessant hounding by misandrist harpies of all ages, is nothing short of astonishing to me. When the current antebellum period finally ends, I shiver in anticipatory horror how many women will suffer for past sins and stupidity.

    I love women (most especially the girl I married a long time ago.) I also take seriously the duty to protect them (those to whom I’m related only, because most women are frankly psychopaths) and educate them on prudence vis-a-vis men.

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    • Replies: @Jim Christian
    "The self-restraint on the part of men these days, given the incessant hounding by misandrist harpies of all ages, is nothing short of astonishing to me. When the current antebellum period finally ends, I shiver in anticipatory horror how many women will suffer for past sins and stupidity".

    We're there already in some venues, DC. As a tech-guy, I consort with various construction types, men you don't mess with that are complete in their masculinity given their work and habits in the gym. I've known several that deflected impending divorce-rape with the mere suggestion to their plotting wives that his masculine patience was at end. One, with a personal, unscheduled visit to his wife's divorce attorney derailed the plan. Divorce attorneys are a cowardly lot when presented with the physical world outside the courtroom. About half of said men are still with their wives and all is now well, so perhaps something is to be said for a notion that masculine leadership gives these wannabe divorcing harpies a tingle in their lady-bits.

    In any case, this is the silly-season, be certain there will be several high-profile domestic violence cases of husbands-gone-mad on divorce-raping ex-wives with a handgun. Many, many men have indeed had it with the new Matriarchy and on occasion will take back their Male Imperative in a most unpleasant manner. It is bound to happen. In any given situation, when they dig into the aftermath, the madman had his reasons after all. At the end of the day, women aren't stronger, or smarter or better. They're merely women, their favor handed to them by men who can surely snatch that favor away in a mere moment.

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  21. @AG
    There are minority women who initiate physical violence against men. Pinching or slapping face are quite common. Occasionally with weapons like nives. At least that is some northern Chinese women are like (often due to lost argument)

    How should men repsond to that? In my case, I just try to get out of situation as soon as possible. Escalation is never my choice.

    It’s pretty well established that women are as frequently the aggressor in domestic battery as are men, and that women are far more likely to use weapons that result in serious injury (knives, striking instruments, etc.)

    Many women also thrive on drama, and inciting a man is kind of the pinnacle of drama.

    Read More
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  22. @Bill P
    Practically (rather than morally) speaking, perhaps the post should be titled "Why Women Should Never Hit Men." That so many women do hit men and get away with it without consequences speaks to men's deep affection for and tolerance of the weaker sex.

    Practically (rather than morally) speaking, perhaps the post should be titled “Why Women Should Never Hit Men.” That so many women do hit men and get away with it without consequences speaks to men’s deep affection for and tolerance of the weaker sex.

    The tolerance to which you refer is simply a fad or fashion, a consequence of a very long period of rising social mood that assorts with other social behaviors like “We Are The World” inclusiveness, relatively low crime rates, short skirts, and high/rising stock markets.

    Since social mood is cyclical, patterned and endogenously regulated (see http://www.socionomics.net) we must assume that when this antebellum period of manic optimism finally ends, as signaled by a stock market heading south in a bigger decline than any of the last 20 years, the relative restraint on the part of men will evaporate, resulting in violent retribution for what previously was peacefully tolerated.

    I don’t think I’d want to be a divorce attorney or a women who fully embraced the joy of tormenting her ex (using the courts) when that day comes, and I sure as hell wouldn’t sell those gals life insurance. They have yet to invent restraining orders that stop jacketed hollowpoints.

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  23. Doug Jones says: • Website
    @Razib Khan
    i know Chesterton is super persuasive to a lot of conservatives, catholics in particular. i always have found his analyses superficial and dumb. not a big deal, but he's supposedly so brilliant....

    “Mr. Chesterton’s brain swarms with ideas. I see no evidence that it thinks.” T. S. Eliot

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  24. @Max Payne
    Generally speaking most women who have done any form of marital arts with men will know the limits of female strength. There is a reason for having a separate female and male division in almost every tournament from Brazilian Ju-jitsu (grappling, ground fighting) to Tae Kwon Doe (kicks, strikes).

    Guys too will always comment "I'm gonna just train with the girls" when they are too tired from a long day of work.

    This is why "cardio kick-boxing" is so popular with women. It's not really fighting, its like BS moves that just get you to sweat and men are detracted by the highly choreographed actions which leave you exposed to counterattack. Though oddly enough I've started to notice more men in those type of classes though I assume they're there to meet ladies as opposed to training on their techniques (3 men to 35 women a class is good odds I suppose).

    I was figuratively lynched on a comments section for suggesting that men, on average, are better at combat-style shooting with pistols than are women, even though I added the qualifier that women are generally good enough with pistols to defend themselves (if they get a modicum of training and practice, same as men.)

    I cited the IDPA and USPSA 2014 national competitions as proof; men and women compete on the same courses of fire, and some of the women are industry-sponsored, so they get a lot more trigger-time than some of the male competitors who place well ahead of them in the competitions. Men clearly dominated both of these competitive stand-ins for armed combat.

    A (presumed) woman who took offense to my “misogyny” suggested Serena Williams as a strong woman who could kick men’s asses in tennis, so I linked to a Wikipedia article on top speeds of the serves for various male and female tennis pros, showing that Serena Williams wasn’t even remotely competitive with any male listed (and she’d probably lose matches to talented college tennis players.) After that, I got called every name in the book.

    Women, apparently not satisfied to be women, are now outraged at any notion that they can’t excel more at being men than actual men.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Thomas O. Meehan
    I know at least one woman who out-performs her military trained husband with the old government 45 automatic. Women have good small motor control and with training can be good pistol shots.
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  25. recently there has been this hype about Ronda Rousey in the internet, also I have noticed that today more so than 5-10 years ago women in the gym tend to do the same exercises like men. Also I have noticed that women are expected to be stronger when it comes to pregnancy and birth today. Some weeks ago an elder women among my relatives was surprised when we visited a young women who had just had a birth the day before, left her room, took care of a bigger child, took the subway etc.
    All in all I really have the impression that this “women are physical strong” idea has become more widespread in recent times.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Razib Khan
    for most of history woman did have to do work. so women are strong. just not as strong as men.

    (also, pregnancy was part of life, not a quasi-illness, for most of history)
    , @Doug
    >recently there has been this hype about Ronda Rousey in the internet, also I have noticed that today more so than 5-10 years ago women in the gym tend to do the same exercises like men.

    Even though women are not as strong as men, they should absolutely engage in stereotypically "manly" strength exercises. Mortality decreases monotonically and significantly with FFM for both genders to the same degree across quintiles. If anything, given their proclivity to osteoporosis, women benefit more from heavy weight training.

    Physical attractiveness also increases monotonically with FFM for both men and women. High FFM is an essential component (the other being low body-fat) of low waist-hip ratio compromising classical female beauty standards. The fundamental difference between the female-oriented fashion model waif and the male-oriented Playboy model isn't body-fat levels (both are about equivalent). Its that the latter typically has much higher FFM. Western women are culturally indoctrinated to singularly focus on low body-fat, while males instinctually crave high FFM mates.

    Rather than encouraging women, ignorance of sexual dimorphism on the whole discourages women from engaging in strength training. Very few women in the gym are trying to become strong enough to beat up men. In fact the modal reason that most physically active women don't weight train is because they're afraid of their bodies "looking too manly", i.e. the stereotypical woman bodybuilder.

    Absence pharmaceutical enhancement or serious genetic abnormalities this is impossible. Even the most strength-oriented, heavy barbell focused powerlifting training routine will significantly increase the femininity of an untrained woman's body.
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  26. notanon says:
    @AG
    There are minority women who initiate physical violence against men. Pinching or slapping face are quite common. Occasionally with weapons like nives. At least that is some northern Chinese women are like (often due to lost argument)

    How should men repsond to that? In my case, I just try to get out of situation as soon as possible. Escalation is never my choice.

    if no choice slap don’t punch

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  27. Jason Liu says:

    I don’t see the argument here.

    “The bigger person should always yield” is not a rational or moral position.

    If a woman who was smaller than you was seriously attacking you, should you never hit back? If you’re against violence in general, then wouldn’t you just say nobody should hit anybody?

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    • Replies: @Razib Khan
    despite the way i've framed it, i'm really describing a general heuristic, not an apodictic law. if i took modern feminism* seriously we could have a long discussion about the logic, but i don't, so let's just save time :-)

    * i'm actually rereading wollstonecraft's *vindication of the rights of woman* to reacquaint myself with a feminism i can respect!

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  28. @Erik Sieven
    recently there has been this hype about Ronda Rousey in the internet, also I have noticed that today more so than 5-10 years ago women in the gym tend to do the same exercises like men. Also I have noticed that women are expected to be stronger when it comes to pregnancy and birth today. Some weeks ago an elder women among my relatives was surprised when we visited a young women who had just had a birth the day before, left her room, took care of a bigger child, took the subway etc.
    All in all I really have the impression that this "women are physical strong" idea has become more widespread in recent times.

    for most of history woman did have to do work. so women are strong. just not as strong as men.

    (also, pregnancy was part of life, not a quasi-illness, for most of history)

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    • Replies: @Wizard of Oz
    Since getting interested in evolution's details I've thought the Just So stories actually work pretty well for male-female differences. My impression remains that women tend to have more acute hearing than men and hearing which continues to be better as people age. Men tend to be better at judging distances (though that could be susceptible to cultural change especially for short distances, as inside houses, consistently with the pretty fair chance that a woman will remember a lot more about the appearance of a furnished room than her mate who isn't in the business). Both these generalisations make evo-biological sense as does a sufficient degree of relative physical weakness of women compared to men to ensure that they don't lose their advantages as child-bearers for protective males by fighting them or showing that they don't need the male for protection.
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  29. @Jason Liu
    I don't see the argument here.

    "The bigger person should always yield" is not a rational or moral position.

    If a woman who was smaller than you was seriously attacking you, should you never hit back? If you're against violence in general, then wouldn't you just say nobody should hit anybody?

    despite the way i’ve framed it, i’m really describing a general heuristic, not an apodictic law. if i took modern feminism* seriously we could have a long discussion about the logic, but i don’t, so let’s just save time :-)

    * i’m actually rereading wollstonecraft’s *vindication of the rights of woman* to reacquaint myself with a feminism i can respect!

    Read More
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  30. Doug says:
    @Erik Sieven
    recently there has been this hype about Ronda Rousey in the internet, also I have noticed that today more so than 5-10 years ago women in the gym tend to do the same exercises like men. Also I have noticed that women are expected to be stronger when it comes to pregnancy and birth today. Some weeks ago an elder women among my relatives was surprised when we visited a young women who had just had a birth the day before, left her room, took care of a bigger child, took the subway etc.
    All in all I really have the impression that this "women are physical strong" idea has become more widespread in recent times.

    >recently there has been this hype about Ronda Rousey in the internet, also I have noticed that today more so than 5-10 years ago women in the gym tend to do the same exercises like men.

    Even though women are not as strong as men, they should absolutely engage in stereotypically “manly” strength exercises. Mortality decreases monotonically and significantly with FFM for both genders to the same degree across quintiles. If anything, given their proclivity to osteoporosis, women benefit more from heavy weight training.

    Physical attractiveness also increases monotonically with FFM for both men and women. High FFM is an essential component (the other being low body-fat) of low waist-hip ratio compromising classical female beauty standards. The fundamental difference between the female-oriented fashion model waif and the male-oriented Playboy model isn’t body-fat levels (both are about equivalent). Its that the latter typically has much higher FFM. Western women are culturally indoctrinated to singularly focus on low body-fat, while males instinctually crave high FFM mates.

    Rather than encouraging women, ignorance of sexual dimorphism on the whole discourages women from engaging in strength training. Very few women in the gym are trying to become strong enough to beat up men. In fact the modal reason that most physically active women don’t weight train is because they’re afraid of their bodies “looking too manly”, i.e. the stereotypical woman bodybuilder.

    Absence pharmaceutical enhancement or serious genetic abnormalities this is impossible. Even the most strength-oriented, heavy barbell focused powerlifting training routine will significantly increase the femininity of an untrained woman’s body.

    Read More
    • Replies: @dc.sunsets
    Weight training is a big plus, I agree, but a common problem I see in women as they age is, in their zeal to be fit and trim into their 40's and beyond, they take it too far, especially as their skin thins out due to age-related loss of subcutaneous fat. They end up looking too striated in my view.
    , @Pseudonymic Handle
    What is FFM? Googling didn't help.
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  31. Doug says:

    What strikes me as most interesting about human dimorphism is that the increased muscle mass of men is almost exactly cancelled out by the increased fat mass of women. Despite very different compositional differences the median healthy male and female BMI is nearly identical. That’s not the case for most species like gorillas, where males higher muscle mass simply means being larger in overall.

    This might simply be an evolutionary coincidence. Or their might be some novel selection mechanism at work that keeps the optimal fat dimorphism in line with muscle dimorphism. One possible explanation is the egalitarian nature of human hunter-gatherers. Having one member of the tribe consume more food than the other appears rude. Ancient women may have been offered the same portions as men. Females were selected to increase their total mass to the same size as men, but didn’t need the additional muscles. So they stashed the surfeit calories in long-term fat stores.

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  32. Matt_ says:

    Big relative strength differences between women and men feels kind of a weird idea to me, as much as I guess the numbers are there.

    I’m pretty average in height and build 5’10″, and I don’t really seem to have much of an easier time lifting and carrying stuff around my house than my 22 year old sister or mid 50s mother, who I’ve got a good 3 and 6 inches on, and am a bit heavier than. They don’t seem to find it any harder than I do to chop through wood and bushes with garden tools, and not like I seem to get less tired digging the same amount of earth or can move more with less effort, etc. They just don’t seem that weak. Maybe they are and i just haven’t noticed it. I don’t feel like I would get less tired out by 20-40 press ups than the average woman of around the same BMI and height, either. (Or maybe I’m atypically weak for some reason, but I haven’t ever had anyone say I am). Seems like maybe there’s a difference in the upper limit of strength (and I guess you’d push your limit more in a fight?) or something, but not for many tasks or average fitness too much?

    With muscle mass differences between men and women I kind of wonder if there’s a similar effect to the effect where large muscle building athletes tend to have lower muscle quality per gram – http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics/howaboutthat/11900273/Wimps-are-stronger-than-bodybuilders-study-finds.html. Probably not a great deal; muscle mass increases in response to resistance for a reason. Still I wonder if some of that is for show (sexually selected). While with grip strength that makes sense and I wonder if the proportionately larger hands plus taller height (both of which have limited influence from training) has a large effect there (so it would be very difficult for women like the German fencers to catch up, even if that was their focus)?

    I’d tend to have usually seen raw height and weight and the will to fight as more of a big difference in fight outcomes, than sex differences adjusted for mass and height per se, as much as I guess those matter.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Doug
    > Seems like maybe there’s a difference in the upper limit of strength (and I guess you’d push your limit more in a fight?) or something, but not for many tasks or average fitness too much?

    Studies comparing maximal assertion strength find dimorphic differences equal or greater than muscle mass differences. This is true both for upper and lower body strength. The average untrained male can bench press, deadlift and squat 50% more than an female with equal weight. Those discrepancies only increase with length and degree of training. Comparing elite male and female strength athletes of the same weight the differences increase to 72%, 74%, 63% for the aforementioned lifts. The difference is so pronounced that the average, totally untrained male can bench press more than an equal weight female engaged in intense weight training for the past two years. Per pound, men are significantly stronger than women, even before taking into account their larger overall size.

    http://www.exrx.net/Testing/WeightLifting/StrengthStandards.htm
    , @Truth

    I’m pretty average in height and build 5’10″, and I don’t really seem to have much of an easier time lifting and carrying stuff around my house than my 22 year old sister or mid 50s mother, who I’ve got a good 3 and 6 inches on, and am a bit heavier than.
     
    Seek professional help.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yqtSelV2DUw
    , @guest
    You sound like you live in an alternate universe. If you haven't noticed a difference between yourself and your mom and sister either you're not paying attention or you should go to the doctor.
    , @Anonymous
    "I don’t really seem to have much of an easier time lifting and carrying stuff around my house than my 22 year old sister or mid 50s mother, who I’ve got a good 3 and 6 inches on, and am a bit heavier than. They don’t seem to find it any harder than I do to chop through wood and bushes with garden tools, and not like I seem to get less tired digging the same amount of earth or can move more with less effort"

    Can't find the studies right now but IIRC at *substantially submaximal* loads (as in what you'll be working with when it comes to what you mentioned), women are more fatigue-resistant than men on average.
    , @Wizard of Oz
    That Telegraph story is mostly beat up because it only just lets on that, as every efficient user of gym equipment knows, you don't go for the muscle mass produced by a few repetitions of the heaviest weights you can manage if you want to be fit and strong for some purpose other than looking like Arnie.
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  33. I saw Frozen for the first time over Thanksgiving and given my interest the subject of sex differences I was immediately incredulous at the end where Anna decks out Hans with a single punch. Then I remembered that this was within the bounds of a cartoon with conjured snowstorms and talking snowmen, so one more fantastical element doesn’t make much of a difference.

    Does anyone find it weird that Jared Fogle is in prison for 16+ years but Greg Hardy is still earning big bucks playing for the Dallas Cowboys? I know there’s legal reasons related to the witness and all but it seems like paying for sex with marginal minors is the lesser of two evils compared to actual physical violence against a woman.

    Read More
    • Replies: @CupOfCanada
    Knocking someone over isn't just about brute strength though. She just needs to apply enough force to push his centre of mass over the railing and steadies himself. Getting a quick, solid blow in right at the start is as much about finesse as it is about strength. I've seen it done. One of the guys on a construction site I was on made the mistake of calling our safety officer a rude word for lesbians after she rejected his advances. She clocked him right on his nose and knocked him flat on his butt. She's not a big woman - quite the opposite - but she's wiry and tough as nails.

    Now, that doesn't mean a more prolonged altercation would have gone well.
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  34. Some random thoughts on this.

    (1) The media certainly has played a bit role in this. Not just films and books but also video games. Things like chicks in bikini armor dropping ridiculously muscular Orc chieftains in Skyrim. This might be another yet another reason why ignorance of biological realities increases amongst the younger demographics.

    (2) That recent “debate” over how well Ronda Rousey would do against the top ranked males of her weight class. The commentators who said she’d get her ass kicked were roundly excoriated but they were surely correct. In reality, considering bell curve realities, she probably would not even make it into the top 100.

    (3) Another product of biological egalitarianism is equal portion sizes in households which predictably leads to higher female obesity than would otherwise be the case.

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    • Replies: @Biff

    (2) That recent “debate” over how well Ronda Rousey would do against the top ranked males of her weight class. The commentators who said she’d get her ass kicked were roundly excoriated but they were surely correct. In reality, considering bell curve realities, she probably would not even make it into the top 100.
     
    A few decades back I saw a film of a match up between a 250lb American mucle builder, and a 150lb Brazilian Jiujitzu fighter. The 150lb guy ripped him to shreads. It's all in the training.
    , @Hugo
    I have said this before, Ronda Rousey would get destroyed, utterly destroyed by average male fighters, 2 weight classes beneath her.

    The fact that we as males even entertain this discussion just shows how pro female our society and how ashamed of our gender we have become. Men and women are different. Each has inherent skills. Nothing wrong with that.

    , @Max

    (2) That recent “debate” over how well Ronda Rousey would do against the top ranked males of her weight class. The commentators who said she’d get her ass kicked were roundly excoriated but they were surely correct. In reality, considering bell curve realities, she probably would not even make it into the top 100.
     
    lol, get serious, she wouldn't make the top 1000. No "probably" about it.
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  35. Doug says:
    @Matt_
    Big relative strength differences between women and men feels kind of a weird idea to me, as much as I guess the numbers are there.

    I'm pretty average in height and build 5'10", and I don't really seem to have much of an easier time lifting and carrying stuff around my house than my 22 year old sister or mid 50s mother, who I've got a good 3 and 6 inches on, and am a bit heavier than. They don't seem to find it any harder than I do to chop through wood and bushes with garden tools, and not like I seem to get less tired digging the same amount of earth or can move more with less effort, etc. They just don't seem that weak. Maybe they are and i just haven't noticed it. I don't feel like I would get less tired out by 20-40 press ups than the average woman of around the same BMI and height, either. (Or maybe I'm atypically weak for some reason, but I haven't ever had anyone say I am). Seems like maybe there's a difference in the upper limit of strength (and I guess you'd push your limit more in a fight?) or something, but not for many tasks or average fitness too much?

    With muscle mass differences between men and women I kind of wonder if there's a similar effect to the effect where large muscle building athletes tend to have lower muscle quality per gram - http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics/howaboutthat/11900273/Wimps-are-stronger-than-bodybuilders-study-finds.html. Probably not a great deal; muscle mass increases in response to resistance for a reason. Still I wonder if some of that is for show (sexually selected). While with grip strength that makes sense and I wonder if the proportionately larger hands plus taller height (both of which have limited influence from training) has a large effect there (so it would be very difficult for women like the German fencers to catch up, even if that was their focus)?

    I'd tend to have usually seen raw height and weight and the will to fight as more of a big difference in fight outcomes, than sex differences adjusted for mass and height per se, as much as I guess those matter.

    > Seems like maybe there’s a difference in the upper limit of strength (and I guess you’d push your limit more in a fight?) or something, but not for many tasks or average fitness too much?

    Studies comparing maximal assertion strength find dimorphic differences equal or greater than muscle mass differences. This is true both for upper and lower body strength. The average untrained male can bench press, deadlift and squat 50% more than an female with equal weight. Those discrepancies only increase with length and degree of training. Comparing elite male and female strength athletes of the same weight the differences increase to 72%, 74%, 63% for the aforementioned lifts. The difference is so pronounced that the average, totally untrained male can bench press more than an equal weight female engaged in intense weight training for the past two years. Per pound, men are significantly stronger than women, even before taking into account their larger overall size.

    http://www.exrx.net/Testing/WeightLifting/StrengthStandards.htm

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  36. now that I lift

    Proud of you

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  37. @Doug
    >recently there has been this hype about Ronda Rousey in the internet, also I have noticed that today more so than 5-10 years ago women in the gym tend to do the same exercises like men.

    Even though women are not as strong as men, they should absolutely engage in stereotypically "manly" strength exercises. Mortality decreases monotonically and significantly with FFM for both genders to the same degree across quintiles. If anything, given their proclivity to osteoporosis, women benefit more from heavy weight training.

    Physical attractiveness also increases monotonically with FFM for both men and women. High FFM is an essential component (the other being low body-fat) of low waist-hip ratio compromising classical female beauty standards. The fundamental difference between the female-oriented fashion model waif and the male-oriented Playboy model isn't body-fat levels (both are about equivalent). Its that the latter typically has much higher FFM. Western women are culturally indoctrinated to singularly focus on low body-fat, while males instinctually crave high FFM mates.

    Rather than encouraging women, ignorance of sexual dimorphism on the whole discourages women from engaging in strength training. Very few women in the gym are trying to become strong enough to beat up men. In fact the modal reason that most physically active women don't weight train is because they're afraid of their bodies "looking too manly", i.e. the stereotypical woman bodybuilder.

    Absence pharmaceutical enhancement or serious genetic abnormalities this is impossible. Even the most strength-oriented, heavy barbell focused powerlifting training routine will significantly increase the femininity of an untrained woman's body.

    Weight training is a big plus, I agree, but a common problem I see in women as they age is, in their zeal to be fit and trim into their 40′s and beyond, they take it too far, especially as their skin thins out due to age-related loss of subcutaneous fat. They end up looking too striated in my view.

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  38. @Max Payne
    Generally speaking most women who have done any form of marital arts with men will know the limits of female strength. There is a reason for having a separate female and male division in almost every tournament from Brazilian Ju-jitsu (grappling, ground fighting) to Tae Kwon Doe (kicks, strikes).

    Guys too will always comment "I'm gonna just train with the girls" when they are too tired from a long day of work.

    This is why "cardio kick-boxing" is so popular with women. It's not really fighting, its like BS moves that just get you to sweat and men are detracted by the highly choreographed actions which leave you exposed to counterattack. Though oddly enough I've started to notice more men in those type of classes though I assume they're there to meet ladies as opposed to training on their techniques (3 men to 35 women a class is good odds I suppose).

    (Snicker) “… marital arts with men…” no, those are something altogether different. (Sorry, I couldn’t resist.)

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    • Replies: @Max Payne
    I can't believe I missed that........
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  39. Some 15% of domestic violence victims are supposed to be male (in most categories of domestic violence). Does that gel with the statistics of this post?

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    • Replies: @Erik Sieven
    a two year old child can seriously hurt a grown up man e.g. by slamming a hammer on his head. That is not a question of strength
    , @Anton Chigurh
    Men are victims of female aggression at rates far above just ~15%. It just goes unreported. Men feel ashamed to ask for help, naturally, as it will emasculate them. Moreover when cops are called to DV situations they generally assume the male is the protagonist due to our society's total feminized character (pedestalization of women always).
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  40. @Pseudonymic Handle
    The far poorer hand-eye coordination is disadvantageous to women striking or defending in a fight. The muscle/weight ratio makes lean men (10% body fat) more mobile than lean women (20% body fat)
    Also men have usually more experience fighting because of roughhousing and play fighting and maybe even from watching more martial sports and media.
    There may be some difference even in the quality of muscle, but that's something I only dimly recall reading.
    For the average woman their upper body strength is so low that even if they land a hit it has little effect even on another woman that's why they tend to pull hair.
    When I said on Reddit that a man should avoid hitting a woman even if he is provoked I was massively downvoted, so I guess you are right about people becoming naive about strength differences between sexes.

    you said:
    When I said on Reddit that a man should avoid hitting a woman even if he is provoked I was massively downvoted

    me:
    I think that a noticeable proportion of younger men don’t like the idea that women can actually get away with exerting violence on them while they (the men) are in the wrong if they defend themselves.

    Only children and other people who can’t be held responsible for their actions should be able to get away with being violent, sometimes. Adult women are not children.

    For a certain number of younger men raised with feminism, treating women as equals means, among other things, holding them responsible if they initiate violence on someone else.

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  41. Truth says:
    @Matt_
    Big relative strength differences between women and men feels kind of a weird idea to me, as much as I guess the numbers are there.

    I'm pretty average in height and build 5'10", and I don't really seem to have much of an easier time lifting and carrying stuff around my house than my 22 year old sister or mid 50s mother, who I've got a good 3 and 6 inches on, and am a bit heavier than. They don't seem to find it any harder than I do to chop through wood and bushes with garden tools, and not like I seem to get less tired digging the same amount of earth or can move more with less effort, etc. They just don't seem that weak. Maybe they are and i just haven't noticed it. I don't feel like I would get less tired out by 20-40 press ups than the average woman of around the same BMI and height, either. (Or maybe I'm atypically weak for some reason, but I haven't ever had anyone say I am). Seems like maybe there's a difference in the upper limit of strength (and I guess you'd push your limit more in a fight?) or something, but not for many tasks or average fitness too much?

    With muscle mass differences between men and women I kind of wonder if there's a similar effect to the effect where large muscle building athletes tend to have lower muscle quality per gram - http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics/howaboutthat/11900273/Wimps-are-stronger-than-bodybuilders-study-finds.html. Probably not a great deal; muscle mass increases in response to resistance for a reason. Still I wonder if some of that is for show (sexually selected). While with grip strength that makes sense and I wonder if the proportionately larger hands plus taller height (both of which have limited influence from training) has a large effect there (so it would be very difficult for women like the German fencers to catch up, even if that was their focus)?

    I'd tend to have usually seen raw height and weight and the will to fight as more of a big difference in fight outcomes, than sex differences adjusted for mass and height per se, as much as I guess those matter.

    I’m pretty average in height and build 5’10″, and I don’t really seem to have much of an easier time lifting and carrying stuff around my house than my 22 year old sister or mid 50s mother, who I’ve got a good 3 and 6 inches on, and am a bit heavier than.

    Seek professional help.

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  42. @dc.sunsets
    1. I've been in a fights, and don't like it. I've been sucker-punched to the ground yet the only effect was to enrage me. I've landed full-force fist-stikes on an opponent's testicles, which had absolutely zero effect because he, too, was fully enraged (and drunk.) Think about that...and consider that as a man (well over 6' tall, over 200 lbs and well above average in muscle mass even for my size) I'm not only vastly stronger than nearly any woman, I have demonstrated that short of being knocked unconscious or sustaining a crippling injury I just get madder if assaulted. This is actually the rule for males, not the exception, whereas a 3rd party informs me that essentially all women fold like a house of cards if struck by a man in a boxing or MMA sparring session.

    2. Unless a woman has had 1st hand experience being on the losing side of a physical assault, she probably has less than no clue just how vulnerable she is. For certain, few women using the Divorce and/or Family Court industry to torture ex-spouses would do so if they realized the degree to which they were poking an adult tiger with a stick and the only bars on the cage are self-imposed by the man's acquiescence to the current FAD of peaceful docility. The most dangerous animal on Planet Earth is an adult male human, far more dangerous than a Bengal Tiger, yet women taunt and torture men every hour of the day using tools given them by feminist misandrist dykes. I can only shake my head in wonder at the folly of tormenting men, and fully expect a tidal wave of ex-spouse slaughter should the economy slide far enough to remove what self-restraint men harbor.

    3. My conclusion: today's "grrrl power" Narrative is going to get a lot of stupid women beaten senseless (or even killed, if she's stupid enough to grossly overestimate her ability to best an actual violent criminal, or if she stupidly thinks an order of protection will stop a man she has tormented beyond the boundaries of sanity...hers or his.)

    Women might want to let that sink in; every man she walks by, interacts with at work, in a store or a bar could, if he so chose, grab her by the throat, slam her a few times into a hard surface, and treat her like an inanimate object (because at that point she'd be inanimate.) The self-restraint on the part of men these days, given the incessant hounding by misandrist harpies of all ages, is nothing short of astonishing to me. When the current antebellum period finally ends, I shiver in anticipatory horror how many women will suffer for past sins and stupidity.

    I love women (most especially the girl I married a long time ago.) I also take seriously the duty to protect them (those to whom I'm related only, because most women are frankly psychopaths) and educate them on prudence vis-a-vis men.

    “The self-restraint on the part of men these days, given the incessant hounding by misandrist harpies of all ages, is nothing short of astonishing to me. When the current antebellum period finally ends, I shiver in anticipatory horror how many women will suffer for past sins and stupidity”.

    We’re there already in some venues, DC. As a tech-guy, I consort with various construction types, men you don’t mess with that are complete in their masculinity given their work and habits in the gym. I’ve known several that deflected impending divorce-rape with the mere suggestion to their plotting wives that his masculine patience was at end. One, with a personal, unscheduled visit to his wife’s divorce attorney derailed the plan. Divorce attorneys are a cowardly lot when presented with the physical world outside the courtroom. About half of said men are still with their wives and all is now well, so perhaps something is to be said for a notion that masculine leadership gives these wannabe divorcing harpies a tingle in their lady-bits.

    In any case, this is the silly-season, be certain there will be several high-profile domestic violence cases of husbands-gone-mad on divorce-raping ex-wives with a handgun. Many, many men have indeed had it with the new Matriarchy and on occasion will take back their Male Imperative in a most unpleasant manner. It is bound to happen. In any given situation, when they dig into the aftermath, the madman had his reasons after all. At the end of the day, women aren’t stronger, or smarter or better. They’re merely women, their favor handed to them by men who can surely snatch that favor away in a mere moment.

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    • Replies: @Doug
    > [P]erhaps something is to be said for a notion that masculine leadership gives these wannabe divorcing harpies a tingle in their lady-bits.

    This is completely absurd. I'm virtually certain that the most violent prone men have the highest divorce rates. I'm also sure that this relationship holds despite whatever confounds you want to throw into the regression.

    > Divorce attorneys are a cowardly lot when presented with the physical world outside the courtroom.

    Again this is pure fantasy. Anecdote notwithstanding, Western legal systems long ago figured out how to meticulously nerf the "beat up the courtroom" hack of avoiding justice. Trying to use physical intimidation or violence on privileged members of the legal class will result in the Hammer of God in any jurisdiction with a modicum of rule of law. Don't care how tough you are, you ain't tougher than the US Marshall Service. The people who will be kicking down your down in short order if you make a habit of punking out attorneys.
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  43. all this stuff about men dominating women. OK, there’s something to this. but you guys seem to have forgotten we have hand-guns, so it’s not like it will be the rule-of-bicep at a moment’s notice. if it was that, this would be the day of the chimp, who could tear us limb-for-limb.

    (part of this is motivated by my reading peter turchin’s *ultra society*, where he talks of the “human way of war” with projectile weapons and stones from a distance)

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    • Replies: @Wizard of Oz
    This is a general reply, not specific to #43

    You are of course right Razib. But I have never (or never since about the age of 10 I guess) lacked the intuition that hitting women was just not on because nearly all men were much stronger than nearly all women (though female ball games players who weren't in the same league as men of comparable talent when their respective ages were 40 and 60 may well be on top of the 80 year old male when they are 60).

    I'm surprised no one has mentioned that classic domestic occurrence when she says "can you get the top off this for me?". I seem to remember reading that grip strength is pretty well correlated with muscular strength generally so it is more than trivia; it is relevant.

    it may amuse you to know of my Australian experience since you have some idea of intra Angloshere difference and you probably have a good idea of my age.

    I was certainly brought up so that it never occurred to me that a man might hit a woman and I was mildly reproved at the age of 7 or thereabouts for attempting to wrestle some woman to the floor in the manner of some cartoon or comic strip character. I think she was a temporary cook acting as stand-in childminder. But the more amusing recollection was from one evening when my parents no longer had a live in cook and I was told to leave the dining room and tell the lady in the kitchen that she could go home. We had a back door to the kitchen (which would have been the Tradesman's Entrance in the 1930s) as well as a front hall and door leading to the front porch next to the dining room. I think the cook left by the front door but what I clearly remember was being reproved for failing to see a lady to the door and open it for her.

    Just ordinary civilised bourgeois behaviour** but doesn't it make you wonder about all the horror stories about treatment of (female) servants in the 21st century and not only in Saudi Arabia and the Gulf States?
    ** my mother's great-grandfather on her father's side had been transported as a convict (though later pardoned) but in some memoir he was described as "a gentleman of the old school - with Regency manners". He sounded like a bit of a layabout but as he seems to have owned a school that may be unfair. By the time my mother's father, his grandson, married well after his widowed mother had been defrauded of everything he was regarded by one elderly cousin of mine as having brought social respectability to a young lady (my grandmother whom I never knew) with new money!

    , @dc.sunsets
    Agreed. All I note is that ours is a civilization of self-restraint, honor and mutual respect, not others-restraint. I think our modern feminist-power ethos is forgetting this, and our society is actually the poorer for it.

    [I'll aver that this civilization is eroding rapidly, and is entirely absent in some quarters, in direct proportion to the decline in percentage of persons of predominantly European ancestry.]
    , @Wizard of Oz
    Another piece of Aussie trivia which supports some American observations in this thread. Decades ago I was at a residential conference where, quite vehemently, over dinner, a lefty academic turned Labor Party politician opined that the existing stereotype of the physical differences in strength and speed between men and women was passé and well on the way out.

    It may have been connected to the fact that it is hard to think of a sport in which he wouldn't have been 2 sds below average and his eventual claim to greatest fame was prosecution for use of his parliamentary office for the corrupt procuring of residence visas for Chinese would be immigrants. He and his brother, not Chinese in fact but Mediterraneans, and Labor MPs, were both notorious for the way they (allegedly) treated female staff and were (both I think) accused of rape though I think not convicted.
    , @BurplesonAFB
    Of course it's LARPing, but do you personally have a handgun within arms reach right now? No you don't. And that's true of 90%+ of people, even in 'merica.

    Was your dad punching you as hard as he could? Doubtful or he'd have broken noses, jaws, orbitals. Was your mom slapping you as hard as she could? Maybe.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LPboeNKMngc

    As an aside, what does this say about domestic violence in homosexual relationships which don't have nearly the same taboo against hitting one another?
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  44. @Razib Khan
    That the feminist undercurrent in the discourse both requires women to be strong, and vulnerable to abuse, is inconsistent to say the least.

    yeah, that contrast is dissonant.

    1) men and women aren't different, especially behaviorally

    2) all men are potentially terrifying rapists in some essentialist sense which incredible physical power

    Male feminism is easily explained: a wimp is flattered that anyone would mistake him for a thug.

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    • Replies: @Erik Sieven
    thats a really fitting observation.
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  45. spandrell says: • Website

    The Water Margin has women generals kicking ass in war, handling heavy spears and swords and beating men like it was no big deal.

    That’s a 700 year old book. The fantasy runs deep.

    I think is just that stories sell better when there are hottie around than when it’s only men, but the authors didn’t want to derail the narrative with girly stuff, so they put the hotties in the battlefield.

    But the stereotype of the strong woman 女汉子, has been set, and it’s very popular. China has tons of semibutch lesbians which Japan or Korea don’t. The only explanation is this sort of popular culture trickling down.

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    • Replies: @Pseudonymic Handle
    Modern stereotypes of ancient weapons are wrong, swords are not manly and bows are not girly.
    Swords are light weapons (2-4 lb), and are well balanced, with the centre of gravity near the handguard, so they can be used by a weak person, like a woman. The naginata spear was the traditional weapon of the japanese women.
    A hunting bow for large game needs about 60 lb of force and that's about the force of an untrained adult male. Bows used in war in Europe and Asia required over 100 lb of force, even as much as 140 lb.
    Contrary to Hollywood cliches a woman could swing a 2.5 lb knightly sword but could not pull a war bow.
    , @keypusher
    Interesting, I didn't know that about Chinese literature. In Western lit there are the Amazons, Camilla in the Aeneid, and quite a few great female warriors in Boiardo, Ariosto, and Tasso.

    I saw Frozen for the first time over Thanksgiving and given my interest the subject of sex differences I was immediately incredulous at the end where Anna decks out Hans with a single punch.

    Maybe women hitting men is becoming a thing in cartoons now. There's a strange scene in Wreck-It Ralph in which a female warrior-character, Calhoun, entertains a grove of anthropomorphic vines by repeatedly punching little Fix-It Felix in the face. Not only does this make the vines laugh, it causes Calhoun and Felix to fall in love with each other!

    Probably an interesting paper in there.
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  46. guest says:

    There’s no way I believe a diminution in domestic violence has made people forget. You have to be willfully blind not to notice how much stronger men are, just like you have to blind yourself not to notice sex differences in general or the existence of race, for instance. If men don’t hit women as much they still hit eachother, and it’s not hard to extrapolate from that. Ever notice who does manual labor, which sex commits itself to feats of strength, who plays contact sports against whom? We revel in denying the obvious sometimes.

    I’m of above average height and weight, though by no means one of your stronger or tougher men, and have been throughout life fairly confident that I could beat up every woman I’ve ever met. I’ve never met a lady kickboxer, by the way. I have hit females, but not since I was a kid. I don’t object to the idea of woman hitting, especially in self-defense, and certainly not because of how much stronger I am. Adults are stronger than kids, obviously, and the former have been hitting the latter since time out of mind. Which you may object to, but would it be because of parents’ biological advantages? No, because that can be ameliorated by simple discretion. My parents hit me on occasion without accidentally killing me or giving me battered kid syndrome.

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    • Replies: @Razib Khan
    the analogy with children. there are different ways that parents hit children. one of the ways, like spanking or sometimes slapping, is really not using the parents' strength to really beat the child where their power is being leveraged. it's a stylized punishment which hurts but is constrained. i don't know if there's something similar with men and women, perhaps in some cultures?

    then there are cases where parents just start punching their kids, and that's totally not cool, and can cause injury. my parents come from a culture where they don't really spank willy nilly, but just kind of beat kids up in a casual and brutal fashion. my dad punched me in the face frequently when i was a kid when he'd get angry. it's pretty disturbing and hurt a fair amount and i get pissed thinking about it today. he stopped hitting me like this exactly when i got too large for him to punch me in the face without total impunity in terms of knowing i could fight back. i'd never do that to my kids. i don't view my mom slapping me in the same way. it was a restrained violence of an adult to a child.

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  47. Max Payne says:
    @Grace Jones
    (Snicker) "... marital arts with men..." no, those are something altogether different. (Sorry, I couldn't resist.)

    I can’t believe I missed that……..

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  48. guest says:
    @AG
    There are minority women who initiate physical violence against men. Pinching or slapping face are quite common. Occasionally with weapons like nives. At least that is some northern Chinese women are like (often due to lost argument)

    How should men repsond to that? In my case, I just try to get out of situation as soon as possible. Escalation is never my choice.

    That’s not just minority women. It’s more common than you think for women in general. They know social conventions restrain men and that the odds that the police will intervene on his side are negligible. Which isn’t to say that maybe some of them are hoping the men will put them in their place.

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  49. guest says:
    @Pseudonymic Handle
    The far poorer hand-eye coordination is disadvantageous to women striking or defending in a fight. The muscle/weight ratio makes lean men (10% body fat) more mobile than lean women (20% body fat)
    Also men have usually more experience fighting because of roughhousing and play fighting and maybe even from watching more martial sports and media.
    There may be some difference even in the quality of muscle, but that's something I only dimly recall reading.
    For the average woman their upper body strength is so low that even if they land a hit it has little effect even on another woman that's why they tend to pull hair.
    When I said on Reddit that a man should avoid hitting a woman even if he is provoked I was massively downvoted, so I guess you are right about people becoming naive about strength differences between sexes.

    Ah yes, counterpunching. Few people seem to realize how much faster men are in addition to being so much stronger. Which is why they fantasize about the female UFC flavor of the month taking on Floyd Mayweather, or somesuch nonsense. This is spurred by boxers’ limitations in mixed martial arts, of course, and I can’t say it’s impossible that a lady grappler could get lucky and judo a man on his back. But almost certainly she’d have no defense for his strikes, and her hits wouldn’t matter much to him while he could destroy her with one punch.

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  50. guest says:
    @Matt_
    Big relative strength differences between women and men feels kind of a weird idea to me, as much as I guess the numbers are there.

    I'm pretty average in height and build 5'10", and I don't really seem to have much of an easier time lifting and carrying stuff around my house than my 22 year old sister or mid 50s mother, who I've got a good 3 and 6 inches on, and am a bit heavier than. They don't seem to find it any harder than I do to chop through wood and bushes with garden tools, and not like I seem to get less tired digging the same amount of earth or can move more with less effort, etc. They just don't seem that weak. Maybe they are and i just haven't noticed it. I don't feel like I would get less tired out by 20-40 press ups than the average woman of around the same BMI and height, either. (Or maybe I'm atypically weak for some reason, but I haven't ever had anyone say I am). Seems like maybe there's a difference in the upper limit of strength (and I guess you'd push your limit more in a fight?) or something, but not for many tasks or average fitness too much?

    With muscle mass differences between men and women I kind of wonder if there's a similar effect to the effect where large muscle building athletes tend to have lower muscle quality per gram - http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics/howaboutthat/11900273/Wimps-are-stronger-than-bodybuilders-study-finds.html. Probably not a great deal; muscle mass increases in response to resistance for a reason. Still I wonder if some of that is for show (sexually selected). While with grip strength that makes sense and I wonder if the proportionately larger hands plus taller height (both of which have limited influence from training) has a large effect there (so it would be very difficult for women like the German fencers to catch up, even if that was their focus)?

    I'd tend to have usually seen raw height and weight and the will to fight as more of a big difference in fight outcomes, than sex differences adjusted for mass and height per se, as much as I guess those matter.

    You sound like you live in an alternate universe. If you haven’t noticed a difference between yourself and your mom and sister either you’re not paying attention or you should go to the doctor.

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  51. @guest
    There's no way I believe a diminution in domestic violence has made people forget. You have to be willfully blind not to notice how much stronger men are, just like you have to blind yourself not to notice sex differences in general or the existence of race, for instance. If men don't hit women as much they still hit eachother, and it's not hard to extrapolate from that. Ever notice who does manual labor, which sex commits itself to feats of strength, who plays contact sports against whom? We revel in denying the obvious sometimes.

    I'm of above average height and weight, though by no means one of your stronger or tougher men, and have been throughout life fairly confident that I could beat up every woman I've ever met. I've never met a lady kickboxer, by the way. I have hit females, but not since I was a kid. I don't object to the idea of woman hitting, especially in self-defense, and certainly not because of how much stronger I am. Adults are stronger than kids, obviously, and the former have been hitting the latter since time out of mind. Which you may object to, but would it be because of parents' biological advantages? No, because that can be ameliorated by simple discretion. My parents hit me on occasion without accidentally killing me or giving me battered kid syndrome.

    the analogy with children. there are different ways that parents hit children. one of the ways, like spanking or sometimes slapping, is really not using the parents’ strength to really beat the child where their power is being leveraged. it’s a stylized punishment which hurts but is constrained. i don’t know if there’s something similar with men and women, perhaps in some cultures?

    then there are cases where parents just start punching their kids, and that’s totally not cool, and can cause injury. my parents come from a culture where they don’t really spank willy nilly, but just kind of beat kids up in a casual and brutal fashion. my dad punched me in the face frequently when i was a kid when he’d get angry. it’s pretty disturbing and hurt a fair amount and i get pissed thinking about it today. he stopped hitting me like this exactly when i got too large for him to punch me in the face without total impunity in terms of knowing i could fight back. i’d never do that to my kids. i don’t view my mom slapping me in the same way. it was a restrained violence of an adult to a child.

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    • Replies: @Wizard of Oz
    I think there is a stylised form of physical coercion used by men on women and possible in most male-female relationships. If a woman tries anything physical that a man might want to resist whether taking something from him or hitting or slapping or throwing a wet sponge etc he may well just prove his superior power, maybe causing minor pain, typically by holding her wrists so she cannot mover her arms, pinning her arms from behind and lifting her off the floor (actually my very athletic 16 year old son did that to me with a grin when I was a pretty athletic 41 year old) or upending her and holding her down.
    , @dc.sunsets
    Physical domination of parent to child is an essential lesson, but must be highly constrained.

    I've raised three highly successful (across all walks of life) sons, so I'll claim superior knowledge to those who have not.
    1. Boys are born barbarians. They have to be socialized out of it. I didn't raise girls, so I have no experience to opine on this strategy's applicability to the fairer sex. My guess is that some of it applies, but girls also have antisocial behaviors peculiar to them that should be restrained.
    2. Only those who love the child, and have no desire or incentive to maintain long-term control over them can be trusted to use coercion against them.
    3. When my kids hit that tender age where rules begin to be taught (between 2 and 3?) here's what I did:
    A. Kid does something to violate some rule.
    B. I told the kid to go sit on the couch, he had a 5 min time-out.
    C. Kid ignored me; he's never heard it before.
    D. I walk to the kid, pick him up, walk to the couch, sit, put kid on my lap, cross my arms over him and hold him immobile against my chest (without hurting him, while preventing him from hurting himself or me with something like a head-butt.)
    E. I calmly explain that he broke a rule; I add that I am 100 times stronger than he, and can hold him on my lap indefinitely.
    F. I tell him that his time will BEGIN when he stops struggling, and I'll set him on the couch beside me.
    G. I then tell him that each timeout will be accompanied by three attempts to explain the rule to him. If after three tries he still doesn't understand, the answer is "because I said so."
    H. He is also informed that not all the rules are for his benefit. Some exist to limit his actions as a means for all of us to coexist under one roof.
    I. I further noted that only I, as their father, was tasked with controlling them. There are only two kinds of control in this world, self-control and others-control, and if they got to be my size without self-control, the others-control would come with badges, guns and bad attitudes. (I suspect that the vicious behaviors of girls also need to be deprogrammed.)
    J. I ended by saying that my hands were already quite full running my own life, leaving me with no wish to run theirs for a moment longer than it took them to learn self-control.

    My older two kids required but a single session on my lap. My youngest, very headstrong, took three lap iterations. After that, their mother or I could point to the couch and say, "SIT" and each time they'd immediate do so. They were all very self-controlled before heading off to kindergarten, and promptly ran rings around their peers (and still do as adults.)

    I never had to spank, slap or hit a kid. I'll aver that into teenage years I was incited a couple times (never struck, but did grab upper arms hard enough to leave weals) but these were the normal conflicts between proto-adults and parent, and required adult-to-adult anger management strategies, not "parenting" strategies per se.

    Violence should be reserved for those who direct it at you, not as a strategy for social interaction. See Facing Violence by Rory Miller for an excellent discussion of social vs anti-social violence, and how some cultures and even American sub-cultures are rife with social violence.

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  52. namae nanka says: • Website

    The calculation of d combines the SDs of both population groups, so the difference appears smaller since the female SD is lower.

    For instance, men are two SDs taller than women if you consider the average man in the female distriubtion.

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  53. Dave Pinsen says: • Website
    @Max Payne
    Generally speaking most women who have done any form of marital arts with men will know the limits of female strength. There is a reason for having a separate female and male division in almost every tournament from Brazilian Ju-jitsu (grappling, ground fighting) to Tae Kwon Doe (kicks, strikes).

    Guys too will always comment "I'm gonna just train with the girls" when they are too tired from a long day of work.

    This is why "cardio kick-boxing" is so popular with women. It's not really fighting, its like BS moves that just get you to sweat and men are detracted by the highly choreographed actions which leave you exposed to counterattack. Though oddly enough I've started to notice more men in those type of classes though I assume they're there to meet ladies as opposed to training on their techniques (3 men to 35 women a class is good odds I suppose).

    UFC world champ Holly Holm was discovered in a cardio kickboxing class.

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  54. Anonymous says: • Website • Disclaimer

    The women’s world record in the deadlift is held by a 267lb woman; it has been matched by a 128lb man.

    https://deadliftquest.com/can-girls-deadlift-as-much-as-guys-part-2/

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  55. Women have stilleto heeled shoes they can swing or throw at you. Wear hairpins.
    Since they reside mostly in kitchens they have knives, pots and plates at their fingertips. Boiling water within reach. They can smile and wink at you.
    They are constantly armed and most dangerous!!

    Men must be physically stronger to have a slim change of surviving against womens weaponry.

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  56. Doug says:
    @Jim Christian
    "The self-restraint on the part of men these days, given the incessant hounding by misandrist harpies of all ages, is nothing short of astonishing to me. When the current antebellum period finally ends, I shiver in anticipatory horror how many women will suffer for past sins and stupidity".

    We're there already in some venues, DC. As a tech-guy, I consort with various construction types, men you don't mess with that are complete in their masculinity given their work and habits in the gym. I've known several that deflected impending divorce-rape with the mere suggestion to their plotting wives that his masculine patience was at end. One, with a personal, unscheduled visit to his wife's divorce attorney derailed the plan. Divorce attorneys are a cowardly lot when presented with the physical world outside the courtroom. About half of said men are still with their wives and all is now well, so perhaps something is to be said for a notion that masculine leadership gives these wannabe divorcing harpies a tingle in their lady-bits.

    In any case, this is the silly-season, be certain there will be several high-profile domestic violence cases of husbands-gone-mad on divorce-raping ex-wives with a handgun. Many, many men have indeed had it with the new Matriarchy and on occasion will take back their Male Imperative in a most unpleasant manner. It is bound to happen. In any given situation, when they dig into the aftermath, the madman had his reasons after all. At the end of the day, women aren't stronger, or smarter or better. They're merely women, their favor handed to them by men who can surely snatch that favor away in a mere moment.

    > [P]erhaps something is to be said for a notion that masculine leadership gives these wannabe divorcing harpies a tingle in their lady-bits.

    This is completely absurd. I’m virtually certain that the most violent prone men have the highest divorce rates. I’m also sure that this relationship holds despite whatever confounds you want to throw into the regression.

    > Divorce attorneys are a cowardly lot when presented with the physical world outside the courtroom.

    Again this is pure fantasy. Anecdote notwithstanding, Western legal systems long ago figured out how to meticulously nerf the “beat up the courtroom” hack of avoiding justice. Trying to use physical intimidation or violence on privileged members of the legal class will result in the Hammer of God in any jurisdiction with a modicum of rule of law. Don’t care how tough you are, you ain’t tougher than the US Marshall Service. The people who will be kicking down your down in short order if you make a habit of punking out attorneys.

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    • Replies: @Jim Christian
    For a divorce attorney, female or male (females are even easier, they're the bigger cowards), beating up on a working guy, little return or reward for doing so, it's easy to punk them. They call the wife, claim conflict of interest and call it a day. Arnie Becker of the old L.A. Law series, that typer of guy, divorce raping a rich guy for millions, maybe he has protection. A divorce-raping lawyer hassling a blue collar guy that wants to kill him will call it a day, I've seen it happen enough times to know it's true. Against a man that is desperate and the desperate man is at his end, he goes for the lawyer and there is no real protection.

    The U.S. Marshals are some very serious, very bad men, excellent chasers, paid like shit but funded like crazy. They live to bust bad guys. But they can't be everywhere and they don't get involved on a mere complaint. And a desperate man will do his deed without regard. Lawyers will now come out of the roach-nests to claim otherwise, but they're delusional if it hasn't happened to them. Or liars, lawyers tell a lie where the truth will do.

    No offense, but you rely on the sanctity of a legal system that abuses men who, at the end of the day and properly motivated, will do drastic, horrible damage. Bad, bad damage. You need to observe the Christmas season carnage of a Manassas, Virgina divorce situation. Rednecks have interesting falling out issues there. And in any case, divorce-rape lawyers OUGHT to be first on a frazzled, violent man's hit list list. All due respect to you sir, if not to a divorce-rape lawyer.
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  57. I’m about 5′ 10 and vary between 75 to 80kg. My sister is 5′ 8 and probably 65kg. Years ago when she was in her late teens we grappled one day. I was somewhat unfit at the time but I was actually alarmed how strong she was. I think I was overall stronger than her but I was out of breath and struglling after a while. She definitely surprised me.

    Make of that what you will.

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    • Replies: @Hugo
    That youre a weakling? And who the heck wrestles with his sister?
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  58. @froginthewell
    Some 15% of domestic violence victims are supposed to be male (in most categories of domestic violence). Does that gel with the statistics of this post?

    a two year old child can seriously hurt a grown up man e.g. by slamming a hammer on his head. That is not a question of strength

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  59. @Reg Cæsar
    Male feminism is easily explained: a wimp is flattered that anyone would mistake him for a thug.

    thats a really fitting observation.

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  60. Biff says:
    @Anatoly Karlin
    Some random thoughts on this.

    (1) The media certainly has played a bit role in this. Not just films and books but also video games. Things like chicks in bikini armor dropping ridiculously muscular Orc chieftains in Skyrim. This might be another yet another reason why ignorance of biological realities increases amongst the younger demographics.

    (2) That recent "debate" over how well Ronda Rousey would do against the top ranked males of her weight class. The commentators who said she'd get her ass kicked were roundly excoriated but they were surely correct. In reality, considering bell curve realities, she probably would not even make it into the top 100.

    (3) Another product of biological egalitarianism is equal portion sizes in households which predictably leads to higher female obesity than would otherwise be the case.

    (2) That recent “debate” over how well Ronda Rousey would do against the top ranked males of her weight class. The commentators who said she’d get her ass kicked were roundly excoriated but they were surely correct. In reality, considering bell curve realities, she probably would not even make it into the top 100.

    A few decades back I saw a film of a match up between a 250lb American mucle builder, and a 150lb Brazilian Jiujitzu fighter. The 150lb guy ripped him to shreads. It’s all in the training.

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  61. @Doug
    >recently there has been this hype about Ronda Rousey in the internet, also I have noticed that today more so than 5-10 years ago women in the gym tend to do the same exercises like men.

    Even though women are not as strong as men, they should absolutely engage in stereotypically "manly" strength exercises. Mortality decreases monotonically and significantly with FFM for both genders to the same degree across quintiles. If anything, given their proclivity to osteoporosis, women benefit more from heavy weight training.

    Physical attractiveness also increases monotonically with FFM for both men and women. High FFM is an essential component (the other being low body-fat) of low waist-hip ratio compromising classical female beauty standards. The fundamental difference between the female-oriented fashion model waif and the male-oriented Playboy model isn't body-fat levels (both are about equivalent). Its that the latter typically has much higher FFM. Western women are culturally indoctrinated to singularly focus on low body-fat, while males instinctually crave high FFM mates.

    Rather than encouraging women, ignorance of sexual dimorphism on the whole discourages women from engaging in strength training. Very few women in the gym are trying to become strong enough to beat up men. In fact the modal reason that most physically active women don't weight train is because they're afraid of their bodies "looking too manly", i.e. the stereotypical woman bodybuilder.

    Absence pharmaceutical enhancement or serious genetic abnormalities this is impossible. Even the most strength-oriented, heavy barbell focused powerlifting training routine will significantly increase the femininity of an untrained woman's body.

    What is FFM? Googling didn’t help.

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    • Replies: @szopen
    Fat Free Mass. Go and read the article.
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  62. Anonymous says: • Disclaimer
    @Matt_
    Big relative strength differences between women and men feels kind of a weird idea to me, as much as I guess the numbers are there.

    I'm pretty average in height and build 5'10", and I don't really seem to have much of an easier time lifting and carrying stuff around my house than my 22 year old sister or mid 50s mother, who I've got a good 3 and 6 inches on, and am a bit heavier than. They don't seem to find it any harder than I do to chop through wood and bushes with garden tools, and not like I seem to get less tired digging the same amount of earth or can move more with less effort, etc. They just don't seem that weak. Maybe they are and i just haven't noticed it. I don't feel like I would get less tired out by 20-40 press ups than the average woman of around the same BMI and height, either. (Or maybe I'm atypically weak for some reason, but I haven't ever had anyone say I am). Seems like maybe there's a difference in the upper limit of strength (and I guess you'd push your limit more in a fight?) or something, but not for many tasks or average fitness too much?

    With muscle mass differences between men and women I kind of wonder if there's a similar effect to the effect where large muscle building athletes tend to have lower muscle quality per gram - http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics/howaboutthat/11900273/Wimps-are-stronger-than-bodybuilders-study-finds.html. Probably not a great deal; muscle mass increases in response to resistance for a reason. Still I wonder if some of that is for show (sexually selected). While with grip strength that makes sense and I wonder if the proportionately larger hands plus taller height (both of which have limited influence from training) has a large effect there (so it would be very difficult for women like the German fencers to catch up, even if that was their focus)?

    I'd tend to have usually seen raw height and weight and the will to fight as more of a big difference in fight outcomes, than sex differences adjusted for mass and height per se, as much as I guess those matter.

    “I don’t really seem to have much of an easier time lifting and carrying stuff around my house than my 22 year old sister or mid 50s mother, who I’ve got a good 3 and 6 inches on, and am a bit heavier than. They don’t seem to find it any harder than I do to chop through wood and bushes with garden tools, and not like I seem to get less tired digging the same amount of earth or can move more with less effort”

    Can’t find the studies right now but IIRC at *substantially submaximal* loads (as in what you’ll be working with when it comes to what you mentioned), women are more fatigue-resistant than men on average.

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  63. @spandrell
    The Water Margin has women generals kicking ass in war, handling heavy spears and swords and beating men like it was no big deal.

    That's a 700 year old book. The fantasy runs deep.

    I think is just that stories sell better when there are hottie around than when it's only men, but the authors didn't want to derail the narrative with girly stuff, so they put the hotties in the battlefield.

    But the stereotype of the strong woman 女汉子, has been set, and it's very popular. China has tons of semibutch lesbians which Japan or Korea don't. The only explanation is this sort of popular culture trickling down.

    Modern stereotypes of ancient weapons are wrong, swords are not manly and bows are not girly.
    Swords are light weapons (2-4 lb), and are well balanced, with the centre of gravity near the handguard, so they can be used by a weak person, like a woman. The naginata spear was the traditional weapon of the japanese women.
    A hunting bow for large game needs about 60 lb of force and that’s about the force of an untrained adult male. Bows used in war in Europe and Asia required over 100 lb of force, even as much as 140 lb.
    Contrary to Hollywood cliches a woman could swing a 2.5 lb knightly sword but could not pull a war bow.

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    • Replies: @szopen
    Are you the guy who made those youtube videos, or you have just forgotten to provide proper references?
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  64. @Sgt. Joe Friday
    This actually sounds like a pretty good argument against women in the military, police or fire departments.

    That’s why it’s suppressed and news and entertainment media stress the strength and athleticism of 0.01% of elite female specimens..

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  65. IntRapid says:

    http://www.saveservices.org/2012/02/cdc-study-more-men-than-women-victims-of-partner-abuse/

    Most victims of domestic violence are men.

    Perhaps the reason more women die from it is the same as in suicides: men are more efficent at violence.

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  66. Hugo says:
    @jon halpenny
    I'm about 5' 10 and vary between 75 to 80kg. My sister is 5' 8 and probably 65kg. Years ago when she was in her late teens we grappled one day. I was somewhat unfit at the time but I was actually alarmed how strong she was. I think I was overall stronger than her but I was out of breath and struglling after a while. She definitely surprised me.

    Make of that what you will.

    That youre a weakling? And who the heck wrestles with his sister?

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  67. Hugo says:
    @Anatoly Karlin
    Some random thoughts on this.

    (1) The media certainly has played a bit role in this. Not just films and books but also video games. Things like chicks in bikini armor dropping ridiculously muscular Orc chieftains in Skyrim. This might be another yet another reason why ignorance of biological realities increases amongst the younger demographics.

    (2) That recent "debate" over how well Ronda Rousey would do against the top ranked males of her weight class. The commentators who said she'd get her ass kicked were roundly excoriated but they were surely correct. In reality, considering bell curve realities, she probably would not even make it into the top 100.

    (3) Another product of biological egalitarianism is equal portion sizes in households which predictably leads to higher female obesity than would otherwise be the case.

    I have said this before, Ronda Rousey would get destroyed, utterly destroyed by average male fighters, 2 weight classes beneath her.

    The fact that we as males even entertain this discussion just shows how pro female our society and how ashamed of our gender we have become. Men and women are different. Each has inherent skills. Nothing wrong with that.

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  68. Jeff77450 says:

    I’m 56 and I’ve been propagandized almost from birth that “we’re all equal now” – except in the areas of college admissions, what constitutes racism, divorce-proceedings, child custody decisions and domestic-violence charges. Men are not equal to women in those last three categories.

    There is ample evidence that women initiate physical violence at least half the time. As a practical matter, yes, a man should always “flee” when being assaulted by a woman. If the police get involved the man is presumed to be the initiator or to have responded with excess force. I speak from experience.

    After I got married (the first time) in 1986 I discovered that my wife suffered from bipolar-disorder and was “crazy as a loon.” I learned the truths cited above the hard way. I took my marriage-vows seriously and endured abuse for almost nine years before “voting with my feet.” After the police got involved the second time I issued an ultimatum: go to a doctor and get on some medication or I was gone. She refused and that was that.

    Speculation: If Andrea Yates’ husband had walked in on her as she was drowning their five children how much force would he have been allowed to use to stop her and not be charged himself? Just a thought.

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  69. @Razib Khan
    for most of history woman did have to do work. so women are strong. just not as strong as men.

    (also, pregnancy was part of life, not a quasi-illness, for most of history)

    Since getting interested in evolution’s details I’ve thought the Just So stories actually work pretty well for male-female differences. My impression remains that women tend to have more acute hearing than men and hearing which continues to be better as people age. Men tend to be better at judging distances (though that could be susceptible to cultural change especially for short distances, as inside houses, consistently with the pretty fair chance that a woman will remember a lot more about the appearance of a furnished room than her mate who isn’t in the business). Both these generalisations make evo-biological sense as does a sufficient degree of relative physical weakness of women compared to men to ensure that they don’t lose their advantages as child-bearers for protective males by fighting them or showing that they don’t need the male for protection.

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  70. namae nanka says: • Website
    @Boy, that's lame
    I also find it dissonant that this notion of female "strength" coincides with an increasing concern toward violence against women (both real and contrived). That the feminist undercurrent in the discourse both requires women to be strong, and vulnerable to abuse, is inconsistent to say the least. But feminism seems committed to demonstrating a correlation between irrationality and femininity. They're working damned hard at it.

    It’s the ‘all your base are belong to us’ strategy. Nothing new under the sun.

    There was, as a general rule, no very noticeable sex partiality in the administration of the law. This state of affairs continued in England till well into the nineteenth century. Thenceforward a change began to take place. Modern Feminism rose slowly above the horizon. Modern Feminism has two distinct sides to it: (1) an articulate political and economic side embracing demands for so-called rights; and (2) a sentimental side which insists in an accentuation of the privileges and immunities which have grown up, not articulately or as the result of definite demands, but as the consequence of sentimental pleading in particular”

    As a rule, however, the two sides go together, the vast bulk of the advocates of “Women’s Rights” being equally keen on the retention and extension of women’s privileges.

    - Fraud of Feminism, Belfort Bax, 1913

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  71. @Matt_
    Big relative strength differences between women and men feels kind of a weird idea to me, as much as I guess the numbers are there.

    I'm pretty average in height and build 5'10", and I don't really seem to have much of an easier time lifting and carrying stuff around my house than my 22 year old sister or mid 50s mother, who I've got a good 3 and 6 inches on, and am a bit heavier than. They don't seem to find it any harder than I do to chop through wood and bushes with garden tools, and not like I seem to get less tired digging the same amount of earth or can move more with less effort, etc. They just don't seem that weak. Maybe they are and i just haven't noticed it. I don't feel like I would get less tired out by 20-40 press ups than the average woman of around the same BMI and height, either. (Or maybe I'm atypically weak for some reason, but I haven't ever had anyone say I am). Seems like maybe there's a difference in the upper limit of strength (and I guess you'd push your limit more in a fight?) or something, but not for many tasks or average fitness too much?

    With muscle mass differences between men and women I kind of wonder if there's a similar effect to the effect where large muscle building athletes tend to have lower muscle quality per gram - http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics/howaboutthat/11900273/Wimps-are-stronger-than-bodybuilders-study-finds.html. Probably not a great deal; muscle mass increases in response to resistance for a reason. Still I wonder if some of that is for show (sexually selected). While with grip strength that makes sense and I wonder if the proportionately larger hands plus taller height (both of which have limited influence from training) has a large effect there (so it would be very difficult for women like the German fencers to catch up, even if that was their focus)?

    I'd tend to have usually seen raw height and weight and the will to fight as more of a big difference in fight outcomes, than sex differences adjusted for mass and height per se, as much as I guess those matter.

    That Telegraph story is mostly beat up because it only just lets on that, as every efficient user of gym equipment knows, you don’t go for the muscle mass produced by a few repetitions of the heaviest weights you can manage if you want to be fit and strong for some purpose other than looking like Arnie.

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  72. The central issue is that we’re in an interregnum or transitional phase between traditional culture and the egalitarian dystopia for which feminists allege to have been pining. Chivalry is an artifact of traditional culture – one in which there are a suite of attitudes and behaviors expected of a Lady as a condition of receiving deference and care from Gentlemen. This of necessity presupposes the physical inferiority and gentleness of women; indeed it is impossible without acknowledging this central fact of life. The absence of Ladies and ladylike behavior precipitates the absence of chivalry.

    Of course, women being as they are they want just those very elements of Chivalry which they perceive benefit them without any of the reciprocal burdens. Therefore it passes without question or comment that a woman can champion the assignment of women to combat units (but only if they volunteer for combat), demand the continued exemption of women from Selective Service, all the while supporting the ostracism and extrajudicial punishment of Ray Rice for ending an assault upon his person with a single strike because his assailant was a woman. Yes, the most strident feminist harridans were insisting that Ray Rice’s response to an assault upon him was entirely different, worse, and should subject him to extreme punishment because he hit a woman who was hitting him.

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  73. @Razib Khan
    the analogy with children. there are different ways that parents hit children. one of the ways, like spanking or sometimes slapping, is really not using the parents' strength to really beat the child where their power is being leveraged. it's a stylized punishment which hurts but is constrained. i don't know if there's something similar with men and women, perhaps in some cultures?

    then there are cases where parents just start punching their kids, and that's totally not cool, and can cause injury. my parents come from a culture where they don't really spank willy nilly, but just kind of beat kids up in a casual and brutal fashion. my dad punched me in the face frequently when i was a kid when he'd get angry. it's pretty disturbing and hurt a fair amount and i get pissed thinking about it today. he stopped hitting me like this exactly when i got too large for him to punch me in the face without total impunity in terms of knowing i could fight back. i'd never do that to my kids. i don't view my mom slapping me in the same way. it was a restrained violence of an adult to a child.

    I think there is a stylised form of physical coercion used by men on women and possible in most male-female relationships. If a woman tries anything physical that a man might want to resist whether taking something from him or hitting or slapping or throwing a wet sponge etc he may well just prove his superior power, maybe causing minor pain, typically by holding her wrists so she cannot mover her arms, pinning her arms from behind and lifting her off the floor (actually my very athletic 16 year old son did that to me with a grin when I was a pretty athletic 41 year old) or upending her and holding her down.

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    • Replies: @dc.sunsets
    My wife never needed a reminder that in the physical realm I was by far dominant, any more than I needed a reminder that her civilizing influence was a tremendous benefit to me. All successful relationships are based on mutual respect, and wise people seek out every opportunity to pay their loved ones merited respect. The notion of pushing my wife around doesn't compute, any more than the notion of her manipulating me (against my interests) would compute to her.

    On our wedding day I was 10" taller and literally double her weight. Oh, how I do love sexual dimorphism! She's still a cutie to this day, with three sons grown to adulthood and thriving in their own lives.
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  74. Given that women are more prone to initiate domestic violence than men, it’s a good thing that they are weaker.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2518434/Why-MEN-victims-domestic-violence-Its-Britains-remaining-taboos-abuse-men-home-rise.html

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    • Replies: @nickels
    "Given that women are more prone to initiate domestic violence than men, it’s a good thing that they are weaker"

    True, although female domestic violence is just as deadly. It usually ends with something like pouring boiling water on the man while he isn't looking or such.

    The primary component of female domestic violence is a 'reign of terror'. Destroying your belongings, your important papers. Mocking you as a wimp while you easily defend against their blows. But such blows are a horrific offence and do tremendous psychic damage, especially as chivalry cripples the man and does not allow him to respond.

    Controlling your every move by threat of terror and violence (face it, who wants night long drawn out episode of terror--easier to give in).

    The dynamic of female on male violence is different than that of male on female, but don't think for a minute it is either less deadly or less damaging. That is a myth.

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  75. @Razib Khan
    all this stuff about men dominating women. OK, there's something to this. but you guys seem to have forgotten we have hand-guns, so it's not like it will be the rule-of-bicep at a moment's notice. if it was that, this would be the day of the chimp, who could tear us limb-for-limb.

    (part of this is motivated by my reading peter turchin's *ultra society*, where he talks of the "human way of war" with projectile weapons and stones from a distance)

    This is a general reply, not specific to #43

    You are of course right Razib. But I have never (or never since about the age of 10 I guess) lacked the intuition that hitting women was just not on because nearly all men were much stronger than nearly all women (though female ball games players who weren’t in the same league as men of comparable talent when their respective ages were 40 and 60 may well be on top of the 80 year old male when they are 60).

    I’m surprised no one has mentioned that classic domestic occurrence when she says “can you get the top off this for me?”. I seem to remember reading that grip strength is pretty well correlated with muscular strength generally so it is more than trivia; it is relevant.

    it may amuse you to know of my Australian experience since you have some idea of intra Angloshere difference and you probably have a good idea of my age.

    I was certainly brought up so that it never occurred to me that a man might hit a woman and I was mildly reproved at the age of 7 or thereabouts for attempting to wrestle some woman to the floor in the manner of some cartoon or comic strip character. I think she was a temporary cook acting as stand-in childminder. But the more amusing recollection was from one evening when my parents no longer had a live in cook and I was told to leave the dining room and tell the lady in the kitchen that she could go home. We had a back door to the kitchen (which would have been the Tradesman’s Entrance in the 1930s) as well as a front hall and door leading to the front porch next to the dining room. I think the cook left by the front door but what I clearly remember was being reproved for failing to see a lady to the door and open it for her.

    Just ordinary civilised bourgeois behaviour** but doesn’t it make you wonder about all the horror stories about treatment of (female) servants in the 21st century and not only in Saudi Arabia and the Gulf States?
    ** my mother’s great-grandfather on her father’s side had been transported as a convict (though later pardoned) but in some memoir he was described as “a gentleman of the old school – with Regency manners”. He sounded like a bit of a layabout but as he seems to have owned a school that may be unfair. By the time my mother’s father, his grandson, married well after his widowed mother had been defrauded of everything he was regarded by one elderly cousin of mine as having brought social respectability to a young lady (my grandmother whom I never knew) with new money!

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    • Replies: @Wizard of Oz
    My concluding remark was truncated. I wanted to say that though you might interpret the story differently I see it, in one interpretation, as the determined rise to constrained bourgeois respectability in the Victorian age. It seems inconceivable that the intuition about women being physically much weaker wasn't well entrenched in polite society. It might be material for a minor thesis. Title "Class Differences in the Victorians' Intuitions of Male-Female Differences [With Particular Reference to Upper Body Strength and Distinctions Between the Corsetted and Uncorsetted Classes]".
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  76. @Doug
    > [P]erhaps something is to be said for a notion that masculine leadership gives these wannabe divorcing harpies a tingle in their lady-bits.

    This is completely absurd. I'm virtually certain that the most violent prone men have the highest divorce rates. I'm also sure that this relationship holds despite whatever confounds you want to throw into the regression.

    > Divorce attorneys are a cowardly lot when presented with the physical world outside the courtroom.

    Again this is pure fantasy. Anecdote notwithstanding, Western legal systems long ago figured out how to meticulously nerf the "beat up the courtroom" hack of avoiding justice. Trying to use physical intimidation or violence on privileged members of the legal class will result in the Hammer of God in any jurisdiction with a modicum of rule of law. Don't care how tough you are, you ain't tougher than the US Marshall Service. The people who will be kicking down your down in short order if you make a habit of punking out attorneys.

    For a divorce attorney, female or male (females are even easier, they’re the bigger cowards), beating up on a working guy, little return or reward for doing so, it’s easy to punk them. They call the wife, claim conflict of interest and call it a day. Arnie Becker of the old L.A. Law series, that typer of guy, divorce raping a rich guy for millions, maybe he has protection. A divorce-raping lawyer hassling a blue collar guy that wants to kill him will call it a day, I’ve seen it happen enough times to know it’s true. Against a man that is desperate and the desperate man is at his end, he goes for the lawyer and there is no real protection.

    The U.S. Marshals are some very serious, very bad men, excellent chasers, paid like shit but funded like crazy. They live to bust bad guys. But they can’t be everywhere and they don’t get involved on a mere complaint. And a desperate man will do his deed without regard. Lawyers will now come out of the roach-nests to claim otherwise, but they’re delusional if it hasn’t happened to them. Or liars, lawyers tell a lie where the truth will do.

    No offense, but you rely on the sanctity of a legal system that abuses men who, at the end of the day and properly motivated, will do drastic, horrible damage. Bad, bad damage. You need to observe the Christmas season carnage of a Manassas, Virgina divorce situation. Rednecks have interesting falling out issues there. And in any case, divorce-rape lawyers OUGHT to be first on a frazzled, violent man’s hit list list. All due respect to you sir, if not to a divorce-rape lawyer.

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  77. TheJester says:

    This is the same argument why women should not be in the military, especially the combat arms.

    I served for 20 years and spent time in the field under a full pack. I know what life in the field is like; I know what that weight feels like. I had a friend in Vietnam who fought hand-to-hand combat with North Vietnamese soldiers (he strangled one with his bare hands). How would our female soldiers have faired in similar situations? Would their presence have put our soldiers at risk as they tried to protect them?

    I was also involved training the first contingent of females going through one of the service academies. They were a physical disaster. Many of the female cadets could not jump over a three-foot water obstacle. To prevent injury, they were politely invited not to show up at intermural sports. Later, all cadets were put in tennis shoes rather than combat boots for forced marches because the women were developing shit splints when in boots. But, then, the academy did what every organization does in a PC world: they changed the rules. Henceforth, cadets only had to do their best regardless of what physical activity was involved.

    Razib, you are correct that the image of “butt-kicking babes” is a fantasy. Nonetheless, in the name of equality, it looks like we will soon suffer women in Ranger Battalions, Navy Seals, and Special Forces. (I wonder if they, as their sisters have previously done, will also gravitate toward desk jobs at headquarters.)

    But the logic is clear: At the worst, the fantasy of female equality in the armed forces leads to similar fatasies about military capability.

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  78. @Wizard of Oz
    This is a general reply, not specific to #43

    You are of course right Razib. But I have never (or never since about the age of 10 I guess) lacked the intuition that hitting women was just not on because nearly all men were much stronger than nearly all women (though female ball games players who weren't in the same league as men of comparable talent when their respective ages were 40 and 60 may well be on top of the 80 year old male when they are 60).

    I'm surprised no one has mentioned that classic domestic occurrence when she says "can you get the top off this for me?". I seem to remember reading that grip strength is pretty well correlated with muscular strength generally so it is more than trivia; it is relevant.

    it may amuse you to know of my Australian experience since you have some idea of intra Angloshere difference and you probably have a good idea of my age.

    I was certainly brought up so that it never occurred to me that a man might hit a woman and I was mildly reproved at the age of 7 or thereabouts for attempting to wrestle some woman to the floor in the manner of some cartoon or comic strip character. I think she was a temporary cook acting as stand-in childminder. But the more amusing recollection was from one evening when my parents no longer had a live in cook and I was told to leave the dining room and tell the lady in the kitchen that she could go home. We had a back door to the kitchen (which would have been the Tradesman's Entrance in the 1930s) as well as a front hall and door leading to the front porch next to the dining room. I think the cook left by the front door but what I clearly remember was being reproved for failing to see a lady to the door and open it for her.

    Just ordinary civilised bourgeois behaviour** but doesn't it make you wonder about all the horror stories about treatment of (female) servants in the 21st century and not only in Saudi Arabia and the Gulf States?
    ** my mother's great-grandfather on her father's side had been transported as a convict (though later pardoned) but in some memoir he was described as "a gentleman of the old school - with Regency manners". He sounded like a bit of a layabout but as he seems to have owned a school that may be unfair. By the time my mother's father, his grandson, married well after his widowed mother had been defrauded of everything he was regarded by one elderly cousin of mine as having brought social respectability to a young lady (my grandmother whom I never knew) with new money!

    My concluding remark was truncated. I wanted to say that though you might interpret the story differently I see it, in one interpretation, as the determined rise to constrained bourgeois respectability in the Victorian age. It seems inconceivable that the intuition about women being physically much weaker wasn’t well entrenched in polite society. It might be material for a minor thesis. Title “Class Differences in the Victorians’ Intuitions of Male-Female Differences [With Particular Reference to Upper Body Strength and Distinctions Between the Corsetted and Uncorsetted Classes]“.

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  79. @Razib Khan
    all this stuff about men dominating women. OK, there's something to this. but you guys seem to have forgotten we have hand-guns, so it's not like it will be the rule-of-bicep at a moment's notice. if it was that, this would be the day of the chimp, who could tear us limb-for-limb.

    (part of this is motivated by my reading peter turchin's *ultra society*, where he talks of the "human way of war" with projectile weapons and stones from a distance)

    Agreed. All I note is that ours is a civilization of self-restraint, honor and mutual respect, not others-restraint. I think our modern feminist-power ethos is forgetting this, and our society is actually the poorer for it.

    [I'll aver that this civilization is eroding rapidly, and is entirely absent in some quarters, in direct proportion to the decline in percentage of persons of predominantly European ancestry.]

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  80. @Razib Khan
    all this stuff about men dominating women. OK, there's something to this. but you guys seem to have forgotten we have hand-guns, so it's not like it will be the rule-of-bicep at a moment's notice. if it was that, this would be the day of the chimp, who could tear us limb-for-limb.

    (part of this is motivated by my reading peter turchin's *ultra society*, where he talks of the "human way of war" with projectile weapons and stones from a distance)

    Another piece of Aussie trivia which supports some American observations in this thread. Decades ago I was at a residential conference where, quite vehemently, over dinner, a lefty academic turned Labor Party politician opined that the existing stereotype of the physical differences in strength and speed between men and women was passé and well on the way out.

    It may have been connected to the fact that it is hard to think of a sport in which he wouldn’t have been 2 sds below average and his eventual claim to greatest fame was prosecution for use of his parliamentary office for the corrupt procuring of residence visas for Chinese would be immigrants. He and his brother, not Chinese in fact but Mediterraneans, and Labor MPs, were both notorious for the way they (allegedly) treated female staff and were (both I think) accused of rape though I think not convicted.

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  81. @Razib Khan
    all this stuff about men dominating women. OK, there's something to this. but you guys seem to have forgotten we have hand-guns, so it's not like it will be the rule-of-bicep at a moment's notice. if it was that, this would be the day of the chimp, who could tear us limb-for-limb.

    (part of this is motivated by my reading peter turchin's *ultra society*, where he talks of the "human way of war" with projectile weapons and stones from a distance)

    Of course it’s LARPing, but do you personally have a handgun within arms reach right now? No you don’t. And that’s true of 90%+ of people, even in ‘merica.

    Was your dad punching you as hard as he could? Doubtful or he’d have broken noses, jaws, orbitals. Was your mom slapping you as hard as she could? Maybe.

    As an aside, what does this say about domestic violence in homosexual relationships which don’t have nearly the same taboo against hitting one another?

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    As an aside, what does this say about domestic violence in homosexual relationships which don’t have nearly the same taboo against hitting one another?
     
    It's a huge thing in lesbian relationships - worse than straight - possibly related to this topic, less restraint.
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  82. nickels says:

    good old Cultural Marxism.
    Notice how hollywood heroines are never feminine anymore. They are crass, crude, mean, and beat everyone up.

    Marxism looks for institutions where nature rears its ugly head, whereupon they proceed to destroy such institutions with the assumption that such destruction will change nature.

    The institution destroyed in this case is that of femininity, and the Marxist agent is feminism.

    It doesn’t change the nature of women. It can make them pretty unbearable, however.

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  83. nickels says:
    @Bill Jones
    Given that women are more prone to initiate domestic violence than men, it's a good thing that they are weaker.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2518434/Why-MEN-victims-domestic-violence-Its-Britains-remaining-taboos-abuse-men-home-rise.html

    “Given that women are more prone to initiate domestic violence than men, it’s a good thing that they are weaker”

    True, although female domestic violence is just as deadly. It usually ends with something like pouring boiling water on the man while he isn’t looking or such.

    The primary component of female domestic violence is a ‘reign of terror’. Destroying your belongings, your important papers. Mocking you as a wimp while you easily defend against their blows. But such blows are a horrific offence and do tremendous psychic damage, especially as chivalry cripples the man and does not allow him to respond.

    Controlling your every move by threat of terror and violence (face it, who wants night long drawn out episode of terror–easier to give in).

    The dynamic of female on male violence is different than that of male on female, but don’t think for a minute it is either less deadly or less damaging. That is a myth.

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  84. @Razib Khan
    the analogy with children. there are different ways that parents hit children. one of the ways, like spanking or sometimes slapping, is really not using the parents' strength to really beat the child where their power is being leveraged. it's a stylized punishment which hurts but is constrained. i don't know if there's something similar with men and women, perhaps in some cultures?

    then there are cases where parents just start punching their kids, and that's totally not cool, and can cause injury. my parents come from a culture where they don't really spank willy nilly, but just kind of beat kids up in a casual and brutal fashion. my dad punched me in the face frequently when i was a kid when he'd get angry. it's pretty disturbing and hurt a fair amount and i get pissed thinking about it today. he stopped hitting me like this exactly when i got too large for him to punch me in the face without total impunity in terms of knowing i could fight back. i'd never do that to my kids. i don't view my mom slapping me in the same way. it was a restrained violence of an adult to a child.

    Physical domination of parent to child is an essential lesson, but must be highly constrained.

    I’ve raised three highly successful (across all walks of life) sons, so I’ll claim superior knowledge to those who have not.
    1. Boys are born barbarians. They have to be socialized out of it. I didn’t raise girls, so I have no experience to opine on this strategy’s applicability to the fairer sex. My guess is that some of it applies, but girls also have antisocial behaviors peculiar to them that should be restrained.
    2. Only those who love the child, and have no desire or incentive to maintain long-term control over them can be trusted to use coercion against them.
    3. When my kids hit that tender age where rules begin to be taught (between 2 and 3?) here’s what I did:
    A. Kid does something to violate some rule.
    B. I told the kid to go sit on the couch, he had a 5 min time-out.
    C. Kid ignored me; he’s never heard it before.
    D. I walk to the kid, pick him up, walk to the couch, sit, put kid on my lap, cross my arms over him and hold him immobile against my chest (without hurting him, while preventing him from hurting himself or me with something like a head-butt.)
    E. I calmly explain that he broke a rule; I add that I am 100 times stronger than he, and can hold him on my lap indefinitely.
    F. I tell him that his time will BEGIN when he stops struggling, and I’ll set him on the couch beside me.
    G. I then tell him that each timeout will be accompanied by three attempts to explain the rule to him. If after three tries he still doesn’t understand, the answer is “because I said so.”
    H. He is also informed that not all the rules are for his benefit. Some exist to limit his actions as a means for all of us to coexist under one roof.
    I. I further noted that only I, as their father, was tasked with controlling them. There are only two kinds of control in this world, self-control and others-control, and if they got to be my size without self-control, the others-control would come with badges, guns and bad attitudes. (I suspect that the vicious behaviors of girls also need to be deprogrammed.)
    J. I ended by saying that my hands were already quite full running my own life, leaving me with no wish to run theirs for a moment longer than it took them to learn self-control.

    My older two kids required but a single session on my lap. My youngest, very headstrong, took three lap iterations. After that, their mother or I could point to the couch and say, “SIT” and each time they’d immediate do so. They were all very self-controlled before heading off to kindergarten, and promptly ran rings around their peers (and still do as adults.)

    I never had to spank, slap or hit a kid. I’ll aver that into teenage years I was incited a couple times (never struck, but did grab upper arms hard enough to leave weals) but these were the normal conflicts between proto-adults and parent, and required adult-to-adult anger management strategies, not “parenting” strategies per se.

    Violence should be reserved for those who direct it at you, not as a strategy for social interaction. See Facing Violence by Rory Miller for an excellent discussion of social vs anti-social violence, and how some cultures and even American sub-cultures are rife with social violence.

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  85. This piece reminds me of the joke about the constipated mathematician. He worked it out with a pencil. My back of the envelope calculation suggests that you shouldn’t step on ants.

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  86. @Wizard of Oz
    I think there is a stylised form of physical coercion used by men on women and possible in most male-female relationships. If a woman tries anything physical that a man might want to resist whether taking something from him or hitting or slapping or throwing a wet sponge etc he may well just prove his superior power, maybe causing minor pain, typically by holding her wrists so she cannot mover her arms, pinning her arms from behind and lifting her off the floor (actually my very athletic 16 year old son did that to me with a grin when I was a pretty athletic 41 year old) or upending her and holding her down.

    My wife never needed a reminder that in the physical realm I was by far dominant, any more than I needed a reminder that her civilizing influence was a tremendous benefit to me. All successful relationships are based on mutual respect, and wise people seek out every opportunity to pay their loved ones merited respect. The notion of pushing my wife around doesn’t compute, any more than the notion of her manipulating me (against my interests) would compute to her.

    On our wedding day I was 10″ taller and literally double her weight. Oh, how I do love sexual dimorphism! She’s still a cutie to this day, with three sons grown to adulthood and thriving in their own lives.

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  87. Renoman says:

    If I ever raised a hand to my wife she would wait till I was asleep and quietly cut my throat.
    She would be correct to do so.

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    You might call it delayed self-defense. I call it murder.
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  88. What a ridiculous analysis this is. Typical white knight mangina lunacy.

    A man one standard deviation up from the mean, has roughly the same advantage over a man one standard deviation down from the mean, as he does for a woman, one standard deviation up from the mean. And not much beyond his similar advantage over a woman at the mean.

    The analysis might as well say that no man should ever hit another man who is physically smaller or weaker than he is. Yet no rational person would make this statement.
    The use of this chart to reinforce the traditional Euro cultural prohibition against men hitting women is absurd. That prohibition was always conditional. A large part of the condition was the woman acknowledging the general authority of man. So that even a small act of violence by the woman could only be met by minimal protective force by the man assaulted. And verbal aggression, threats, etc, were to be endured without physical reaction by men.
    Another man, no matter how much weaker was not granted this beneficence, because he too was a man, and enjoyed the general authority of men, so was held to the same accountability and exposure as all men.
    In a world where women assert equality in all avenues of life. Deny any authority to men, and even demand their willing submission to women, women have no claim to an exemption.
    In that world, if a woman initiates violence, a man has a right to return the violence in the same way he would to another man.
    In that world, any person, male or female, has no right to initiate violence or deliberately provoke violence through abusive behavior. And no person who does so has an exemption from a justified reaction. Being female and generally weaker does not create that exemption. Not in a world where the rest of tradition has been discarded to create a female power hegemony.
    Constructing a society where women enjoy all of the privileges accorded men in traditional society, and a host of new feminist privileges as well that specifically harm men, and where women continue to demand all of the traditional privileges accorded to them…While simultaneously denying men any traditional privilege, denying them any new privilege under the feminist hegemony, and yet demanding that they adhere to all of their traditional roles and obligations, is insane.
    If women want equality, they must accept it completely. That means there are times when a man can hit a woman in the same way he can hit a man. Our feminist females and their mangina white knights don’t like that. Too bad. They asked for it.

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    A man one standard deviation up from the mean, has roughly the same advantage over a man one standard deviation down from the mean, as he does for a woman, one standard deviation up from the mean. And not much beyond his similar advantage over a woman at the mean.
     
    I think the more general message here is you shouldn't go around hitting people who are physically weaker than you, regardless of gender. Generally best to not hit people at all really, but it's especially bad to pick on those who can't defend themselves.
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  89. notanon says:
    @BurplesonAFB
    Of course it's LARPing, but do you personally have a handgun within arms reach right now? No you don't. And that's true of 90%+ of people, even in 'merica.

    Was your dad punching you as hard as he could? Doubtful or he'd have broken noses, jaws, orbitals. Was your mom slapping you as hard as she could? Maybe.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LPboeNKMngc

    As an aside, what does this say about domestic violence in homosexual relationships which don't have nearly the same taboo against hitting one another?

    As an aside, what does this say about domestic violence in homosexual relationships which don’t have nearly the same taboo against hitting one another?

    It’s a huge thing in lesbian relationships – worse than straight – possibly related to this topic, less restraint.

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  90. Max says:
    @Anatoly Karlin
    Some random thoughts on this.

    (1) The media certainly has played a bit role in this. Not just films and books but also video games. Things like chicks in bikini armor dropping ridiculously muscular Orc chieftains in Skyrim. This might be another yet another reason why ignorance of biological realities increases amongst the younger demographics.

    (2) That recent "debate" over how well Ronda Rousey would do against the top ranked males of her weight class. The commentators who said she'd get her ass kicked were roundly excoriated but they were surely correct. In reality, considering bell curve realities, she probably would not even make it into the top 100.

    (3) Another product of biological egalitarianism is equal portion sizes in households which predictably leads to higher female obesity than would otherwise be the case.

    (2) That recent “debate” over how well Ronda Rousey would do against the top ranked males of her weight class. The commentators who said she’d get her ass kicked were roundly excoriated but they were surely correct. In reality, considering bell curve realities, she probably would not even make it into the top 100.

    lol, get serious, she wouldn’t make the top 1000. No “probably” about it.

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  91. I checked results for Olympic weightlifters. The 69kg male record is 166kg for the snatch. The 69kg female record is 128kg. Thats a difference of 29.6%. It’s a significant difference.

    Not as much as I had expected, though.

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  92. guest says:
    @Renoman
    If I ever raised a hand to my wife she would wait till I was asleep and quietly cut my throat.
    She would be correct to do so.

    You might call it delayed self-defense. I call it murder.

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  93. @dc.sunsets
    I was figuratively lynched on a comments section for suggesting that men, on average, are better at combat-style shooting with pistols than are women, even though I added the qualifier that women are generally good enough with pistols to defend themselves (if they get a modicum of training and practice, same as men.)

    I cited the IDPA and USPSA 2014 national competitions as proof; men and women compete on the same courses of fire, and some of the women are industry-sponsored, so they get a lot more trigger-time than some of the male competitors who place well ahead of them in the competitions. Men clearly dominated both of these competitive stand-ins for armed combat.

    A (presumed) woman who took offense to my "misogyny" suggested Serena Williams as a strong woman who could kick men's asses in tennis, so I linked to a Wikipedia article on top speeds of the serves for various male and female tennis pros, showing that Serena Williams wasn't even remotely competitive with any male listed (and she'd probably lose matches to talented college tennis players.) After that, I got called every name in the book.

    Women, apparently not satisfied to be women, are now outraged at any notion that they can't excel more at being men than actual men.

    I know at least one woman who out-performs her military trained husband with the old government 45 automatic. Women have good small motor control and with training can be good pistol shots.

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  94. @Jokah Macpherson
    I saw Frozen for the first time over Thanksgiving and given my interest the subject of sex differences I was immediately incredulous at the end where Anna decks out Hans with a single punch. Then I remembered that this was within the bounds of a cartoon with conjured snowstorms and talking snowmen, so one more fantastical element doesn't make much of a difference.

    Does anyone find it weird that Jared Fogle is in prison for 16+ years but Greg Hardy is still earning big bucks playing for the Dallas Cowboys? I know there's legal reasons related to the witness and all but it seems like paying for sex with marginal minors is the lesser of two evils compared to actual physical violence against a woman.

    Knocking someone over isn’t just about brute strength though. She just needs to apply enough force to push his centre of mass over the railing and steadies himself. Getting a quick, solid blow in right at the start is as much about finesse as it is about strength. I’ve seen it done. One of the guys on a construction site I was on made the mistake of calling our safety officer a rude word for lesbians after she rejected his advances. She clocked him right on his nose and knocked him flat on his butt. She’s not a big woman – quite the opposite – but she’s wiry and tough as nails.

    Now, that doesn’t mean a more prolonged altercation would have gone well.

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  95. szopen says:
    @Pseudonymic Handle
    What is FFM? Googling didn't help.

    Fat Free Mass. Go and read the article.

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  96. szopen says:
    @Pseudonymic Handle
    Modern stereotypes of ancient weapons are wrong, swords are not manly and bows are not girly.
    Swords are light weapons (2-4 lb), and are well balanced, with the centre of gravity near the handguard, so they can be used by a weak person, like a woman. The naginata spear was the traditional weapon of the japanese women.
    A hunting bow for large game needs about 60 lb of force and that's about the force of an untrained adult male. Bows used in war in Europe and Asia required over 100 lb of force, even as much as 140 lb.
    Contrary to Hollywood cliches a woman could swing a 2.5 lb knightly sword but could not pull a war bow.

    Are you the guy who made those youtube videos, or you have just forgotten to provide proper references?

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  97. keypusher says:
    @spandrell
    The Water Margin has women generals kicking ass in war, handling heavy spears and swords and beating men like it was no big deal.

    That's a 700 year old book. The fantasy runs deep.

    I think is just that stories sell better when there are hottie around than when it's only men, but the authors didn't want to derail the narrative with girly stuff, so they put the hotties in the battlefield.

    But the stereotype of the strong woman 女汉子, has been set, and it's very popular. China has tons of semibutch lesbians which Japan or Korea don't. The only explanation is this sort of popular culture trickling down.

    Interesting, I didn’t know that about Chinese literature. In Western lit there are the Amazons, Camilla in the Aeneid, and quite a few great female warriors in Boiardo, Ariosto, and Tasso.

    I saw Frozen for the first time over Thanksgiving and given my interest the subject of sex differences I was immediately incredulous at the end where Anna decks out Hans with a single punch.

    Maybe women hitting men is becoming a thing in cartoons now. There’s a strange scene in Wreck-It Ralph in which a female warrior-character, Calhoun, entertains a grove of anthropomorphic vines by repeatedly punching little Fix-It Felix in the face. Not only does this make the vines laugh, it causes Calhoun and Felix to fall in love with each other!

    Probably an interesting paper in there.

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  98. @eyesfrontmen
    What a ridiculous analysis this is. Typical white knight mangina lunacy.

    A man one standard deviation up from the mean, has roughly the same advantage over a man one standard deviation down from the mean, as he does for a woman, one standard deviation up from the mean. And not much beyond his similar advantage over a woman at the mean.

    The analysis might as well say that no man should ever hit another man who is physically smaller or weaker than he is. Yet no rational person would make this statement.
    The use of this chart to reinforce the traditional Euro cultural prohibition against men hitting women is absurd. That prohibition was always conditional. A large part of the condition was the woman acknowledging the general authority of man. So that even a small act of violence by the woman could only be met by minimal protective force by the man assaulted. And verbal aggression, threats, etc, were to be endured without physical reaction by men.
    Another man, no matter how much weaker was not granted this beneficence, because he too was a man, and enjoyed the general authority of men, so was held to the same accountability and exposure as all men.
    In a world where women assert equality in all avenues of life. Deny any authority to men, and even demand their willing submission to women, women have no claim to an exemption.
    In that world, if a woman initiates violence, a man has a right to return the violence in the same way he would to another man.
    In that world, any person, male or female, has no right to initiate violence or deliberately provoke violence through abusive behavior. And no person who does so has an exemption from a justified reaction. Being female and generally weaker does not create that exemption. Not in a world where the rest of tradition has been discarded to create a female power hegemony.
    Constructing a society where women enjoy all of the privileges accorded men in traditional society, and a host of new feminist privileges as well that specifically harm men, and where women continue to demand all of the traditional privileges accorded to them...While simultaneously denying men any traditional privilege, denying them any new privilege under the feminist hegemony, and yet demanding that they adhere to all of their traditional roles and obligations, is insane.
    If women want equality, they must accept it completely. That means there are times when a man can hit a woman in the same way he can hit a man. Our feminist females and their mangina white knights don't like that. Too bad. They asked for it.

    A man one standard deviation up from the mean, has roughly the same advantage over a man one standard deviation down from the mean, as he does for a woman, one standard deviation up from the mean. And not much beyond his similar advantage over a woman at the mean.

    I think the more general message here is you shouldn’t go around hitting people who are physically weaker than you, regardless of gender. Generally best to not hit people at all really, but it’s especially bad to pick on those who can’t defend themselves.

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  99. @froginthewell
    Some 15% of domestic violence victims are supposed to be male (in most categories of domestic violence). Does that gel with the statistics of this post?

    Men are victims of female aggression at rates far above just ~15%. It just goes unreported. Men feel ashamed to ask for help, naturally, as it will emasculate them. Moreover when cops are called to DV situations they generally assume the male is the protagonist due to our society’s total feminized character (pedestalization of women always).

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  100. too many MRA loser comments having to be deleted. closing thread.

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