The BanBossy campaign. Yes, I get what their point is. But no, I'm not going to praise a child for pushing other kids around and pretend it's them showing leadership skills.
Amen on this because there 's a big difference between being a leader and being bossy. A good leader is willing to consider the opinions of others. A bossy person isn't.
Until recently, it seems that 'bossy' was the female equivalent of the male 'bully'. Now that bully is an equal opportunity epithet, maybe it is time for 'bossy' to go.
...It's not about letting kids be bullies. It's about preventing girls from being called 'bossy' and shut down when they display genuine leadership skills.
(As with everything else in life, I'm sure some people will do it the wrong way, but that doesn't mean the campaign itself is wrong.)
While I understand this, I've never heard someone called bossy just for having leadership skills and being assertive, whether male or female. It seems easier and more productive to me to focus on building leadership skills within Girl Scouts instead of just saying, "We need to ban the word bossy!" Honestly, I've been called just about every word in the book at this point in my life, and, while, yes, it hurts at the time, I've had to learn to just not care. If it's true, I'll take it under advisement. If not, I don't care about the opinion of a jerk.
.........okay, it's nice that some people have the self-esteem to ignore stuff like this, but for other people it's stuff like this that destroys their self-esteem. Yes, i got called 'bossy' in school, for putting my hand up in class when a boy was mad at me for getting more answers right on a test than he had. The teacher told me that maybe I should try not to 'stand out' so much. I still clearly remember feeling crushed and embarrassed, because I'd been so happy to know the answer, but the teacher had taken that boy's side, so I must have been wrong somehow. Being obviously right in class was wrong.
So I stopped putting my hand up in class, at all. And at the end of term that teacher still put on my report card that I had to learn not to 'dominate classroom discussion'.
Did you know that there are studies showing that if girls are taking up 15% of classroom time, boys - and most teachers - think they're getting equal time? And if they get 30% of classroom time, boys think they're never shutting up? And one of the most common ways to get them to shut up is to tell them they're being bossy (or pushy, or unfeminine, or... There are a lot of words that get used against girls). I will look up links and post them when I get home and am not typing on my phone.
So yes, I care about this. I think it could be a good idea, done right. And honestly, having someone object to unfair treatment and immediately be mocked with a joke or made-up story painting them as whiny and petty is one of the ways people try to shut down legitimate complaints, so no, I did not laugh at that comic.
I'm sorry. Either I misunderstood what you were saying or we are reading that comic in completely different ways.
I was also called bossy, stuck up, and another word that starts with 'B'. I still am, sometimes. It was a long time before I stopped feeling bad every time someone said something like that. One of the ways I felt better about it was kind of owning it and redefining it in my head. I actually got a (pretty jerky) guy to say once that all those kind of insults meant was "woman that doesn't agree with me." I agree with the girls in the comic, but I didn't mean to offend.
We're reading it differently.
I have no problem with people wanting to reclaim the word instead of asking people not to use it! I, uh, don't think it's a useful strategy, for reasons which are entirely off-topic in this thread but I am happy to discuss if anyone wants to PM me, but my opinion is not the be-all and end-all of wisdom and hey, if you wanna try and it actually works I will cheer and admit I was wrong.
So my problem is not that the little kids in the comic are suggesting that.
(...though wow, they're articulate and use some big words for little munchkins, and like I said I do disagree with their argument, and while I'm on the subject I remember the adults
as the ones pushing that 'words will never hurt me' line when I was little... we kids knew differently. Ahem. Back on track, Mel.)
No, if the comic ended with Sheryl Sandburg blinking at the (tiny fictional joke writer stand-in) kids open-mouthed for one frame, and then saying something like "...You know what, I'll get back to you on that", I would have no problem with it at all. The opposing viewpoint would have been presented in an amusing way, a little gentle fun would have been poked at Sheryl but nothing over the top, haha, I probably would have snickered. My problem is that instead, they presented Sheryl as being considerably less mature and intelligent than the kids (resorting to name-calling instead of discussion), and also portrayed her as abandoning her "Ban Bossy" principles when she doesn't get instant agreement, because ooh! She calls them bossy! Subtext: We don't think she really means it. She's just putting on a front to get publicity and adulation.
That's not presenting an argument, that's belittling your opponent, which is not exactly a stellar debating technique. (My primary school would have buzzed them and deducted points for an ad hominem attack if our debate teams had tried that. Just sayin'.) And then if you look further down the webpage this comic is on, there's a handy little survey asking you what's the most bossy thing about the "Ban Bossy" campaign.
There is no option for "I actually agree with Sheryl". There isn't even a neutral "I don't agree with Ban Bossy but I don't think it's a bad thing either" option. There's a 'humorous' "Hold on, by teasing poor Sheryl Sandberg, this comic is being bossy! Stop being bossy!!!" option, which is... pretty well repeating the comic punchline by saying that anybody who supports her will resort to the exact name-calling they're trying to stop as soon as they get pushback, and there's one where you can pity Marc Zuckerberg for "having to work with her". Because it's so utterly terrible for a man to have to work with an assertive woman. We must now call her 'bossy' and teach her her place.
*cough* Uh. Yeah. I have opinions, m'kay, and that comic and the snarky little survey pinged a lot
of my "OH YOU DID NOT JUST DO THAT" buttons.
Well, I promised links, and here's a couple!
Here's a good article about the 'ban bossy' campaign, with a bunch of links to follow if you want to read more (not all of which agree with it! there is reasonable discussion and argument without belittling anyone! this is good!): http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/mar/12/ban-bossy-sheryl-sandberg-beyonce-campaign
This one's about the myth that women talk more than men: http://www.pbs.org/speak/speech/prejudice/women/
(and here's a very relevant quote from it)
Perceptions and Implications
If social confidence explains the greater contributions of women in some social contexts, it is worth asking why girls in school tend to contribute less than boys. Why should they feel unconfident in the classroom? Here is the answer which one sixteen-year-old gave:
Sometimes I feel like saying that I disagree, that there are other ways of looking at it, but where would that get me? My teacher thinks I’m showing off, and the boys jeer. But if I pretend I don’t understand, it’s very different. The teacher is sympathetic and the boys are helpful. They really respond if they can show YOU how it is done, but there’s nothing but ‘aggro’ if you give any signs of showing THEM how it is done.
Talking in class is often perceived as ‘showing off’, especially if it is girl-talk. Until recently, girls have preferred to keep a low profile rather than attract negative attention.
Teachers are often unaware of the gender distribution of talk in their classrooms. They usually consider that they give equal amounts of attention to girls and boys, and it is only when they make a tape recording that they realize that boys are dominating the interactions. Dale Spender, an Australian feminist who has been a strong advocate of female rights in this area, noted that teachers who tried to restore the balance by deliberately ‘favouring’ the girls were astounded to find that despite their efforts they continued to devote more time to the boys in their classrooms. Another study reported that a male science teacher who managed to create an atmosphere in which girls and boys contributed more equally to discussion felt that he was devoting 90 per cent of his attention to the girls. And so did his male pupils. They complained vociferously that the girls were getting too much talking time.
And the BBC chimes in: http://www.bbc.co.uk/voices/yourvoice/classroom_talk.shtml
Phew. Apologies for the derail, everyone; I didn't realise this was such a hot button for me, but I guess it is, so you get a big wodge of hopefully-well-cited info dump! Definitely one of my 'little things' that drives me up several walls and possibly a skyscraper, so perhaps it's not off topic after all.
If anyone wants to keep discussing this I would love to, but we'd probably better take it to PM or a separate thread...