The inevitable fate of a “conservatism” that has no roots

I wrote to a female correspondent:

Do you remember how, a few years ago, you used to admire Richard Lowry for his columns praising masculinity and masculine values against the attacks by modern feminist culture?

He hasn’t written on that theme in years. What he has done is gone along with the feminization of the military, and now with the homosexualization of the military.

What does this show? It shows that his writings on masculinity were not based on anything solid. They were just grains lying on hard ground, with no roots, and the first wind blew them away.

- end of initial entry -

Gilda A. writes:

You wrote: “I wrote to a female correspondent:”

Why did you think it necessary or desirable to specify “female”? I ask not only as a woman but as a copy editor.

Should readers assume that every unspecified person is male? Reporting on the 2010 Census results, Wikipedia (good enough, unless you dispute the finding) says: “There were 155.6 million females in the United States in 2009. The number of males was 151.4 million.”

Thank you.

P.S. I’ve meant to tell you how much I like your site’s graphic design—nice colors, serif body type, and fast loading.

LA replies:

It was relevant because it was a woman who was supporting Lowry’s evocations (weak though they were) of male qualities. It is important to make clear that women understand, in some ways better than men, the terrible costs of feminist society’s systematic downgrading of the male.

However, sometimes it is appropriate to say “female correspondent” for the reason you give: the great majority of commenters at conservative sites are male; and since in our language words such as “friend” or “correspondent” do not specify gender, it is useful and appropriate, at least sometimes, to specify that a particular unnamed commenter is female.

I agree with you about the site’s design. The site was created by James Kalb in 2002. While he was developing it, I complimented him on its look and readability, just as you are doing now.

(However, for those who find the typeface on the small side, please remember that you can easily enlarge it using your browser’s zoom feature, as discussed here. Depending on your eyesite, the typeface, especially the headlines, can be more vivid and readable when enlarged a bit.)

Posted by Lawrence Auster at January 21, 2011 10:26 AM | Send

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