Reason Podcast

Let’s Talk About Sex Differences with Christina Hoff Sommers and Debra Soh: Podcast

Frank talk about evolution, feminism, politics, and why we don't want to acknowledge social progress.

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Few topics inspire more anxiety, anger, and confusion than sex differences between men and women. If you believe in evolution, you believe that sex differences between men and women are real and persistent. If you believe in libertarian values of individualism and freedom, you want everyone to be treated equally under the law, in the workplace, and in social settings.

On today's Reason Podcast, I talk with Christina Hoff Sommers and Debra Soh about our constantly evolving understanding of gender roles, how biology and culture shape our expectations, the successes and excesses of contemporary feminism, what today's sexism looks like, and how best to measure progress. Both were in New York to speak at a panel titled "Who's Afraid of Sex Differences?" organized by the Independent Women's Forum.

Sommers is a resident scholar at Washington, D.C.'s American Enterprise Institute, the author of such well-known books as Who Stole Feminism and The War Against Boys, and co-host (with Danielle Crittenden) of the Femsplainers podcast. Soh is a Toronto-based psychologist who writes frequently on gender and science issues for The Globe and Mail and Playboy, and co-hosts (with Jonathan Kay) a podcast called Wrongspeak for the website Quillette.

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53 responses to “Let’s Talk About Sex Differences with Christina Hoff Sommers and Debra Soh: Podcast

  1. Christina Hoff Sommers.

    Would.

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    1. You’d probably break her hip.

      1. No, CHS on top.

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    2. In general, women ARE too emotional, inferior, not as capable as men.
      Physically, men are so dominant that women simply cannot compete. The best female women athletes in the known history of the world are on par with high school boys. So basically, anything that requires strength, speed, endurance, power, eye-hand coordination – is an area dominated by men. This applies to the very best female athletes of all time.

      Mentally, men and women are different. Some women are rational – but others – most – are dominated by their emotions. The DemonCRAPs are the party of women. The DemonCRAPs embraces a “social safety net” policy that is responsible for the majority of US debt. In effect, women’s fear is dooming America.

      So a good test for whether a person – woman or otherwise – is rational, ask them for their views on socialism.

  2. Men are from Mars, women are from Venus imo

    1. Everyone knows what planet Crustys are from

        1. You’re Darryl Dawkins? Holy shit!

            1. posting skills otherworldly considering.

  3. Whoa, full on alt right Nazi with Debra soh.

    1. Build the Northern Wall!!!!

  4. “Few topics inspire more anxiety, anger, and confusion than sex differences between men and women.”

    Anxiety because how am I going to repay my student loan for a woke studies degree, anger because no one wants to date someone who lectures them about invisible backpacks, and confusion because deep down I’m not sure whether or not we are defining “sex” and “gender” differently this week

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  6. Nick, you should have been talking about sex with Salt and Pepa. Baby.

    1. I remember when “Push It” was on the radio back in the 1980’s. Tipper Gore failed me. 🙂

  7. call your self anything you want your still either a man or a woman even if you are born with both sets of genitals with very very rare exceptions

    1. There are some abnormalities, X only, XXY, YYX, or other multiple sex chromosome schemes. There are also a few mosaic schemes – different cells have different sets. About 0.1% of the population has some abnormal set. These have some characteristics that are outside the norm.

      But 99.9% XY or XX.

      1. “These have some characteristics that are outside the norm.”

        What norm is that? The only norm that matters is whether or not an individual can parent a child and pass down their genes according to Darwin. And there are plenty of your normal people who fail that test.

        1. It depends on one’s goal in life. Couples can decide their own relationship goals. That being said, there are Americans who cite Darwin to prove the futility of following traditional Jewish and Christian theology, and then there are Americans who have many grandchildren.

          1. “It depends on one’s goal in life. ”

            That will be news to those here who believe that chromosomes is destiny.

        2. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2008 Jan;93(1):182-9

          A 46,XY mother who developed as a normal woman underwent spontaneous puberty, reached menarche, menstruated regularly, experienced two unassisted pregnancies, and gave birth to a 46,XY daughter with complete gonadal dysgenesis.

          1 in 300 men are not 46,XY. Some women are.

          1. First, it’s 46.XX/46,XY, not “46,XY” because one needs the XX and the XY for this to work.

            It’s two fused fraternal twins of different sexes. A chimera.

            Second, it’s a phenotypically normal woman–she was not normal in any other sense.

            Third, there is no clear way to have a rate of occurrence since all kinds of chimerism are incredibly hard to detect unless they are debilitating in some way right from the outset.

            1. I’m pretty sure that non-mosaic XY women exist. Most have obvious problems because of it, but some apparently don’t.

  8. If you believe in libertarian values of individualism and freedom, you want everyone to be treated equally under the law, in the workplace, and in social settings.

    This is why there are no female libertarians!

    1. It shouldn’t be any mystery. This legal equality works best for a women when she suppresses her female values and takes on the values of a man.

  9. If you believe in libertarian values of individualism and freedom, you want everyone to be treated equally under the law, in the workplace, and in social settings.

    No, you blithering fucking idiot, just NO.

    If you believe in libertarian values then you want everyone treated equally BEFORE (not ‘under’, there’s a very important semantic difference there) the law. Period.

    You do not interfere in business, and you do not interfere in interpersonal contacts. THAT is totalitarianism. To have your political philosophy be one that controls all aspects of life–however benign you might think it is– is wrong.

    It is the antithesis of liberty.

    Though, given the slant of reason of late, that might be what they’re aiming for.

    1. No, you blithering fucking idiot, just NO.

      Glad someone else said it.

    2. Yeah, it should be legal to be a chaser or practice endogamy. The alternative is affirmative action in one’s love life.

  10. “sex differences between men and women are real and persistent”

    SCREEEEEEEEEEEEEECH!!! /SJW

    1. I know, I can pee standing up, my wife cannot, It really pisses her off!

      1. She can, but it is a bit messy – – – – – –

  11. “If you believe in libertarian values of individualism and freedom, you want everyone to be treated equally under the law, in the workplace, and in social settings.”

    Are we enforcing women quotas on the Navy Seals now?

    Are we insisting that VMI go coed now–even if they don’t accept any government money–because we’re libertarians?

    Because I’m a libertarian, I want the Catholic church to ordain women as priests?

    Because I’m a libertarian, I want people to be free to make choices for themselves.

    1. “Are we enforcing women quotas on the Navy Seals now?”

      Do the Navy Seals accept government money, or not?

  12. “Hormones are used to communicate between organs and tissues for physiological regulation and behavioral activities, such as digestion, metabolism, respiration, tissue function, sensory perception, sleep, excretion, lactation, stress, growth and development, movement, reproduction, and mood.[1][2]

    Because women and men are so different in so many ways, of course, doesn’t mean all sexes shouldn’t enjoy the full protection of their right to make choices for themselves, but the idea that men and women are the same? That’s gotta be a poor attempt at a noble lie. When I think of all the ways men and women are different, . . .

    One of the interesting differences between sexes I’ve read about is the way that things like adrenaline dissipate differently in the presence of estrogen vs. testosterone.

    We’re talking about trends here–not hard and fast rules. Suffice it to say, however, that adrenaline breaks down much more slowly in the bloodstream in the presence of estrogen. In the presence of testosterone, it tends to stop on a dime.

    1. What this tends to mean in practice is that women are often quite capable of knowing that they’re upset before they know exactly what it is that upset them. Ever had one of those occasions like when your significant other is mad because she thought you ate the last cupcake she was saving, but it turns out that it was hiding in the refrigerator behind the milk. She may not suddenly stop being upset just because what upset her turned out to be a false alarm. That adrenaline will not dissipate for a long time. Her heart rate is elevated, she may be breathing heavily, so she may start trying to figure out why it is that she’s upset. If it wasn’t because you ate the last cupcake, then maybe it’s because that time two weeks ago when you didn’t take out the garbage!

    2. That kind of thing tends to drive guys nuts because they don’t experience adrenaline that way. In fact, guy trend towards the opposite extreme. Women often realize they’re upset before they know exactly what upset them, but men often don’t realize they’re upset until they know what upset them. This tends to drive women crazy. They can see you’re upset, and when they ask you, “What’s wrong”, you look her in the eye and say “nothing”. Why is he lying to me? It’s often simply because he doesn’t know why he’s upset until he knows what it is that upset him. One difference is that once guys know what’s upsetting them, the adrenaline dissipates quickly. YOU ATE THE LAST CUPCAKE! turns into laughter as soon as the offending cupcake is found.

  13. Google tells me Debra Soh is Dr. Debra Soh. What kind of doctor? A Canadian sex doctor !

    1. She’s a PhuD.

      The kind you might wanna see in a schoolgirl outfit…..

  14. FtR, this study reads like a litany of differences between sexes in various thought processes associated with various hormones, etc. This bit is a good example:

    “The hypothesis that stress responses in men may be primarily characterized as “fight-or-flight” is supported by the observation that RPFC activation and LOrF deactivation with stress is predominately observed in the male brain. Involvement of the limbic system including ventral striatum, putamen, insula, and cingulate cortex underlies the stress response in females.[61] The observed limbic activation to stress in female subjects is more consistent with a ‘tend-and-befriend’ rather than a ‘fight-or-flight’ model.”

    “Estrogen effects on the brain: actions beyond the hypothalamus via novel mechanisms”

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pm…..MC3480182/

    1. Because the legitimate purpose of government is to protect the rights of women just as well as those of men, of course, doesn’t mean that there aren’t huge differences between men and women–including the way they think. In fact, treating women as if they were men is probably the easiest way to discriminate against them. That being said, rights are the obligation to respect someone’s choices. When women are treated as individuals whose right to make choices for themselves is sacrosanct, it effectively protects their ability to make choices for themselves as women. No further action is necessary.

      Anyone who thinks that true equality for women in terms of their rights requires us to believe in some noble lie that women and men are alike more than they are or that women need to be treated like men in order to have their rights respected is wrong–both in terms of the lie and on principle.

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  16. Feminism is Sexism in PRACTICE — IT is the very definition of Fascist!

    Its all about using inalienable “sex identity” to wield more power by Federal LAW to a particular sex.

    The Left makes a career out of redefining word meanings to be exact the opposite of what they actually do.

    Every individual has every right to have prejudice – its only an issue when LAW starts playing “identity politics” which is EXACTLY what the left-wing political field is doing!

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