The winter of 1620 was a devastating one for the colonists who had just arrived from England in New Plymouth. They suffered from scurvy, exposure to the elements, and terrible living conditions. Almost half (45 out of 102) died; only four of the remaining were women.
They made contact with the Wampanoag tribe in March. The tribe taught them how to grow corn and donated food to the colony. Thank to their help, the pilgrims were able to celebrate a harvest, or thanksgiving, that fall. It was attended by the 53 remaining pilgrims and 90 indigenous Americans.
That’s why this Red Bull commercial is so annoying. In the final 12 seconds, you see four pilgrims and two Indians, three women and three men. So, by pure numbers, reversed and heavily female. The turkey is served by a pilgrim, sending the message that the pilgrims were feeding the Indians and not vice versa. It’s a woman, of course, but likely most of the food preparation would have done by men, since they were 77% of the colonist population.
But, it nicely lines up with how we apparently think the world should be today: multicultural but majority white, with women cooking, and everyone paired up in same-race, heterosexual monogamy.
Privilege comes in many forms: class privilege, white privilege, male privilege, heterosexual privilege and so on. Being privileged means that you “fit” in the society in which you live and reap rewards by virtue of just being.
Recognizing privilege isn’t just a matter of being thoughtful or empathetic, it usually involves sacrificing something. Sometimes it’s something big (like the belief that your success is due entirely to your talents and hard work) and sometimes it’s something small.
The person who sent this confession to PostSecret is admitting to feeling frustrated by giving up one of those small benefits that come with privilege:
@Anne_Rev sent us this scary Halloween pumpkin. In France, she explains, there is a conservative fear of gender studies, described as “a dangerous theory imported from the U.S. and threatening children.” Oh those frightening feminists!
It turns out, there’s a nice Halloween field experiment. Here’s the setup. On Halloween, a woman answers the door and invites the trick-or-treaters in. She tells them to “take one,” and then leaves the room leaving the bowl of candy and a bowl of nickels and pennies (adjusting for inflation: dimes and quarters, maybe even half-dollars). They did this experiment at 27 houses with a total of 1,300 kids.
Overall, most kids (69%) took one. But conditions mattered.
In one experimental manipulation, the woman either asked the kids who they were and where they lived or she allowed them to be anonymous. Experimenters also noted whether the kids were trick-or-treating alone or in groups. For some groups, the woman designated the smallest kid in the group as being in charge of making sure that kids took only one. All these variables made a difference.
The greatest rate of cheating (80%) occurred when the smallest child was being responsible but everyone was anonymous. Diener reasoned that with responsibility shifted to the smallest link, the other kids would feel freer to break the rule.
Those who did cheat usually took only an additional one to three candies. But, of those who did grab more than what was offered, 20% took both candy and coins. Unfortunately, the Snickers study is not like the marshmallow study, so we don’t know where those greediest kids are now.
In many parts of the Western world, Halloween (for adult women, and increasingly for girls too) has morphed into an opportunity or imperative to dress sexy. These costumes for women and girls are par for the course, where men usually go for scary, funny, or creative. Brandi H., however, found a link to “sexy costumes for men” at msn.com that claims “There are sexy options for men, too.”
Let’s take a look. While women’s sexy costumes are typically decidedly sexy (tight with lots of exposed skin), these men’s “sexy” costumes are simply suggestive. In two cases, they “suggest” that men should be sexually serviced or played with (the “breathalyzer” and the “ring toss”):
In a third, the joke is that he is a perfect candidate for casual sex (the “one night stand”):
In a fourth, the costume is simply sexy because it’s related to (stereotypes) about prostitution (the “hustler”):
So, when women go sexy for Halloween, it usually means being seen as a sex object for others. When men go sexy, it means joking about how men should be sexually serviced, have access to one night stands, or being in charge of and profiting from women’s bodies. A different type of “sexy” entirely.
The other two costumes are simply non-sensical in context. I suppose policemen (and men in uniform in general) are supposed to be sexy in American culture. And I guess bunnies are related to Playboy bunnies? But the costume certainly misses the mark.