so i failed to be impressed with brian edwards' attitude towards the high school student who objected to being told she looked like a slut (or somesuch). there was a healthy dose of not getting the point that using abusive language towards a student was not actually going to shock her into behaving in a manner whereby she would be safe from sexual violence. because there is in fact no such behaviour that will guarantee safety.
he tops that effort with a post highlighting the lack of courage shown by tradespeople who won't be honest about the fact that they are unable to take on a small job. which is a reasonable complaint - if you're too busy to do the job within a reasonable timeframe, say so and let the potential customer deal with someone else.
but look at the descriptors he uses to describe this lack of courage:
These pathetic wimps, wusses, chicken livers, cream puffs, crybabies, fraidy cats, milksops, momma’s boys, pantywaists, sissies, yellow bellies and big girl’s blouses do not have the cojones to tell even a little old lady they can’t concrete her drive...
surely it's not just me who objects to the fact that most of these descriptors equate lack of courage with feminity ie with being like a woman or being close to women. really, you couldn't have made your point without "momma's boys", "sissies" or "big girl's blouses"? it's such a terrible thing for a man to be close to his mother that this mere fact needs to be used as an insult? and just to ram the point home, he adds the implication that courage is dependent on having male genetalia. nice.
i'm also not liking the fact that he is equating a "lack of assertiveness" with lack of honesty. the problem is not that these tradespeople have trouble in being assertive, it's that they have trouble being honest about their workload and their ability to do the job. lacking assertiveness is not a bad thing, in and of itself. some people aren't assertive by nature, but that certainly doesn't make them less than anyone else. having seen a couple of people being put down simply for not being outgoing and assertive, i know how harmful that kind of judgement can be. perhaps mr edwards doesn't believe that the meek shall inherit the earth, but that doesn't mean they deserve contempt.
as i've said before, language is often a tool of discrimination, and he has provided a healthy dose of it here. language matters, it shapes the culture and environment people live in, it can aid in marginalisation, especially when it's used in the way it is here. mr edwards works in the field of media and communication, so i can't imagine that he would be unaware of this fact. i can only deduce that he chose to ignore it.