Notebook Entries June 2007

Notebook entry, June 25th, 2007

I finished the essay that I mentioned in the notebook entry of June 8th. It went fairly well. I think I borrowed too much from this web site called but it was too well written in terms of its clear message and citations. To assuage my guilt, I have decided to give them a permanent spot on my web site as a link of special interest to students. The full title of the essay: "Menstrual Odors, Dirty Diapers, and the Male Dominated Religious Quest For Purity: Giving Birth to Misogyny, Ethnic, and Racial Discriminations Originating in the Human Biological Emotion of Disgust. You can read the essay from this link: Menstrual Odors, Dirty Diapers, and the Male Dominated Religious Quest For Purity

Notebook entry, June 8th, 2007

There was a very interesting article in the June 4th 2007 issue of Time magazine on page 51. It was in the LIFE section under "Behavior" and its title is "The Ewww Factor," by Michael D. Lemonick. The article highlights two scientists, Andrea Morales and Gavan Fitzsimons who specialize in the psychological study of disgust. I consider this as very important article because it opens the door to allow the common person to understand various mechanisms behind certain select discriminations - in particular against women, and all humans considered to be "inferior."

The important keywords here are: "touch transference." "It's a fancy term for cooties," Time quotes one of the scientists. If something repulsive touches something benign, the latter, even if it is physically unchanged, becomes 'infected.'"

If social scientists were quick to sum up the mechanism of discriminations found in all cultures, a person would find social dominance orientation theories between dominates and subordinates prevailing. But to "take the elevator down" one floor into the biological origins as to why dominates have such thoughts is that they believe that the social subordinates are "dirty" and carry disease. The German Nazi propaganda movies of the 1940s are the ones that quickly jump into my consciousness when they target "the Jews."

Then my mind quickly jumps to the current American political debates of 2007, which finds the subject of the mass entry of "illegal aliens," a hot potato issue. [I prefer to think of them as "being invited by illegal employers" seeking cheap labor. [The messages on the knuckle-crawling radio air waves scream out the message that these "inferiors" bring disease with them [the main 'disease' de jour in the spring of 2007 is leprosy] and crowd up "our" hospitals and schools which extort various social costs and commitments "from our pockets."

One it comes to human behavior that revolves around this "touch transference" considering the "repulsive" touching something "benign," one is reminded of the "birthing" order between dominates and subordinates. If a Nazi German -so called, pure in bloodline -- would to have sexual intercourse with a Jewish woman, and the female became pregnant, then it is interesting to note that the child born would still be considered "inferior" by the dominate German social norms. The same could be said about the black African-American slaves and white slaveholders in the American South.. In both cases, the children born do not rise up into the higher ranks of the social dominate circles, but remains in the "inferior" subordinate ranks. In both cases, the child remains a subordinate. My question is -- why is the child not lifted into the higher social ranking by the mating with a "superior" dominate??? Why is the child of such a mating always forces the child to remain in the lower social rank?

Because in all likelyhood the child would still be attached to the subordinate female. And because the "group" behavioral social norms that are formed from our ancient evolutionary brains that revolve around social hierarchies still believes that resources are scarce and that "allowing" others considered "inferior" into the ranks of the social dominates could possibly hurt the available resources, and thus, lead to food shortages, and ultimately, possibly death. You must remember that our "minds" were formed long before the social norms where established in Greek, Roman, and Victorian England societies.

Prominent paragraphs from the Time article:

"In a series of studies, the researchers found not only that some products - trash bags, diapers, kitty litter, tampons - evoke a subconscious feeling of disgust even before they're used for their ultimate messy purposes, but they can also transfer their general ickiness to anything they come in contact with."

"This may be the first study, though, that reveals an evolutionary basis to shopping preferences. Low threshold revulsion makes sense, protecting our ancestors from eating rotten or poisonous food or touching animals that had died of infectious disease. The face of disgust - with the nose wrinkled and the eyes squinted as if against some pungent smell, and the tongue often protruding as if spitting something out - tells you a lot. "It was probably," says Fitzsimons, "a pretty good proxy for the germ theory of disease before anyone knew germs existed."

"The idea that negative qualities can be passed by a touch has become hardwired, say Fitzsimons. (That applies to good qualities too, which is why touching a holy object or person is considered a way of acquiring a little holiness for oneself.)"
"…everything we did suggested that these feelings were below the level of awareness."

These solid scientific findings are very important because not only to they give us a clue about the early ways our ancestors remained alive in the jungle, the studies also lead us down a path to the biological origins of misogyny. ..........

I am currently expanding these thoughts and will attempt to write a short essay with the same lead-in.

Notebook entry, June 5th, 2007

My computer caught hold of a virus this past month, and I have been spending that time backing up Word Docs and assorted files. It was time consuming, but it feels good knowing that my machine is free of spying bugs except those from the NSA. I mean after all, you can't have every Tom, Dick and Harry producing a web site telling the world what its problems are and actually presenting ideas that can solve them. That has been the only reason for no entries for almost three weeks.

Just kidding about the NSA. Have a great day.