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30 May 2016 07:22

Ofc it's not inherently, absolutely valuable, but given that society as a whole finds beauty/aesthetically pleasing physical appearance a valuable human quality, it's given that in general terms the better you look the more valuable you are. And that is just how the world is, like it or not.
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Re:

30 May 2016 07:26

Netserk wrote:Ofc it's not inherently, absolutely valuable, but given that society as a whole finds beauty/aesthetically pleasing physical appearance a valuable human quality, it's given that in general terms the better you look the more valuable you are. And that is just how the world is, like it or not.


Oh righto. So that is "just how the world is". That's OK then. And of course, because "that's just how how the world is" means that cultural change is impossible.
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Re:

30 May 2016 07:31

Netserk wrote:Ofc it's not inherently, absolutely valuable, but given that society as a whole finds beauty/aesthetically pleasing physical appearance a valuable human quality, it's given that in general terms the better you look the more valuable you are. And that is just how the world is, like it or not.

But it's not something a public website needs to support or bear out.
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30 May 2016 07:40

Here's how I see it.
The thread in itself was good, back when it showed pictures of (good looking) female bike riders, sitting on their bikes and looking like they actually knew what they were doing. It was great because it showed young women who might have been put off by the I'll look stupid mentality that you can ride a bike and still look good.
Unfortunately the thread seemed to degenerate from Babes on [b]Bikes[/b] to (half-naked) Babes Posing Awkwardly with Bikes, Looking as if They have no Idea What They're Doing.

Nothing wrong with appreciating a beautiful woman (or man) but you can still appreciate their looks even if they're actually dressed.
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30 May 2016 07:44

Can you show any culture anywhere in the world at any given time where aesthetically pleasing physical appearance wasn't a valuable human quality? Can you actually explain why that quality not only isn't valuable to you, but why it shouldn't be valuable to others?
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Re: Re:

30 May 2016 07:50

sniper wrote:
Netserk wrote:Ofc it's not inherently, absolutely valuable, but given that society as a whole finds beauty/aesthetically pleasing physical appearance a valuable human quality, it's given that in general terms the better you look the more valuable you are. And that is just how the world is, like it or not.

But it's not something a public website needs to support or bear out.


Exactly, which is how you begin the slow path to social change.

When I was a kid, racist jokes on TV shows were normal. That's how the world was, like it or not. It's taken a whole generation of people firmly resisting the idiocy of those that whine about 'political correctness' to enact change to the point that it is now socially unacceptable to treat people like crap just because of the colour of their skin.

It's interesting how immediate the reaction of some men is to the issue of women in society. They react as if THEY are being repressed. Or as if finding a woman beautiful is about to be outlawed. The one thing they don't do is stop and think without the immediate defensiveness.

Sexism (ie. treating women not as equal) is deeply imbued in society, ("it's just the way of the world, like it or not" :rolleyes: ). Women's salaries being lower than mens for doing the same job is just one example. It's precisely because the position of women is weaker that comparisons between what men do and what women do are fatuous. It's like white people thinking it is OK to call black people 'N*****' because they hear black people using the word on other black people.
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Re:

30 May 2016 08:23

Netserk wrote:Can you show any culture anywhere in the world at any given time where aesthetically pleasing physical appearance wasn't a valuable human quality? Can you actually explain why that quality not only isn't valuable to you, but why it shouldn't be valuable to others?
I'm increasingly unsure what point you're trying to make wrt the BoB thread.

My point would be roughly like this:
Everyone should be allowed to enjoy what he/she perceives as beautiful, no doubt. But imo no social distinctions should be made, or privileges granted, on the basis of perceived beauty or intelligence. We'd be entering fascist territory. I know such distinctions/privileges are (un)conciously being made/granted all over the globe, but that doesn't mean we/this website should support that. The less the better, imo.
The closing of the BoB is a small but plausible indication of where this website stands in that respect.

@kwikki: good point about racism.
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Re: Re:

30 May 2016 08:37

Merckx index wrote:
Netserk wrote:
Like it or not, but beauty is a valuable quality, so obviously everything else being equal, you'd be less valuable if you lack beauty.


The question is, what is beauty? The problem IMO is that when one looks at pictures of women, as opposed to meeting them in the flesh, all one sees are the purely physical aspects, whereas sexual attraction in real life is far more complex. And even the physical features are severely limited. Pictures present a false view of beauty as fixed, static, the same to all beholders, now and always. Missing is the notion that beauty can fluctuate over time, in different situations, to different people, that it’s very much modulated by non-physical features like intelligence, confidence, sense of humor, self-awareness, ease, and on and on and on.

IOW, getting turned on by looking at pictures is not wrong or sinful, it’s simplistic. It’s like trying to learn about complex political or social issues by reading bumper stickers. We all like and probably need simplicity sometimes, it’s a refuge from the crushing complexity of real life, but for many it can become a means of denying the complexity entirely.


+1 very good post
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Re: Re:

30 May 2016 13:00

Merckx index wrote:I used to ask myself, how would I feel if there were a thread of ripped young men in their underwear, especially popular viewing among women? I would think it a little silly, but I would not be offended, nor think it should be removed. But then I realized that’s not a good comparison, because men don’t generally have the problem of being viewed as sex objects by women, certainly not to the extent of the other way around.

A better example might be a thread in which pictures of wealthy, politically or economically powerful men were posted, with the clear implication that their wealth and power makes them more attractive than the average man. I would be offended by this, not so much for its being sexist (though it would be) as for glorifying greed and what I consider a false understanding of genuine power. IOW, it does a disservice to both men and women. I wouldn’t argue that such a thread should be removed, but neither would I object if it were removed.

Netserk wrote:
Like it or not, but beauty is a valuable quality, so obviously everything else being equal, you'd be less valuable if you lack beauty.


The question is, what is beauty? The problem IMO is that when one looks at pictures of women, as opposed to meeting them in the flesh, all one sees are the purely physical aspects, whereas sexual attraction in real life is far more complex. And even the physical features are severely limited. Pictures present a false view of beauty as fixed, static, the same to all beholders, now and always. Missing is the notion that beauty can fluctuate over time, in different situations, to different people, that it’s very much modulated by non-physical features like intelligence, confidence, sense of humor, self-awareness, ease, and on and on and on.

IOW, getting turned on by looking at pictures is not wrong or sinful, it’s simplistic. It’s like trying to learn about complex political or social issues by reading bumper stickers. We all like and probably need simplicity sometimes, it’s a refuge from the crushing complexity of real life, but for many it can become a means of denying the complexity entirely.

Scott SoCal wrote:Fashion, make-up.... I mean if there ever were a more absolute objectification of women in the history of the world it certainly would be make-up. And yet the vast majority of women, certainly in the western world, wear, you know, make-up.


Absolutely right. But to imply that the popularity of women wearing makeup is a justification for objectification is like saying that the popularity of social drinking is a justification for alcoholism. There’s a very delicate balance between appreciating something and being obsessed with it. And no one has a stronger interest in encouraging obsession than those who make money from it, whether it be the manufacturers of alcoholic drinks or the beauty aids industry.

No one (in Western nations) is arguing that society should ban makeup, any more than we argue for a return to prohibition. But just as alcohol may justifiably be banned in certain times and places and for certain people, so can any practice that arguably does or might be considered by some to objectify women. Again, I'm not saying the thread should have been removed, but I have no problem with the fact that it has.


I'm not suggesting women who wear make up are inviting objectification. And you are right, there's a delicate balance.

All one has to do is look at what's available to women (and men) regarding self-image.... from medical procedures to simple fingernail polish... and then one begins to realize the only thing worse than too much attention is not enough.
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30 May 2016 13:15

And then you start to realise the difference between what men and women have to do in order to gain attention (in a man's world).

Then you think about why, and about all the cultural mechanisms that reinforce it.

Then you think about what you might be able to do in order to contribute to change. It might not be much you can do, but it all starts with an honest and non-defensive appraisal of one's own attitudes and the forces behind them.

Put it this way, I hold staggeringly different views on this subject to the ones I held even five years ago.
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Re: Re:

30 May 2016 13:23

kwikki wrote:
sniper wrote:
Netserk wrote:Ofc it's not inherently, absolutely valuable, but given that society as a whole finds beauty/aesthetically pleasing physical appearance a valuable human quality, it's given that in general terms the better you look the more valuable you are. And that is just how the world is, like it or not.

But it's not something a public website needs to support or bear out.


Exactly, which is how you begin the slow path to social change.

When I was a kid, racist jokes on TV shows were normal. That's how the world was, like it or not. It's taken a whole generation of people firmly resisting the idiocy of those that whine about 'political correctness' to enact change to the point that it is now socially unacceptable to treat people like crap just because of the colour of their skin.

It's interesting how immediate the reaction of some men is to the issue of women in society. They react as if THEY are being repressed. Or as if finding a woman beautiful is about to be outlawed. The one thing they don't do is stop and think without the immediate defensiveness.

Sexism (ie. treating women not as equal) is deeply imbued in society, ("it's just the way of the world, like it or not" :rolleyes: ). Women's salaries being lower than mens for doing the same job is just one example. It's precisely because the position of women is weaker that comparisons between what men do and what women do are fatuous. It's like white people thinking it is OK to call black people 'N*****' because they hear black people using the word on other black people.


You are off in the weeds.

If the social change you are looking for requires the undoing of perfectly natural responses between the sexes then you will be left wanting.
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Re:

30 May 2016 13:26

kwikki wrote:And then you start to realise the difference between what men and women have to do in order to gain attention (in a man's world).

Then you think about why, and about all the cultural mechanisms that reinforce it.

Then you think about what you might be able to do in order to contribute to change. It might not be much you can do, but it all starts with an honest and non-defensive appraisal of one's own attitudes and the forces behind them.

Put it this way, I hold staggeringly different views on this subject to the ones I held even five years ago.


Image enhancement goes back at least as far as ancient Egyptian times.

Ask ten women to put down their lip gloss and see how far that gets you.
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30 May 2016 13:46

It's not about what women do. It's about what YOU do.
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Re: Re:

30 May 2016 13:50

Scott SoCal wrote:
kwikki wrote:And then you start to realise the difference between what men and women have to do in order to gain attention (in a man's world).

Then you think about why, and about all the cultural mechanisms that reinforce it.

Then you think about what you might be able to do in order to contribute to change. It might not be much you can do, but it all starts with an honest and non-defensive appraisal of one's own attitudes and the forces behind them.

Put it this way, I hold staggeringly different views on this subject to the ones I held even five years ago.


Image enhancement goes back at least as far as ancient Egyptian times.

Ask ten women to put down their lip gloss and see how far that gets you.

I think we can all agree that there is a positive correlation between the rise of MTV culture and the sexualization of (young) women in the US on the on the hand, and the rise of plastic surgery on the other, even though technology improvement obviously plays a big role there, too.

The BoB thread was a very tiny, futile, almost negligible, contribution to the promotion of that mtv culture, viz. to the sexualization of (young) women. Futile, but it was still a contribution, and so closing it seems like the right thing to do. It's of course nothing but a drop of water on a hot plate. But it's still a drop.
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30 May 2016 13:57

The closure has sparked a debate that is (attempting) to at least question some entrenched views.
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Re: Re:

30 May 2016 14:27

Scott SoCal wrote:If the social change you are looking for requires the undoing of perfectly natural responses between the sexes then you will be left wanting.


One way of describing the history of human civilization is precisely the undoing (or more accurately, the modulation) of “perfectly natural responses”. Why do you think it’s been so difficult for societies to overcome racism? Because it was originally a natural response, necessary when humans lived in small groups and needed to be able to identify and exclude non-kin. Racists were more likely to survive than those who did not react with fear and/or hostility towards those who didn’t look like them.

Why do you think rape has always been a serious problem? Because at one time it was a perfectly natural response of males, selected by evolution to impregnate as many females as possible. Rapists left more progeny than more gentlemanly primates.

Why do you think obesity is a serious problem? Because at one time overeating, and particularly gorging on high calorie foods like fat, and quick energy foods like sugar, was a highly successful strategy when meals might be few and far between. Gluttons were less likely to starve than those who ate moderately.

We can’t change the fact that we have drives for eating, sex, aggression, and so on. The idea is not to deny the existence of these drives, but allow them to be modified by our intelligence and collective social knowledge. We lose something in the process, but also gain something. The same large forebrain that collectively has imposed an increasing number of restrictions on our sexual desires has also made it possible to experience during sex thoughts and emotions far beyond what our ancestors knew.
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30 May 2016 15:04

The ignorance of some posters here takes my breath away


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bx51eegLTY8
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30 May 2016 15:21

:D
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Re:

30 May 2016 15:26

Glenn_Wilson wrote:
The ignorance of some posters here takes my breath away


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bx51eegLTY8


I know you are a deep-thinking kind of guy, so I'll take it that you are posting that video to show a woman appearing sexy.

You know Brittany Spears talked on MTV about the pressure put on female stars to act and appear sexy (she's not the only one, a few have dared bite the hand that feeds them).

But here's how her view was reported:

http://www.inquisitr.com/1005720/shy-sex-kitten-britney-spears-says-female-performers-are-pressured-to-be-sexy/
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30 May 2016 15:43

So, was it the title that was offensive, or the photos? Because the title can be changed. If we titled it "Gracious Women on Bicycles" would that be acceptable?

Yes I admire beautiful women, but to me, that's a good thing, especially if I treat them with respect. Not every man looks at women with the primary intent of having sex with them. This might come as a shock to some people, but I often look at women on bikes and wonder what it might be like to, you know, ride bikes and hang out with them. Maybe start a relationship with them. If one is looking for photos to pique sexual interest, half the internet is filled with that, and it's easy to find. I don't see a link between that, and women in cycling clothing. But show me a study, and I'll read it.

As I stated in the other thread, people seem to have this impression that the women were almost nude, and many photos were crass. The thread had a few of these like this when started, including some photos of women from the backside with no under garments, we deleted and banned those. In recent times, like over the last million views I'd guess, nearly every photo was professionally shot. Many of the photos were of women wearing regular cycling clothing, many of them were professional cyclists or amateur racers. Some were nostalgic looking. Some were of famous people. There was a pick on there of Lindsay Vonn, out on her bike cross training. I remember looking at it and thinking not that I wanted to jump on her, but that it was cool that she was serious about cycling.

As I noted in the other thread as well, the vast majority of the photos were no more offensive, or of women no more or less scantily clad, than what you would see in any woman's magazine today, magazines aimed at female readers (Cosmo, Allure, etc). I would even make the argument that nearly every one of those photos are photoshopped showing women to have perfect skin, and very thin bodies with large breasts, and thus present a dangerous view of what a women should look like and be, while photos of healthy women on bicycles is a positive thing for women to aspire to.

Yes, CN can do what they want and remove any threads they don't like. I honor that. But the thread was approaching 5 million views. It was without question the most popular thread on the entire forum. That equals traffic, which equals advertising, which equals money. And that means people like myself, and many others, are going to visit the entire website less.
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