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Old 2012-06-02, 20:30   Link #81
ChainLegacy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DonQuigleone View Post
Possible, I don't think it has a genetic basis though. I think it's more a result of a case of some hormonal imbalance in the womb, IE it's "mechanical" in nature, rather then design. Sexual attractiveness, and queues are very subtle things, and even vary a lot based on your culture. It makes sense that it's a part of the brain that's easily mixed up. A fair number of other animals have also shown homosexual behavior, many of which are non-social animals, where it couldn't provide such a benefit.

So, whether you become gay or not, isn't really based on your genetics, but how you developed in the womb.

In addition, I'd say sexuality is less of an "either/or" proposition then the debate around homosexuality makes it out to be. A lot more people float on some continuum between homosexuality and heterosexuality then are hard "same gender only" homosexuals. Both communities, however, pressure members to stick to only one or the other (for instance, I've heard stories of gays who suddenly "go straight" getting ostracized by other gays). But the truth is, I'd say if our society was different, many androgynous men and women would be appreciated by both homosexuals and heterosexuals, with little debate over orientation. No argument at all regarding the sexuality and how it's probably more ambiguous than the overly simplified "gay" and "straight." I think that actually ties in to my point about bonobos. Humans might have this floating sexuality for social reasons.

Certainly, if you look at non-western societies, or classical societies (like the Greeks and Romans), they were often much more casual about same sex relationships and liaisons. Many famous men were known to have both male and female concubines. An example of such a society we are all familiar with is Japan, where homosexual acts have never been particularly illegal, and there's a long history of it's open practice. The same society also considers the idea of being exclusively homosexual to be, at best, rather strange, and at worst, at odds with familial responsibilities to continue the family line. I'd say this attitude is fairly typical of most human societies in history. Homosexuality for fun, heterosexuality for fun, and for practicality.
I see what you're saying, and agree that for most animals it might be a simple developmental alteration as it is such an integral part of animal behavior. What makes me consider there might be a Darwinian basis at least for humanity, is actually the behavior of bonobos, who have evolved to use sex in all kinds of ways socially. If a close relative of ours displays a tendency to use sex as a social tool, rather instinctually, it raises my eyebrow in thinking the same may be true of humans. Indeed - the ease of 'confusion' in the brain might even make it a more readily evolved trait, as it is a common mutation. No argument at all regarding the sexuality and how it's probably more ambiguous than the overly simplified "gay" and "straight." I think that actually ties in to my point about bonobos. Humans might have this floating sexuality for social reasons.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Zakoo View Post
That's because he is saying non sense, there's no gene/allele of homosexuality, that's total bullshit.
Never saw such thing, next is the gene of the rapist?

Men, sometime we are reaching high level here. And nonetheless, I doubt a weak testosterone or AMH rates makes you desire for an butt instead of a vagina.
Quite the dichotomy you have there between homosexual and rapist... That's what we call a red herring, but I'll not get into that...

I don't agree with C.A. fully as I have not read any scientific material giving definitive evidence of a genetic basis, but I'd rather not discard the idea entirely as you have. It's still possible for a genetic component to exist; since homosexuals themselves will not reproduce, their Darwinian role would be furthering the chances of their siblings to do so. In that way, the same genetics that *may* (entirely wild speculation for the sake of interesting discussion) have influenced sibling A to become homosexual could still be passed through sibling B if he has children, and possesses the said genetics himself (which is not improbable due to being siblings).
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Old 2012-06-02, 20:35   Link #82
james0246
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Please cease all discussion concerning the so-called "gay gene" (and everything such a discussion entails). It serves little purpose in a discussion concerning gender roles in society. If you wish to discuss the issue, please you the general homosexual issue thread.

Consider this a warning.

---

That being said, here is a quote from a recent article/essay from a film blogger I generally like that explore the idea of gender roles and the false dichotomy often found in many recent so called "feminist" blockbuster titles:

Quote:
At the heart of this concept, and the reason why Pixar's Brave(judging by its marketing) isn't nearly as feminist as it might want to be, is the false dichotomy behind the cliched 'girls can do anything boys can do too' meme. It sells the idea that male activities are inherently superior to female activities. We all cheer when Katniss Everdeen kills people but boo when Bella Swan aggressively pursues a guy. We scream 'empowered!' when Lisbeth Salander uses violence to save the proverbial day yet think less of her when she changes her appearance and uses her more conventional attractiveness to entrap a villain. And since there is no opposite concept in play, no societal pressures for boys to engage in 'female behavior', the message is that male behavior is inherently superior. We live in a society where having Snow White don a suit of armor is progressive, but Superman donning a dress is unfathomable. What message is that really sending?
Full article here.

While the author uses the concept of clothing to exemplify the theme, the overall message is still sound: women performing generally perceived to be masculine actions are often toted as being "progressive", yet men performing feminine actions are deemed as being unrealistic if not unfathomable (as the author says); consequently, the masculine actions are seen as being superior.

I think this is an important topic in modern gender studies, especially considering how prevalent these themes are becoming in modern culture (especially film and music).

Last edited by james0246; 2012-06-02 at 20:53.
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Old 2012-06-03, 03:52   Link #83
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Bella pursuing Edward isn't disturbing because it's feminine. It's disturbing because he's fucking insane (though, so's she). Bad example, Mr. Author Guy.

And I always think it's awesome when a heroine ensnares someone with intrigue, subtlety and sneakiness.
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Old 2012-06-03, 04:41   Link #84
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That abomination of a series sounds to me like a story about Stockholm syndrome.
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Old 2012-06-03, 06:02   Link #85
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Not to mention, as one of the commenters on that essay also pointed out, what makes fighting an inherently masculine activity? What makes any activity inherently "masculine" or "feminine?"

Other than "putting a penis in something" or "giving birth" there are no inherently male or female activities. The rest is a social construct. A woman wanting to join the military and fight and possibly die to protect her country isn't rejecting being feminine and embracing being masculine.

I mean, I have loads of "typically masculine" interests, like playing violent video games, listening to metal and other "man" music, looking at porn (yuri only plzkthx), watching cheesy action flicks and doing a lot of nerdy techy stuff. I'm also capable at minor auto repair and various "handyman" tasks like basic electrical work and I can also use a soldering iron and a whole array of tools, power, pneumatic and otherwise.

This does not mean I embrace masculinity and reject femininity. I also like lots of "typically feminine" things like clothes, shoes, lolita, cooking, shopping and a whole slew of "girly" activities. I like wearing dresses and high heels and stockings. I am not at all upset when called "Miss" or "ma'am" and I'm a gigantic hopeless romantic and a huge girly sap. I cry in all the sad parts. All the sad parts. If someone tells me they love me, there's a fifty-fifty chance I'm going to go all teary-eyed. Hugs are a form of communication all their own.

I reject the notion of gender roles. I am me. We are all ourselves. We are all little bits of masculine, feminine and everything in between.
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Old 2012-06-03, 12:13   Link #86
DonQuigleone
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I have to say, I'd consider physical fighting to be a largely male activity, and to be considered within the male sphere.

1. How often do you see girls getting into violent fights? I doubt there's many male posters here who haven't gotten into a fight that involved some form (however mild) of violent physical contact. Likewise, very few girls have ever gotten into such a fight. "Catfights" are very rare.

2. Guys are physically stronger. The vast majority of the world's armies and warbands have been staffed by men.

3. Boys are generally much more strongly drawn towards stories and activities that involve real or simulated violence. Girls, not so much. As a kid I was always fascinated by war. My sister? Not so much. And she wasn't much of a girly girl either.

4. Guys are naturally more competitive.

4. If you look at the most violent sections of societies (notably urban gangs) they're almost entirely (younger) men. It's much rarer to see women start up such gangs. The most frequent instance is the occasional tomboy, who is an outlier among girls in having a more typically male disposition. Likewise there are guys who have a more typically "female" disposition in having no such interest in violence.

I don't think the male preoccupation with violence is a good thing, might I add. But it's definitely overall a male thing. To a lesser extent, men are also more predisposed then women to extreme physical activities.

A lot of these tendencies can be seen from a very young age. Male children are generally much more boisterous, competitive and active then female children.

Likewise, childcare is generally a feminine activity, because women are wired for it. But many men enjoy it too.
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Old 2012-06-03, 12:24   Link #87
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DonQuigleone View Post
2. Guys are physically stronger. The vast majority of the world's armies and warbands have been staffed by men.
On pre-wwI scenarios this was kinda relevant, in this era of assault rifles it is quite irrelevant.
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Old 2012-06-03, 14:10   Link #88
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Originally Posted by mangamuscle View Post
On pre-wwI scenarios this was kinda relevant, in this era of assault rifles it is quite irrelevant.
Actually it still is. Of course in the age of assault rifles you can even have 8 years old child soldiers as well, making excellent human waves cannon fodder.

But there is still a huge gap between men and women when it comes to frontline and a truckload of other military duties.

You can't imagine how surprised I was during my military service at the blatant gap there was between the few super motivated girls and sub-average guys like me (BTW: here its mandatory for guys, but voluntary for girls).

You still need to carry 50-odd kg of equipment on your back sometimes, haul sand bags, explosives devices, RPGs, mortars, AA missiles, shells. Not mentioning that things such as close combat and grenade throwing are far from being phased out.
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Old 2012-06-03, 14:40   Link #89
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Quote:
Originally Posted by synaesthetic View Post
Not to mention, as one of the commenters on that essay also pointed out, what makes fighting an inherently masculine activity? What makes any activity inherently "masculine" or "feminine?"

Other than "putting a penis in something" or "giving birth" there are no inherently male or female activities. The rest is a social construct.
The fact that a man has, on average, three times the strength of a woman, is far more the reason why fighting is typically a masculine activity than any social construct.
Also, the fact that the hormone controlling agressivity and muscle development is testosterone, which "tends" to be on the masculine side, to say the least.

Most social constructs are consequences of our biology mixed with our environment, not things that were created out of thin air. Don't ignore facts and logic just because they sometimes go contrary to our own preferences and bias.
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Old 2012-06-03, 15:24   Link #90
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Indeed. The increased endurance and strength is decisive, even today. For instance an average soldier today actually carries more weight then a medieval knight did(armour and all).

Furthermore, an assault rifle is often fairly heavy, and has a lot of recoil, requiring a lot of strength to use for an extended period.

And most women simply don't have the stomach for soldiering, compared to men.
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Old 2012-06-03, 15:38   Link #91
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Your reasoning is not sound. Men are not, on average, three times as strong as women. That's a load of malarkey. Men aren't even twice as strong as women, unless you're comparing a male bodybuilder to an elderly Chinese lady. *snort*

Additionally, speaking from experience, modern assault rifles aren't heavy. I've personally fired AR-15 variants and others, and I'm hardly a paragon of upper body strength. The modern assault rifle is a lightweight weapon that fires small, fast ammo. Even when they were big, heavy and fired large bullets, it's still not that big a deal as something like, swinging a sword would be (which I've also done, and trust me, combat requires nowhere near the physical fitness it used to).

I used to own the civilian variant of the M-14 assault rifle, which is much heavier than any AR-15--all the furniture is wood, the gun itself is much more overbuild and over-engineered, and it fires a significantly larger round (7.62mm vs 5.56mm). I had absolutely no problem firing it standing, not resting on any object. Sure, it would have been exhausting to shoot repeatedly for hours on end, but I'm not a solider. I've never been through training, so it's no surprise that I don't have these skills.

To say that a man is unequivocally a better soldier than a woman just because he is a man is probably the stupidest fucking thing I've ever heard. I'm pretty sure most women in service would agree with me.

*harumphs*
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Old 2012-06-03, 15:49   Link #92
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Well there is the upper body strength question that comes up, not only in the military, but in firefighting as well. The need to be able to carry another full grown man, alone, some distance. The point of those regulations is so that each soldier or firefighter can rescue a comrade or civilian in need of aid.

The firefighter also have regulations for carrying firehoses due to safety issues and the need to be able to use the hose to do one's job of fighting a fire. This regulation has been relaxed somewhat in recent years, and it gets under the skin of older firefighters. Not because they are letting women in, but because the hoses are not lighter than they use to be, and people are tending to be heavier than they use to be. Thus if one cannot physically carry either a person out of a building, or carry the hose...that individual is endangering lives to fill in a slot. The same regulations are in place for men and women. If a man can't pass the regulations, he does not get to be a firefighter. Same should be true for women.
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Old 2012-06-03, 15:57   Link #93
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Originally Posted by synaesthetic View Post
To say that a man is unequivocally a better soldier than a woman just because he is a man is probably the stupidest fucking thing I've ever heard. I'm pretty sure most women in service would agree with me.
Could you carry a 60 kg pack marching 30 miles per day? That kind of fitness obsviously requires training (or a life of physical exertion), but it's also much easier to train a guy up in that kind of fitness, then it is a woman.

Also, you haven't addressed the fact that women, on the whole, are uninterested in violence, whereas men have an unhealthy fascination with it, from a very young age.

It's not just about physical capability. It's about temperament. Girls rarely volunteer themselves to be in situations requiring violence, compared to men. Be it soldiering, or a life of crime. The world's violent occupations are all dominated by men.

EDIT: According to Wikipedia, men have almost double a woman's upper body strength, and one third more lower body strength.

While it's possible to train a woman to be fit and strong enough to be a soldier, my guess is that it's likely significantly easier to do so with men. Additionally, men also tend to have a larger interest in physical activities generally, so they likely start from a better place.

And ithekro noted, there a lot of other tasks that soldiers are required to do that are unrelated to firing a gun, like digging trenches, and a lot of other grunt labour. And their are many other weapons that are heavier then an assault rifle, like machine guns, Grenade launchers etc.

I don't see any reason why women wouldn't do well in armored battalions, or the airforce, however.

Last edited by DonQuigleone; 2012-06-03 at 16:12.
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Old 2012-06-03, 16:17   Link #94
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May I point out that endurance is not the same thing as strength, at least the top female athletes are not too far from male athletes so the average should be about the same. Carryng 50kg of equipment seems a bit excesive to me, there might be some scenarios where it would be required, but not all and AFAIK even in the army not everyone is the same, there are specialists in demolition, tank destruction, etc. otherwise the not so strong men would never make it over there (back in wwII Jack Kirby did maps of the terrain).

I do not think the army is about liking violence, IMO it is more about fullfilling orders from the chain of command to the best of ones ability, if you really like to blow people to shreds you will have a hard time returning to society in times of peace.
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Old 2012-06-03, 16:18   Link #95
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Just because the average man is more physically suited to being a soldier does not mean that women who become soldiers are trying to become men.

It means they want to be soldiers. Being a soldier is not inherently masculine. You're missing my point entirely. If biology was slightly different and we ended up like a great many animals where the females are much larger, it'd be flipped around.

Soldiers are predominately male because they, as you say, are more likely to be more efficient at completing the job. That does not mean that being a soldier is an inherently masculine behavior.

Again, I'll say it a-fucking-gain... the only inherent masculine behavior in the entire goddamn universe is STICKING A DICK IN SOMETHING. Being a soldier does not rely on the presence of a cock and balls.
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Old 2012-06-03, 16:25   Link #96
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I'm sorry Syn, but you are simply overlooking too many facts.

Men are substantially stronger than women for cumulative reasons grounded in our species sexual dimorphism:
Men are taller, have a greater lean mass, denser and longer bones, granting them superior mechanical strenght. And their lower sensitive nerves density makes them more resilient to pain.
And you don't need to compare a bodybuilder with a chinese grandma to see this: just look at a crowd or the average classroom.

An assault rifle is heavy, because being on a battlefield is nowhere like being in a shooting range. You have this long, 3-5 kg thing to carry for tens of kilometers around your neck, and sometimes you have to lift it for hours (all those video games where you see the avater lifting his weapon non stop are ludicrous). And contrary to the shooting range, you have to add up all the accessories: several magazines and ammo (1kg minimum, sky is the limit), all the nifty accessories: grenade launcher and ammo, the neat scope, bipod, bayonet. And then of course you have all the gear: helmet (let's say minimum 1kg on your head and inflating with extra gear), the optional body armor (can't imagine how many kg), 3kg for the plain battledress and shoes, water for you to drink.
Heck, just being on guard duty, standing in front of a gate is a pain in the ass.

For real combat mission, meaning you go out of your base, you have to add the backpack, with more water, food, shovel, tent, sleeping bag, etc.. (20-30 kg on your back, on top of everything mentioned above).

And that's just for the standard soldier. Now here comes the specialists: radio, medic, mortar guys, msg guys, bazooka guys, AA guys. Guess what? They are carrying exactly the same gear the other carry, plus their heavy specialist equipment. Topping everyone, you have the stretcher bearer, who have to be ready to run, crawl, cross river and walls carrying up to 150kg extra in the form of a wounded, dressed up comrade.

Edit: was beat up to it.

Edit 2: and there is a male behavior rooted in their biology by evolution: throwing stones (or any sort of projectile).
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Old 2012-06-03, 16:36   Link #97
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The difference in thinking here seems to be split between the concept of soldiering (as in the idea of wanting to be one, or partaking in the activity of it) is not related to gender issues. That can be male or female.
Verses the phycial qualities that tend to make for more ideal soldiers based on what they are expected to do on the battlefield. In that line of reasoning, the male form is more suited to the needs of the battlefield due to endurance and, on average, more body strength. It does not say that women cannot be soldiers, it simply points out that, on average, the ideal soldier would fit the male frame better than the female frame.

And that is going without any of the notions of mental states, hormones, alilities that seem to be favored by one gender verse the other (again, on average) such as the general notion that women are better at multitasking than men. That would be useful in certain types of combat, or tactical situations, while males tend to focus on stuff. This can make them more objective orientied, sometimes for good or for bad depending on the situtation.

None of those things are gender specific on the level of sexual attributes.

But one wonders about the other differences between the two sexes is not sexually related, but things evolved because of how the two did their tasks in the long past (hunter/gatherer days).
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Old 2012-06-03, 16:48   Link #98
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Right. That's what I'm saying. A female soldier is a female soldier, not a woman who wants to be a man.
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Old 2012-06-03, 16:52   Link #99
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Originally Posted by mangamuscle View Post
May I point out that endurance is not the same thing as strength, at least the top female athletes are not too far from male athletes so the average should be about the same. Carryng 50kg of equipment seems a bit excesive to me, there might be some scenarios where it would be required, but not all and AFAIK even in the army not everyone is the same, there are specialists in demolition, tank destruction, etc. otherwise the not so strong men would never make it over there (back in wwII Jack Kirby did maps of the terrain).
An infantryman has to carry a variety of weapons, body armor, tools, tents, food and water. Consider how much you have to carry when you go out camping. It's already too much weight for most men. I'd hate to know how women take it.

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Originally Posted by synaesthetic View Post
Again, I'll say it a-fucking-gain... the only inherent masculine behavior in the entire goddamn universe is STICKING A DICK IN SOMETHING. Being a soldier does not rely on the presence of a cock and balls.
Masculinity is not defined by whether or not you have a set of balls attached to your groin. It's as much a psychological difference as anything else. It's perfectly possible for women to have a somewhat masculine mindset (including possibly yourself).

Tasks are assigned as male and female for both physical and psychological reasons. The sexes are naturally drawn to different tasks, though ultimately, far as I can see, the difference is only significant in two categories: Childrearing and violence. These are, however, tendencies relating to mental gender, not physical gender. And of course, many people have personalities atypical of their born sex.

Women are far more drawn to childrearing (and tasks involving children in general), then men. Compared to violence, however, the preference is much less strong. A very large proportion of "normal" heterosexual men show an affection for looking after children. Equally, however, there are a lot of men who don't care at all for children, but would prefer to spray their seed everywhere and let women deal with the consequences. Such a casual attitude is rarely seen in women.

With violence it's far more extreme. Men are more physically aggressive then women. The vast majority of "violent crime" is committed by men. It's routine to hear about young male youths who just got themselves killed in a gang war. It's much rarer to hear the same thing about a bunch of young women.

Furthermore, even if you're not personally violent, most men have an interest in matters military and violent then the vast majority of women. If we look at game playing, games that are particularly about war (not just FPS but also strategy games) are almost entirely played by males, and the interest in such wargames begins at a young age (I was interested in wargames by the age of 6 or 7). My sister also had an interested in strategy games, but she only ever was interested in city building games, games that were not centered on conflict.

When it comes to anything, men will be far more (stupidly) competitive about it then women. Boys will do it without any kind of prompting. Young girls, by comparison, will be more keen on cooperation.

In terms of modern warfare, these kinds of masculine traits and interests don't necessarily make for better soldiers. But in terms of older style warfare, these traits make men much more psychologically able. Furthermore, men will be naturally drawn to such violent pursuits, whereas women will prefer (quite sensibly) to avoid them.

The fascination with violence in all it's forms is a big part of masculine identity, it's not coincidental that all the early stories used to exemplify masculinity all involved some kind of pursuit that involved violence. Be it hunting, or warfare.

If we look at why soldiers join the army, I often hear about men joining because they desired the thrill of the job (and perhaps secretly want to kill people). I much more rarely hear female soldiers cite the same reason, usually it's more to do with patriotism (often also cited by men), or for practical benefits (like earning money for their families, accessing education etc.)

That's why I would consider warfare inherently masculine. Because the people who are naturally interested in it are almost entirely men, or the men at heart.
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Old 2012-06-03, 17:00   Link #100
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I know a woman that was fairly good a strategic games. Axis and Allies for one. She usually won. She did table top miniatures gaming for a little while. Though she had a "ramming always works" mindset.
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