David Thompson
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February 14, 2017

Comments

Sam

For some people it’s just politics über alles.

Or posing über alles.

David

Or posing über alles.

Quite. As so often with these things, it smells so insincere. Given the potential differences in male and female ensembles and their musical aesthetics, and given the existence of other vocal groups on campus, both all-female and mixed, the protestors’ demand is gratuitous and dishonest. They don’t want to join that particular group. They just want to destroy what it is for the people who take part, while congratulating themselves on their own imagined bravery.

It’s like demanding that every rock band should include a bassoonist.

Farnsworth M. Muldoon

It’s like demanding that every rock band should include a bassoonist.

Not an altogether bad idea.

R. Sherman

The Whiffenpoofs

Wasn't that one of the houses in the Harry Potter series? Or, am I out of the modern culture loop?

David

The conceit is almost funny. The unhappy ladies and ungendered beings at Yale are acting as though the Whiffenpoofs are a cornerstone of The All-Powerful Patriarchy™. Crushing female dreams with their close harmonies and rather camp name.

svh

Cole Porter was a Whiffenpoof.

Alice

The all-male group looks a lot more racially diverse than the all-female one. I demand a protest!

David

Cole Porter was a Whiffenpoof.

I didn’t know that.

Tom

"The all-male group looks a lot more racially diverse than the all-female one."

Well, the female group does have a redhead, what more could you ask really?

Joan

I wonder how many of the protestors can even sing.

David

I wonder how many of the protestors can even sing.

Apparently, the protestors’ petition garnered 135 signatures. Sadly, the articles linked above don’t say whether the signatories were vocationally motivated. But given the existence of other, all-female and mixed-sex singing groups on campus, I’m guessing fashionable politics and the chance to be obnoxious trumped actual interest.

NTSOG

I presume that these modern day feminist Philistines would object to the centuries-old Vienna Boys Choir too if the choir made a visit? Or a male Welsh choir? [Wales has a rich history of wonderful male choirs.] To my ear the voices of boys and men have a different timbre from those of girls/women who, as noted, have their own gender-exclusive choirs.

David

I presume that these modern day feminist Philistines would object to the centuries-old Vienna Boys Choir too if the choir made a visit? Or a male Welsh choir?

The unspoken assumption is that if women want to sing only with women, this is fine and empowering, and no-one should complain. And if women want to sing in a mixed group, this is also fine. But if an all-male singing group exists, even if it’s just one of many options, this is something that must be done away with, and its members must be made to endure lots of disingenuous posturing. These are students at Yale, supposedly the intellectual cream, and yet the hypocrisy and bad faith are quite hard to miss.

R. Sherman

Welsh "Boys" Choir.

I shall repair to the correction booth. Have you restocked the snacks?

David

Have you restocked the snacks?

We’re running dangerously low on Pringles. It’s been a heavy couple of weeks.

R. Sherman

But at least, it's Valentine's Day!

Spiny Norman

This sort of infantile nonsense is becoming so commonplace, it's barely noteworthy.

“White fragility,” as defined by a paper in the International Journal of Critical Pedagogy, “is a state in which even a minimum amount of racial stress becomes intolerable, triggering a range of defensive moves. These moves include the outward display of emotions such as anger, fear, and guilt, and behaviors such as argumentation, silence, and leaving the stress-inducing situation. These behaviors, in turn, function to reinstate white racial equilibrium.”

Projection, on a monumental scale, by the "microaggressed".

Other workshops held throughout the semester at the university address topics including: “Microaggressions and Unconscious Bias in the Classroom and Beyond”

As I said.

David

Projection, on a monumental scale,

“White fragility” being the unremarkable fact that people by and large don’t like being slandered as racists and assigned with some pretentious collective guilt, the supposed purging of which requires deference to actual racists and predatory hokum merchants.

David

These moves include the outward display of emotions such as anger, fear…

Or, put another way: “How dare you be annoyed by our slandering? How dare you question our motives as anything other than benign?”

...and behaviours such as argumentation, silence, and leaving the stress-inducing situation.

Or, “How dare you talk back and question our assumptions? How dare you not wish to engage with, or be in the presence of, people who wish to do you psychological harm?”

I’m paraphrasing, of course.

NTSOG

Returning to the theme of choirs and gender: would the good sisters of tolerance even accept a Welsh or Viennese male choir comprised of castrati as in the good[?] old days? Given the undergraduate behaviour and attitude of the collective of Harpies they would likely be first to volunteer to find and "improve" male [soon to be ex-male] candidates?

NTSOG

And thank you for your posting of the wonderful Mr Terfel - what a male voice!!!

Hal

It’s like demanding that every rock band should include a bassoonist.

It's a very nice lute, and we hope you enjoy it. Think of it while you're listening to the bagpipes.

Hippogryph

The "white fragility" imposture is, of course, just another example of "Kafkatrapping". Which may be *the* distinctive style of argumentation on campus, these days.

http://esr.ibiblio.org/?p=2122

https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/Kafkatrapping

Squires

Obvious solution: next time get a hose and turn that shit into a wet t-shirt competition.

dicentra

a wet t-shirt competition.

Like this one? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EfFvGkw-kwE

Ted S., Catskill Mtns., NY, USA

[quote]Wales has a rich history of wonderful male choirs.[/quote]

I know they have a history of male choirs. I don't know that they have a history of wonderful male choirs.

Ted S., Catskill Mtns., NY, USA

Taft in a wet t-shirt contest is the key image

Frank

Unfortunately it will probably take a war, or something equally serious, to reinstall a sense of perspective in people.

J.M. Heinrichs

Could be problems:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/San_Francisco_Gay_Men's_Chorus

Cheers

Col. Milquetoast

From Vice I learned that some gay porn actors have "preferences" as to who they want to have sex with. I also learned that it must be very, very important to enclose the "preferences" in quotation marks. Also, it is considered progressive to ostracize, expose, share and shame people for their sexual "preferences" – at least the sexual "preferences" of those who make it but I'm left unsure if those who consume it are permitted to "prefer" someone they find attractive as opposed to Bob the fat lesbian with a 14yr old boy's mustache who identifies as a gay man.

David

I also learned that it must be very, very important to enclose the “preferences” in quotation marks.

Setting race aside, there’s something faintly surreal about insisting on ideological purity in the gay porn industry. To the extent that not being aroused by overly effeminate men makes you some kind of bigot.

But it’s much too early for this. I need more coffee.

Deborah

These moves include the outward display of emotions such as anger, fear, and guilt, and behaviors such as argumentation, silence, and leaving the stress-inducing situation.

Well, they have certainly covered all of the bases, its almost like a trap. I wonder if they realize. This really is all getting so tedious. I'm exhausted.

Squires

Like this one?

Well, I was thinking more along the lines of just spraying them with cold water right in the titties the next time some take the audition stage in silence or lecture.

Imagine the uproar!

The most important part will be not caring (and judging bosoms fairly despite what sort harpy they may be attached to).

David

To keep things tidy, the “white fragility” thread now has its own post.

Daniel Ream

four Whiffs walked out in the middle of the audition as the student stood in silent protest rather than performing a solo.

Any reaction short of "get the hell off the stage and stop wasting everyone's time" indicates to me that these Poofs deserve all the harassment they get.

When children act out in a destructive manner, you spank them and send them to bed without dinner, you don't clutch your pearls and retire to your fainting couch.

David

When children act out in a destructive manner, you spank them and send them to bed without dinner,

It does sometimes seem that much of our cultural pathology is a result of excusing and indulging tantrums and antisocial behaviour. From tolerating and even rewarding mob delinquency on campus to excusing the predations of career criminals, as if leniency were an act of piety, rather than an act of contempt for the past and future victims of said offenders.

Tim Newman

From Vice I learned that some gay porn actors have "preferences" as to who they want to have sex with.

Sort of on this subject, and because this is the sort of thing David encourages in his blog comments, I have a Norwegian mate who went to high school with a guy (also Norwegian) who is apparently one of America's biggest gay porn stars and has made a fortune doing it. From what I am told this guy's scenes are spectacularly hardcore, but there is just one catch: he's not actually gay. Yes that's right, he does it purely because it pays well and he's good at it, not for enjoyment. My mate hated this guy at school and takes positive delight in the career path he's found himself following.

David

and because this is the sort of thing David encourages in his blog comments,

[ Feigns outrage, splutters indignantly. ]

Lisboeta

not for enjoyment

I thought all porn stars were in it solely for the money? Don't think enjoyment enters the equation.

David

I thought all porn stars were in it solely for the money? Don’t think enjoyment enters the equation.

Lisboeta seems to know an awful lot about the subject. Just sayin’.

[ Room falls silent. Everyone turns and stares. ]

Matthew McConnagay

Cole Porter was a Whiffenpoof.

I don't think you're supposed to say that anymore

Microbillionaire

This from the man who acts like it's no big deal he had a Frog in his throat just now?

[ Record scratch, leading into Yakety Sax as innuendo builds to a crescendo. ]

PiperPaul

"This really is all getting so tedious. I'm exhausted."

Prog mission accomplished!

Jonathan

Cole Porter was a Whiffenpoof.

Even worse: he was a WASP.

Jonathan

What did they mean by this?

David

See also this:

A Yale student group has waged a war on the university fraternities and will use Title IX to force them into admitting women — while letting female-only sororities off the hook.

Why, it’s almost as if there’s a pattern.

Col. Milquetoast

The obvious conclusion is that the writer of the Vice article, Zachary Sire, must be exceptionally repulsive and can only find companionship by throwing a fit and wailing that anyone who says he isn't their type is a racist.

TimT

"Sexual "preference" is a widespread and increasingly visible problem within the gay community at-large..."

Well now. Fancy that. The gall of someone expressing a sexual preference. We all need to go back to arranged marriages, stat!

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