The Forgotten Men II

Because of our concern for the safety and security for women and children, the media’s “if it bleeds, it leads” formula is often modified with “including women and children” if some act of war or violence befalls any group of people that includes among them women and children. We have outsized concern because our children are the future, and women are the bearers of children.

But there is not such concern for the men of society. After all, men only build society with their sweat, protect it with their bodies, and pay for it with their blood. When some calamity befalls men exclusively, suddenly the gender neutral pronouns come out.

Recently, a group of 17 “coal miners” were killed in a blast in west China. Can we assume they were all men because men make up the overwhelming it-ain’t-even-close-to-close majority of coal miners in the world? A better assumption to make is that they were exclusively men because nowhere in the story is the phrase “including women and children”, which would signal the viewers to care about the victims as people rather than a statistic.

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