Why is discrimination against the short considered not only tolerable, but also amusing? In an era constantly on the lookout for prejudices to denounce, this obvious one gets a pass.
The main reason our culture doesn’t denounce short-shaming is highly revealing about the essential nature of wokeness.
I’m 6’4″ (193 centimeters), so I’m not sore about heightism personally. I just think it’s increasingly a bad idea.
Evidence for discrimination against short men is widespread.
For example, the last twenty U.S. presidents, going back to Teddy Roosevelt, have averaged six feet tall (according to Wikipedia’s listing), or 183 cm. This would likely put the average president around the 90th percentile compared with the average American man of his time, even though, until recently, Americans tended to be among the healthiest, best nourished, and tallest people in the world. Amazon.com Gift Card i... Buy New $50.00 (as of 05:35 EST - Details)
The most famous presidents have been particularly tall. The four on Mount Rushmore (Lincoln 6’4″, Jefferson 6’2.5″, Washington 6’2″, and Teddy Roosevelt 5’10”) average somewhat under 6’2″.
Few presidents have been shorter than average. William McKinley was 5’7″ and Benjamin Harrison was 5’6″, but every other president after Martin Van Buren (5’6″) was at least 5’8″, which was the typical height of a Union soldier in the Civil War.
It’s not true that the taller candidate always wins, but truly short men don’t get nominated very often. Michael Dukakis (5’8″) was the shortest recent male candidate (although the 72-year-old John McCain, who is listed at 5’9″, might actually have been shorter when he ran due to age and the beatings he endured in North Vietnam).
Do people favor tall men because they are superior on average or are they just biased toward the tall?
A clever new study from Poland compared the responses of 34 blind people with 43 sighted people to a fictional story about a man named Thomas. In half the versions, Thomas is described as 5’5″ and in the other half as 6’3″. The sighted people tended to extrapolate that Tall Thomas was smarter, wealthier, a better leader, and higher in social status than Short Thomas. The blind participants, however, didn’t distinguish, presumably because they haven’t noticed who is tall and who is short.