Are Women Catty?

I raise this question because it crossed my mind, and then it seemed like a good way to be politically incorrect.

I suggest that you search on “are women catty”. You will find reputable articles not only saying that they are catty but explaining why they are catty as an evolutionary matter.

I haven’t done the research, so I present the matter as a question. Cattiness would have to be defined and measured. It would have to be compared to male cattiness.

What prompted the question? I got wondering whether or not a male Speaker of the House in Nancy Pelosi’s shoes would be saying the kinds of things she’s saying and doing the kinds of things she’s doing. Disinviting Trump from appearing before the Congress to present the State of the Union address is spiteful, it seems to me. It also builds out her desire to be treated as an equal. Frankly, I cannot imagine a male Speaker feeling he has to show equality with the president, or a traditional Democrat male Speaker disinviting the president, except maybe if Schumer were in the House and Speaker. He’s that petty and vicious. Would Sam Rayburn or Tip O’Neill have done such a thing? Pat Buchanan can answer that better than I can. Americans expect to hear this address, and it’s petty to tie it into the ongoing conflict.

Several of the female freshman Democratic class are coming off as quite nasty, foul-mouthed and power-hungry. Cattiness looks like the least of their possible defects of character.

Hillary Clinton is known to be nasty in private. In public her cattiness has come out in all sorts of excuses for losing the election. She attempts to look and sound diplomatic and reasonable. The facade is often shattered, as when she gloated over Gaddafi’s murder. It has been far from joyful to hear the string of U.S. female representatives to the U.N. To me they’ve seemed very catty, whether Democrats or Republicans.

It should be understood that we are talking about a statistical distribution of a characteristic. The hypothesis is about the average (mean), as compared with the male of the species. Even if the mean is higher for females, there may be huge numbers of females below the mean for males. This will depend on the size of any difference in means. Donald Trump by himself seems capable of raising the male mean of cattiness. The same goes for Obama, who always sneaks nasty zingers into his statements.

I can imagine that some day we will be presented with mature candidates who have some wisdom, sense, understanding and integrity, and who can control the 21st century tendency for nasty remarks. It seems that rap, comedy, and movies are all raising the level of crudity, nastiness and immaturity. It’s been so long since mature candidates have appeared, male or female, that it’s hard to maintain this fond hope. The theory that the worst people, the shallow demagogues, rise to the top in a democratic system seems to have legs. The level of the top is also sinking lower and lower.


9:17 pm on January 16, 2019