A Generation of American Men Give Up on College: ‘I Just Feel Lost’

Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by Dustin, Sep 6, 2021.

  1. not4profit

    not4profit Active Member

    I have witnessed it as well in law enforcement, except the discrimination was against men, including mostly white men (gasp), and in favor of women. I am not arguing that your experiences are not your experiences, but the discrimination isn't just against women. Nobody talks about how far the pendulum has swung the other way in terms of hiring and promoting women in LE.
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  2. sanantone

    sanantone Well-Known Member

    All one has to do is look at the composition of police departments. They're disproportionately White and male. Of course, they can only hire from the applicant pool. If women and minorities don't apply, then it's understandable that the majority of police officers are White and male. However, I've applied to civil service departments and scored higher than everyone, including applicants who received veterans preference points. Still, men of all races were hired over me. In general, on a nationwide level, there's nothing to support your assertion that White men or men of all races are being discriminated against on a large scale.

    In 2017, 12.5% of police officers were female. I think that figure is at 14.8% now. Is that supposed to be the pendulum swing?


    Is representation better in federal law enforcement? Nope.


    You said that women are being favored for promotions. I wonder how can that be. We know that just under 15% of officers are women. First line supervisors are 9.5% women, and 2.7% of chiefs and executives are women. I'm not seeing this favoritism.


    60.1% of the U.S. population is non-Hispanic White according to the 2020 Census. In 2019, 67% of police officers were non-Hispanic White. There are also New York Times and Washington Post articles behind a paywall that discuss how White officers are overrepresented in urban police departments. Where is this widespread discrimination against White men?


    I'm sorry, but my experiences are much more representative of what's going on.
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  3. sanantone

    sanantone Well-Known Member

    What's interesting is that the IRS, which has the highest percentage of women in law enforcement positions out of the federal law enforcement agencies, saw a drop in female representation between 2008 and 2017. This is the one job that requires accounting credits, the majority of accountants are women, and there's no pre-employment physical agility test that could be blamed for weeding women out. Yet, less than 28% of IRS special agents were women in 2017. I repeat, this is the federal agency with the most female representation.

    Probation and pretrial services is 50% female, but that's social work, and some offices don't allow probation officers to carry guns. So, we're stuck with the IRS having the best representation of women.
  4. Vonnegut

    Vonnegut Well-Known Member

    I've met a lot of people, even people I consider quite intelligent, who truly believe that OJ is innocent. I've never met a soul, regardless of intelligence, who thought R. Kelly wasn't guilty... Juries are wild things though, and sometimes they provide results that many can't fathom.
  5. not4profit

    not4profit Active Member

    1. I'm sorry, but I am trying to find any data on the literally thousands of times per year that two promotions are available and one promotion goes to a male (out of 100 male applicants) and the other promotion goes to one of literally 7 female applicants. They don't keep track of that.

    2. You scored higher than everyone, including people with veterans preference points, but didn't get selected? Wow! Crazy! The exact same thing happened to me! Except I also had the veterans preference points! Do you have any actual evidence to prove your hypothesis that it MUST have been discrimination? The difference between me and you is that you jump to the discrimination excuse. Is there any chance you just weren't as competitive? Is there a chance there was a law that said they have to hire veterans? There are laws like that out there. I have literally scored 110 out of 100 on exams and never got a call. In my LE experience, just 22 years, including several years as a supervisor, management bends over backwards to promote women BECAUSE they are so underrepresented. I was guilty of it myself when I had to fill a promotion. I would scrape and claw to get women and minorities (including much less qualified ones) into interviews to increase our diversity.

    3. None of your data really mean anything when nobody controls for how many actual female applicants there are. I filled a role as a program manager in charge of trying to increase representation in LE hiring, and we were bending over backwards to get minority and female applicants. They just wouldn't apply.

    4. You keep mentioning 'wide spread discrimination' against white men, but I never asserted any widespread trends (I leave that to you and your extremely uncompelling data that is absent of all context). I made a point to tell you that I was not disputing your experience and simply expressed my experience that counters yours to provide some context. But, apparently that is not permitted, since you have made up your mind, based on aggregate data that you found to back up your personal experiences.

    5. Your experience is your experience. I find it amusing that you think you can interpret 'what is going on' across the thousands of LE agencies in this country by looking at aggregate data that does not control for important things.
  6. sanantone

    sanantone Well-Known Member

    The jury is representative of how Americans think. One juror admitted that they didn't see the girl as a victim. Chance the Rapper admitted that he originally didn't care about what R. Kelly did because most of his victims were Black girls. Black girls are adultified (supported by research), so they're not seen as innocent little girls. R. Kelly's fans don't deny that he's a hebephile and ephebophile; they just don't care. He might even be a pedophile; he allegedly loved watching Dance Moms when the dancers were really young. Anyway, people believe these girls are "consenting."
  7. sanantone

    sanantone Well-Known Member

    2. Civil service rules are public, and they're required to be public by state law. The departments were not required to hire veterans. The veterans were given 5 to 10 extra points on their test to give them a better chance of getting hired. My point was that I still beat out everyone even though some received 10 extra points on their test. I also did not say that veterans were hired or selected for interviews over me. Many of them were not veterans. You can tell by the eligibility lists that are published on the website.

    A couple of departments gave me a reason for not hiring me; I was too intelligent for the position. They blame physical agility tests for women not getting hired. They blame written tests for minorities not getting hired. But, when a Black woman with a clean background and CJ experience passes the PAT and scores high enough on the written test to be placed first, she's too smart. Can't win.

    At another department, a Black sergeant said he pushed for me to be selected and didn't understand why I wasn't since they're supposed to be increasing their efforts to hire Black women. I have a theory for why. Public agencies and public figures will say one thing to appease the public and do another.

    3. Maybe women aren't applying since 60 - 70% of female police officers report being sexually harassed. With sexual harassment being so common, do you really think police departments don't have sexist men in the ranks who make hiring decisions?

    4. A person from every group has been discriminated against somewhere. What is your point? The concern is prevalent discrimination, not rare cases.
  8. sanantone

    sanantone Well-Known Member

    Hold on. So, you got hired, and you got promoted? You mean that you didn't apply to dozens of local law enforcement agencies over a 10-year period just to never get hired? Now, I did work at a sheriff's department as a corrections officer. I was the only Black female corrections officer, and I don't believe there were any Black women on patrol; I never came across one. I was privy enough to hear racist comments made by my colleagues. I was also a dispatcher for another sheriff's department and got to hear racist comments made by ranking deputies, but that can't possibly have anything to do with the fact that this sheriff's department also did not have a Black woman on patrol.
  9. not4profit

    not4profit Active Member

    I'm sorry, but I am calling BS on one thing you said. No department told you that you were 'too intelligent' for a law enforcement position. Maybe they told you that you were too educated and they were afraid you would leave. But, nobody told you that you were too 'intelligent.' LOL.
  10. not4profit

    not4profit Active Member

    You are filling in too many blanks with your imagination. I applied to literally HUNDREDS of positions and was eventually selected twice (in 22 years)... even with veterans preference. I was promoted to a position that literally NOBODY else put in for because it involved a self-paid move to D.C.

    I have some more bad news for you. I can tell from the fact pattern you present on this forum and from your arguments you make that something else is wrong with your background or your application. I noticed you never mentioned how you scored on any of the interviews (just tests). Something about your background or your replies is setting off alarm bells with the PDs. Maybe you should do an open-records request for the notes on your files. The reality is this: You were not the only black female to apply to those dozens of LE agencies during those 10 years, and I bet several were hired. So, at some point you will have to ask yourself some honest questions about what vibe it is that you are putting out there or what it is in your background that is stopping you from getting hired. I can guarantee you one thing though. You didn't get passed over by ALL of those dozens of agencies during 10 years because of discrimination. Maybe some of the time, but not all the time.

    I am sure you faced and witnessed discrimination some of the time. But, if all you look for is discrimination, that is all you will see (instead of the other factors at play that you may actually have some control over). I believe that is called attentional bias.
  11. sanantone

    sanantone Well-Known Member

    I got the "too educated" too even though there were other officers in their department with a master's degree (BS excuse), but I also received comments on my very high test score and that someone with my level of intelligence would get bored with the job. I guess you never heard of the long, drawn-out case involving a man who was not hired by a police department because his IQ was too high.

  12. not4profit

    not4profit Active Member

    That is not the same as being told "we did not hire you because you are too intelligent." Receiving an off hand comment is not the same thing. My spider sense is telling me that someone tried to let you down easy and console you by saying you were too smart for the job anyway, and that comment was interpreted as an official reason for non-selection. Note that I am not arguing that it wasn't indeed discrimination because I don't have all the facts (just like you probably don't have all the facts if you were to assert that it was discrimination).

    Also, the case you provided is an across-the board determination by an agency, and it seems like it was held up in court precisely because it was applied to ALL applicants.
  13. sanantone

    sanantone Well-Known Member

    I was never given interview scores. Some of the agencies did not score their interviews. The panel voted on whether they were going to send the person to the chief's interview. One of the agencies told me that I did well in the interview, but they were uneasy with spending $100,000 on training someone who could be competitive for a state or federal government job. That was also the agency that spent an hour talking about my intelligence and education. The funny part is that cities in Texas often pay better than the State of Texas, which had no issue with hiring me for security-sensitive positions, by the way.

    Unless it was a civil service position, which 90% of the jobs I applied to were not, I usually did not get to the interview stage. For those jobs, there was no background investigation because I didn't get past the applicant stage. Actually, in my interviews, they went over my background, and there was nothing of concern. Good credit, no delinquent debt. no arrests, no charges or convictions, no references had concerns in regards to integrity or security, received glowing remarks on my work ethic and performance, etc. I even passed the polygraph exams at the few agencies that required them for whatever that's worth. A psychologist at one sheriff's department also went over my background investigation with me before clearing me for hire as a corrections officer. The background investigation process for county jailers and police offers/deputies in Texas is generally the same. I was offered corrections jobs by three sheriff's departments after going through a background investigation.

    I'm already ahead of you on the open records request; I have my security clearance background information from a FOIA request. I do work for the federal government currently. I've been through three background investigations with the federal government ranging from public trust to top secret.

    Interestingly, I did a ride-along as a dispatcher with a deputy who had been with the department for over a decade, and he said that he couldn't recall seeing one patrol deputy who was a Black woman. He encouraged me to apply because of that. LOL. There were Black women working in the jail, which is where they recruited all of their patrol deputies from up until a few years ago. It's possible that he missed someone, but to be with a department that long and not have seen one Black woman... If there had been any Black women on patrol during that time period, there was probably only one or two. Black women were easy to spot on the detention side. Just because an agency might have hired a couple of Black women over the years does not mean there has been no discrimination. It could mean that they were trying to appease politicians who complained, or they were trying to avoid suspicion.
  14. sanantone

    sanantone Well-Known Member

    If I believed the too intelligent excuse, I wouldn't be suspecting discrimination. There has been research on hiring discrimination outside of law enforcement that has found that equally qualified candidates were not called for interviews because of perceived race based on names. So, it's not hard to believe that there could potentially be hiring discrimination against women in male-dominated fields. There could also be discrimination against men in female-dominated fields.

    I only provided you with info on that court case since you didn't seem to believe that a police department would eliminate someone for being too intelligent. They have and they can. High intelligence is not a protected class, so he lost the case.
  15. sanantone

    sanantone Well-Known Member

    I went through my old emails to remind myself of the order of the process because it differed by department. At the civil service police departments, the background investigation came before the board interview. You were not invited to interview if you didn't pass the background investigation, so there goes that theory.
  16. Acolyte

    Acolyte Active Member

    This doesn't surprise me at all. I feel like even when I was in high school, even middle school (and this was back in the 80's) girls/women seemed to be much more focused on academic achievement. When I was in college in the early 2000's (I didn't really go until I was in my 30's) there were several times I had conversations with young men (in group projects, etc) that had spent all night playing video games rather than working on the project - at that time it did kind of shock me a bit, that they would shirk so much responsibility to play video games. But where I grew up - especially where I went to high school (inner city environment) academic achievement was almost looked DOWN upon - almost as an "un-masculine pursuit" -sports was much more important, and in racial terms - black kids that were too into academics were often called "too white" - which was always sad to me on many levels.

    I have no scientific data, but it seems that intellectualism, academic achievement, and even as others have pointed out - career field are all entwined with cultural, ethnic, and gender identity - and IMO the school system has been on a continual shift away from practical experiences (like wood and metal shop, auto shop, drafting classes, and other "hands-on" skill sets for a long time in favor of extended periods of sitting. Again, I'm no scientist, but even when I volunteered to work in the inner city in my late 20's I knew that some kids, especially boys - needed to burn off some physical energy before they could settle down for a quieter activity - maybe that's just a physiological thing that doesn't affect females as much overall -

    All that to say that I feel that I've seem men (in my own family) flouder as they attempt to find "noble purpose" in their career paths, and even in their existence. As some others have pointed out, women have fought for their positions - and in my anecdotal experience, that does seem to give women a certain drive that I have seen lacking in men for decades. Maybe it's the effect of upsetting the "patriarchy" that we haven't quite gotten a handle on - in a strange way, women are told they can be anything - but men are still given a narrow lane in which to still be counted as "men" - (and in my experience growing up, living, and working in African American communities - that is exacerbated even further by notions of "blackness" and black male identity and the relationships those communities have with authorities and power structures - of which, the educational system is a big one!) and those boundaries are often reinforced as much or more - unfortunately by WOMEN - who still hold men to certain "patriarchal standards" - primal roles of provider and protector above all else. Earning potential and extreme self-confidence. Suicide rates among young men are more than 3 times that for young women. That should be just as alarming as sexual assault stats. Something is not right. Maybe the "patriarchy" - including the ancient idea of the "warrior class" - evolved specifically because men/males have a deep primal weakness that needs to be compensated for - and as we dismantle these power systems, we need to make sure we are understanding the effects of that re-conception, so to speak. Men can find an identity in the warrior class through video games. Through sport. They can live vicariously as the alpha male, the sexually dominant one through the distorted lens of pornography. Without the intimate relationship with the father figure, there is opportunity for disassociation with one's own masculine identity and all the forms that it is "allowed" to take. It reminds me of the Mister Rogers documentary, where one of the blue collar guys that worked on the show said, "He showed me a different way to be a man" - add to all of this the growing acceptance of the reality that all of our gender identities exist on a spectrum - and I do feel like I've seen "men" and when I say that, I mean young cis males of various ethnic backgrounds struggle with finding and claiming a space that provides them with that noble purpose.

    .02 rant.
  17. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly Staff Member

    For what it's worth, sanantone, I believe you.
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  18. sanantone

    sanantone Well-Known Member

    The educational attainment gap between Black men and women has been around almost since after the Civil War. The Black American community's issues go all the way back to slavery. Since families were often split up, Black families became matriarchal. This persisted after emancipation. The gap in graduating from high school started developing earlier in the Black community than the White community. Black women were graduating from high school at a significantly higher rate than Black men I believe before WWII ended. Even though Black men enrolled in college at far higher rates into the 1960s, Black women had higher college graduation rates. One researcher noted that the academic achievement gap between Black girls and Black boys is present right at the beginning of schooling. Black boys are more likely than any other group to be placed into special education, and they're rarely classified as gifted and talented or advanced. Black boys' representation in special education classes is almost twice as high as their representation in the general population. The old marriage statistics for Black Americans aren't reliable because of what they called the "poor man's divorce." The marriage rates were higher in the Black community several decades ago, but they're misleading. When a man couldn't afford a divorce, he would just leave. On paper, a woman was married, but in reality, she was a single mother. Black women learned over 100 years ago to be self-reliant, which causes friction because the Black community is also very religious and believes in traditional Christian ideas on women being submissive and men being leaders. Traditional ideas might also be tied to the very high domestic violence and intimate partner murder rates in the Black community along with financial stress.

    It took a little while longer for White women to surpass White men in degree attainment, but the gaps between White men and White women and also Asian men and Asian women are small in comparison to the gap between Black men and Black women. Skilled blue collar jobs pay more than some of the most popular professions college-educated women enter. That's seen through the statistics that show that men with associate's degrees earn about the same or more than women with bachelor's degrees. Earning a bachelor's degree has become the most efficient way for women to enter the middle class. Girls aren't really told that we can be anything. There's more of an expectation for boys to enter STEM fields. For a long time, it was believed that women were naturally worse at mathematics. Recent research has found that girls start out being better at mathematics but that advantage fades as they progress through grade school. Additionally, ADHD is underdiagnosed in girls because it presents itself differently. Girls tend to be primarily inattentive, which is something parents and teachers don't notice. Boys tend to be primarily hyperactive. In many ways, traditional gender roles still influence educators' perceptions of how girls and boys are supposed to behave, which areas they're supposed to excel at, and which occupations they can be expected to enter. When women do major in STEM, they still make less than men, and that's probably because women gravitate toward the life sciences. Asian women are the only group of women who out-earn men in STEM with the exception of Asian men.

    I'm not quite sure the college education gap should be concerning. Men still earn STEM degrees in far greater numbers than women do. Is it really an issue that not as many men are enrolling to study the social sciences and humanities? Generally, over 80% of those working in the skilled trades are men, and many of those jobs pay just as much or more than some female-dominated fields that require a degree. That's not to say that we couldn't use more male teachers or more male mental health professionals. I think that would have a positive impact on boys, especially Black boys since Black male teachers are rare. If we are to encourage more boys to go into non-STEM fields, we would have to also encourage more women to go into the blue collar trades. Honestly, I'm not sure that there are that many men who want to become K-12 teachers or counselors, and I'm not sure if there are that many women who will be interested in becoming plumbers and HVAC/R technicians.
  19. Michael Burgos

    Michael Burgos Active Member

    Given the Western transition from traditional social and moral expectations, especially for men, it makes sense that men, having jettisoned those expectations and the presuppositions that underlie them, find college unhelpful and(or) impossible. The decades long increase in female college attendance, while not reflected in the article, supports this conclusion. When men believe it is their God-ordained responsibility to provide, protect, and support their progeny and spouse, education, whether through tradesmanship or the university, becomes a foregone conclusion. Indeed, the university arose within the traditional milieu only because its ultimate presuppositions required it.
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  20. SpoonyNix

    SpoonyNix Active Member

    My sons are 14 and 11. Pretty soon we'll be having more involved chats about college, and I'm pretty sure I will advise them to steer clear of just about every American college campus.

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