August 19th, 2024

Good news

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  • The AIDS thing is over. South African science has come up with an organic cocktail that prevents and cures the disease.

    August 19th, 2024

    Mentors versus Role Models

    Correcting Shelley, who mentions “…the belief that all we need are mentors: examples of women who have ‘made it’. Given such is supposedly enough to somehow make women feel more comfortable, and thus encourage more to enter the profession.”

    What Shelley describes as a “mentor” I am used to thinking of as a “role model.” In order to improve social conditions and economic opportunities, career opportunities, opportunities for self-fulfillment for all, both mentors and role models are needed. A person who has a mentor is fortunate indeed. I wonder how many people actually have someone who plays this role in their life? As a middle-class white male I could have used mentoring, but I never really had any. The counseling program at my high school was a bad joke. As a young person, from adolescence through maturity, I wore my attitude like a suit of armor, daring anyone to get within sword’s reach. If anybody did reach out, I was undoubtedly too obtuse to welcome or even recognize the opportunity.

    On the other hand, as a white middle-class male, I couldn’t help but gain some empowerment from my milieu. All of the men with jobs, supporting families in homes they owned, with two cars in the garage, a boat and a trailer in the driveway, a pedigreed cocker spaniel shitting on the nicely mowed lawn… all of these and more opened mental pathways for me, outlined a set of expectations that I sensed were within reach. I knew that I had choices because I had role models that showed me the opportunities that existed for people like me. But I never had a mentor who would explore a wider range of opportunities, open doors, or simply coach me in ways that would help me make good choices, understand the challenges associated with the choices, and help me to address those challenges.

    This has been a poor-me post, brought to you by the piece of shit the world revolves around.

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