Not just something known to cause cancer in rats in the state of California.  (Though, are we aware of any substance and/or object that doesn’t cause cancer in the state of California?  The best risk management for cancer has to be moving away from California.)

This particular version causes grand revolutions, interpersonal spats, and great outbreaks of calvariam eksplodigi on our great campuses of higher learning.

I have been known to generate high torque from the PC crowd myself, when I state, without embarrassment or appropriate markers of shame, that men and women are NOT equal.

Now I’m not a neanderthal – I think that all human adults of majority age with adequate mental capacity should be able to vote, to own property, to pursue an education in whatever they prefer, and to get paid for their work what their work is more or less worth (not my fault though if you are incapable of negotiating, or feel the need to take sabbaticals to tour the NorthWestern Pacific ashram circuit every three years).

However, anyone who has ever spent a microsecond in a weightlifting gym is well aware that the sexes have some pretty wide gaps in at least physical ability.  Don’t believe me?  Take a set of guys and girls at the same level of total lack of physical fitness and have them train to do pull ups.

Instead of being a believer in egalitarianism, or meritocracy, or any other more sweeping ideals, which I find do not take into account how individual we generally all are, I believe in the The Standard.

The Standard is what any human needs to meet to do The Job.

For instance, if The Job is firefighting, The Standard will be that one needs to be able to sprint up 12 stories in 70 pounds of gear wearing a respirator, in the temperature equivalent of the African Savanna, and potentially haul a 200lb person back down those 12 stories with vigor.  These are the things that are necessary to properly do The Job.

If The Job is nuclear engineering, The Standard will be a high-level education in physics and/or medicine and the ingenuity to put such information into real-world practice.  Note there’s no corporeal requirement whatsoever.  A brain in a tank might meet The Standard, if they were capable of communicating coherently with their embodied compatriots.

If The Job is a public school administrator, The Standard will be that one requires a huge glutenous ass on which to rest comfortably at their red tape dispenser, the possession of at least 7 cats, and a healthy measure of disgust toward both children and those who actually work for a living.

You didn’t turn in your paperwork.

You’ll notice however, that there is no mention of gender, race, sexuality, religion, or any other defining characteristic of a particular individual other than their ability to meet The Standard.  A girl from the projects, a boy from an Appalachian town with a population of 12 and a GDP assessed entirely in dirt, and a transgender Bangladeshi trust fund baby can all do The Job if they meet The Standard.

Sometimes, however, The Standard will be difficult for a set of people to reach.  There may be few women, if any, who meet The Standard to become a firefighter.  Personally, I don’t care.

It is far more important to have The Job done in the way it needs to be done than anyone’s feelings about not being able to do The Job.

Who would I like to rescue me from burning building?  The affirmative-action chick who was allowed to test at a reduced gear weight and half the lifting ability so that the FD wouldn’t get screamed at by social justice warriors, or the huge dude who passed with flying colors, wearing a weight vest just for a little extra challenge?

When my ass is on fire, I’m taking the person who can do The Job.  Period.

I would also take the huge viking chick who wore a weight vest to her testing as well.  The operation here is “Carrying ass out of fire,” not “Being a female firefighter in a display of how anything you can do we can do better.”

Yeah, you’ll do.

The Standard also does not discriminate by poverty level or any other characteristic.  Yes it may be more difficult for little Hiram Skaggs from Dysentery Creek, NC to get into Harvard for that physics degree, but if everyone knows where the bar is set and the bar doesn’t involve your skin color or dangly bits, everyone gets to take their shot per their individual proclivities.

Ideally, if I ran the world, The Job wouldn’t even know it was Hiram Skaggs applying.  They would be reviewing the merits of Applicant 3467-15.

If all the accepted applicants end up being Samoan women, so be it.  If the Coalition of Transgender Vietnamese Speakers is upset about being underrepresented they should brush up on their physics.  Or get more cats.  Or otherwise look into getting their demographic to reach The Standard.

I want the best people for the position, not a happy demographic rainbow of people who are potentially incompetent but check the boxes.

That’s what makes us equal – Everyone gets their shot, everyone gets to fail in their own special way.