Where the Personal becomes the Political at our whim...
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:: Saturday, December 07, 2002 ::
Guns & Bias So as several of you may know, I spent the last week goingcrazy while working on a presentation and paper for a very important class. It’s the last class I have to take for my self designed major. I gave the presentation late Wednesday, and it seemed to go pretty well.
Topic: targeted marketing campaigns for women, specifically firearms advertising for women
My disclaimer: “I’m not here to discuss laws or debate the issue as a whole. I simply wanted to examine a controversial issue related to women and marketing today. Whether you are a supporter of Second Amendment rights or not, firearms and the industry advertisements are a reality. Deal with it.”
Reaction of class: some shock, mostly just curious…a few were mostly interested to finally put a face with my name since I’m kind of known to be the gun chick on campus
Reaction of professor: “I’ve never even considered that industry before.”
My reaction to his reaction: “I’m not surprised.”
After class, I spoke with the professor in an attempt to explain the trouble I have had finding unbiased articles. Many of the articles (no books that I’ve found are dedicated to this specific topic, typically the broader arguments about advertising to women) end up arguing the issue of firearms in society. It’s the same stuff I’ve heard over and over again. I feel like I know this issue well enough that I could argue for banning guns as well as I can for gun rights. You want stats? I got ‘em or have them nearby if they aren’t off the top of my head. Getting back to my point, his answer to me left me almost speechless. He looked at me and said, “Oh, you mean you are only finding sources that are anti-gun? That’s biased, right?” It never occurred to him that bias can include a point of view with which you agree. But with me being the always optimistic, give everyone a chance (or 20), “I’m sure he didn’t mean it that way” type, I attempted to clarify. I made comments that I’d even found a couple of sources that were blatantly pro-gun, so obviously that proved to be a problem as well. He looked confused. I don’t think I’ve ever made a professor look that confused before. (Well, maybe my advising committee, but now they are just entertained by me.)
Now maybe it’s just me, but I thought that this whole higher education thing was supposed to make us question everything, including things we believe. Maybe I’m way off target with that idea. Anyway, the confusion continued when I tried explaining the situation a little more. Blah, blah, “I just want a simple analysis without bringing in ideology that doesn’t have to apply to the situation,” “I know I’m pro-gun, but that doesn’t mean I can’t question tactics used by the industry if they are suspicious,” blah, blah. Still the same confused look. I gave up.
:: Bitter 10:34 AM [+] ::