Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Is Miley Cyrus a real human being?




I’m not sure why everyone is talking about Miley Cyrus. Maybe it’s because the situation in Syria is too difficult to think about or maybe it’s just that she’s another attractive, scantily clad woman that people can project their own causes onto.

Some have complained that her performance at the recent Video Music Awards was too raunchy or shocking. Others think it was sexist. Still others claim the backlash against her is really slut shaming (a term I hate), while other are using it to discuss race since the male rapper was white. All of these points have their interesting elements, but given how excited people are, I’m surprised there isn’t a massive stampede to English or Women’s Studies departments, because this kind of cultural criticism has become their currency. Ultimately, I think everyone has missed the point.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Should a philosopher give dating advice?


PQED is back after a summer hiatus. I hope you are all well.

About a week ago, an undergraduate I shall call Otto asked me the following question via Facebook: “Is it a bad or good idea to tell a girl you like her thru text?”

My response was immediate: “In my opinion, if you have to "tell" her, it means she is uninterested. Don't tell her. Ask her out. If she says yes, show her that you like her during the date. If she says no, then you know she isn't interested, and whether you like her or not is irrelevant. As for asking her out via text, that is generational. I wouldn't do it. But I'm an old guy.”

I wanted to share this because I think it exemplifies several things about the philosophical method.