Why there will always be a need for men...

Discussion in 'Current Events' started by Frohickey, Apr 1, 2004.

  1. Frohickey macrumors 6502a

    Feb 27, 2003
    Why there will always be a need for men

    If the 21st Century belongs to women, could men become extinct? It's the question raised in this week's BBC Two drama documentary If... women ruled the world?

    Professor Steve Jones explains why, in spite of the rumours, men are biologically hard to get rid of.

    One of the biggest questions in biology is: what is the point of men?

    Why do women let them get away with it? All they do is force the unfortunate female to copy their own, male, genes.

    And why are there so many of that selfish tribe?

    Each one, each time he has sex, makes enough sperm to fertilise every woman in Europe. Surely a few lucky lotharios would be enough and we could do away with the rest in the interests of economy.

    'Dumped males'

    In fact the question of males raises not one, but many biological issues: the origin of sex, of distinct sexes, of why there are only two sexes rather than dozens.

    And how is that pastime maintained, given that it is so expensive? A woman, it seems, could much increase the rate at which she copies her own genes if she avoided having them diluted by those of a man.

    Yes, men are a complicated lot, and there's a lot we do not know. As we look through the living world, one thing is clear: it is very hard to get rid of them.

    There are plenty of creatures out there that have done the job (including a California lizard in which every animal is a female but, strangely, half pretend to be male by trying to mate with its sister).

    Plants - think banana or potato - have dumped males again and again. However, almost none of those lineages have evolved very far.

    On the great tree of life, they are at the tips of the branches, each at a dead end. Males act to reshuffle the genetic cards, handing a new mixture of DNA to the next generation, rather than exactly the same mix as that in their mother.

    In the great casino of life, they are essential, for any creature that always gambles with the same hand, however good, is bound to lose in the end.

    'Investment strategy'

    In mammals like ourselves there are also boring technical reasons why some genes have to pass through a father to work properly (which is one reason why cloning is so hard).

    But why equal numbers of the sexes? Like so much in life it is a matter of investment strategy.

    Imagine a city with 10,000 women and just 10 men. :eek: :D Thats 10 happy, but tired guys. Thats even better than the deal given to muslim martyrs! :p

    Every man would have lots of mates perhaps a hundred or more but however energetic the men were, many of the women would remain without a partner.

    Being a man would be very, very, advantageous, and the gene for maleness would get commoner in the next generation.

    In time, the city might, perhaps, end up with more men than women - and then the shoe would be on the other foot for many of those males would fail to reproduce.

    In the end, things would settle down at 50-50, which is where it more or less is, at least in the west.

    In China and India, though, lots of girl babies are killed off as they are seen as valueless. That effect has led to a great excess of young men (more than 120 to every 100 women in some places).

    Now, it seems, some parents actually prefer to have girl babies as they are guaranteed to find a partner when they grow up.

    Why are babies born young?

    The laws of nature are less forgiving than those of television, and in spite of the rumours men are going to be around for a long time yet.

    In fact there is another reason why we are going to be hard to get rid of.

    Men are at the heart of another central question of biology: Why are babies born young? How can two old and decayed pieces of protoplasm (mothers and fathers, as we call them) get together and, with remarkably little effort, generate a new, rejuvenated, one?

    It has to do with sex: for the cells that make sperm are preserved from decay while those who bear them age and die.

    Without men, babies might be born as old as their mothers. Imagine what a great television drama that would make!


    Okay, you women out there, here is the full skinny on why men are needed. I always knew it wasn't just for taking out the garbage and killing big nasty spiders and cockroaches. :cool:
  2. Gymnut macrumors 68000


    Apr 18, 2003
    lol, add changing the oil in the car and putting air in the tires. ;)
  3. G4scott macrumors 68020


    Jan 9, 2002
    Austin, TX
    Us males will always exist... Although it'd be nice to be the only male out of 1000 women, that would get very tiring, and would probably burn after a while...
  4. mvc macrumors 6502a


    Jul 11, 2003
    WARNING… Unpolitically correct statement ahead!

    An all female society would self destruct in 3 days as there would be noone to be wrong.

    Or, to paraphrase the old riddle, "If a man is standing alone in a forest, is he still wrong"? :cool:
  5. rainman::|:| macrumors 603


    Feb 2, 2002
    there's one good reason why there should always be men.

    they're so damn attractive.

  6. crenz macrumors 6502a


    Jul 3, 2003
    Shanghai, China
    It's interesting that they mostly talk about physical aspects. Do they really assume that men and women are equal in social and emotional aspects? I believe we need both men and women to have a balanced society. That's why it's good we still need both for procreation...
  7. jxyama macrumors 68040


    Apr 3, 2003
    i have read that through simulations, it's natural to end up with 2 sexes, with one sex providing a large but not so numerous part (i.e. egg) and the other providing small but numerous part (i.e. sperms) needed to mate.

    iirc, the assumptions they made were that larger an object, more robust but less mobile and smaller the object, more fragile but more mobile. if you let out many of two extremes (robust/immobile and fragile/mobile) along with all the possible ones in between, the combination that maximizes the survival and the chance of mating is 2 sexes with egg and sperm like carriers...

    thought it was interesting...
  8. Giaguara macrumors 6502a

    Nov 22, 2002
    SOMEONE has to do the firty work. thatswhy they invented men? :rolleyes:

    seriously, if i lived in a society that had 10 men per every 10,000 women, i would suicide.
  9. Dippo macrumors 65816


    Sep 27, 2003
    Charlotte, NC

    I would probably commit suicide too, but for different reasons.

    Just think, 1000 women telling you want to do and nagging all the time...I think one is plenty enough for me :p
  10. musicpyrite macrumors 68000


    Jan 6, 2004
    Cape Cod
    What would happen when it was their time of the month???But it would still be cool to be the only guy in 10,000 chicks....
  11. cr2sh macrumors 68030


    May 28, 2002
    I thought for sure I'd click this thread and the answer would be:

    "Cuz they got the weeners." :D
  12. tpjunkie macrumors 65816


    Nov 24, 2002
    God, he's right! Its a well known fact that women living together start to have coordinated menstrual cycles....could you imagine the amount of PMSing ? :eek: :D
  13. AngryLawnGnome macrumors regular

    Jan 5, 2004
  14. Frohickey thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Feb 27, 2003
    That in itself would be a very strong disincentive for foreign invasion. :eek: :D
  15. Frohickey thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Feb 27, 2003
    That, and we know how to do a proper BARBEQUE. :p
  16. Frohickey thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Feb 27, 2003
    Real man test

    Darn it... I only scored a 9.

    Anyone know the Alzheimer's joke? :D
  17. wdlove macrumors P6


    Oct 20, 2002
    I'm out of luck, don't know the Alzheimer's joke. Hopefully someone will! :eek:
  18. KingSleaze macrumors 6502

    Feb 24, 2004
    So. Cal
    Alzheimers joke

    Couple of them:

    Uh, I forgot it.

    Alzheimers/Cancer joke:

    Doctor to patient- I've got good news and bad news.
    Patient- What's the bad news?
    Doctor- You are dying from Cancer.
    Patient- What's the good news?
    Doctor- You also have Alzheimers.
    Patient-So what's the bad news?

    Lousy as jokes go. Not remembering what just happened.
  19. DarkNovaMatter macrumors member

    Aug 3, 2001
    Is this the same guy that wrote this book? - http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/0618139303/104-2000124-8340705?v=glance

    There is many reasons for why men are still around. Anyone remember the idea that the Y chromosome was dying out? Well they found out that it in itself is mostly responsible for genetic mutation. By being able to mutate a whole string of DNA to make sure that errors don't crop up (and clone itself). When will people realize that one can't live without the other (well without of alot of tech to depend on, and even then....)? Its not that this one is inferior or this one is only good for doing this mundane task, its about one provides one side, and the other the other composing side.

    P.S.- If anyone hasn't seen the Y chromisome article, heres the link- http://www.newscientist.com/news/news.jsp?id=ns99993849 -verry interesting article BTW.
  20. rueyeet macrumors 65816


    Jun 10, 2003
    Ah, but in a society composed mostly of women, women would know that they can do all that stuff themselves, so there would be no need for nagging the men. Really, the only reason that women ask guys to do the open jars/squish bugs/etc is that in our strictly gender-separate, male-dominated society, women are taught that being weak and squeamish will enhance their feminity. Ridiculous, but that's how we currently do it.

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