Discover more from Default Wisdom
thought digest, 3.31.2023
Next week, we’re back in business with some very cool guest and archival posts.
Substack recommends I throw these in.
But in the meantime, here’s what’s been on my mind. Quite possibly nothing new. Just a new format.
Female rage. Since the shooting in Nashville, I’ve been thinking a lot about female rage. Mass shootings have never struck me as particularly male behavior, even though men commit 98% of them. Maybe the guns. I don’t meet many women who genuinely like guns.
I’ve been wondering, why don’t women commit more mass shootings? Is it just that women are less likely to be attracted to those types of weapons? Could it be that simple? Contra even my own writing on the subject, I don’t find it difficult to imagine what would motivate a woman to react this way.
Women snap all the time. Women poison their husbands and drive minivans full of toddlers into canals. They put salt water into their kids’ IVs and kill them. They make their daughters sick until their daughters turn around and bash their heads in. They kneecap athletic competitors and kidnap rivals and stab their best friends. They commit some of the most horrific violent crimes you can imagine and many that we can’t imagine or don’t want to. All of this is to say nothing of the ways women hurt themselves.
We can write that all off, and say it’s personalized—women individualize things. Seems too reductive. Like we have more Eric Harrises these days than Ted Bundys, times change. Men individualize their crimes too. Doesn’t feel like an excuse.
Why hasn’t there been a Falling Down with a female lead, I wonder. Or has there been, and I just don’t know about it? Where is all the “BPD” female violence? Where are the fits of rage outside Reddit horror stories and viral TikToks of abusive girlfriends? Have we yet crossed the event horizon of femcel violence—not the Isabella Janke or Lindsay Souvannarath “femcel fatale”—but the truly disaffected woman?
The Christine Chubbucks, the Brenda Spencers, the Sol Paises of the world?
We know where all the ISIS brides went, but what about women who aren't radicalized, who don’t need a cause? Where are the women who are eaten alive by a nihilism that doesn’t look like an Otessa Moshfegh book, who aren’t sexualized, who aren’t dead-eyed Ozempic zombies?
Why don’t we see them?
Come to my D.C. meet-up on Sunday at 5 PM. Register here.
Me around the web:
TikTok’s new HIV influencer | UnHerd
Computer Love | Comment Magazine
The Humans Who Live As Lab Rats | The Free Press
The Witch Trials Trials of J.K. Rowling (as a guest) | The Free Press
The Rise and Fall of the Girl Boss Meme | Modern Wisdom
Katherine Dee Needs To Log Off | Walk-Ins Welcome
And a pedantic explainer I shouldn’t have even had to write about why I differentiate between far-right and right-wing.
What I’ve been reading:
No articles lately, just Three Women by Lisa Taddeo. I tried to read Tressie McMillan Cotton’s Thick but found the first chapter to be a little insufferable and had to put it down. I wish she had a better editor because a lot of her commentary on digital life has been pretty good. Also, yes, I subscribe to Book of the Month. Yes, it is sort of a waste of money.