Patterico's Pontifications


Saying “You Guys” Is Sexist, You Guys!

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:30 am

The latest unbelievable drivel from The Onion Vox: Why I’m finally convinced it’s time to stop saying “you guys”:

I’m a big user of “guys,” and when it was first brought to my attention that the phrase was frowned upon among leading feminist thinkers and people concerned with equality — especially in male-dominated workplaces — my reaction was, “Oh, come on. It’s inaccurate, but it’s not actually hurting anyone.”

But I’ve changed my mind. As I read up on the issue, I realized that my knee-jerk response (“It doesn’t seem like that big a deal to me, personally, and changing would require effort on my part and that’s hard and tiring”) is nothing more than a very typical lazy excuse for avoiding the tiny tweaks to our lives that can, as a whole, make society more equal.

Now I’m convinced that “guys” — unless we are actually addressing a group of guys — has got to go.

The reason is the typical leftist drivel about sexism and male privilege and crap like that. By saying “you guys” to groups of people that include women, we are reinforcing the cultural norms of male superiority, erasing femininity from the world, and basically treating women as nobodies. And here we thought we were just using a convenient short phrase to refer to a group of people in a casual way. WRONG! It’s rude, you guys! I mean, my friends! As Michelle Malkin says: “You guys” is the new “you people.”

The writer is our old friend Jenée Desmond-Harris. You might remember her from this post summarizing an argument I had with her . . . or this post, in which I captured three tweets that summarize her character and world view quite succinctly:

Screen Shot 2013-07-29 at 7.17.39 AM

Screen Shot 2013-07-29 at 7.17.49 AM

Screen Shot 2013-07-29 at 7.17.59 AM

You now have a pretty good idea of who you’re dealing with, don’t you? By the way, the disdain for male progenitors continues with today’s “you guys” piece:

If you get a jump on changing now, you can avoid being like your grandfather who is still saying “negro” because he doesn’t mean anything by it and that’s what they used to say in his day and he doesn’t see the point of evolving. Don’t get left behind, y’all/friends/everyone/folks.

Raise your hand if you plan to say “you guys” a lot more often in coming days. Just to get under the skin of people like this entitled, disrespectful witch. *raise*

21 Responses to “Saying “You Guys” Is Sexist, You Guys!”

  1. Ding, you guys.

    Patterico (3cc0c1)

  2. *Raise*

    IGotBupkis, "Si tacuisses, philosophus mansisses." (225d0d)

  3. Clearly they should be saying y’all, or its plural, ‘all y’all’.

    Skip (83e9b7)

  4. I don’t suppose the greeting “Guys and Dolls” would be considered appropriate for mixed company? Too 1950’s musical perhaps? Maybe, but I believe it did play Carnegie Hall in 2014. But I ramble …

    Mike Morgan (7a3b37)

  5. You guys are taking feminists way too seriously.

    edoc118 (43ae68)

  6. This is about feminism? I don’t think so you guys. I think it is simple BS.

    Fred Beloit (8d4349)

  7. I started explaining math and physics to my dad after I took Calculus I and Statics.

    My dad humored me.

    Then I took Calc. IV and Dynamics and apologized to my dad.

    egd (1ad898)

  8. Jenee is kinda dumb.

    JD (d7747e)

  9. #FirstWorldProblems you guys…

    but i have a solution.


    redc1c4 (6d1848)

  10. “…who is still saying “negro” because he doesn’t mean anything by it and that’s what they used to say in his day…”

    Somebody had better clue in the United Negro College Fund.

    navyvet (c33501)

  11. Do the rest of you guys hear Forrest Gump every time you read Jenée’s name, or is it just me?

    edoc118 (43ae68)

  12. My first exam in Soc 101, I wrote that cultural relativism was a bad thing. That turned out to be wrong. Next exam, I wrote it was a good thing. Still wrong. The only thing I learned for sure was a new word: folkways.

    gp (5a38d9)

  13. “feminist thinkers.” There’s your problem right there.

    Gazzer (be559b)

  14. i’m a y’all person mostly

    also i’m in marketing

    what is this male-dominated workplace of which you speak?

    oh you mean where you get your oil changed

    i sold my car like two weeks ago

    happyfeet (831175)

  15. You mis-spelled bitch.

    Sic Semper Tyrannis (f6d089)

  16. I’ve never understood what’s supposed to be wrong with “you people”, and I use it when appropriate, e.g. when the people in question aren’t all, or even mostly, guys.

    Milhouse (a0cc5c)

  17. Re: Jenée’s “Raise your hand if you started explaining stuff to him” quote, there’s another quote (usually attributed to Mark Twain, though that provenance is doubtful) that she would have done well to read and understand:

    “When I was a boy of fourteen, my father was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have the old man around. But when I got to be twenty-one, I was astonished at how much he had learned in seven years.”

    Robin Munn (2a698e)


    Once moar for emfassis:

    First Lady Michelle Obama: “I want to urge you guys to keep on working hard every single day.”

    Steve57 (48418e)

  19. The Obama White House. Hotbec of sexism, overseen by the Sith Lord of sexism, Michelle.

    Steve57 (48418e)

  20. Hotbec = hotbed

    Steve57 (48418e)

  21. Re the grandfather still saying “negro”.

    I remember seeing somewhere that the US was still paying **civil war** pensions to two people a couple of years ago. Basically there were a couple of long lived children of young solders.

    Point is, stuff takes a while to disappear.

    I think it’s actually pretty durn impressive how quickly the US has moved on from the jim crow racism myself.

    scrubone (c3104f)

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