This article – actually, this series of articles – at the Huffington Post – has drawn some predictable criticism from some the commenters. And why?
Because the author, a man who writes books about women and does scientific research on happiness, reports in “The Paradox of Declining Female Happiness” that there are some things that women can do to improve their lives.
Marcus Buckingham, from all accounts, has just compiled a bunch of data from women and is reporting objectively on what he’s discovered. He doesn’t have an agenda, apart from making women aware of some of the unfortunate consequences of certain lifestyle choices – like being negative and not accepting the world as it is.
Yet commenters on HuffPo question him as if he’s some tool of the establishment, sent to oppress women:
Dear Mr. Marcus Buckingham,
What authority and expertise do you posses in womens’ issues? Further, what is your degree in? Where is the research referenced in your blog? Is it peer reviewed? It seems to me you want to write an “inspirational” self help book for women (from a white male perspective), and they will probably buy it. The beauty of blogging is access to information and opinion that popular media falls short in delivering, but I also find it troublesome that some people use blogs to promote themselves and their “brand” which is not dissimilar to the corporate concept that has served to oppress pretty much the majority of this country’s population, minus 1% on the top.
So, I would like to know your education and credentials and I would appreciate references to the studies you cite. That would be honest blogging and reporting!
Adelina’s skepticism is based not on Mr. Buckingham himself – after all, she has no idea who he is. Instead, her anger is based on the fact that he told her something she didn’t want to hear. And when people tell us things we don’t want to hear, we tend to attack them – instead of considering the message itself – and how it might be valid to a broad swath of others.
If Mr. Buckingham reports that women are less happy than before, and a reader herself is PERFECTLY happy and can’t possibly understand where this study is coming from…it still doesn’t negate the veracity of the study.
Once again, the messenger is getting shot. But it’s not HIS message.
It’s an objective one.