On Tuesday, Forbes’ Web site published a piece by Michael Noer, arguing that according to a number of sociological studies men are better off marrying women who don’t have careers. The headline: “Don’t Marry Career Women.”
Proving once again that we live in a golden age of getting a rise out of people, today blogger after blogger responded to Noer’s bait.
“What a fucking idiot,” writes Gonzo Rangers. “Besides being a complete misogynist who is probably being divorced as we speak, he’s also a moron. His problem is basing his whole ludicrous theory on vast emptiness of ‘social science’ which is just about the biggest oxymoron since ‘compassionate conservatism’ or ‘homeopathic medicine.’”
“Now I love a good marriage joke as much as the next man but this article was not meant to be satirical,” writes Progressive Conservatism. “Noer was attempting to put into words an argument for men to avoid marriage based on statistical evidence.”
“I’m just glad I’m already married,” writes Jennifer Inc. “Otherwise, I’d need to quit my job and try out for one at Hooters to git me a man.”
Over at the Huffington Post, Eat the Press rewrote Noer’s led: “Ladies: A word of advice. Marry hot guys or ugly ones. Short ones or tall ones. Blondes or brunettes. Just, whatever you do, don’t marry Forbes’ Michael Noer. Because he’s an idiot.”
According to the well-established rules of cheaply boosting one’s Web traffic, Forbes also published a perfunctory slide show accompanying Noer’s piece.
“But even all this foolishness is eclipsed by the accompanying slideshow, ‘Pictures: Nine Reasons To Steer Clear Of Career Women,’ which is a grab-bag of more stats illustrated with tenuously related stock photography,” writes Gawker. “Why does this information require illustration? Did we need a close-up of a woman’s gelatinous fake tear to know what an unhappy wife looks like? That stock-photo man at right sure looks sad. If only he’d had the balls to send off for that Ukrainian mail-order bride.”
After briefly removing Noer’s article from the site, Forbes has since re-published the piece along with a side-by-side counterpoint by Elizabeth Corcoran entitled, “Don’t Marry a Lazy Man.”
“OK, call me a cougar,” writes Corcoran. “I’ve been working since the day I graduated from college 20-odd years ago. I have two grade-school-aged children. Work definitely takes up more than 35 hours a week for me. Thankfully, I do seem to make more than $30,000. All of which, according to Michael, should make me a wretched wife. In spite of those dangerous statistics, my husband and I are about to celebrate our 18th wedding anniversary.”
But many bloggers were beyond appeasement.
“Forbes is still missing the point,” writes BlogHer. “Running it as part of a point— counter point isn’t going to solve anything. The point is that it took the outrage of readers and their own employees to make the editorial team at Forbes realize that what Noer had written was an opinion piece and not a piece of objective journalism.
“They broke the public trust,” adds BlogHer. “They insulted their subscribers. They were snarky. While readers expect and accept snarky from Gawker and other bloggers, they do not expect it from mainstream business publications that are supposed to adhere to fundamental journalistic ethics.”