Most people learn only by mimicking what other people are doing

Most people, whether by students or not, learn only by mimicking what other people are doing. We see people doing something, and we try it until we gain proficiency. These activities range from the simple – following a step in a standard operating procedure or pressing the green button, to the more complex – racing a car around a track hoping for the best time.

We are hardwired to learn by mimicking. Toddlers learn to stand upright and walk by observing others. Even our animal ancestors learn by mimicry. In fact, mimicry is one of the only ways animals learn. Monkeys learn to climb branches by watching their parents climb from branch to branch. They develop the hand and arm strength over time. They learn which branches can support their weight. And they learn to depend on their tail for stability and security instead of relying on mom. There’s a saying for that.

Humans aren’t too different. We have many more resources available to us. We can read any subject, most college courses are available online, and we can talk about our experiences and ask questions. Despite all these advantages, most of our learning happens by mimicry.

I learned most of what I learned by mimicking others. Even reading and writing – I started these because someone I looked up to said I should read and write. He was a cool dude that got attention from when I didn’t. I wanted attention from chicks, so I decided I’d follow his advice. So, I developed the habits of reading and writing. Fortunately, I liked reading and writing, even though the habits didn’t get me too much closer to having sex with women.

I still wanted to get laid. So, I followed people that spend their lives trying to understand women. I became a student of Patrice O’Neal (a comedian) and Julian Blanc (a “pickup artist”). I learned how women think from Patrice O’Neal and social skills from Julian. I behaved like Julian, and I studied like Patrice. I went out in the world and interacted with women with the two of them in mind. That worked. I started to understand women, and I started to have sex with them.

When I turned to more virtuous endeavors, I followed intelligent, virtuous people that had done it before. The Thoreaus, Petersons, and Senecas – these became my teachers and my lab partners. I studied what they said, and I did what they did. And I found (and continue to find) virtue.

I wanted to be a podcast host. So I followed Anthony Cumia and Geno Bisconte. I talked like they talked. I structured my show like Geno structures his shows. And I created a podcast I was proud of.

Mimicking others is a great way to learn, but it requires two things. It requires following the right person, and it requires understanding what I want to learn.

I choose people that are both experts and people I want to be like when I set out to learn something. Geno has a podcast I love, so I chose him to emulate instead of a generic article online that explains how to host a podcast. Patrice and Julian have lots of sex, so I followed them instead of listening to the latest movie that shows two people falling in love and having sex. The reading and writing I fell into for the wrong reasons, but I emulated the man who could choose what he wanted – and even though I wasn’t searching for that, I found that by reading and writing and emulating his habits. If I never picked up reading years earlier, I never would have got into Walden or Peterson’s lectures.

I needed to understand what I wanted to learn. Each time I picked someone to emulate, it started with a goal (usually sex). From there I could pick someone that is an expert in that field and study from them.

Too many people don’t align themselves with a goal, and many that do don’t align themselves with the right goal. For instance, many people envision success as fame and money and women. So, we choose people to mimic that are celebrities that have those material things.

Athletes and actors end up being our role models, but not because we want to be the best at throwing a football or acting in a major motion film. We emulate them because we want their results.

Athletes and actors get women and fame, but those are results. They aren’t experts in women and status dynamics. Patrice O’Neal and Julian, who studied women in an academic setting and in practice, are much better people to emulate because they know the exact skills and knowledge it takes to accomplish that result.

Most people only learn by mimicking others. The information learned in textbooks rarely translates to real-life activity. Real-life activity is learned with the motivation of achieving the results of the people we choose to mimicking. This style of learning is hard-coded in us, and can be effective if you copy the right people.

Bill Nye the Liberal Entertainer

Bill Nye is anything but a science guy in his episode about genders during his Netflix show, Bill Nye Saves The World.

He talks about gender, but he also discusses sexuality, of which gender is a part of. Bill gives four qualities that comprise sexuality: sex, gender, attraction, and expression. He doesn’t argue, but instead regurgitates what we hear from “politically correct” sociology majors (about the furthest thing from science possible).

I argue he is wrong on all four accounts, and that all four of these are not a choice, but a function of masculine/feminine behavior, which is a function of evolutionary biology. 

1. Sex

Sex is male or female. We have a penis or vagina, and that determines our sex. You can cut off your dick or strap one on (I don’t know how transgender works) but you start off with one or the other. Bill gives statistical outliers to prove his point that people have different genitalia. They don’t. The exception makes the rule. 

2. Gender

Bill Nye says gender is “How you identify?” Not, “Do you have a penis?”

I don’t disagree with his definition. I disagree with his conclusion that you choose your gender.

Thing is, having a penis has a massive influence on how people identify. This is because a penis (being a boy) is massively correlated with higher testosterone. 

Not just higher testosterone in a “patriarchal world that encourages men to eat red meat and lift weights and women to eat cheese and do yoga.” Higher pre-natal testosterone. Boys form ball sacks and begin producing testosterone in far superior quantities than women before they pop out of the estrogen hole and can even utter the word “patriarchy.” It’s not a problem. It’s how we are.

Not every man will be masculine and not every female feminine. This can be influenced heavily by the quantities of pre-natal sex hormones the child develops. This is also influenced by post-birth influences that are both hormonal and other, such as the values from your parents.

Higher testosterone effects our brain and bodily development. This sex hormone leads to brain development that will assume “masculine” qualities such as strength and an attraction to danger.

That’s the physical. the mental and emotional differences are also clear.

The mental and emotional correlation is most proven by rules of attraction. Masculine attracts feminine. And vice-versa. We see this in behavior and evolutionary study of animals and humans. There are qualities that fall under masculine and feminine. This is Bill’s third criteria. 

3. Attraction 

Attraction is not a choice. Genuine desire is not a choice.

If it was, the nice guy would always win. But he doesn’t. The nice guy struggles to finally luck into a relationship that is likely to end in divorce because he isn’t attractive. He assumes a feminine persona, which doesn’t appeal to the feminine. 

A man acting feminine, coming from a man that wants to attract a woman, is seen as dishonest because it’s not his primal instinct. He’s going against his biology and lying about it.

And, if he is being honest (because of what he sees in movies and TV), those qualities are less attractive to a woman that wants a more masculine man. Why? Because it goes against her animal instinct.

4. Expression

Expression is cultural but attraction triggers aren’t and expression is often to signal attraction triggers. Attraction triggers aren’t cultural. They are psychological, which is driven from biology. Expression is used to attract the other sex, so that one can attract a high-quality mate. Science.

There are other evolutionary attraction triggers. Confidence is attractive to women. Strength. These are universal, because we evolved to be attracted to things things hundreds of thousands of years ago.

One claim from the show is that Korean men use makeup. Only two dudes were interviewed about men having makeup, and they are obviously gay. These gays could identify as female and have more female psychology. They are attracted to, and signal masculine (gay) men. This again proves that gender is only male or female – not the opposite.  

Then Bill gets emotional, which is the appeal of this show and the foundation of his “argument”. He says, “What’s the big deal? Just get over it. What do you care? Those people are not going to try to have sex with you. Move on.”

I agree. It’s not a big deal for people to choose to be goofy and do what they want. But the term “gender”, which describes the psychological differences of the sexes, is a big deal. Words mean something. Without words representing something, there is no meaning. We have a definition for gender. Don’t stretch that definition.

From American Gangster:

What you want, Frank? You want me to change the name on it?
Frank: I would have to insist that you change the name.
Frank’s cousin: Fine by me, Frank. I’ll call it Red Magic, even though that don’t sound as good.
Frank: I don’t give a fuck what you call it. Put a chokehold on the motherfucker and call it Blue Dog Shit.

Don’t call what’s not a gender a gender.

Nye uses ice cream as a comparison. Saying chocolate and strawberry ice cream are their own flavors and uses vanilla to signify heterosexual male and female, which says all flavors should just be vanilla.

This is so obviously an invalid comparison because ice cream is man-made and does not have an evolutionary makeup. There is no DNA, there is no brain built and developed over millions of years of evolution. Ice cream is simple. Malleable. So are social trends. Sort of. Psychology is not.

Humans have evolutionary beginnings and cannot just change. We don’t choose attraction; we don’t choose our gender. We may not have the same gender as our genitalia, but we don’t choose.

The show concludes with a sexual trash song voiced by a lesbian whore that just shoves the lack of femininity and anti-Christianity and anti-evolutionary psychology in our face.

Nye says culture is providing more ways of expressing this gender spectrum, and that is progress that should be celebrated. Really, culture is getting us further away from the truth of the way people are. To find happiness, it does no favors to reject the truths of evolved male and female dynamics.

Science is the mathematical and statistical method of determining the truth. In this episode of Bill Nye there was no experimenting other than asking people their opinions. Opinions are highly biased and therefore are not controllable in an experiment setting. Further, his panel consisted of a gay black comedian, a black sociology professor, and a chick sociology professor. Hardly the diverse authorities on the subject. This doesn’t count as an experiment. This isn’t science.

Bill Nye is an entertainer. To call him the “science guy” is a misnomer. He did little but follow popular liberal outcry, and followed it up with, not numbers but, the opinions of sociology professors that are also likely to buy into liberal outcry.

The whole point of science is to reduce outcry – liberal or otherwise, so that we may continue to be productive and seek further truth. To that end, Bill Nye the Liberal Entertainer did the world a disservice. This is the only episode I watched because I wanted to see if a proclaimed science guy did address the “gender issue” from a biological, evolutionary, or behavioral angle of problem solving. He did not.