Failure Mode

 Women who choose careers over children are genetic failures.

There might be no better phrase to send most people — especially women — into hysterics than this one.

Is it true?

That doesn’t really matter now, does it? It’s not something that is meant to be true. It is an incantation meant to hurt. It is a stab in the dark at a hole in the armor; a hole that the wearer believes truly does not exist.

Ignorance may be bliss, but what you don’t know is often what hurts you the most.

But I digress. I always do. One of my more consistent habits, really.

Genetic success is defined by the number of grandchildren you produce. This is a fairly common biological metric. It is not enough to have children. Your children must have children. Is a career woman therefore a genetic failure?

Perhaps. Does she sacrifice genetic reproduction for corporate devotion? If so, yes. She is. She has snuffed out her genetic lineage in pursuit of a transient sense of validation (or perhaps because she never imagined that she had the option to pursue avenues other than that which she was brainwashed to do). Does she ever find that satisfaction? It doesn’t matter.


It’s hard not to read this as a condemnation of one’s entire being. Genetic failure. There are few epithets more damaging than this. It cuts to the core, and it takes a rather nuanced approach to even begin to defang it.

Da Vinci, Newton, and Caesar were all genetic failures. Does this mean that they had nothing of value to offer to the world?

The progressive mind is one that is generally holistically-oriented (citation needed, I know, I definitely read this somewhere, though I’ve been unsuccessful in digging up the exact source). One of the consequences of this is that terms like “genetic failure” are perceived to represent a holistic invalidation of the entire individual, one that overrides accomplishment in other realms. This is also why progressive identity politics clings so steadfastly to notions such as ethnicity or sexual preference as a determinant of human value, because to the progressive mind such things comprise an all-encompassing assessment of an individual’s worth.

(Side Note: Thinking holistically is far from a bad thing, though it rarely takes you where you need to go without an ability to see the bigger picture. Seeing the big picture, of course, is impotent without an ability to compartmentalize and focus on the gritty details. These abilities, of course, don’t have a proper place in a mind that cannot see the big picture and that is incapable of thinking holistically. The preponderance of individuals who lack just these simple things is staggering. It is enough to make a man believe that most people are walking around with incomplete brains, as if entire nodes were just missing from their neural networks.)

Genes are not the only thing a man or woman can leave behind. Institutions, social structures, cultural artifacts, and works of art are but a small handful of the other foundations on which someone can build a legacy.

Genetic failure is not cultural failure is not social failure is not societal failure is not financial failure is not political failure is not artistic failure. There are many ways to succeed or fail in life. These things are often connected, but it is rare that even the most accomplished of individuals will achieve success in more than two or three of these fields. Reproduction is not the only factor that counts.

And yet, the idea of being a genetic failure cuts harder than the idea of failing in any other realm.

Genetic failure.

There is something heavy about this idea, something heavier than almost anything else. Perhaps we should take a moment to ponder why.

One of the most fundamental aspects of being human is the drive to reproduce. We are wired for it. We are driven to do it, and everyone has a story why.

God. Family. Biology. Lean on whichever rationale you prefer.

We are beings that reproduce. For whatever reason, this is one of our core functions. To fail to do it is a failure to live up to one of the core aspects of being a living, breathing being on this earth.

Most people are never going to do anything so great as to trump the production of children in terms of impact. Most people are not building empires. Most people are not discovering new medical advances. Most people are not revolutionizing the way we live with fantastic machines. Most people, even the exceptional ones, will never have that kind of impact.

I intend to be one of them, of course, but that does not invalidate what I am saying, and I too plan on fathering children.

Perhaps you will not have your name in the history books, but if that isn’t your goal, it doesn’t really matter. Find a mate with the best genes that you can get and raise good-quality human beings. Raise them well and put a few good people on this earth who will work and live for a stable society and the well-being of those who deserve it.

Sure, some of us intend to build the world. But it is not enough to build a better world. You also have to breed it.


9 thoughts on “Failure Mode

  1. White-Presenting "Mongrel Race" 06/02/2015 / 1:34 AM

    “Genetic Failure”, that phrase by itself such a harsh thing to say to another precisely because it forces them to either conciously or subconciously aknowledge the fact that they probably will never be an Isaac Newton or a Caesar, and that instead these thoughts amount to nothing other than petty rationalizations.

    I’m missing your former persona “Legionnaire”, it had a good ring to it.

  2. nickbsteves 06/02/2015 / 4:31 PM

    “Women who choose careers over children are genetic failures.”

    It seems practically tautological. Maybe a woman will be the 1 in 1000 that can contribute MOAR to society than just her genes. But woe to those other 999.

  3. nickbsteves 06/02/2015 / 5:39 PM

    Good point on the “holistic” aside, BTW. “Holistic”, if it actual meant principled concern for the whole person in connection with his natural surroundings, is a perfectly laudable goal. Unfortunately “holistic” has come to mean (by frequent use) “myopic, self-absorbed, unscientific, overly emotional, and otherwise perfectly retarded”.

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