On Tuesday’s Phillip DeFranco show, Phil proceeds to use a bunch of heightist slander against Kim Jong Un. Now Kim is a horrible person, but that is irrelevant to his height. It is offensive that short people everywhere should be compared with him.
Normally Phil is a pretty reasonable guy though; perhaps he is just ignorant? If any of his viewers could send him an email asking him to consider how his worlds affect people more carefully, it would be appreciated.
Relevant part starts at 5:33
TSC: No offense to the reader who submitted this post; but I don’t understand why anyone would watch this guy’s YouTube show. It’s not like he gives any in-depth analysis of current events. All he does his spout common knowledge and conventional wisdom.
I will however say that this clip is good at illustrating how accepted height bigotry is in our everyday ideas and conversations. Notice how he feigns sensitivity to matters of social justice when it comes to race (where, earlier in the clip, he admits that he’s never had a problem with police officers because he is a white male), but then goes on to call Kim Jong Un “a little bitch of a man with a Napoleon Complex”.
Those slurs rolled off his tongue like butter. So you can be assured that he sees nothing wrong with them because “hey, I wasn’t talking about YOU”. But, he wouldn’t go on his show and start using other types of slurs and then say “hey…why are you all upset…I wasn’t talking about YOU”. This is why people of good conscious need to wake up and challenge this prejudice. Especially shorter people.
TSC: I just received this very nice message from the AtEyeLevel blog. Appreciate it.
I want to give a special thanks to you Geoff and your blog. Your writings, investigations, dissertations and case studies have inspired me to become a bit of a height activist, but with a bit more of an edge to really challenge people’s thoughts. You inspired me to start my AtEyeLevel blog here on Tumblr.
Within a few weeks we’ve managed to acquire lots of followers by going on the light side of extreme to make people aware by pointing out the absurdities and hurt that Heightism may cause.
My blog is like yours, but also deals with pop culture, fashion, dating because while Heightism isn’t that, it AFFECTS that, so I just wanted to thank you and hope that you keep on doing what you do!
Why do short guys have such a chip on their shoulders?
Most men under 5’8” seem to have such a bad attitude and ready to rumble —they always want to fight to prove themselves men.
Why is that?
Oh yeah…they seem to lie about their height like people can’t see how tall they are the moment they stand up. Funny.
TSC: While this question is typical, ignorant, and nasty; the answers give me some hope. They seem to be split 50/50. Half of the answers agree with the “short man complex” myth and stereotype short men “compensating” for feelings of inferiority regarding their height. The other half give the correct answer. That everyone is different but short men are stereotyped and so when you meet an ambitious man who happens to be short, you assume that he feels inferior to you, when he probably doesn’t.
Isn’t it funny how people project their views onto others? So a person thinks that shorter people are inferior to him/her and so they assume that shorter people agree with him/her and everything they do is to compensate for that “fact”? That’s not how it works.
But, click on the link to view the question and answers.
So at work today a customer was listening in to a conversation I was having with my co-worker. I was telling my co-worker about this girl I work with at my other job who was shorter than her and a conversation we had regarding our height difference. I’m 6’1” and she was probably 5’0” and we’re both girls.
This gentleman overhears us and decides to pipe in. Nothing I haven’t heard before until he says
“I dated this girl who was six foot once. And I just couldn’t do it. I mean she couldn’t wear heels and her height was insulting to me. I mean she didn’t care, she liked shorter guys, but I just couldn’t do it anymore. I had to break up with her.”
This guy was probably in his 40’s, laughing while he’s telling us this story, like it’s not rude to say what he’s saying, especially in front of a girl who is 6’1”.
I hope this is something I only see in older men and younger men will have more brains and self esteem than this guy.
TSC: This is depressing to here. Studies have shown that women tend to care much more about the height of their partners than men. And to be honest, I’d never considered that a man would regard a taller woman negatively, until hearing from a considerable number of tall women through this blog.
I suspect that taller guys are more likely to “be insulted” by a woman who is taller than them because they may feel as if she is encroaching on their social privilege. So I guess that there are a number of men out there who are considerably insecure about their height. So, for some tall men, a tall woman standing next to them would skew their relative height advantage and make the “feel like a short man” whenever he is around her. I can understand why the mental stress of seemingly losing some of your social privilege while standing next to your lady would be distressing to some tall men. That’s not to excuse it, but it’s just a theory.
Unfortunately, even though I still think that these insecure men are a minority, there isn’t much positive to be said about this phenomena. I could say “tall guys shouldn’t worry about guys who reject them for being too tall because those men are insecure”. But I wouldn’t say that because it would be as patronizing as people who tell short guys “not to worry about shallow women who care about height”.
TSC: A reader wrote in to respond to all of the online commentary about how women view short men. This essay represents the opinion of its writer and isn’t necessarily the opinion of The Social Complex. Personally, I think whether or not some short men reportedly have problems attracting women is nearly irrelevant to the greater issue.
I have something to say, it is on topic but I am not much of an essay writer and I cannot guarantee it to be well written.
First of all I will tell you a little about myself to give you an idea of where I cam coming from. I am a 37 year old 5’5 man and two years ago I typed “short men” dating into Google. Yes, I know heightism is not all about dating but hear me out. You know as well as I do that this subject concerns short men the most. Anyway, The information I found horrified, shocked and angered me. If I am to believe the general consensus of the internet most women won’t date short men and a guy my height (5’5) is doomed. I thought to myself, how did all this stuff go over my head for 35 years. However, the general consensus of the internet is that most men are not good enough for most women. This is the internet, the land of bullshit and fantasy sometimes. If things really were as bad as I read I would guess that at best 10% of women would date a 5’5” tall man, if he was perfect. I am not perfect. I am average looking, of low income and have no compensatig factor that I know of to throw of the general aversion that most women apparently feel toward short men. I am but one person but assuming that i am not perfect and some women may not accept my advances for some other reason besides my height I would have to approach alot of women before I could find even one to have sex with me or date me. Things just arent that bad and I would imagine a man of my height with even an average income could do better in the women department than I do. I have low income acquaintances who are my height or shorterr, I don’t know their exact sexual history but they sure aren’t virgins and some are married. If in an all other factors equal comparison a man of average height can pick up several times more women than I can he must just have to go up to the first woman he sees and she will automatically go home with him. Maybe it is just my observations and not your’s but things just don’t seem to work that way.
Do you believe everything you read on the internet? I am sure you don’t but I just don’t see a very high percentage of average women in the real world holding out for some guy that has a certain set of traits that can only be found inless than 1 in 100 men, for example, must be six feet tall, good looking, hard muscle, hung like a horse etc. I think these women sometimes say this stuff for a game and a powertrip and if they are halfway serious they are not going to find this guy, even if they spend the rest of their life on plenty of fish. It is insane to take all the anti short stuff on dating forums and the like seriously when I know things don’t work that way.
I do not mean to deny that short men are at a disadvantage in dating but it cant possibly be to the extreme that alot of short guys online who talk about this stuff seem to think. There seems to be a general trend amond many females ( im not going to throw around estimates) to prefer tall men and average height men over short men but not as bad as the internet indicates.
Who is short, 5’8 5’7 ? Being 5’5 I can only think of a handful of guys who i currently associate with or see who are my height or shorter but I know guys who are probably not even two inches taller that most women will go out with. These guys are good looking and have slightly better than averae jobs but cant be more than 5’7. According to the internet this height is too short for over half of the women out there. I have been with friends of average height or taller and roughly average looks who women seemed less interested in me because i am slightly better looking or maybe alot but these guys were not notably ugly. Just my antecdotal experiences , not a controlled study.
I think by taking what annonymous people say about short men over the internet seriously in dating forums without really thinking about, who wrote this, why did they write this etc is kind of stupid. The vast majority of people who are not short simply do not care enough to go into a forum and voice their opiniion about short men, whatever their opinion is.
I am sure there are men of close to average height who have lost it from reading all this shit. “must be 5’8” “under 6 feet not real men”.
In summary, I just dont see short men who “cant get laid” or have to “settle” for the least desirable women out there because they are short and i know more women who will sleep with anyone that talks to them than women waiting around for these perfect tall alpha male studs who dont exist or are pretty rare. I have never been 5’7 or 5’2, i am 5’5 but at least for a man of my height to go around practically crying “girls hate me because i am short, I read it on the internet” is stupid. I was doing it for a while and this is what I believe.
i saw a thing on this once where they had single women looking at a lineup of guys asking who’d they’d date, they thought it was for a dating show. they told them this guy works in a video store, this guy owns a tshirt shop, this guys a doctor. the doct was 5’4” and the other guys were much taller. the doctor was also very cute. no matter how much they made the other guys look worse or the dr look better, the women NEVER picked the short guy.
TSC: Let me start by saying that I do not believe that a “Napoleon Complex” really exists. What people perceive as a Napoleon Complex is the result of social stereotyping and expectations. That is to say that a shorter man attracts negative social scrutiny if he behaves in a manner which is reserved for taller men. Social expectations are upset when assertiveness comes from a shorter man because taller men are encouraged to be assertive (and leaders) while shorter men are discouraged from any behavior which would imply social dominance over others.
But ignoring this thought, a more interesting thing is going on in this exchange. One participate is trying to explain to another that shorter men “have issues” because other people treat them differently. The second participant completely fails to understand this concept and asserts that they are both substantively agreeing with the statement: “short men have issues because of their height”.
Do you see the confusion?
One person is saying that short men “have issues” because of height discrimination, NOT because they are short. The second person is claiming that this is a distinction without a difference. She is saying that “having issues” because you are socially stigmatized and “having issues” because of that characteristic which causes the social stigmatization is the same thing. Essentially, her argument reads that “having issues” with racism is the same thing as “having issues” because you happen to be Black. [analogy can quickly expose a faulty argument].
This sort of thinking should be challenged because it represents why height discrimination is so hard to combat. For most people, being short is something they consider to be a “naturally” (read: intrinsically) inferior state. That is why the second participate could not grasp the concept that “having issues” with height discrimination is totally different than “having issues” with ones height. The key, of course, to grasping the concept is having the understanding that height (and “short stature”, specifically) is a neutral characteristic. It is neither “good” nor “bad” without social context. Without this concept, one cannot truly understand what heightism means. The second participant surely did not understand how a man could “have issues” with height bigotry but not his short stature.
In the mind of the second participate, it is always the short man’s fault. He either “has issues” because he is short or he “has issues” because people rightly respond negatively to his height.
And so here is where we must re-frame the debate. Why is it that the people who discriminate are considered “normal” while the discriminated against are considered “defective”? Isn’t it more accurate to characterize the height bigots as “having issues”? If anyone has an “issue” in this scenario, it’s clearly the people who are stigmatizing a characteristic which should otherwise be considered completely neutral, right?
So a better question for the OP would be:
Someone on here said that women on UB hate short men. I have to say, all of the UB women I know do seem to have huge issues concerning other people’s height.
Got a “Napoleon Complex”? Well Now, There’s an App For That.
Someone Developed an Android App for “Short Man Syndrome”.
TSC: This has to be one of the most ridiculous things that I’ve ever read. The makers of this app actually use anti-heightism language in order to sell short people a “cure” to fictional disease which is based on heightism (the “short man syndrome”). For the unaware - the concept of the “short man syndrome” (or “Napoleon Complex” or “Short Man Complex”) is designed to blame the victims of height discrimination instead of its perpetrators. It’s a form of blame shifting which helps to maintain the social construct which is heightism.
Is short man syndrome driving you to act smaller than you are?
Are you always measuring yourself against others and feeling that they’ve got an unfair edge on you?
Anybody who tells you that physical proportions don’t make any difference to anything is talking nonsense. What size something (or someone) is makes a difference in all sorts of ways, in different circumstances. But, as with many other things in life, context is everything. In the unimaginably vast universe, relative differences in the size of human beings cannot be said to count for much.
The roots of short man complex
Except, you will say, among the human beings themselves! Human beings sometimes act as if their relative height is something of consequence. Of course, in certain contexts, it will make a difference. A fly-weight fighter who takes on a heavy-weight will have to find a way to deal with the size difference. A taller person is going to be able to reach that high shelf when a shorter person won’t make it.
But that kind of difference is really a matter of practicalities and the laws of physics. It is not a question of value. Short man complex stems from value judgments about being taller or shorter than others. Value judgments are subjective (that is, they come out of how you see the world). They are also very susceptible to social conditioning (that is, you are likely to be strongly influenced by how others see the world).
Getting a new perspective on height
So when people around you seem to value a taller physical stature over a shorter physical stature, and you are a person of (relatively) shorter stature, it’s not so surprising that you sometimes, or often, ‘feel small’. But although you probably can’t do much to change the attitudes of other people, you can do something about how you respond. It does help to remember that their attitudes are just ‘opinions’ - not fact.
Of course, it’s easy to say that you just ‘shouldn’t mind’, but if you’ve taken on the whole ‘being shorter is bad’ shtick and assimilated it into how you think about yourself, it’s not so easy to throw it off, just like that. You’re used to thinking along these lines. It’s a habit.
But there is a fast and powerful way to change it.
Hypnosis is a fast and effective way to deal with short man syndrome
Overcome short man syndrome is an audio hypnosis session devised by psychologists that utilizes the power of hypnosis to reach the unconscious mind and change seemingly entrenched behaviors and attitudes.
As you relax and listen repeatedly to your download, you’ll observe a number of positive changes starting to happen. You’ll notice that
you feel much more calm and grounded generally
your focus shifts away from self-concern to engage with what matters to you
you rebalance your sense of your self to give proper weight to your strengths and gifts
you no longer care so much what others think
life becomes a whole lot more enjoyable
Download Overcome short man syndrome and be proud of who you are.
TSC: Wow! And all of this for only $1.99? Who wouldn’t pay $1.99 for a better life? Of course, you can’t forget about the “shipping and handling fee”. But don’t worry about that. The makers of the app will accept payment in the form of your self-respect.
This Wikipedia article illustrates a fantastic psychological explanation for the social persistence of the Napoleon Complex myth. Basically, a person starts with the idea that short men are aggressive and easy to anger. They can then meet 100 short men who display “easy-going” behavior without affecting their bias. However, when they meet one short man who happens to behave aggressively, their bias is confirmed and they feel justified to maintain the generalization.
Oh, Brandon Hantz. You are one of the weirdest “Survivor” contestants we’ve ever seen - and that is saying a lot.
Upolu’s big alliance of Coach/Sophie/Rick/Brandon/Albert get together and decide to go 3-3-3, three for Stacey and three for Christine just in case of an Idol since Christine/Stacey/Mikayla will have three votes for whomever they choose to vote for.
Brandon starts telling Coach he has doubts about Mkyala - “because [he’s] faithful to his wife.” It makes him uncomfortable to be around her. Oh my god, dude. What is wrong with you? I think this has very little to do with Mikayla’s siren song and more to do with Brandon Hantz’s short-man complex and feeling threatened by strong women. I hate those guys.
Brandon tries to work on the alliance, but Coach says Mikayla is way too strong to get out first. And Sophie’s radar is pinged because she can obviously tell that Brandon is threatened by strong women.