A recent study about howler monkey testicles has inspired some snarky hate speech against men, but the Medical Daily really takes the cake with this Tumblr-Feminist worthy headline: “Men With Small Testicles Overcompensate By Showing That They’re Louder Than The Rest.”
Of course, the study was not about men. It was about monkeys. So, congratulations to the Medical Daily for pairing pseudoscience with casual bigotry. A two-pointer on the Feminist scorecard.
Note also the subtle relational aggression in the photo caption. “There may be a scientific explanation for extremely loud men.”
The social bullying here is the shaming threat to a man’s social status unless he remains quiet: “If you make noise, you must have small balls.” Silencing men, a classic Feminist tactic since Seneca Falls.
Most important is how the supposed science journalist doesn’t seem to understand the evolutionary science. Neither does the researcher, as quoted in the story: “It may be that investment in developing a large vocal organ and roaring is so costly that there is simply not enough energy left to invest in testes.” This does not at all explain, in terms of natural selection and reproductive success, why these two particular features would be linked. You could just as easily say that “there is simply not enough energy left to invest in hair.”
So, scientifically speaking, why smaller testicles?
It makes perfect sense for a males with more opportunities to reproduce—due to a louder attractive call—to have smaller testicles, because they don’t need more sperm production to ensure passing on their genes. Large testes would be a waste of resources, evolutionarily speaking.
It’s the males with the weaker voices, and thus fewer mating opportunities, who really need to make sure each mating counts by (pardon the indelicate language) filling their relatively infrequent partners with lots and lots sperm, thus requiring larger sperm-producing organs. We can think of the chance of reproductive success as the number of matings multiplied by the chance of conception per mating. The loud-voiced monkeys are succeeding by maximizing the first variable. The big-balled monkeys are succeeding by maximizing the second variable. Either way works.
So, if you wanted to be insulting about it, you could just as easily say, “Monkeys with bloated testicles have squeakier voices.” However, if you wanted to be scientific about it, you could say that there are two competing reproductive strategies among howler monkeys, one relying on attracting more mates and the other relying on guaranteeing conception in relatively fewer mates.
But our culture, saturated with Feminism’s hate rhetoric and obstinate habit of misrepresenting the science of sex and gender, prefers to use insults and social aggression against men whenever the opportunity arises. Even when that means transforming science into pseudoscience.
So, this is not what hack journalists might call “overcompensation” in a cheap and lazy swipe at men. And it’s not even how the researcher characterizes it: no resources left over for testicles after the loud voice is created. It’s not some #masculinitysofragile self-esteem problem and it’s not that the monkeys go broke after spending all their calories building vocal chords. It’s just basic efficiency in service to differing reproductive strategies.