Sex, Gender and Justice

We first covered this story in Covenant Connection, February 2006

A new brain-scanning study, published online on January 19th by the journal Nature, suggests that:

1) when men see a cheater, a person they have seen to have dishonestly cheated in something, get a mild electric shock, they not only don't "feel his pain" at all but rather enjoy it.

2) when women see the same cheater get the same shock, they do empathize with the cheater's pain and don't get a kick out of it at all.

Dr. Klass Stephan, a senior research fellow at University College London and co-author of the study, says that this could help explain why men have historically taken charge of punishing criminals. Dr. Tania Singer, who led the study, says that "the results were a surprise."
(The New York Times, "Side Effects," January 25, 2006, p. D-3)

We are not surprised. God Himself requires the men of a society, rather than the women, to take responsibility for the First Covenant Commandment of dinim - the Universal (Noahide) law against anarchy.

God requires every society to create, maintain, and apply just laws, as well as a system of courts and police, etc., to enforce and defend them. The primary responsibility for this - for the fulfillment of this Commandment - falls on men, not women. (See the discussion in Rainbow Covenant, pp. 213-214).

Just in case you're curious about this, the same principle applies in Torah among the People of Israel.

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