Opinion: Modern Masculinity

Nathan Perez

Through the modern pursuit of feminism and gender equality, there has seemed to be an intolerability towards men and the idea of men in American society.

The idea of feminism is to pursue and achieve equal rights and equality that men hold, yet often in modern times, men have gotten the short end of the stick, and they continue to do so through propaganda. The contemporary business narrative is to cater to the more progressive side of society. If it is through feminism, LGBTQ, and other liberal movements, there has been a demasculinization through commercial propaganda and social stigma. Society enjoys siding with the minority in the eyes of the public for the sake of commercial gain, and through this method, we have created a new double standard for men in America. The social movement for equality has already been achieved. Yet, progressivism has continued to reach, and now through this overreaching, we have created a bias and a negative connotation towards men. However, this is not the only issue men face here; besides, the media bashing men have been put through the grinder through family dynamics via family courts, and the sons of America are suffering dearly from it.

Men have to find ways to be politically correct, emasculate themselves, grow up without a father figure, and somehow become a good man in society to find a place in this wilderness disguised as a society. Becoming a man in modern society is as complicated as being held upside down and forced to solve a Rubix cube.

Family values have shifted over time, and although values differ through perspectives, there is a clear public bias in play that is not being addressed. Not only are men being forced into a smaller sized shoe, but they are also being told to shut up and keep walking. Feminism has acted as the main compartment in the midst of achieving equality. Equality is something that is ideal and should be held as a standard in society. Yet, the constant push has created a complete bias in social media, corporations, social circles, legal industries, education systems, and communities.

Through social media, there has been a form of praise through this new society. If a man were to bash a woman publicly on social media, there would be a backlash of grey coated words starting with sexism, misogyny, and so on. Yet, if you publicly bash a male, you gain praise as a pseudo intellect for pushing the boundaries. Male bashing has generated a mouth-watering amount of sales and social following. The idea that men are power-hungry machines that are secretly inferior and their success is only through the fake patriarchy. A man is only successful because he is a male in a male industry is a common notion, yet nobody bats an eye. If one were to say, a woman getting promotion through a female-oriented industry solely because they are female would result in a call for violence.

The bias shines clear even through the legal system, such as family court. Minnesota published the survey results of the Supreme Court, with 56% of the judges believing children should stay with their mothers. Nebraska also posted a survey in 2013 that resulted in 72% of their judges give primary custody to the mother. The notion that this is an anomaly with the
study being measured in two states is not true. If this is the case with Conservative states, what can we assume from progressive states such as California, New York, and so on?

Through a report from PEW, in 1960, only about 11 percent of Americans grew up without a father. Now the percentage has risen to 27. One in every three kids is growing up without a father. Now we can point fingers endlessly, but that is not the point. We have to realize how important having a father is in the home, especially for boys. Children without fathers are more likely to: be at a higher risk for behavioral problems, four times more likely to live in poverty, more likely to be in jail through their life, twice as likely never to graduate high school, seven times higher for teen pregnancy. They are more vulnerable to abuse and neglect and more likely to abuse alcohol or drugs. Aswell as being twice more likely to be obese. Now the idea that a woman is strong enough or capable enough to raise a child still stands correct, but the idea that a stable father is not needed in the household or they can be replaced by a woman is not true. Both women and men bring different properties to raising a child, and a single-parent household is more susceptible to fall into the potholes of society.

The idea that masculinity is toxic has helped develop the phrase “Toxic Masculinity.” This term is a byproduct of the over femininity of society. If our children are growing up and going to American schools for about 12 years or so, there is an overexposure to women. When they leave the school system, they go to the universities where they may or may not run into male figures. The United States Department of Education (DOE) released a study in 2012 that 77 percent of all American teachers are females. This means through the crucial years of development for behavior and morals and so on, that men are barely in the picture. This leads to the idea that through the system in place, there is simply a lack of men, and this unfamiliarity clashes with the norms that so many are used to.

Men are not promoted as something positive in society. Fathers are taken out of the home due to family court bias, depicted as useless or violent in mass media, and are not promoted as educators due to the idea of men not being capable of being nurturing or capable of teaching.

Young boys are not allowed to be boys; somehow, they have to find methods to include others, yet the rest of the world won’t add them. The boys of America are growing up in a country that does not include men, which leads to this overriding femininity that has been presumed to be the “main” school of thought. The way femininity is promoted in America should be the same way masculinity should be encouraged. In the end isn’t that equality?

The term toxic masculinity is used to attack characteristics that men have, some biologically hardwired. Should we call the men who fought bravely to prevent us from speaking German toxic? Should we call the men who fought and died on hot sand toxic males as well? Or the men who risk their lives every day toxic. To call men toxic in itself seems like a childish act and a “toxic” one in itself.

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