Want to End "Toxic Masculinity"? Stop Dosing Men with Leftism!
Today Gillette, as in the razors for men, dropped a disastrous ad suggesting all men are guilty of being sexual harassing rapists who secretly love Mariah Carey. For more on that spectacle of burning crap watch Gillette's #TheBestAManCanBe Ad Assumes Toxic Masculinity is a Real Thing.
Before we begin, a primer on how liberalism works: create a problem, provide a "solution" to that imaginary problem you created, grow the problem, promise a solution to the problem, grow the problem and repeat. This pattern applies to what feminist troutfaces call "toxic masculinity." Let no one say a passionate group of ladies cannot bend the language to their whim. Because "toxic masculinity" used to go by other insults: jerks, assholes, douchebags, creeps, layabouts, and so forth. Insults which worked just fine until a feminist decided to take those insults and apply them to all of mankind -- hijacking the most negative aspects of some men and applying them to the whole. Add a spice of nasty branding and voila, a new imaginary enemy to fight into perpetuity.
Allow me to make some concessions here. Yes, some men are jerks... just as some women are bitches. Men tend to be jerks and assholes much the same way, just as women are bitchy shrews much the same way. Yet "toxic femininity" isn't a problem being pushed in the cultural mainstream, is it? No, no, we never hear about how toxic femininity of some manipulative harpies results in the emotional or financial hardship of men. We only hear about how toxic masculinity destroys the lives of poor innocent women, the LGBTQ community, and Fergie's fledgling singing career. I added the last bit because I'm writing this column and you can't stop me.
Neither masculinity nor femininity is a problem. Rather the opposite, masculinity is a solution for men as femininity is a solution for women. Up until rather recently, the terms held no negative connotation at all. In fact, I'd argue when a woman raises an eyebrow to a fellow lady, signaling a man on her visual radar, she's doing so to acknowledge that man's embodiment of masculinity. Just as two men would admire a rather feminine lady. Which isn't to say masculinity and femininity apply exclusively to the physical, only that we instinctively value masculine traits in men, feminine traits in women. Related: OPINION: It's Time to Make Behaving Like "Ladies and Gentlemen" Great Again.
But at some point, and by design, toxic masculinity was conflated with masculinity. Just as for some men, third wave feminism represents all women. Become obnoxious enough, espouse a point longly and loud enough, and the perception becomes the norm.
I don't mean to stray from the thrust of my argument here, only to lay the groundwork. What is now called "toxic masculinity" isn't masculinity at all. What fuels this toxicity is actually leftism.
Think about it for a second. A man the left would describe as toxically masculine acts out of a sense of entitlement, that he is owed certain things based on his maleness: a rapist, a sexist, a sexually harassing creep act as they do out of this entitlement. The sense of entitlement, when it isn't fulfilled, results in two ways: that toxic man takes what he wants despite not having earned it (like a rapist), or a group of victims who champion their own victim status. Look no further than the men who call themselves "incels" based on the term involuntary celibates. Their solution to being involuntary celibates is not to look in the mirror both literally and figuratively, to ask themselves how they might improve to make themselves more attractive to women. No, their solution is to whine. Instead of transforming themselves, they blame others, specifically women, for not liking them. See also Joe Rogan on Incels: "They Need to Become Men!"
Like leftism, "toxic masculinity" eschews personal responsibility.
"I'm owed because I am" is the leftist motto. If a leftist doesn't get what he or she feels he or she is owed, that leftist champions their victimhood into a movement. Like socialists. Never do they ask more of themselves, they blame others and demand others solve their problems. I'm poor, therefore it's the rich's fault. I'm poor, therefore I'm owed welfare. I'm poor, therefore the rich must pay their fair share. Never "I'm poor, how can I raise myself up into a better person and do better for myself."
Yet in our modern times, victims who feel owed are our cultural heroes. They receive attention, accolades, and are awarded points of bravery for just being victims. Is it really any wonder so many men have embraced this mentality? How can we admonish men for being toxically masculine when toxic humanity of demanding, whining, and stealing from others is lauded?
Contrast toxic humanity with standard issue masculinity, which the American Psychological Association in trying to demonize it, defines as "marked by stoicism, competitiveness, dominance, and aggression." A man marked by stoic competitiveness, who wants to dominate, is going to compete. He is driven and will do what he needs to advance himself. For himself and his own betterment. A man marked by stoicism and competitiveness isn't content to wait around whining about what he is owed, and he doesn't blame others for not getting what he feels he deserves. Rather he will work toward what he wants.
Competitiveness and leftism cannot peacefully coexist. Competitiveness demands a betterment of self, leftism relies on on the embracing of failure.
So if feminists and our greater culture at large honestly want to solve "toxic" masculinity, the solution is simple: cease and desist the lionizing of entitlement, starting with the abandonment of socialism as a legitimate ideology, and embrace personal responsibility. For good measure, let's make great again those men who embody personal responsibility in our everyday lives: good husbands and fathers.
Sound like a plan?