SUNY Stony Brook will be offering a master’s degree in masculinity. It will not be taught by Mike Cernovich, author of Gorilla Mindset. Rather, Michael Kimmel will be in charge, and he has a very different perspective.
“What does it mean,” the 64-year-old sociology professor asked the group, most of them undergraduates, “to be a good man?”
A series of examples follow, but I’ll cut to the chase. To Kimmel, a good man is a woman. If men were just more feminine, all would be right with the world.
There’s an irony abrewing. Feminist theory is that gender is a social construct, meaning that we take beautiful children and beat them into the monsters they eventually become, because there is no inherent difference between genders. Studies to the contrary are ignored or denied. And so, the reason guys watch football, eat bacon, get horny, are aggressive, is that socialization makes them that way.
This is problematic and wrong, and must be stopped at all costs.
It’s not just Kimmel. As Ashe Schow writes, Vanderbilt is putting on a week long symposium on the subject.
Are you a man who majored in business because it interested you or because you felt it would lead to a great career? That may be an unhealthy form of masculinity, according to a series of seminars coming next week from the Vanderbilt University Women’s Center.
Yes, you read that correctly: A women’s center seems to be telling men how they should and should not behave.
And why not? As any married man will tell you, this happens. But not quite this way.
The Margaret Cuninggim Women’s Center at Vanderbilt will host a week of seminars exploring “healthy masculinity through various lenses: American society, the gay and bisexual community, fraternities and more.” The first event, taking place on Thursday, Sep. 10, is called “The Macho Paradox: Why some men hurt and how all men can help.”
Macho is a word that is used to denigrate masculinity. That’s why they’re calling it “The Macho Paradox,” to make clear that this is a negative male trait in need of fixing.
Anyway, the advertisement for this week-long event features the silhouette of a man with a thought bubble that reads: “Don’t cry,” “have sex,” “major in business,” “play sports” and “man up.” As if this is what all guys think makes someone a man.
“Allegedly, these are examples of unhealthy masculinity,” wrote Ashley Rae Goldenberg of MRC.
This concern over whether masculinity is “nature or nurture” is a curious irony in itself. Ashe writes, “[a]s if this is what all guys think makes someone a man.” Frankly, most guys don’t think about it at all. It’s kind of a women thing to spend one’s time pondering “unhealthy masculinity,” because most guys would rather spend their time watching a ball game.
But given that there’s noise being made about the “wussification” of men, it’s caused some to not only ponder the question, but feel compelled to fight back, because they refuse to stand by and allow women to tell men that they ought to be women. Meh.
Is it surprising that academics see this as an underrepresented field of inquiry? Not at all. They’re always struggling to find some new hem length, or no one woman would feel compelled to buy new dresses every season. They need tenure. They need recognition. If all the old fields of inquiry are maxed out, how will they ever sell books and establish a name for themselves as leaders?
Plus, and I quickly add, #NotAllAcademics, there are many who never cared much for football or beer, and felt left out when all the other boys had fun doing guy stuff while they were left to play with themselves.
Rory Dicker, the director of the center, provided the Examiner with the following comment regarding the events in an email:
“Because a university is a place dedicated to critical thinking, having a week devoted to an exploration of masculinity will allow the Vanderbilt community to think about how boys and men are pressured to behave, and to consider that sometimes masculine norms, some of which are illustrated in the poster promoting the week’s events, harm men, who aren’t always taught that emotional vulnerability, cooperation, and sensitivity are valuable human traits.”
First, nobody ever pressured me to love bacon. If anything, it was just the opposite, my being Jewish and all. Or cars. Or football. I didn’t watch football as a kid, but my wife (who is female, in case there was a question) was a die-hard Giants fan and she forced me to watch. Now I love football. And I’m good with that.
Are “emotional vulnerability, cooperation, and sensitivity” really “valuable human traits”? Or are they feminine traits, and therefore deemed valuable because gender correctness wants to force them down guys’ throats? I hate to be the one to say this, but emotional vulnerability isn’t something I care to possess.
I’m quite pleased with the extent to which I’m in touch with my emotions, and really have no desire to wear them on my sleeve to show my vulnerability. If some other guy wants to cry, to sit in a circle and discuss his feelings with other people who want to hear them, and share their feelings about his feelings, that’s fine with me. But I won’t be there. I’ll be watching the game, because that’s what I want to do.
That there are people who want to tell men that it’s somehow wrong to be the way they are is silly. You like vanilla better than chocolate? Cool. Eat all the vanilla you want. Gorge. Fill yourself to the brim with vanilla.
A real guy won’t give a shit. To the extent all this introspective, metacognitive, feminization of masculinity nonsense makes young men doubt that they’re okay preferring cars to lean-in groups, don’t. It’s no crime to be masculine, and anyone who says otherwise should have their man card revoked.
See? That was a joke, but some women won’t laugh at it. Men like to make jokes too, and sometimes they’re childish, off-color or inappropriate. We think they’re funny. Women may not.
Get over it.