Rethinking Masculinity
Will Staton

I have to disagree.

Donald Trump is not a typical example of masculinity in any era. He might resemble a few very wealthy male individuals of yesteryear, but no one of the pre-industrial era. Without his money, empire, henchmen and bodyguards, Trump would likely emerge as a bit of a coward. I think it is self-flagellation to see him as generally representative of masculinity.

However, males of all species have always battled to prove some sort of worthiness in terms of bonding with females. That drive may be plugged in at a very deep genetic level that can only be obscured — as opposed to removed — by modern culture.

The world as it is today can alternatively be understood as one in which massive centralized power can only exist in its currently corrupt form by keeping the people as divided as possible. This is arguably why leaders generally preach tolerance as regards sexual, gender, racial and religious difference; they know that in reality this keeps the citizenry divided and troubled by division they cannot resolve. And of course, how better to divide people than to create a world in which survival is basically every man/woman for him/herself?

So much as you are busy telling us that the old world of masculinity is over, it could equally be argued that so too is the old world of femininity. It is noticeable how relationships based on marriage, the family and a sense of community have effectively been culturally trampled on in the last half century such that everyone feels obliged to look after number one above all. The idea that this is some form of social progress is of course central to the very fact that it is happening at all, but the protest element of electing Donald Trump can be seen as a backlash against such thinking.

The explosion of identity politics in the West has generally been a leftist movement on the face of things, but that so-called left has actually become the establishment and could be seen as promoting all this identity politics precisely because it creates the sort of social confusion that they can capitalize on.

… but toughness is knowing when and why to withhold violence, applying force only when truly necessary, and certainly not in reactive anger.

I think this reflects the sort of self-flattery that modern politics encourages to subdue the spirit. Without advocating violence, truly reactive anger is a state beyond any conscious control. It is a stage when the most primitive instincts usurp any conscious restraints. In reality it is pretty rare, but I think almost anyone could be driven to it — evidence that our civilized personas are in fact only skin deep.

It is much tougher to look in the mirror and examine your own flaws.

This is how we are trained to be complacent — to imagine that simply being human is a fault. Well-balanced people do not avoid lashing out on the basis that they see themselves as flawed in doing so — they simply manage life by other means.

…real men don’t perceive women as animals to be conquered like a distant relative on the evolutionary tree.

This is just pounding your personal drum as regards the values you hold. However much you dislike Trump, he is a real man — flesh and blood. You cannot come up with a meaningful social theory by just discounting or looking down on whoever does not fit your ideas. I certainly do not hold Trump’s views, but there are all sorts of people out there — not just the ones you like.

The longer men continue to conceive of ourselves as first and foremost strong and therefore entitled, the more our traditional powers and roles will erode, and the uglier it will be for everyone.

This illustrates a problem with a lot of modern thinking — if you are not seen to buy into the touchy-feely and arguably de-sexed new thinking, it is inferred that you must therefore be a sexist chauvinist dinosaur. I don’t for a moment see myself as entitled to anything at all — but genes make every man masculine, and it is plain dangerous to deny how deep such an issue is — literally affecting just about every cell in the male body, just as female genes do in women. You can’t make nature fit your political ideals.

Masculinity no longer means dominating like the lion…

It never did — that’s just a position feminists found politically expedient because men were dominant in certain areas, and feminism was able to adopt a sort of damsel-in-distress victimhood on the back of that — ironically because women can hold considerable emotional power over men. In general, a man will rush to the aid of a woman in trouble far sooner than he will with another man. Think about it: if men were so determined to dominate women and were using their physical strength to control the game, how did the game ever get to change? Makes no sense…

The world does not need to become post-man, but unless we can adapt, I doubt we’ll be of much use.

Intelligence 0, Feminism 1.

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