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Monday, September 13, 2010

It's unfair to men!!

Well, the Female Rights movement has been an overwhelming success, to say the least. Beyond propelling women to the forefront of the nation, it has opened the door for gays, lesbians, trans-sexuals, trans-genders, vampires, shape-shifters, and any other group whose identity may be unfairly misunderstood due to society’s “old-school” definitions of gender. Wonderful! This is truly a melting pot, and we should be tolerant of each other’s lifestyles. Unless, of course, you just want to be just a regular guy, you know, a throw-back to the old days, watching sports and chasing girls.

The stereotypical man, as is portrayed everywhere, is tough. They are taught to stand up for themselves and the ones they love. If things get physical, it’s time for a “real man” to spring into action, roll up his sleeves, and take care of business. This has been the male ritual for centuries, across all cultures, beginning at childhood.

In most countries today, altercations arise daily between young boys. In a schoolyard setting, these disputes are usually settled by an afternoon brawl for all to witness and cheer. Those who follow the tradition are rewarded with a virtual badge of honor in victory, while even the loser can score points for a brave showing.

One who chooses not to participate in the challenge, however, is seen as a coward and dishonored among his peers, while receiving a deranged nod of approval from figureheads, such as parents and teachers. The signals are perplexing to say the least, and yet, a child who is gay receives our sympathy for being so “confused” even though the decision to not fight for him is probably much clearer. Divas don’t fight.

Still, bombarded by society’s twisted views of gender in this country, the average heterosexual male presses on. He must make a choice early on whether to appease his natural instincts and engage in these physical confrontations or be a “good” boy. Although pressure from above can be heavy, as in the case of a D.A. leaning on a convict to turn state’s evidence, usually, being punished by mom can not hold a candle to being black-listed by an entire school.

The cloud of confusion for the poor male only becomes thicker, however. Beyond the realm of scolding authorities, it becomes clear that this sort of aggression is, in fact, celebrated by everyone. Not only are the best fighters treated with respect in their own circles, but the same adults who punish you for it actually enjoy such sport after hours. Great boxing legends fill a century worth of history, and today more than ever, with the emergence of mixed martial arts, which is pure school-yard fighting, the best and baddest brawlers around are heralded as national heroes.

Finally, it begins to make sense. Obviously, a real man fights at times, when it is necessary. We all understand the game. It is natural; it is a sport. Every television show or movie has some violence in it, or maybe a lot. You have bar room brawls, sucker punches, karate flicks, and every other brand of Hollywood rumble between men and boys of all ages. The hero in cinema is usually the best fighter or at least a guy who gets in a “lucky” shot.

So, what happens when an all-American man strolls into a bar and a good old-fashion argument breaks out? It should be quite obvious to anyone watching, given the social cues both men have received since birth, what should occur. If you are a man, as defined by society, you must fight and restore your honor.

Only, in this country, a regular man is persecuted, and his natural conditioned response to that situation is met with an arrest and probable jail time, along with a lifetime of carrying the label of “violent offender.” The same actions that once brought him merit and are seen as a beloved form of entertainment in many other settings have now essentially defamed him. Is this not confusing?

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Thanks for reading that. Please add some comments, give an opinion, ask questions, disagree. I would love a healthy discussion on this, not to find a winner in this debate, but to find the truth.

- Professor Plume

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