We see this lack of ambition in the growing movement of people, not just men, wanting wealth and success without merit, hard work, or sacrifice. We see it in the lazy greed of the occupy movement who, although may have began with good intentions, didn’t remain so altruistic.
How to Be a Man
With this emasculation of the masses also comes the desire of many to change it. The rise of TV shows, magazines, and web sites geared towards – at the very least – identifying what it means to be a man, is encouraging. As we look at the causes of the emasculation, in an effort to find the solution in this article, it’s important to identify that most young men don’t know what it means to be a man.
How then, can a boy become a man if he doesn’t know what a man truly is? With the exodus of fathers from their families, and the lack of real men who become dad’s, comes yet another generation with no real comprehension of what manhood really means.
Manliness is something we’ve covered a fair bit on this site form many different viewpoints and perspectives (How to Be a Warrior, How to Be an Alpha Male), but at the core of manliness and the masculine essence is that word assertiveness. Ambition is a very masculine trait. As is pride, stubbornness, and the desire to protect those around us. The desire to provide for and defend who and what we hold close to our hearts.
Let this paragraph, and the one previous, serve as the baseline for the manliness persona.
With that said, what are those social, technological, even environmental forces that are ripping the real men from our society, and replacing them with impotent (literally and not) cowards and wimps?
Is the Rise of Women?
Much is made about the rise of women in the work place as the source of the emasculation of men in society. Bullshit. Where there is credence to this notion, is in men feeling emasculated because a women is doing a better job than they are in the work place, or making more money than them in their own home. Those insecurities, however, are the man’s problem, and he must find the solution.
Regardless of the pay grade between a couple, the man still needs to be the man. He still needs to take charge and to lead, if he doesn’t, he fails to give his lady the masculine form she desires. By not giving her the man she needs, she’ll resent him, push him, test him, fight him, and if he fails to stand strong, he’ll break.
If you’ve met a “broken man”, it’s just about the most emasculating thing you can see. It’s depressing. He’s lost his drive, his fortitude and his power. He sleeps in, gives in, and gives up. He’s lost his fight.
A strong man can’t be emasculated by a strong woman, they should complement each other, aid each other in life, and in their growth, development, and evolution. The problem, then, isn’t that with the rise of women comes the destruction of men. It’s that we’re not raising and creating strong enough men in the first place.
This goes back to education – both in our schools, sports, and socially – and the role models young men look up to which influence the men they would like to be.
Are Porn & Technology the Cause of Emasculation?
The internet is a wonderful technological advancement, but like all developments in technology, there is also a downside to this great bridging of the social gap. As Emerson said…
The civilized man has built a coach, but has lost the use of his feet. He is supported on crutches, but lacks so much support of muscle.
I’ve always been told that you can tell a lot about a man by how he treats the women around him. Does he love them and respect them? Is he faithful to his lady, or is he a whore who knows nothing about the meaning of commitment and what it means to be a loyal, faithful man?
One of the downsides of the internet is the ease of access to porn. A generation has grown up with porn readily available on the other side of a screen. They learn about sex and women from the brutal and disgusting world of online porn. The shit that goes on in porn is un-fucking believable. The utter lack of respect for women and the way they have sex, show young men that women are nothing but an object; a tool to get them off.
As a result, young men – not all of them mind you – don’t develop real relationships with women. They have “numbers”, not human beings they’ve been with. They look at new women they meet as someone they could bang, not as a person they could cultivate a relationship with. Sex is more like masterbation than it is the beautiful act between two people that it can and should be.
What’s more is that studies show that the more porn we watch, the less of the real thing we want.
So not only is porn emasculating young men by altering the way they look at and treat women, but it’s creating impotent men who’d rather jerk off in front of a computer screen than bed a sexy, beautiful woman. And then there’s technology…
Much of our advances in the realm of technology make life easier. We no longer have to push a lawn mower, we can now sit while cutting the grass. We no longer have to get up and change the channels on the TV, we can do it from our couch with a remote. Advances in technology are great, but when they contribute to our laziness, we have to be careful.
With the increasing ease of life, comes the quelling of drive and ambition.
Just like it’s harder for a rich kid, who’s given everything he needs in life, to appreciate the value of a dollar and to have a great work ethic, it’s tougher for us to fight our laziness when tools that promote laziness are everywhere in our lives. A lazy man isn’t a man. Anything that contributes to his laziness is pulling him further away from his masculine self.
Are We Failing to Teach Boys to Become Men?
Competition is a good thing, as is failure. Both teach us about discipline. They shows us how to evolve, to learn from failure, and they helps us grow. As we protect our sons from failure, we rip from them the ability to see its beauty.
We weaken our young men when we confine them to safety, when we teach them to set realistic goals, and laugh when they have to audacity to set massive ones. We don’t want our sons and students to fail, because it’s painful. So we reward participation. We reward mediocrity. We should be rewarding those who are courageous enough to extend themselves beyond what they currently have the ability to accomplish. That’s growth. We shouldn’t make failure out to be the end of something, but a new beginning, a birth.
If we taught our young boys to try to fail, to push themselves, to dream big, work hard, and try to win, we’d instill in them the characteristics that this generation lacks: ambition, assertiveness, action over thought, hard work over laziness. However, so long as we try to spare feelings and protect our young lads from failure, we’re going to have weak men that buck responsibilities. We’re going to have scared men who stand for nothing, and fight for even less.