Toxic Masculinity? There’s No Such Thing

“Toxic masculinity” has been cited as the cause of everything from the #MeToo sexual assault crisis to mass shootings.

But the phrase “toxic masculinity” is an oxymoron, like jumbo shrimp. One thing refutes the other

Masculinity cannot be toxic. Maleness can be and unfortunately often is. Masculinity is a social virtue. Maleness just means being a male. Men who rescue those in distress, like we saw on 9/11, in the Houston floods this summer and those who ran toward the bullets in Las Vegas are masculine. Mass shooters, rapists, abusers, gang-bangers and sexual predators are not masculine. There is a world of difference between the two.

In fact, any male who shrinks in the face of serious challenge or danger of others cannot be called masculine. Nor can any man who uses his powers to hurt other people or enrich himself. They are merely males.

How is masculinity a character quality distinct from being macho or boyish? What does it mean to be a masculine man?

I explain these important questions in a new piece I have over at the Federalist. I hope it’s interesting and helpful to you.

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About glenn stanton

researcher, speaker, skater, commentator, writer, friend
This entry was posted in commentary, cultural analysis, culture, feminism, gender; masculinity, manhood, manhood; masculinity, masculinity, politics, Sexuality, Uncategorized and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Toxic Masculinity? There’s No Such Thing

  1. Nathan Z says:

    The phrase, “Toxic masculinity” is a horrible phrase. But to switch to, “Toxic maleness,” would be no better.
    Thank you for pointing out that masculinity is a social virtue, it should be common sense, but our culture often does not go along with common sense, thus there’s really a need for it to be said that masculinity is not toxic. Rather, men using their strength to help others are being masculine.
    But then you state that “maleness means just being a male.” And maleness can be, and unfortunately often is, toxic. WRONG! Males, just like females, are made in the image of God. We are NOT toxic. People would be rightfully offended if phrases such as “poisonous femaleness” or “poisonous femininity” were said.
    Both men and women do things wrong at times. We all sin. That does not mean our gender should be said it is toxic. God made genders. He made us in His own image.
    A male who shrinks in the face of danger is NOT merely a male, he is a cowardly male. A male who uses his power to hurt other people is NOT merely a male, he is a male who is a bully or an abusive male.
    I wonder if all the attacks on masculinity and yes, on males, is rooted in an attack on God Himself, who describes Himself in His Word as Father.

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