Male Strength Should Be Celebrated, Not Replaced With Girly Men
To be around strong men makes me feel at peace, alive, and more womanly. In light of their strength, I can celebrate my femininity. I can’t do that when I’m around weak men. When I’m surrounded by soft males, I am on guard. I’m unsettled. Life is fraught with struggles, even if they’re not always present. They’re there, stalking us beyond the perimeter. Without a strong man, we have no one to rely on -- physically speaking.
Does that make me horribly weak as a person? Not at all. I’m a strong woman, but that strength only goes so far. It’s a woman’s strength. A man’s strength extends much further, wrapping around us like a protective barrier so we can live fully as women.
There are many books written today about manliness, about the rise of the “soft male,” and the shackling of the wild nature of men. That loss is caused by many factors, of course. There’s no single culprit. Technology has taken on many of the physical tasks men used to engage in, pushing men to express their masculinity in more intellectual ways. This is a strength in its own right, but it’s one women share. It doesn’t make men any different.
One of the primary differences between men and women is their strength. It’s not the only point of masculinity, but it is a big one. Women are not physically equal to men, and they never will be.
The comment at the end of the fashion article celebrating girly men in the fashion world is a boldface lie: “If men and woman are equal, then what does all that matter?”
They are NOT equal. Not when it comes to our strength or even our roles in the reproductive process. Men are, and should be, stronger. But they have become softer over time, partly due to technology, but also because of shifting social narratives that have devalued manliness.
Feminism is a huge factor, as it has reframed masculinity as a threat in and of itself. Women for decades have sought to suppress manliness. But I would also put the mainstreaming of a flamboyant, weak portrayal of homosexuality that is celebrated in pop culture and the fashion world. What used to be fringe has now become conventional. The soft male is one of them.
While some might think this is just awesome, it’s logically impossible to brand weakness as positive. To put it in the most basic terms, for the human species to survive, we need to be strong. For a society, a nation, a tribe, a clan, a family, to survive, we need to be strong. When the strongest among us become weak, we are collectively weak and vulnerable.
As a woman, I want a man to be strong. I celebrate his manliness, his power, his wildness. I don’t want him tamed. I don’t want him soft. I want him free to be a man, so I can be free to be a woman.