Dangerous Men

All men are dangerous.

Every last one of them. Your Father, Brother, Husband, and Son are all dangerous. The stockboy at the the grocery store is dangerous.

I’m dangerous.

I know this is going to upset a lot of people. It upset me the first time I heard it. People will think I’ve converted to feminism. I haven’t. Just hear me out.

There’s been a lot in the media lately about violence against women and sexual assault. There’s been Ray Rice, Jian Ghomeshi, Bill Cosby, and that weird video game thing where game reviewers are getting death threats. Feminists were crying “toxic masculinity ” and I was getting angry. I felt like I was being lumped into the same category as the women beaters and rapists just because we had the same chromosomes . I wanted to yell and scream that it wasn’t because they were men that they were doing these things. It’s because they’re not good, moral people. While that’s true, they aren’t good people with morals, I was wrong. It is because they are men.

I’ll say it again,

I was wrong. The men who are raping and beating are doing it because they are men.

There were two events that brought me to this realization. One was Gavin McInnes’ great article for Taki’s Magazine “In Defense of Evil. ” McInnes writes about the need for men to engage in their darker instincts for the world to work. “Vices, like greed and revenge, drive men to success.” He’s absolutely right. It’s a man’s desire to make his way in the world and cut out a portion just for himself that drives the world. So why aren’t all men beating and killing and raping? Even though they’re driven by these impulses? I’ll come back to that in a bit.

The second thing that happened was a Mötley Crüe concert. I was there with my fiancee and she was really sketched out by the crowd. They were a pretty rough crowd. Lots of older men and terrible life choices. I wasn’t scared at all but she was worried. I asked her what was up and she said she was scared of all these men.

I was shocked, hurt and upset. I couldn’t go into a place and say I was scared of all these women. I couldn’t blame my troubles on the fact that they were women. That’s not equality! Does she think I’m like that because I’m a man? How could she think I would defend her against these men if it came to that?

As I looked around, I realized that I wasn’t scared of any of these men because I was confident in my ability to defend myself. And that I wasn’t a target. No one has ever looked at me and thought, “Yes, that’s the guy I want to fight.”

But, as a woman, my fiancee is the target of drunk and rough men. Men I’ve had to put in there place on occasion.  She has to worry about men. After all, men commit about 75% of all violent crimes. Remember that thing, #YesAllWomen? How it turned into #NotAllMen? Well, I’m here to say, yes all men. Men do bad things. It’s a part of what being a man means. Sometimes we do these bad things in the right way for the right reasons. Sometimes we don’t.

Why?

Come back for the next post where we look at the dark impulses of men and why we aren’t all raping and pillaging.

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Lumbersexuals, Metrosexuals and Manliness

Over the last few days there’s been a fair amount of talk over this new classification of men called “Lumbersexuals.”

You may ask yourself, what is a “Lumbersexual”? Do I even want to know? Let me enlighten you.

Apparently a Lumbersexual is someone who dresses in flannel or plaid, has a beard and seems very manly. The original article posted at Gear Junkie here.

According to them:

“Today, the metrosexual is a disappearing breed being quickly replaced by men more concerned with existing in the outdoors, or the pseudo-outdoors, than meticulous grooming habits.He is bar-hopping, but he looks like he could fell a Norway Pine.He looks like a man of the woods, but works at The Nerdery, programming for a healthy salary and benefits. His backpack carries a MacBook Air, but looks like it should carry a lumberjack’s axe. He is the Lumbersexual.”

So the Lumbersexual is essentially the style pendulum swinging from effeminate metrosexual to the hyper masculine lumbersexual. Now let me tell you why this is all ridiculous.

Full disclosure, I have a great beard and I wear plaid and plaid flannel when it gets cold out. This isn’t some new trend with me. I’ve been able to grow a full beard since highschool. When I was playing football I liked to have a beard because it made the chinstrap on my helmet more comfortable. Plus, nothing says manly like playing on the line with a full beard. You may as well be wrestling with your pet sabretooth tiger.

Anyways, I eventually had to shave my beard for various jobs I got to pay for my education. Plus, my prom date hated and probably still hates facial hair. After I got a new job and a lady friend that appreciated facial hair I was all about it. As far as the plaid flannel goes, I live in Alberta. ‘Nuff said.

This doesn’t make me a “Lumbersexual”.

It makes me a man. I know what I wanted and what I wanted to put out into the world. This is who I am and what I look like. Barring some other life circumstances I will likely have a beard and be wearing plaid when my grandchildren visit me. This is who I am.

All this metrosexual/lumbersexual stuff is nonsense. They’re just labels being attached to styles for people who want to be hip and with it. For the rest of us, we look how we want to look because it makes us feel like ourselves and it makes us feel powerful. When I walk down the street, I feel good about myself because I know I look good. I take pride in my appearance. I’ve known many men who would fall into either the lumbersexual or metrosexual label but weren’t those. They were just themselves. They gave off the image of a man who knew who he was. They didn’t label themselves anything other than who they were. For example, a friend of mine I worked with, he was probably more on the metrosexual side. He was meticulously groomed, probably used skin creams or whatever, but when you looked at him, he wasn’t metrosexual. He was Kevin. A good man.

I’ve also seen some commentators talking about some weird “beard culture” privilege whatever. It’s all non-sense. Stop trying to fit into these culturally empty labels and take pride in yourself.

Real men aren’t going to get caught up in these labels or trends because they don’t care about being a  part of the pack. They figure out who they are and live it. Being authentic to yourself has always been a timeless style.