The Dangers Of Masculinity

The Dangers Of Masculinity

What does it mean to "be a man?"
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We are born into a system of twos. One of the first things children are taught is good from bad, right from wrong, and left from right. They are also taught the difference between male and female. This distinction defines our lives and shapes our personalities. For boys, being told to “be a man” can have multiple meanings, and not all of them are good. Men have many expectations and masculine roles pushed upon them by society, telling them who they should be and how they should act. However, this can have negative effects and even affect men’s health. Men need to be aware of these pressures and demands so that they can fight damaging stereotypes and overcome the binary.

What does it mean to “be a man?” People especially have been wondering, who has it worse, men or women? Results have shown that both genders have their own difficulties to contend with, and that as much as women face, men do have a lot of societal problems of their own. From a very young age, little boys are told to be “little men,” with all of the pressures and expectations that comes with. Many are forced into sports and stereotypical “boy” pursuits that they may not want to do, but are expected to because of their gender. Boys are told not to cry or show emotion, and thus “be a man” or “man up.” Men are forced into a set of expectations from birth. No man can be the perfect husband, be CEO, have the perfect body, be beautiful, athletic, intelligent, political, assertive, and rough at the same time. Our society still upholds this ideal and it is evidenced in our media, advertising, and merchandise. Magazines and TV show how to change diets, workouts, and sex lives to try to sell a version of this ideal to the "regular" man. Movies try to model their own versions of this in the form of James Bond, Indiana Jones, Rambo, and Prince Charming. Some of the most important gender roles exemplified in this archetype is being strong, aggressive, confident, sexual, and unemotional.

Hyper-masculinity is dangerous for men because it creates tension in themselves and can lead to harmful behavior. Men are risk-takers. They are more likely to die of occupational deaths and not wear seat belts and die in accidents. It becomes "cool," especially for young men, to put themselves in harm's way to show off and prove themselves. There is also less attention called to men’s health issues, such as testicular cancer and prostate cancer. Many people are unaware that men can get breast cancer, too, even though there is so much awareness now about women getting it. They also self-repress. Men are just as emotional as women; they are just told not to show it. Men are told that they are supposed to be cold, callous, and inept at understanding feelings, and this makes them suffer in important relationships in their lives such as with parents, lovers, and children. As the dominant sex, men are expected to do everything -- to provide, to fix problems, to be CEO, and to answer questions. This puts a lot of pressure on them. This could be why they have more frequent heart attacks, high blood pressure, and die earlier. Men also stratify themselves, based on where they fit in the gender binary and how masculine they are. So many pressures are put on men that this is often called "toxic masculinity," showing how dangerous it is for men's mental and physical health.

Cover Image Credit: ilovehdwallpapers

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13 Style Mistakes Every Girl Made In The 2000s

Hide your selfies.
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1. Crimped Hair

2. Straightened Side Bangs With Curly Hair

3. Jeans under skirts

4. A "poof" with two braids

...thanks Lizzie Mcguire

5. The solo "poof" with straight hair

Lauren Conrad made this acceptable, right?

6. All silver or light blue eye shadow

7. Too Much Eyeliner

8. "Emo" hair

9. Ponchos

10. Tank Tops Over T-Shirts

11. Those "shrug" Half Sweaters that tied in the middle *cringe*

12. The uggs, graphic t, jean skirt, and leggings combo.

13. Stretching our tank tops way down under a tight T-shirt... Layers are trendy, right?

Cover Image Credit: College Fashion

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He’s Not My President, And I’m Sorry That He’s Yours

I refuse to acknowledge him as "my" president, he doesn't deserve it.

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It's been about two years since Donald Trump has officially taken office and became your president. I say "your" because he is not my president and I refuse to acknowledge him as such. I refuse to associate this man with one of the most powerful titles because he does not uphold the standards of what it means to be president. Donald Trump is a failed businessman, WrestleMania participant, and T.V. personality, but he is no president.

In the past, we've elected leaders whose ideas and vision for this nation didn't align with mine, but Donald Trump is another kind of malevolence that I refuse to believe runs the United States of America. Go ahead, call me all the names in the book; snowflake, libtard, or whatever your petty, little heart desires—your president still incompetent and runs his platform based off of false hope, an abundance of lies, and a xenophobic agenda.

This man single-handedly fooled an entire group of people that the United States was going to build a wall at the southern-most border (as if there isn't already a wall there) to keep out "criminals" (undocumented immigrants fleeing their country in order to survive) and said Mexico was going to pay for it (which they never did and never will.) This entire plan was flawed from the beginning; it was founded upon hate and pure ignorance. I hate to break it to you, but this country was founded upon immigrants and that's never going to change.

Your president even had a temper tantrum and shut down the government for 35 days, he doesn't care about the citizens of this nation, and to be quite frank, he never did in the first place. He never will unless it benefits him in some way. We're talking about the same man who addresses woman like their objects, views minorities like criminals, opposition for the LGBTQ community, makes a mockery of disabled people, honestly, the list can go on and on. What makes you genuinely believe he cares about you?

President's Day was initially created to celebrate George Washington's Birthday but eventually was adapted to commemorate the presidency as a whole somewhere along the line. So this President's Day, as we reflect upon your President's legacy for what he's created thus far, I'm sorry. I'm not sorry he'll be remembered as one of the worst presidents to go down in history and I can't wait until this nightmare is over.

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