I’m not even joking.
David French is featured as representing the conservative liberal side of the debate in a new CBS News documentary on “toxic masculinity.” The progressive liberal side supports dissolving the gender binary. This comes after last month’s documentary on “non-monogamy.”
“Roe Anderson, a lifelong Tennessee resident and mother of a 10-year-old son, sits at her dining room table and recalls the earlier years of her son’s childhood. She was excited to find out she was having a son, believing that boys were easier to raise than girls because they were tough enough to fend for themselves without a lot of support.
To foster that, she put her son in male-dominated sports. “It started maybe at the age of 4 or 5. I began to toss him in sports. I started throwing him into baseball, football, all of these sports and thinking, ‘Well, you’re a boy. Boys do this. Boys are tough. Boys are supposed to be aggressive and this is how you learn how to be aggressive.'”
Roe believes her initial understanding of what it means to be a man came from social conditioning she experienced growing up surrounded by more traditionally masculine men, and her situation is not unique. Many parents of boys and gender-nonconforming children are contending with these conceptions of masculinity and are trying to figure out how to balance allowing their kids to express themselves authentically, while trying to protect them from bullying they may experience from their peers. …”
“This week CBS News released a short documentary that asked, “Is there a better way to raise boys?” It explored the challenge of raising boys to avoid the trap of “toxic masculinity,” and the crew visited our home in Franklin, Tennessee, to get the perspective of a conservative Christian family. You can watch the documentary here.
I write and speak quite a bit about masculinity in America—not because I represent any sort of ideal but because our nation faces an immense challenge in raising boys, and any discussion of the challenges of modern American society (including deaths of despair) that does not explore the masculine identity crisis is missing a big piece of the cultural puzzle. It’s true that men still achieve well at the apex of American society (they fill boardrooms, legislatures, and CEO chairs), but in the rest of American society, men are starting to fall behind. …
Instead, our culture often treats vices in men as the result of their masculinity, while viewing their virtues as the result of their humanity. The result is a culture that often tells young boys that there’s nothing distinctly good about being a guy—but there is a lot that’s perilous.
Indeed, we’ve reached a point where the American Psychological Association is essentially pathologizing traditional masculinity itself. In early 2019, it declared that “traditional masculinity—marked by stoicism, competitiveness, dominance, and aggression—is, on the whole, harmful.” It published guidelines that arguing that “traditional masculinity ideology”—defined as socializing boys toward “anti-femininity, achievement, eschewal of the appearance of weakness, and adventure, risk, and violence”—has been shown to “limit males’ psychological development, constrain their behavior, result in gender role strain and gender role conflict,” and negatively influence mental and physical health. …
Toxic masculinity is a real thing, and we see its effects in the #MeToo sex predators, in the violence of gangland criminals, and in the rage and fury of abusive boyfriends and husbands. As a Christian, I see toxic masculinity as the outgrowth of what happens when men surrender to sin …”
Yeah, well, I would say the problem is the liberal order that David French defends. I would argue that is incompatible with social conservatism and that it has been taken to such extremes that it is no longer defensible. I would also suggest that it is better to shoot your television than to participate in a documentary like this that normalizes perversion.