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  • Rick LoPresti

Toxic masculinity

Toxic masculinity has become a popular catch-phrase. Google searches for toxic masculinity have climbed steadily since May of 2016. Over 90,000 news articles and 150,000 videos (and climbing) indexed on Google deploy the phrase. The Oxford Dictionary’s 2018 word of the year is toxic. The Gillette company sells shaving products which are mostly used by men. You woud think they would attempt to appeal to that market with their advertising. They payed big money to run an ad during the 2019 Super Bowl called “The best a man can be” which was a play on its own motto. It purports to address the problem of toxic masculinity. Suzanna Danuta Walters wrote an article published on June 8, 2018 in the Washington Post entitled, ““Why can’t we hate men?” She is a professor of sociology and director of the Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Program at Northeastern University, is the editor of the gender studies journal Signs. There is even a movement to address the supposed issue of “manspreading”, which is men sitting with their legs spread apart. A Russian law school student who is a feminist activist filmed herself on public transportation pouring bleach water on men’s crotches who were sitting with their legs apart. Manspreading is against the law in Madrid. Steven Crowder did an experiment where he made a device that women could wear which simulated having male body parts. He then had them sit with their legs together. It did not take long for them to get the point on why men sit with their legs apart. They realized that an obvious biological difference is the reason, and not some oppressive, patriarchal attempt to hog space. So, what is toxic masculinity? That is part of the problem. There is no clear and consistent definition of what it is. You can watch a youtube video of someone asking college students on campus if toxic masculinity is a significant problem, and they say yes; but when they are asked to define it, they cannot. Some common allegations are that men are obsessed with sex, are forced to suppress emotion, and are probe to violence. While there is a small number of men with these problems, the issue is that it has been conflated upon all men by some, especially radical feminists. That is classic tactic of radicals. They bemoan the alleged intolerance and judgment of those who disagree with them, and then hypocritically lump people into groups and pass judgment on them all rather than seeing people as individuals.

Another tactic of theirs is to hijack language and the meanings of words. The Nazis and the Communists employed this tactic. The book “1984” by George Orwell described a society where those in power take control of the use of words and definitions. One example is the redefining of the definitions of sex and gender made by the self-appointed gender police. They propose that these words have different meanings. Since there are obviously only two sexes biologically, they try to deflect the point by saying that sex is biological but gender is malleable. They ignore the basic fact that it is God who made us and not we ourselves (Gen 1-2, Ps 100:3). He invented male and female and He alone has the authority to define what that means. The words in Genesis 1:27 are as follows:

1. male: zakar - a male (of man or animals, as being the most noteworthy sex): him,

male, man (child, -kind); literally remembered – as he through whom the memorial of

parents is continued; also used to signify the membrum virile

2. female: nĕqebah – a woman, a female (a genitalia figura dicta); from naqab – to pierce,

perforate, hole

3. Gen 1:28 – be fruitful and multiply (only male with female can do this)

4. Gen 2:22

a. man: adam – red (red clay); can refer to mankind

b. woman: ishshah – wife, woman

Webster’s Dictionary definitions are as follows:

1. gender

a. a subclass within a grammatical class (such as noun, pronoun, adjective, or verb) of a

language that is partly arbitrary but also partly based on distinguishable characteristics

(such as shape, social rank, manner of existence, or sex) and that determines agreement

with and selection of other words or grammatical forms

. the behavioral, cultural, or psychological traits typically associated with one sex

2. sex

a. either of the two major forms of individuals that occur in many species and that are

distinguished respectively as female or male especially on the basis of their

reproductive organs and structures

b. the sum of the structural, functional, and behavioral characteristics of organisms that

are involved in reproduction marked by the union of gametes and that distinguish

males and females definitions are:

1. gender

a. either the male or female division of a species, especially as differentiated by social

and cultural roles and behavior: the feminine gender.

b. (in many languages) a set of classes that together include all nouns, membership in a

articular class being shown by the form of the noun itself or by the form or choice of

words that modify, replace, or otherwise refer to the noun, as, in English, the choice of

he to replace the man, of she to replace the woman, of it to replace the table, of it or she

to replace the ship. The number of genders in different languages varies from 2 to more

than 20; often the classification correlates in part with sex or animateness. The most

familiar sets of genders are of three classes (as masculine, feminine, and neuter in Latin

and German) or of two (as common and neuter in Dutch, or masculine and feminine in

French and Spanish).

2. sex

a. either the male or female division of a species, especially as differentiated with

reference to the reproductive functions.

b. the sum of the structural and functional differences by which the male and female are

distinguished, or the phenomena or behavior dependent on these differences.

Clear points that can be taken from these definitions are:

1. The words sex and gender mean the same thing

2. Sex and gender are binary

3. Sex and gender are directly related to biology

This is what these words meant and how they were used since the creation all over the world. It is only very recently that people have sought to change this. There are basic biological and psychological differences between men and women which are abundantly obvious to all but those who have deluded themselves in order to promote their contrary agenda. There is no real science that disproves this. Our DNA, our brains, our hormones, and our innate “wiring” are different. This is more than just some social construct forced on humanity by the “oppressive, Judeo-Christian patriarchy”. This existed before the first verse of the Bible was ever written. The books of Moses were written about 1450 B.C., although some scholars think the book of Job may have been written around the time of Abraham, which was about 2,000 B.C. So, for the first 2,000 plus years of the existence of man, there was no Bible to assert its values on mankind. Who is to blame for the concepts of male and female that existed then? The radical feminists will undoubtedly answer “men”.

The first question then would be, “Is the Bible to blame for a patriarchy which unjustly oppresses women?” Some would attempt to twist the scriptures to justify their rejection of them. This is nothing new. People have been doing this to the word of God since it was written. This is what the serpent did to Eve in the garden (Gen 3:1-7). Below is a list of scriptures on several topics pertaining to men and women:

1. Marriage and divorce

a. Gen 2:20-25 – marriage first human relationship and first institution by God

b. Deut 22:13-19 – false accusation against virginity: 100 shekels of silver, no divorce

c. Deut 22:28-29 – if a man lies w. a virgin: 50 shekels of silver, marry, no divorce

d. Deut 24:1-2 – in law of Moses, divorced woman free

e. Deut 24:5 - newlyweds off 1 year

f. Hos 1-3 – forgiveness and reconciliation

g. Mal 2:10-16 – God hates divorce, prayers hindered (1Pet 3:7)

h. Mt 5:31-32 – saving for fornication, adultery

i. Mt 19:3-9 – for hardness of heart Moses allowed, from the beginning it was not so

j. 1Cor 7:1-16 - due benevolence, depart not, if unbelieving depart – depart

k. Eph 5:22-33 – represents Christ and church

l. Heb 13:4 – honorable in all

m. 1Pet 3:7 – giving honor

2. No rape – Deut 22:13-29

3. No incest – Lev 20

4. Mother

a. Ex 20:12, Mt 15:4-6, Mt 19:19, Eph 6:2 (comm. w. promise) – honor

b. Ex 21:15 - he that smiteth – death

c. Ex 21:17 – he that curseth – death (Lev 20:9, Deut 27:16, Prov 20:20, Prov 30:11)

d. Deut 21:18-20, Prov 30:17 - stubborn son – death

e. Prov 23:22 – despise not (Eze 22:7, Mic 7:6)

f. Prov 28:24 – he that robbeth

5. Gal 3:28 - neither male nor female – all one in Christ

6. Women of honor

a. Eve – Gen 2:20-25

b. Rahab – Josh 2, Josh 6:25, Mt 1:5, Heb 11:31, Jam 2:25

c. Deborah – Jud 4

d. Ruth

e. Widow – 1Ki 17:9-25, Lk 4:26

f. Elisha’s friend – 2Ki 4:1-37

g. Huldah – 2Ki 22:14-20

h. Esther

i. Mary – Mt 1, Lk 2-3, Acts 1:14

j. Mary Magdalene – Mk 16:9

7. God

a. Gen 2:18-24 - He created woman

b. Is 66:13 – as a mother will I comfort

c. Mt 23:37 – as a hen

The Bible is the best friend of women. Everywhere in the world throughout history where the Bible has had a major influence on society has been a place where women have prospered more than anywhere else. Look around the world today at the places where societies have been founded on the influence of the Bible compared to societies where another system of beliefs has been the major influence. Where have women fared better and had more freedom and rights? The Arab world? The far east? No, it is in Western Civilization which was founded on the Bible. Of course, no society in this world is perfect. We are not in heaven, and Jesus has not yet returned to the earth. Yet honest Biblical study and societal comparisons reveal that the Bible is not to blame for man’s imperfections and shortcomings. It is also interesting to note that these critics only attack Judeo-Christianity and never any other belief system. The Bible promotes and highly values femininity (1Pet 3:1-4). There is a difference between femininity and feminism, especially radical feminism. Webster's dictionary defines feminine as "characteristic of or appropriate or unique to women". It defines feminism as "the theory of the political, economic, and social equality of the sexes; organized activity on behalf of women's rights and interests". Femininity has to do with accentuating and valuing what makes women different than men, and feminism has to do with trying to make men and women the same. Femininity has to do with the beauty of all the aspects of being a woman, and feminism has to with asserting "rights". If feminists hate men so much, why are they trying so hard to be like them? It’s because they reject their God-given role and try to take the one that doesn’t belong to them. Who are the angry haters? Just watch the videos of the protests.

A second question is, “Is there a system in place created by men to oppress women and provide them with dominance and to skew every advantage their way?” Let us answer a question with a question. Do men really have all the advantages to the disadvantage of women? Here are some facts, not emotions, about the alleged oppressed status of women today:

1. Rape culture

a. less than 7% of reported rapes lead to an arrest and less than 2% of arrested rapists are

convicted or see a day in jail according to

b. The definition of rape has been changed to mean any “unwelcomed” advance and not

just the violent accomplishment of sex by force against the will. Some women are even

calling verbal comments rape.

c. Per FBI – 1 in 1900, not in 4

d. On campus – per DOJ from 1996-2002 6 per 1,000

e. What about false accusers (Duke Lacrosse)? What happens to them? Ex 20:16, Deut


2. Pay inequality

a. Women make 77% what men do

b. College major choices (engineer vs. teacher). College is sold as the path to better jobs

making more money. More women than men go to college, and more women than men

finish. So, why aren’t they making more? The patriarchy? Why don’t the patriarchs hire

all women and save money?

c. Career choice

d. Time off for children

e. 8% of women make more in 147 of 150 biggest cities in U.S. per Time

f. Hours worked per type of job (alleged glass ceiling)

3. “Men are overrepresented in prisons, are more likely than women to commit violent crimes

and are at greatest risk of being a victim of violent crime,” the A.P.A. wrote. (American

Psychological Association)

4. In August, author Rollo Tomassi tweeted “Children from single-parent households

(overwhelmingly single mothers) account for 80% of rapists motivated by displaced anger.

Congratulations feminism, you’ve literally bred and raised the ‘rape culture’ you claim to

fear.” To this provocation, a user named Miss Stirr replied that “43% of boys are raised by

single mothers. 78% of teachers are female. So almost 50% of boys have 100% feminine

influence while at home & an 8/10ish chance of 100% influence at school. Toxic

masculinity isn’t the problem. Lack of masculinity is.”

Arguably one of the healthiest forms of modern masculinity is engaged fatherhood, a fairly

new masculine ideal. Caregiving demands a lot of men but can be ennobling and, if

positioned correctly, masculinizing. There’s a reason that the heavily branded movement

towards male parental involvement has been largely fronted by athletes who pose

fatherhood as a challenge.

5. Women make up 20% of politicians and 4.5% of Fortune 500 CEOs. Why? Because men

are somehow so in control of everything that they are shutting women out, or because

women are making other choices more suited to their role?

6. Sexual objectivism. Most of it is voluntary, i.e. actresses and models.

Here are some facts, not emotions, about the status of men today:

1. Death at work 94% men, 4,584 in 2013

2. Prison

a. 90% of inmates

b. Men do 63% more for same offense

3. Victims of crime

a. 76% of homicides

b. always in top 10 reasons men die (7-9)

3. never in top 10 for women

4. 4 of 5 suicides

a. always in top 10 reasons men die (6 or 7)

b. never in top 10 for women

5. War

a. Korea – 2 women, 36,572 men (99.9%)

b. Vietnam – 8 women, 58,285 men (99.9%)

c. Gulf – 15 women, 280 men (95.0%)

d. Enduring Freedom – 51 women, 2,301 men (98.0%)

e. Iraqi Freedom – 110 women, 9,302 men (98.0%)

6. Homelessness

7. Drug abuse

8. Women pay price for equality

a. backfiring

b. incurring same negatives as men

c. stress

d. medical issues

e. heart attack once “man’s disease”, now #1 killer of women

1. #1 killer for both sexes, but now more women than men

2. 1971: 419,716 men; 323,652 women

3. mostly steady for men 1971-1998, increase every year for women – passed men in 1991

4. stats from CDC, NCHS, Vital Stats

9. Suffrage

a. Most women didn’t want it because the draft was attached

b. White men approved it

10. Single motherhood

a. 3 things to avoid poverty according to Brookings Institute

1. marry before kids

2. graduate H.S.

3. get a job

4. 75% of poor move to middle class with these 3 things

b. only 2% of U.S. poor globally per Pew

c. 90% of U.S. above global standard of poverty

d. 71% of poor single mom house

e. not race either – 22% of white single moms poor, 7% of black married poor

11. 55% of college students and 58% of graduate degrees women, 38% of men drop out

12. 54% of electorate women

13. Women and children first (Sully)

14. Men have traditional roles too

15. Women live 5 years longer

16. Domestic violence

a. Many men don’t report

1. shame

2. not believed

3. arrested

b. CDC – 2014 more men than women victims

c. Duluth power and control wheel still used

d. Shelters only for women

e. Orders of protection – men lose house, job, kids, stuff with only court appearance by

woman, no repercussions for perjury or damage

17. Boko Haram – before kidnapping girls they killed 1,000s of boys with no attention

18. Family court

a. 81% of women get kids

b. Adoption with no notice to man

c. Paternity fraud

19. No men’s choice in abortion

20. Ritalin

There used to be a college class called “women’s studies”. Now it is called gender studies and has become a major. This is nothing more than learning how to hate men, be a lesbian, and be a radical feminist activist. Here is a basic history of the gender studies movement:

1. Simone de Beauvoir, “The Second Sex” 1949

2. John Money 1950s-1960s, redefined gender and separated definition from sex

a. co-editor of 1969 book "Transsexualism and Sex Reassignment"

b. twin study – body mutilation, perversion, abuse; David Reimer (Brenda) started living as

boy at 15, committed suicide, brother OD-ed

3. Judith Butler, professor at UC Berkeley

a. Gender Trouble: Feminism and the Subversion of Identity (1990)

b. Bodies That Matter: On the Discursive Limits of Sex (1993)

As an example of how unscholarly these studies are, there have been several hoaxes played on these alleged experts where fake papers have been written which should have been very clearly not legitimate. Yet these were peer-reviewed and published. If what they are seeking is balance, then where are the men’s studies classes?

They are not content to just infiltrate college campuses. They have now pushed their agenda into the grade schools and even kindergarden and pre-school with such books as “Jacob’s New Dress” and “It’s Perfectly Normal”. The agenda of “Welcoming Schools” is sponsored by the Human Rights Campaign, the largest LGBT lobbying organization in the U.S.

How about toxic feminism? Some say there is no such thing, but they are usually the proponents of it. They are so rabidly anti-man that they cannot acknowledge that women also have issues. They have no balance. However, on November 29, 2017 Psychology Today published an article about this subject, and there are many others. Both men and women have pro’s and con’s. Both have good and bad. The Bible does not teach victimhood mentality or division. It’s not us vs. them. We’re in this together. Don’t be hypocrites. Get balance.

Are we seeking equality of opportunity or equality of outcome? There is no law on the books, at least not yet in America, that specifically favors men over women. Neither should there be a law favoring women over men. The fair and just thing is for all people regardless of there gender or any other factor having the same opportunity as all others. There should be no special class of people with unfair advantages or disadvantages, except those which people create for themselves with their own choices. Although some people claim this as their goal, they are liars and hypocrites. They want to be treated as a special class with unfair advantages. They make the excuse that society (read the Judeo-Christian patriarchy, a.k.a. the Bible) has been so unfair to them that this is the only way to level the playing field. This may have been true to some degree for some in the past, but let’s not live in the past. How about today and moving forward? Can it be agreed that vast improvements have been made, or are we so caught up in bitterness, hatred, and the blame game that we cannot even grudgingly admit that? Equality of outcome is not only impossible, but unjust. A great illustration is the school room where the teacher announces that no matter what the students’ abilities or what level of work they do, everyone is going to get a C. The students who are capable and willing to do better will decide there is no point in exerting themselves toward excellence, and the less capable and lazy will say, “Great”. This is what happens when society tries to force equal outcomes. First of all, they never achieve it. Second, all that us accomplished is that that excellence and initiative are squashed, and mediocrity at best becomes the standard. That is why we cannot expect some artificially contrived attempt and eliminating the differences between men and women to be obliterated. It is neither possible or desirable. Men and women have equal value but not equal roles. Their roles are different. Both bring vital aspects to the table. The differences are beautiful and harmonious, not contradictory. The battle of the sexes is contrived, divisive, and counter-productive.

One man can make a big difference without having to be a superhero. God always started big things with just one regular man - Adam, Noah, Abraham, Moses, David, Jesus, Peter, Paul, etc.

Here are some statistics on the value of fatherhood and the damage of fatherlessness:

1. 63% of youth suicides (5 times more likely)

2. 90% of homeless and runaways (32 times more like to run away)

3. 85% of child behavior disorders (20 times more likely)

4. 80% of rapists (14 times more likely)

5. 71% of dropouts (9 times more likely)

6. 75% of teens in chemical abuse centers (10 times more likely)

7. 70% of juveniles in detention centers (9 times more likely)

8. 20 times more likely to end up in prison

9. 53% of children born out of wedlock

10. 92% of children not in poverty have both parents

11. 40 % chance of being in poverty with one parent

12. 83% of single parents are poor women

13. 15% lower depression in teens with both parents

14. 15% lower drug use when family eats dinner together

So, what is “non-toxic” masculinity? If it could be summed up in one word, it is responsibility.

God gave Adam responsibility in the garden to dress and keep it (Gen 2:15). When Adam and Eve sinned, God cursed the ground Adam was assigned to work. The curse was not work. It was unproductive work – thorns and thistles instead of abundant fruit and life (Gen 3:17-23). Men should first take responsibility for their own actions (Prov 16:32, Titus 1:6). What society calls adult behavior is actually the opposite (alcohol, tobacco, pornography, cursing, gambling, fornication, violence, etc.) Once a man has reached a relative level of responsibility for himself, he can consider being responsible for a family (1Tim 3:4-5). Then if he shows himself a capable leader in the home, he can be responsible in the community. He should not be dependent, but mostly independent (2Thes 3:6-14, 1Tim 5:8). Don’t be a wimp, face responsibility, and don’t run away. Wherever you go, you’re there. Running away can be more that physically leaving. It can be retreating emotionally and relationally. Two of the greatest leaders in the Bible did this - David (1Sam 27:1), and Elijah (1Ki 19:8). Learn to stand where you are before considering if it is the will of God to go elsewhere (Eph 6:10-18). Stay in your marriage, your church, your city, etc. Be a man of God (1Sam 4:9, 2Sam 10:12, 1Ki 2:2, Is 46:8, 1Cor 14:20, 1Cor 16:13). Be used of God. Realize you’re not an island. Our masculinity will come out one way or another. Channel it where it belongs, and it will do what God intended for it to do.

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