The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

No, Our Boys Are Not ‘Broken’

Posted on | February 21, 2018 | 1 Comment


Talk about “toxic masculinity” interests me, because I know very well what that looks like — the domineering behavior of the brittle ego, the obnoxious braggart who feels that every social encounter is a contest in which he must demonstrate his superiority. Nobody likes a bully, and if the critics of “toxic masculinity” were serious about addressing such problems, I would be happy to suggest experience-based solutions.

Michael Ian Black is a comedian who hates Donald Trump and who used the Parkland shooting as a pretext to launch a Twitter lecture about masculinity that was, in fact, irrelevant to what happened last week. The shooter in Parkland was psychologically disturbed, the product of an unusual family background. He was adopted at age 2 by a middle-aged couple. His adoptive father died when he was 5, and his mother died last year. The shooter was diagnosed with depression, autism, and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. To make such an obviously damaged person — who was recognized by school officials and his fellow students as having profound personal problems — symbolic of an allegedly pervasive “crisis in masculinity” is not a logical inference.


As I said yesterday, the Parkland massacre raises “serious questions about adolescent mental health — why were so many red flags about this teenager’s dangerous behavior ignored?” However, the media avoid these questions, instead offering formulaic liberal “solutions” while ignoring evidence that such “solutions” are part of the problem:

Broward County used to lead the state of Florida in sending students to the state’s juvenile justice system. County leaders responded with a perfectly progressive solution: “lower arrests by not making arrests.” . . . One particular motivation behind programs like Broward County’s was the pressure from multiple sources to reduce the statistical disparity between black and Hispanic student arrests on one hand and white and Asian student arrests on the other. . . .
By virtue of his name alone, Nikolas de Jesús Cruz, the adopted son of Lynda and Roger Cruz, became a statistical Hispanic. As such, authorities at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland had every reason not to report his troubling and likely criminal behavior to the police.

(Hat-tip: Instapundit.) Whatever policy changes might be suggested in response to the Parkland massacre, the liberals who caused the problem have discredited themselves as a source of “solutions.” Yet the media continue to pretend that liberals have a monopoly on wisdom, so that Michael Ian Black’s Twitter rant earned him an interview on NPR:

What do I mean by boys are broken? I think it means that there is something going on with American men that is giving them the permission and space to commit violence. And one of the main things we focus on correctly is guns and mental health, but I think deeper than that is a problem, a crisis in masculinity. . . .

(Question: Was the ISIS-inspired Orlando gunman Omar Mateen, whose family is from Afghanistan, part of “something going on with American men”? Or what about Syed Rizwan Farook, perpetrator of the San Bernardino massacre? Why is it that only “American men” are considered appropriate subjects of discussion about a “crisis in masculinity”? But please continue your lecture, Mr. Black.)

I also think that masculinity doesn’t have a language in the way that femininity has come to have a language. We understand that femininity can be much more broadly encompassing than masculinity now. When you think of a strong woman, that doesn’t rob her of any of her femininity. But when you think of a fragile man, that has the effect culturally, I think, of neutering that guy. And so much of masculinity is rooted in sexuality. . . .

Blah, blah, blah — it’s the same tired old Freudian nonsense, recycled in the jargon of postmodern feminist “social justice” wokeness. Stuart Schneiderman is not deceived by such rhetoric:

If leftists believe that feminism is the solution, the truth is that feminism is the problem. If you ask who broke boys or why boys are broken, you might turn to Christina Hoff Sommers’ book The War Against Boys.
Thanks the feminist schoolteachers, in particular, boys have been beaten down at school.

One of the most important aspects of healthy masculinity is that a good man must be able to endure pain, to shrug off insults, and to avoid complaining about his suffering. When I’d take my sons on mountain hikes, the younger ones would sometimes get tired and start whining. “There is no crying on the Bataan Death March,” I’d say, and tell them about how soldiers survived that brutal ordeal. Also, I’d point out to them that the greatest triumph of Muhammad Ali’s career was a fight he lost, when Ken Norton broke his jaw, and yet Ali still went the distance, fighting on to finish the 12th round and lose a split decision. Take the pain and keep going — that’s what a man has to do.

“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.”

“Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man.”

“I don’t believe in God. How can I say the Pledge of Allegiance if I don’t believe in God?”
Michael Ian Black

Michael Ian Black is an atheist, and thus lacks the wisdom necessary to advise anyone about anything, especially about “the duty of man.”

As a child, I was taught to “turn the other cheek,” to resist the temptation to wrath, because “vengeance is mine . . . saith the Lord.” Mercy ought not to be confused with weakness, and only “the fear of the Lord” can make a man truly courageous. Knowing that “the wrath of God” is directed against the “unrighteousness of men” should inspire in us a spirit of humility, because “the judgment of God” condemns us all: “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.”

The Rev. Billy Graham died today at age 99, and I think his ministry was far more helpful in teaching non-toxic masculinity than anything a Hollywood liberal like Michael Ian Black might say. Being conscious of our own sinful nature, and our need for divine mercy, is the only possible solution to every evil temptation in our lives. While probably few of my acquaintances would say I am a good Christian, I married a godly woman, who never ceases praying and who has been a tremendous force for good in the lives of all our children. It is an insult — and one I deeply resent — for Michael Ian Black to suggest that my sons are “broken,” trapped inside a “rigid, outdated model of masculinity.” Oh, really?

Godless atheists like Michael Ian Black know they can insult Christians — disparaging even honorable men like my son — because they know that “the fear of the Lord,” and a concern for doing “the whole duty of man,” requires us to “turn the other cheek.” Yet the truth has not changed in the past 2,000 years, and when hateful degenerates like Michael Ian Black mock God, they invite God’s wrath against themselves. Selah.




One Response to “No, Our Boys Are Not ‘Broken’”

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