The Most Serious Conversation We Can Have.

We can talk about racism, homophobia, transphobia , and go down the list of wrongs in the world, but we have to be honest about where men factor into this list. That this is a list perpetuated by the actions of male people. Yes, I’m saying it, the ills of the world are BECAUSE of men. Is that hard to hear? Does it make you want to jump to the defense of men? To say that not all men are like that, or that some women do it to? Before we get into that, let’s just not. Of course not all men are like that, you don’t need to state it, nor do you need to bring up women’s participation in or the committing of certain crimes. When you do this, please understand that you’re contributing to the problem by stifling speech and shutting down the conversation. What you’re bringing to the table with NAMALT defenses, or the assertion that women do it too is the idea that this is a conversation not worth having. Stop it. This is the most serious conversation we can have.

From the dawn of time men have, throughout most cultures, dominated the scene and they have done this through violence, I implore you to simply open a history book. It’s so obvious that it’s weird that it even needs to be said, but we as a society do a hell of a job masking male violence. our headlines read “Woman raped” instead of “Man rapes woman”  “3 shot on fifth” instead of 3 shot and killed by a man on 5th.” When you start paying attention the sex of violent offenders, you start seeing a common denominator. This is a problem, and I have a major problem with our collective problem of not wanting to talk about it. Yes, it’s an ugly truth, perhaps one of our ugliest, but all the more reason we need to really dive into it. I don’t want to live in world like this, do you?

“In 2010, among persons ages 10 to 24 years, the homicide rate for males was 12.7 deaths per 100,000 population and the homicide rate for females was 2.1 deaths per 100,000. For males ages 10 to 24 years, the homicide rate was the highest for those ages 20 to 24 years with 22.6 deaths per 100,000. For females ages 10 to 24 years, the homicide rate was highest for those ages 20 to 24 years, with 3.4 deaths per 100,000.”
http://www.cdc.gov/violenceprevention/youthviolence/stats_at-a_glance/hr_age-sex.html

According to the U.S. Department of Justice, between 1998 and 2002:

  • Of the almost 3.5 million violent crimes committed against family members, 49% of these were crimes against spouses.
  • 84% of spouse abuse victims were females, and 86% of victims of dating partner abuse at were female.
  • Males were 83% of spouse murderers and 75% of dating partner murderers
  • 50% of offenders in state prison for spousal abuse had killed their victims. Wives were more likely than husbands to be killed by their spouses: wives were about half of all spouses in the population in 2002, but 81% of all persons killed by their spouse.Stalking According to the Stalking Resource Center:
    • 1,006,970 women and 370,990 men are stalked annually in the United States.
    • 1 in 12 women and 1 in 45 men will be stalked in their lifetime.
    • 77% of female and 64% of male victims know their stalker.
    • 87% of stalkers are men.
    • 59% of female victims and 30% of male victims are stalked by an intimate partner.
    • 81% of women stalked by a current or former intimate partner are also physically assaulted by that partner.
    • 31% of women stalked by a current or former intimate partner are also sexually assaulted by that partner.
    • The average duration of stalking is 1.8 years.
    • If stalking involves intimate partners, the average duration of stalking increases to 2.2 years.
    • 61% of stalkers made unwanted phone calls; 33% sent or left unwanted letters or items; 29% vandalized property; and 9% killed or threatened to kill a family pet.
    • 28% of female victims and 10% of male victims obtained a protective order. 69% of female victims and 81% of male victims had the protection order violated.

      So, just do the math. Something is the matter here and it’s numerically significant enough to talk about. We KNOW that the majority (sitting at over 90%.) of  all violent and sexual crimes are committed by men. But crickets…snores…nothing.I’ve argued that our problem with male violence comes from our socialization as men, that is, more or less my position. End male socialization as we know it and change the world. However, I’ve heard people of both sexes just chalk it up to the biological differences in males and females. I don’t think that can be an argument because I’m looking for solutions. Saying it’s all just inherent feels like throwing in the towel. I mean, if that’s the case, really whats the point? If that’s reality sign me up to the kill all men bandwagon. Seriously, if men are actually just testosterone poisoned creatures with some deep seated yearning to be violent rapist then I don’t see any other option. Reduce the male population like now. Like ten minutes ago.

      hulk

      I stand by that the problem is not because of our biology as men, but because how men, our forefathers and ourselves, have shaped what “man” is suppose to be. We do little to change by holding on to the old stereotypes of what we are “suppose” be. We give a little boy a toy gun, pump him full of hyper-masculine male role models and fictitious heroes . Instill a sense of entitlement into him. We don’t discourage the devaluing of females or others. we do nothing as a society to foster male empathy, it’s discouraged and even looked down upon. We continue this hammering in of manhood until the boy reaches maturity, and then we all act surprised with the man commits a violent crime. I mean, we’ve only been grooming him to do so all of his life. Let’s stop being surprised. Let’s stop chalking it up to any factor (like mental illness.) than, what is to me, the most obvious. Male socialization.  With that comes male privilege and with that comes entitlement and you have a recipe for the sad reality that we see around us on the daily. I want something else, I don’t want to live in a world like this. Do you?

      So what can be done? How can we change? I really want to see a new form of parenting rise to change things for the future generations. I want to see active resistance to the brainwashing that is male socialization in all of us. I want to see the men of this generation put some effort into insuring the men of the next will be better. Insuring that you, the singular man, will be better. I’m not entirely sure of how to change every facet of masculinity, but that’s why this conversation is imperative. Your voice is needed. Your solutions are needed.

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