I realize that this node will not be popular among some of the denizen
s of E2
. I only ask that you read it completely. Note that I am not a warmonger
by any stretch, and I avoid fights and violent confrontations whenever possible. Note also, that I am no pacifist
, nor do I regard pacifism
as a workable philosophy for civilization
s. I believe there are times when violence is the best solution to a problem (see violence never solved anything
for a few details on why I feel this way). nonviolence
is often effective, and I highly suggest attempting it if one is not under the immediate threat of death. There are times, however, when this tactic is not practicable
Manhood is all about responsibility, ultimately. A man takes responsibility for himself as well as those in his charge. Depending on the society one is in, his charge may be a wife (or wives), children, and/or other men. A sorely lacking trait nowadays, unfortunately. One of the unfortunate problems with the high numbers of out of wedlock births among black people is that manhood is not transferred to the new generation. A father abandons his child, displaying a serious lack of the aforementioned manhood, leaving a single mother to rear a child, which, if the child is male, will likely have little understanding of how to be a responsible man.
Manhood is rough. Boys fight and play rough because those skills are good for men to know. A man is a protector. Due to the fact that men generally are physically stronger than women, along with the manner is which men are typically socialized this is a natural role. I think an unfortunate side effect of the gun violence of the inner city is the crippling of the rough manhood rituals traditionally undergone by boys. A critical part of learning to be a man is knowing how to receive, and administer, an ass kicking. A man should know what it is to be beaten (not always physically, this can be any of a variety of ways of taking a loss), and how to come back, without bitterness, from this temporary humiliation, with renewed resolve, learning from the defeat. A man should also be prepared to kick some ass should it ever be required of him. If your brother-in-law strikes your sister in front of you, what do you do? Rationally speak to him about the senselessness of violence, or beat his ass like he stole something? I say the latter. One of the reasons for the death of modern manhood is the lack of low level violence. We seem to only deal with two levels of violence nowadays: none and lethal. There is little appreciation for rough play, nor the fist fight. Even spanking children is taboo in some circles. Believe it or not, this sort of low grade violence has more benefit than harm for young boys growing into manhood. Men have to know about violence. It is of paramount import that they understand when to use and when not to use violence. Violence can be necessary or unecessary, justifiable or senseless, and avoiding it completely means that those who will later be charged with its dispensation will not be equipped to recognize the critical differences among these conditions.
In short, I believe that the most important aspect of manhood which differentiates it from womanhood or adulthood in general is the fact that, generally, men are given the responsibility to use violence in a society, and manhood is the ability to handle that terrible responsibility effectively. Misuse of it leads to oppression, either of others, in the event of overexuberance in the use of violence, or self, in the event one fails to stand up to oppression when faced with it, with violence if necessary.