Tuesday, September 13, 2011

The State of Modern Manhood?

I was present at a friend’s party about five years ago. The host’s family had a son who was mentally handicapped. The handicapped son saw a lovely young lady at the party, and thought she was attractive. In the way of males, he set out to win her heart.
So he walked up to her, and his exact words were: “Hi, I think you’re pretty. Let’s have sex.”
He repeated the same statement – multiple times. Coupled with his later complaint that “no one would ever have sex with him,” his statement was unsettling. 
He didn’t know any better, of course. But if he were not mentally handicapped, I (and everyone else there) would have decked him. These things are not said in polite society.
But his words reveal a fundamental truth about the nature of male sexuality today. For what that mentally handicapped man was willing to say, many (if not most) males inculcated in the culture of pleasure think in their heart of hearts. Instead of seeking communion with women in marriage and in strong relationships, men instead seek the empty pleasure of casual sex, and order their lives around that pursuit.
The actions of men, although perhaps more subtle than that of my retarded (I use that term only in the technical sense, not as an insult) friend, reflect that misbegotten attitude.
Go to virtually any men’s locker room, any sports bar, any guys’ hangout – and you find this attitude expressed and acted out. Sex is treated as a measure of manliness (the more partners, the better) rather than a relationship of communion between a man and a woman.
This attitude is destructive to society. A society where men objectify women for the purposes of gratification is fundamentally diseased. Rather than respect and appreciate the beauty and dignity of womanhood, men today denigrate women. Women, seeing this lack of respect (caused in part by society’s adoption of feminist causes), retaliate in kind.
A relationship which is meant to dignify and fulfill both men and women instead degrades both men and women. And the harmony between the sexes, as created by God, is poisoned, to the detrminent of men, women, and society as a whole. 
The thin veneer of politeness and civility that males are forced to exhibit in “polite society” towards women far too often covers the lust that lies beneath that veil. And the fruits of this attitude are rotten indeed. 


  1. What a fine essay.

    I would take this off the web, blow it up and submit it to NCR. Or Our Sunday Visitor.

    Or some other catholic site if you think they're too left-leaning. They need a healthier mix of orthodoxy.

    .. and what I mean by "blowing it up," I mean nearly every sentence is fraught with intelligence, as though they were their own main idea of a paragraph. You blow it up by illustrating and expanding a bit in low-lingo so that "everyone" can understand.

    Just like what you did with your intro. Brings humanness to this essay.

    I liked it very much, thanks.

  2. “Hi, I think you’re pretty. Let’s have sex.”

    I've been told by a friend of mine with a number of sons this come-on is rather close to what her sons told her actually does happen at the local State U.


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