Re-examining Masculinity in the 21st Century

I’m not about to jump into the politics of right now because I know that doing so will push away part of a potential audience. And if I’m honest, it’s precisely the audience that I most desperately want to reach that might be pushed away.

Hey fellas? It’s okay to tell the men in your life that you love them. Family. Friends. Romantic partners. It’s okay. Love is not a slur. Love is not an epithet or a weakness. It is a cause for celebration.

If you’re not doing things for love, then what are you doing them for? Money? Power? Show? I can promise you that in the middle of the night–in moments of joy and in moments of agony–none of those things will be a tenth of the salve love will be.

All of the running about pretending to be

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And what of the time we lose checking the locks on our doors and constantly looking over our shoulders? What is the cumulative effect of our suspicion and our anger and our fear? What great wonders would we be capable of—as individuals and as a species—if only we didn’t have to waste so much time on manufactured and entirely avoidable threats?

I know that I can’t tell you to love others and to be open to being loved. Even if that’s what you want at your deepest core. We’ve been taught to suppress and stuff that down. But what I can do is live my own life in a way that proudly declares the importance of love – for those close to us, for strangers, and just as importantly, ourselves. I am unapologetic in my love for humanity and its potential. I am unapologetic for my love of strangers.

Does that mean I never get angry? No. Of course not. I’m flawed. I am broken in a hundred different ways, but I know—truly know—that love is the glue that holds me together. Without it, we are only sharp edged porcelain on the kitchen floor.

Let’s admit our bullshit. Let’s acknowledge that putting on armor every single day to go to the grocery store, to sit next to our co-workers, to walk down the street, to interact with our children, to simply exist is exhausting and that so much of it, if we’re honest, is only for the theater of it all.

When you understand just how much of a superpower love is and how it is not a finite resource you understand what great magic you can wield and how your capacity for love is directly related to your capacity to affect positive change in the world. There is nothing weak about love. In fact, it is the source of your greatest strength.

We’ve been given our scripts and told how to act, but we can turn down the role and step off the stage. In fact, we need to.