Declining Manhood In America

No Man's Land

America is in deep trouble and we face an uncertain future. Our culture has shifted from a backbone of healthy, strong, hardworking, productive, brave, and intelligent men to decreasingly insignificant obese, chronically ill, lazy, unproductive, ignorant, cowardly, emasculated boys who never reach manhood.

Our present course is leading us into a “No Man’s Land,” where men have lost their significance to society. The disastrous consequences are everywhere. The American economy is failing. Our educational institutions are the joke of first world nations. Our health-care system continues to spiral out of control. Our civil government is composed of self-serving baboons. Our churches are effeminate. Our homes are fractured and our boys are “failing to launch.”

The modern journey from childhood to manhood is littered with hurdles which have an emasculating effect. Our males are failing in school, failing socially & in relationships, failing sexually, failing in business, failing in health and short, failing in life.

How has this happened? How have things changed so quickly? There is much to consider. For one thing our men, young and adult, have become consumers rather than producers:
  • We don’t read anymore, we wait for Hollywood to produce the movie for our viewing consumption.
  • We don’t play sports anymore, we consume television sports or play the video game versions.
  • We don’t learn a musical instrument anymore, we merely consume what Nashville calls music.
  • We don’t talk with women, woo women, have relationships and sex with real women, we choose to consume porn.
  • We don’t labor in the kitchen to produce healthy meals, we choose the easy route of consuming fast food.
  • We don’t workout and produce a healthy fit body, we rather sit on the sofa, consume digital media and grow obese.
  • We don’t spend the untold hours learning self-defense or the art of war to protect our village or homeland, after all war is push button we fight and shoot our enemies in a virtual world.
  • We don’t spend time in nature because there is much entertainment to consume in the air-conditioning far removed from humidity and mosquitoes.
  • We don’t have to get a job and produce income because we can stay at home with mom and dad, mooch off of them and play more video games.
Trends that ought to concern us seem to be easily brushed off:
  • I’m not worried about being diagnosed ADHD, they have drugs for that.
  • I have no concern about BPA or endocrine disruptors because the toxic chemicals are minute.
  • I no longer have to worry about being competitive because everyone gets a trophy these days.
  • It doesn’t bother me that more women are graduating from college than men, I’ve had enough education.
  • I don’t care that women are increasingly taking higher paying jobs...hey, they can pay the bills for a change!
  • I don’t stress over traditional gender roles, this is a brave new world...the list goes on and on.
Young Men are Confused

Boys today are confused. There is a great transition that has been taking place for decades and it is changing the world. Modern liberals would argue it is changing the world for better. Old-school conservatives would argue it is destroying the world.

Traditionally there have been gender-specific roles in every culture. World history is undeniably patriarchal – a system now demonized and consigned to the flames of hell. Hitler’s doctrine of the extermination of the Jews seems tame compared to the evils of patriarchy. To offer praise to any aspect of patriarchal society is almost as bad as honoring an heroic Confederate general.

As the annals of time goes, this change has happened rapidly and it has brought confusion to boys and young men. As a boy I grew up with manly heroes like John Wayne, Clint Eastwood and my grandfather. As a young man I played sports and worked hard to achieve skill and endurance so I could play first string. As a young adult, I traveled the world perfecting my job knowledge and skill of management. The Vietnam War ended while I was still in High School, so there was no war for me to fight or I probably would been involved there.

Today boys grow up with supernatural heroes like Spider-man, Iron Man and Luke Skywalker. Yes, John Wayne was just as fictional, but he overcame his difficulties by manly means of strength and character...not by using “the force.” Today’s young men do not spend hours learning athletic skill. Even the few who play sports do not have to work hard at it because everyone gets to play. Besides, video games are more entertaining. As young adults, they don’t have to worry about finding a good job, they can live at home for many years. They don’t have to worry about being drafted to war and even if they did, there would be few actual battle fatalities in this age of drone warfare.

Boys today have no rite of passage to manhood. A large number have no dad at all. They lack the manly compass that guided their masculine forbears. It is very easy for them to opt out of a world of modernity they do not understand. They can isolate themselves in a safer, simpler, sanitized world where responsibilities are few.

In their virtual worlds they have clear objectives, control over outcomes, no fear of rejection and their skills are perfected with practice. It is a safe haven so why should they leave it? With gaming and porn, there is instant gratification. The rewards of life become present-oriented rather than future-oriented.

The mindset of setting out in life with the goals of a good job where you can grow and move up the ladder, get married, buy a home, have kids, take vacations, etc. seems archaic and so Ward Cleaver. There is much risk, uncertainty and pain in the old world manhood. The modern hedonistic model brings safety, security and pleasure in its place. But it comes with a price...
What got us into all this trouble? Where did it begin?

The answer is not so simple. The problem is like the Hydra of Greek mythology. It is a multi-headed beast. And like, Hydra, when you cut off one head, two come back in its place. We are quick to cast blame on video games and all digital media. But are these the cause or rather the effect? Do video games rob boys of their manhood or does their already depleted mojo escape to the virtual world to save what little bit of masculinity they still possess? Perhaps its a bit of both spiraling downward in a viscous cycle.

But manhood problems begin long before the teenager locks himself in the bedroom for hours of porn, Halo, Call of Duty, and World of Warcraft. The seeds are sown early in life. Boys today go through a continuous process of emasculation which attacks them from nearly every imaginable angle:

Lack of Traditional Male Influence
  • Single moms – raising boys in homes without their dad as a male role model.
  • Helicopter parents – hovering over children protecting them from “all harm” and not allowing them to take risks, teaching them to prefer safety and security over all things.
  • Education system – starts boys and girls at the same age even though their biological clocks are different, teaches them under a system of predominantly female teachers, in a system with scientifically-proven female bias.
  • Rites of passage – traditional societies had rites of passages for boys into manhood. Boys had to man up and “pass the test” or live in shame.
  • Age of push-button warfare – boys no longer have to train to become warriors. There is no need to learn how to use a sword, spear, bow or gun. As mentioned, you do not have to learn such skill to defend your village or country any more. We just send drone and bomb our enemies to damnation.
Environmental Estrogens
  • Diet – boys are raised on sugary junk food which is highly estrogenic. Grain-fed and hormone-induced livestock are another contributing factor. Boys become fat and lazy, all the while their testosterone levels drop.
  • Fitness – boys need to run and be active. There is a reason why men have more muscles than is called testosterone. Males are designed to engage their world physically – their very manhood is tied to this.
  • Competition – it is hard-wired into males to be competitive and challenged. They are hormonely-driven to win.
  • Endocrine Disruptors – BPA in plastic is highly estrogenic, but that’s not all. There are 87,000 man-made xenoestrogens currently being studied by the EPA. There are pesticides, insecticides, sunscreens, phthalates, PCBs, etc. that are slowly sapping the manhood out of our boys.
Nature-Deficit Disorder
  • Sterile Containerized Kids – the positive effect of nature on boys has been demonstrated in numerous scientific studies.
  • Sunlight – beside being important to Vitamin D production, it also tied to testosterone production. Historically men have spent more time outdoors than women and there is a biological reason for the necessity.
Brain Re-wiring (cells that fire together, wire together)
  • Internet addiction, social media & cell phone/tablet apps – Yes, it goes without saying these addictive technologies are a contributing factor to the decline in manhood. We will discuss just how destructive this is to our brain health in section five.
  • Video games – again, is it a cause, an effect, or both? I lean toward the latter. I believe young men may have certain attractions to video games as a way to “feel” manly – to meet challenges, to be competitive, and to win. However, their brains are being re-wired in negative ways.
  • Porn – males of all ages have found a substitute for real women, a virtual world where there is no rejection, no responsibility, no risks...and you do not have to leave the comforts of your bedroom.
  • Failing To Launch – having their brains re-wired and being low in testosterone levels has resulted in “stay-at-home men” who do not leave home after high school or college but remain to mooch off the parents for many years.
I didn't add feminism. Contrary to the views of the men’s rights groups, I believe it is the effect, not the cause of emasculinity. I know that’s not a word but I had to coin something a while back to describe this modern phenomenon.
Man Up Boot Camp

This is a huge subject and I’ve only touched on some of the highlights here. In the Man Up Boot Camp:
  • We will discuss each of the above “emasculating” problems in more detail.
  • We will spend a good bit of time talking about the important male hormone testosterone.
  • We will look at specific phytoestrogens (estrogenic plants) that contribute to low T levels.
  • We will also examine the xenoestrogens (synthetic or natural chemical compounds that imitate estrogen) and the effect it has on men.
  • We will talk about the dangers of overconsumption of digital media and the re-wiring of the brain. Plus we will show some behind-the-scenes secrets about purposeful addiction.
  • We will dive into the manifold problems of modernity which appear to have no simple solutions: the education system, no rites of passage, no martial training, lack of competition and so forth.
  • We will counter with ways we can rise above the din and excel within the context of our modern world.
  • We will touch on the dangers of porn use and how it is leading young men away from relationships and physical contact with real women.
  • We will have an entire section of Boot Camp devoted to physical fitness and diet which are two of the biggest problems.
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All text by John Cripps
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