This Father's Day let's call toxic masculinity what it is

This Father’s Day, men should take the left’s attacks on manliness as men should – with our chins raised and a warm, manly humor in our baritones as we point out all that is good in old-fashioned manliness.

The academic left accuses manly men of having “toxic masculinity.” They insinuate that manliness is to blame for the actions of sexist workplace monsters.

Instead of trying to understand the deep philosophy men of honor try to live up to, those on the left pretend manliness is only as deep as the phrase “man up.” As they do, they portray men in TV sitcoms mostly as cases of arrested development – beer-swilling, barely literate frat boys.

This sexist treatment of men is pervasive throughout the mainstream media and Hollywood-led popular culture. Even Microsoft Word’s thesaurus offers “chauvinist” as a synonym for “macho.”

To rip down the trusses of manliness, critics act as if back to antiquity legions of thinkers, soldiers and statesmen didn’t work to evolve the deep definition of what makes a good man, a man of honor.

Instead, the critics read sexism, misogyny and an Old World patriarchy into whatever remnants of manliness stubbornly hang on today.

The men, or whatever they call themselves, who buy into this ignorant and sexist treatment of an entire body of thought are left with what?

With nothing, that’s what.

Some young men, after being fed this nonsense at a university, start to search for answers outside the politically correct cannon. This is why Jordan Peterson is a YouTube phenom.

As these people turn against the “mainstream” they realize that honor and integrity aren’t toxic old-school notions we must dispel.

How can standing up to adversity with your chin stubbornly out and your back straight be a sign of toxic masculinity?

Should men who speak with authority – not with a talk-over-others arrogance, but with confidence and respect—be called “mansplainers?”

Must a man be meek in today’s office culture to survive?

Can a man even thrive in a competitive office environment if he must be weak?

Of course not.

Few women even think this way. This flawed reasoning is from the activists who refuse to even allow conservative women – people who’ve started business, lead huge corporations and more – into the feminist movement.

So why are we allowing women’s studies professors to be thought leaders in what makes men?

A real man, after all, fights for equality. Any man who has to put down women to prop up his own ego is too insecure to be a real man.

Also, how can men be the strong stand-up guys we need – the men who have the will and fortitude to call out the workplace monsters and to defend others (women or men) – if they are supposed to be weak and busy apologizing for their Y chromosomes?

The real shame of this dumbed-down treatment of manliness by the mainstream is that for this important #MeToo moment to achieve all it must, we need to not just call out the monsters, but also to differentiate the few fiends out there from the gentlemen.

After all, men without ideals, without a good gentlemanly archetypes to follow, are destined to be boys, or maybe cads, for life. Do women really want that? Do they even want to date such men?

The biggest thing I learned when working with Greg Stube on the book “Conquer Anything: A Green Beret’s Guide to Building Your A-Team” is that even men of honor – Special Forces soldiers who grew through years of specialized training and then fought for us –  can come home disillusioned when the old ideal they were living up to, the ultimate warrior, fades away after their return to civilian life.

They were these trough dudes, men of honor and action, but suddenly they’re home and maybe wounded. They’ve taken off their uniforms and have to morph into something else. Many lose their way then.

We all must grow through the transitions between the chapters of our lives. But when men find themselves in an age when even their very ideals are deemed “toxic,” they’re more likely to get lost and to stay that way.

Smashing all our ideals doesn’t improve men. It leaves men without heroes and without a philosophy to follow. It is these things that grow men and women of consequence.

We need men of character more than ever now. So this Father’s Day let’s acknowledge that being a heroic man, a gentleman, is a deep and good thing.