Tuesday, June 21, 2011

man down...,


Video - Domestic violence arrests spark homelessness

Kunstler | Last week, in an incident that didn't get much attention in the national news, a man named Tom Ball set himself on fire in front of the county courthouse in Keene, NH. He left a fifteen-page suicide note explaining his actions. He was angry at the state child protection bureaucracy and the courts after a ten-year battle over a child abuse charge that became, for him, a Kafkaesque struggle with cruel authority. The long suicide note he left was a thoughtful and disturbing indictment of the legal procedures now common across America that have had many unanticipated consequences - from breaking up families to homelessness - but it was also a grim comment on the condition of American manhood.

A casual Martian observer hanging around any convenience store in the "fly-over" zones of this nation must be impressed with the striking way that American men present themselves to the world. Forgive me for revisiting an oft-dredged-up theme - male costuming and adornment in our time - but I wouldn't keep bringing it up if I didn't think it was significant. On the whole, American men present themselves as savages. I think they do it because they feel very insecure about themselves - similar to the insecurity that prompts a politician to wear a flag lapel pin. Should there be any doubt that an elected official cares about his country? Or maybe we should ask: what kind of country produces such craven, weak, pandering elected officials? What kind of culture produces men who get themselves up like chain-saw murderers?

The same country that furnishes an endless diet of super-hero movies to pubescent males who are not expected to develop normal adult coping powers. The same country that supplies gruesome, sado-masochistic video games to occupy the idle hours of young men - and then lets them take those "skills" to some tilt-up bunker in Nevada where they sit in air-conditioned comfort and direct drone aircraft ten thousand miles away to incinerate suspected "enemies" in mud villages. (Sometimes "mistakes are made" and they blow up a wedding party or something - but the drone controllers still get to leave the bunker at the end of their shift and roll down the strip for a plastic tray full of burritos.)

This month's WeinerGate was another instructive incident. Up-and-coming wonderboy politician revealed to be secret sex schlemiel, undone by "social media" - which turns out to have the unanticipated consequence of undermining the impulse control of supposedly grown men. Who knew? But what interested me more than Weiner's pitiful dishonesty was the parade of women journalists on cable TV news who all agreed that poor Weiner's downfall was yet another conclusive demonstration of how hopeless men are - not to mention that their male colleagues on-screen, Blitzer, King, O'Donnell, sheepishly agreed with them. This ceremonial posturing for moral brownie points in an extremely moralistic and puritanical culture does tend to obscure the reality that adult male humans are sexually alert in an inconvenient way that is not identical to the experience of females.

1 comments:

nanakwame said...

Unless you are part of the rich and famous

‘Lost’ Actor, 51, Marries 16-Year-Old'  with the blessing of mommy - "She is a virgin" man she looks 21 years old.

Rep. Jasmine Crockett Cosponsored Bill to Revoke Trump Secret Service Protection

TheTexan  | Congresswoman Jasmine Crockett (D-TX-30), a freshman from Dallas, signed onto a resolution back in April that would have str...