When I was a young boy, I was told by other boys that nothing was better than getting one free hand up a girls shirt in the middle of a dark movie theater. It was a strange sentiment because I just wanted her to smile at me and hold my hand. But holding hands was for “fags” they said. Grow a pair and cop a feel.
There is a terrible thing that happens in a young boy’s head when confronted by other members of your pack. Like jackals running wild, you do not want to be left alone to hunt, for fear that the pack may turn and devour you. So when they ask you to take down the innocent gazelle, you shyly comply to prove that, you too, are a member of this pack. This tribe.
I wish I could tell you that your father was an honorable man when he was younger, but he was not. He ran with the pack and even became their leader at times. Hunting at night like a rabid wolf or an insatiable vampire. Feeding on those he deemed weak or easy prey. There were even the strong ones he simply viewed as a challenge, and like every vampire trick in the book, I was charming until I left you half dead and drained.
There is a certain swagger young men carry when they’re insecure. Perhaps it’s why we hunt women sometimes. My swagger disappeared in the wars. Some men will piss themselves. Others cry for their mothers. I begged and begged not to be sent to the front lines.
I will not lie, Adi. Men died, and I was afraid. But some men displayed honor until the moment of their death.
An entire platoon refused to shoot a little girl carrying ammunition to the enemy each day. That decision would cost some their lives. Other men would brave bullets and death to save an injured friend. One held the hand of a fellow soldier and told him over and over it “would be okay ” until he passed. It didn’t matter he was still being shot at. Some would share their meals with poor farmers.
After the war, I saw honor in different ways from other men who were not in the military. One evening, a group of us sat in a local pub nursing a beer, when one of the men began bragging about the sexual exploits of a friend who was getting away with infidelity. The jeering was reaching a crescendo when a voice boomed over the laughter.
“What a sad excuse for a husband.”
I set out today to write a letter to my son in the same style, and I quickly realized that a key part of my upbringing and experience is that I have always rejected the girl pack. I have never wanted to be part of that tribe – the tribe of women who understand how to use passive aggression and how to humiliate and control men and boys with the power of rejection and sexual mocking. Those boys were my brothers, and I have always understood the forward, direct aggression of men much better than the underhanded, indirect aggression of women. I prefer it, too.
I will spend some time considering what I would like to tell my son about women and girls, but more important is what I have to tell all my children about being worthy of honor. Honorable, decent men are not hard to find. Indeed, I would venture to say honorable men are the majority, provided the recipient is worthy. In my experience, the default setting for men is to behave with honor, until you have proven yourself to be unworthy of the effort. If a young woman finds herself constantly in the company of men without honor, the mirror is the first place to look for an explanation. And I think Sledge is dead right that young men without honor have been stripped of role models, both in terms of not growing up with fathers and in terms of a broader culture that does not consider fathering as vital as mothering.
If I could add anything to Sledge’s essay it would be this: be worthy of an honorable man, Adelaide, and one will come to you.
How are you worthy of honor? Respect for others begins with respect for yourself. Keeping yourself fit and healthy and strong is fundamentally about respecting yourself, and it indicates a reverence for both yourself and the life you have been given. One need not be religious to revere life. Having a sense of gratitude and humility and accepting responsibility for your own health and well-being is living an honorable life, which will in turn invite the honorable to join you. Am I saying you need to be thin and pretty to be honorable? Absolutely not. Nonsense. We have varying natural weights and degrees of health and ability and well-being. My argument is that maintaining the best you that you can be indicates a person with honor.
Kindness, cheerfulness and a willingness to please are also vital, because these traits indicate that you understand you are not the center of the universe and that everyone you meet is fighting a battle you know nothing about. You get to choose to approach the world and other people joyfully or angrily, and those who choose joy are honoring the other people who live on the planet with us. Does this mean we accept rude, insulting, aggressive behaviour from others? Of course not! It means people get the benefit of the doubt, until they have proven they don’t deserve it.
Honorable people spend their days doing meaningful work. Meaningful to themselves. If you are doing something you hate for a reason you can’t identify, you are leading a life of lies. Perhaps you have a tedious, dangerous, poorly paid job you would rather not be doing, but that work allows you to put food on the table for your family. That’s meaningful. It’s not about achieving some kind of external ‘success’ that can be measured. It’s about achieving an internal sense that you are valued and needed and your life has meaning.
These are all the things feminism has destroyed. Feminism does not require women or men to respect their bodies and their health. Quite the opposite. Fat acceptance is just one iteration of ‘to hell with everybody else’. The unfortunate fashion and grooming choices of feminists are a clear signal that honor is no longer welcome. Feminism is the exact opposite of cheerfulness and good nature. Feminism nurtures every grievance, no matter how impossibly small, to ensure that feminists spend every day consumed with misery and anger. Moments of joyfulness are fleeting, and usually involve celebrating the harms done to men and children.
Feminism encourages both men and women to reject the most meaningful work they will ever do: to create and nurture a family. Feminism has created the men without honor, by destroying the role of the father, and feminism has created women who are undeserving of honorable men.
We must fight back against this destruction.
Media commentators are beginning to express concern that a hidden Trump vote is going to deliver him a landslide victory. I think it will. The culture is beginning the process of eliminating the hateful, intolerant, ruinous ideologies of the left – feminism in particular.
It’s an exciting time to be alive.
The war begins.
Lots of love,