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Elliot Rodger: Misogyny – Real or Constructed by Mass Media

May 26, 2014

I agree, but also disagree with the following Time article on the latest California shootings. Elliot Rodger is in part a product of our society’s depiction of maleness. Now, before I get jumped for this statement, let me say one other thing. In American the mass media movement to equalize social treatment of females has created a derogation of maleness that has created a backlash against other males, females and society in general. Young males for the past 20 years have been faced with a ‘constructed’ media transmitted definition of ‘maleness’. This depiction ‘feminizes’ the traditional understanding of being male and is coupled with an equally debatable understanding of ‘whiteness’ (a whole discussion in its own right). Rather than providing positive reinforcement of being male and treating others with respect (both other males and females) media has created a strained environment for the American male adolescent wherein the young male is sent mixed messages of being masculine and treating others with respect. Rather than focusing on maximizing ‘positive maleness’ media maximizes creating a feminized maleness and obviates ‘positive treatment of and respectful dialogue with others. The tension of a feminized maleness set against a backdrop of traditional masculinity leaves the males from childhood through young adulthood frustrated and in search of identity. They search for identity and positive recognition while being bombarded with media messages belittling their positive male roles. In response many strike out against those about them or else accept the feminized male model. Many seek ways to ‘off-set’ their stigmatized media constructed maleness roles. Two ways they seek to compensate and exhibit maleness is acquisition of firearms and by assertive rudeness toward others, particularly females. In an age where children are increasingly being raised with out fathers our society increasingly needs strong and positive male role models. Media has sought to change maleness through reducing maleness to something similar to femininity. This is a process called ‘equalization’. In equalization all parties are depicted/treated the same. Rather, what is need is to employ the process of ‘equity’ in assisting both males and females to realize the distinct and separate fullness of who they are, while developing respect for the other. Hence, this argument turns on how we define ‘positive’ understanding and portrayal of being male. Like being female, being male carries social responsibility. This boils down to ingrained respect, curtesy and equitable treatment of others. We need media to change their portrayals of males that create tensions and frustrations. Positive role models are needed that help young men realize the fullness of masculinity and maleness, yet respect for others whether male or female. Call it in old school terminology being ‘gentleman-like’. So, what is next? Statistics show us that females are increasingly moving toward greater likelihood of delinquent behavior and status offense activity. ‘Girls Gone Wild’ is once more related to media. Whether constructed by media or whether a depiction of femaleness we can track changes in female aggressiveness increasing toward and similar to the new understanding of maleness. If equality is the aim of media then this outcome seems plausible. The question presented is what happens when these two transformations in identity collide? Just my opinion, but wake up America.

One Comment leave one →
  1. May 28, 2014 12:59 am

    Reblogged this on oogenhand.

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