What would a real man do?

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6 comments posted
Ah - Remember being respected around the world?

We had that, sort of, before Shrub took office. I don't know if we'll ever have it again.

A "real man" wouldn't have gotten us into this mess in the first place. He wouldn't have sent troops into harm's way on a personal vendetta - "He tried to kill my Daddy!". He didn't succeed, he just tried. Now we're on the verge of World War III but that's OK because Shrub is God's own pResident and he'll have a special seat in Heaven if he manages to start Armaggedon.

Once in this unholy quagmire, a real man would say -" Hmmm, bad idea. I'd better back out of here and let the U.N. try to salvage this mess. I'll give money to rebuild, and apologize for acting on "bad intelligence" and then I'll resign my office and let someone with a clue try to restore our standing in the world. Then I can retire to Crawford and clear all the brush I want."

A real man wouldn't fight this war. He'd go to jail, or desert, or apply for Conscientious Objector status, but he wouldn't kill one more civilian, commit one more rape or torture one more prisoner. Every drop of Iraqi blood that is spilled endangers American lives. This was not their fight. It never was. If there are terrorists there, we created them and invited them in. This war was the greatest gift Bush could have given Osama - he did the work for him. Now they really hate us. Now they have reason to kill us. Why wouldn't they? Think about it - we attacked a sovereign nation for NO reason. We've got others lined up that we seem to be planning to attack - Iran, Syria, North Korea. If I knew I was on the list, I'd be making plans to strike first.

If I were an Iraqi, I'd have 100,000 + dead brothers and sisters demanding justice. At this point, it's not even vengence. It's justice. I just wish it was going to be directed at the people who deserve it. It won't. It never is with these fanatics. They won't just go off somewhere and kill each other. These two rich fanatics - these favorite sons named George and Osama - are going to risk the lives of everyone else in the world because they have armies to fight for them and armies to protect them.

Bush won't even face a grieving mother - how in the world is he ever going to face his own crimes?

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Morgaine Swann's picture
Posted by Morgaine Swann on 13 August 2005 - 10:37pm
a very rare dissenting viewpoint de moi..

ehhhh

While I'm all for bashing of the shrub, I'm not so sure I can agree with/support this specific Bush-bashing scenario.

Like this:

"who is not a man but a frightened little boy pretending to be tough."

Come on now, kids. There are plenty of other ways to dishonour el presidente without perpetuating the gender binary's expectations and rigid gender roles.

Reverse-gender this, and put it in the mouth of a republican bashing Hillary Clinton:

A real woman isn't supposed to take a stand. A real man should stand by and take the shit. A real woman shouldn't look someone in the eye without casting her gaze downward. A real woman wouldn't take power away from her husband.

Does that seem right?

To me, it doesn't.

Little boys are hurt by this "real man" crap too, just as little girls are fucked over by this "ideal woman" bullshit.

Double standards are never ok, no matter which way you slice it.

ferdette's picture
Posted by ferdette on 14 August 2005 - 4:35pm
Dissenting with the dissent

There's a lot of talk about what a "real man" would do, and it usually means juvenile notions of macho. I'm not talking about macho. I'm talking about a man who knows his strength. A man who has strength. And confidence. And knows himself. So that he doesn't have to lash out at others or hide from criticism.

Count me as one who believes the "gender binary" really does exist, and always will. Why? Because one gender is the penetrator, and one is the penetrated, when it comes to sex. To be sure, our cultural dressings put on gender are ridiculous.

Case in point: Bush's notion of manhood.

Bush is the one who puts forth the "'real man' crap," not I. When I talk about a real man, I talk about something completely different than the schoolyard notion of "first boss."

As for the example of Hillary, or any woman, I do think there are paradigms of a strong woman, woman who is a leader, and what she would do and how she would behave and carry herself. Again, I'm not arguing for the existing patriarchy-driven stereotypes, but for the idea that there are ideals, there are role models, to which we all can aspire.

And yes, they are dressed in gender, no matter how many common traits they share.

Back to Bush, I think he acts like a frightened little boy. It's how he's run his presidency -- working harder to protect himself from the American people than protecting the American people from threats foreign and domestic. It's like he never grew up, and all this is an effort to prove his manhood somehow.

media girl's picture
Posted by media girl on 14 August 2005 - 6:07pm
point taken

However

I'm a big ol' radical feminist, so I think my main problem with this specific perpetuation of the gender binary is the use of the term "real man."

A "real woman" would hopefully do these exact same things.

I'm not at all saying that the things you described a "real man" would do are not admirable, or what 'real men' should aspire to be.

But everyone should aspire to be and do these things, not just men. (Obviously.)

So, while I understand your post in terms of countering Bush's own "real [macho] man" facade, and perhaps, if the fuckhead actually bothered to read any kind of dissenting media and by some chance stumbled on this post, it would actually hit home with him because he is so concerned with his own manhood......it still bothers me. But that's probably just my desire to eradicate the gender binary altogether talking (or at least the stratification of said binary).

ferdette's picture
Posted by ferdette on 14 August 2005 - 6:33pm
Whose binary

Bush is behaving badly based on bad principles on his belief window and ironically, the very behavior he tries to celebrate is at odds with the best in men. That's my take of him.

Matsu's picture
Posted by Matsu on 14 August 2005 - 5:40pm
I see MediaGirl's tactic as being appropriate to the situation.

He likes to play Cowboy, and she's countering the image he tries to portray with his actions, which are cowardly, greedy and smug.

I wrote an article to this effect a while ago called "My Cowboys have always been Heroes" because the media continually lets him get away with this manufactured facade. He's a spoiled rich brat from Kennebunkport. He was a cheerleader at Andover and a deserter, but they let him strut around like he's a tough guy and don't call him out for his cowardice. It makes me ill. Just like the ADL glossing over the families money connections to the Nazi party. The people who are supposed to be calling 'bullshit' on this stuff aren't doing it.

I'm so glad America is starting to turn against JR and his lousy lie of a war, but they'd have been here a lot sooner if media and watch groups had told the whole truth about him.

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Morgaine Swann's picture
Posted by Morgaine Swann on 14 August 2005 - 11:58pm