Sometime in February 2023 CNN (of all places) ran a story (video) that spoke of the declining levels of interest among single men for members of the opposite sex (1).
It was an interesting bulletin that spoke about a subject we have been echoing for the last year or so in this blog (and for a much longer our YouTube channel). And that is the decline in the overall status of men relative to times past.
The decline is felt by not all men for sure. But by a growing percentage of young, mostly educated capable men with a lot of potentials. Men in the prime of their lives, who are inclined to go out and make it in life. Especially where it counts!
The CNN video was an interesting one. In that it hit on a key point that we (and others in men’s development and to a lesser extent in the dating space) have been calling attention to: that is the decline of sexual activity among young men in the prime years of their life.
Critically, this correlation was made in the discussion that stated that a lack of sex, and underlying it the presence of healthy relationships were strong indicators of success in life. Or the lack thereof.
The ability to pursue and have a meaningful romantic life was an important factor in a man’s ability to build himself in other areas of life.
There were a number of other subjects that were discussed in the course of that 10-minute segment. But one of the things that stood out, and one that is pertinent to our debate is the importance of having the right conversation on the subject of men (American men) in the modern world.
The takeaway is that it is high time we have this conversation on, not only finding ways to improve the status of men in modern America but on confronting the adverse effects that society is bound to face if this problem is allowed to grow unchecked.
It is a bit late in the day if you ask me. But not that things are so far gone, that there is no turning back. However, the reality for a lot of men is quite serious.
The question is: What’s to be done? Before we answer this question, arguably a more pertinent question is: How did things get here?
Whilst there is no single explanation, we do have one significant culprit: feminism. Or more specifically how the debate on men, women, and gender more broadly has come politicized in a one-sided way.
In this post we will seek to understand why, and what could be done to guide this conversation in a direction that aids men and aid the society they (we) live in.
And with some pointers to men, whose attitude is like: ‘To hell with it’ and wish to take control of their lives.
The Story of the Average Guy: What Culture Ignores
When you live in a society where around 60 percent of men between the ages of 18 – 29 can’t even find a date, a society that is, by GDP per capita, the wealthiest in the world, you know there is a problem! (2)
Added to that, when one considers that at a time when the number of female graduates to males is double, in addition to the fact that when it comes to a host of societal ills: such as crime, gang involvement, lower life expectancy at birth, homelessness, etc. All of which overwhelmingly affects men. Subjects we have discussed elsewhere.
Since this is the case, and mind you, these things didn’t happen overnight; the question has to be asked? Where is the outcry?! Why haven’t enough people, particularly people in positions of power and influence said enough about these matters?
If the matter that concerns the reader is one of seriousness, then one can throw in the data on suicides in America. A matter (that of taking one’s own life) that is so serious that YouTube’s algorithms actually penalize content that audibly employs this term.
This does not take away from the fact that in America men are 3.5x more likely to take their own life than women (3).
Wow. With this state of affairs, one is bound to have heard some prominent social commentator, activist, or heck, politician (the people who are supposed to represent us citizens) to have raised an eyebrow and said something on the matter.
Whenever the discussions on the various affected or marginalized social groups in America enter the popular discussion the focus invariably shifts towards the socially divisive but politically advantageous subjects of race, climate change, feminism, and immigration. Which is not a problem in itself.
But the lack of emphasis on the plight of men is curious. Considering the times we’re in, where feminism is all the rage, one would think that some attention could have been directed the way of men.
Not so. Buy why? The answer to this takes us to the next section of this post.
Feminism vs Men
Feminism is a social movement that is supposed to represent the rights and freedoms of women.
Notably, it positions itself to advance the political rights and social freedoms of women, which it (i.e. the movement) believes have long been marginalized by society. A society that was built, as the argument goes, for the sake of men, and to the detriment of women.
Now it is not my intention here to debate the merits and demerits of these claims. Or to even ponder the question that some in the West have begun to ask: Is feminism actually a force for good?
Rather, our focus here is on the sheer dominance of the converse on gender and society, that the feminist movement, directly or otherwise (that is aimed towards the betterment of biological women) has had in shifting the focus away from matters that concern men.
Many of them (ideologues) are of the opinion that giving any wiggle group for men, or anything specifically male-oriented, is anti-feminist, and by extension, anti-woman.
Even if such a belief is sustainable, that does not warrant trying to close down debates that are of particular concern to men. As noted, the high rates of suicides among men is a serious matter. Notable, that how men are more likely to resort to lethal means for doing so.
Considering this state of affairs, one would think that the concerns of men would receive greater attention. For whatever one’s political affiliations may be, the fact that men make up half of the US’s (and humanity’s population) is not likely to be missed.
But alas, it has!
Take a look at this example:
In 2014, Janice Fiamengo, a professor from the University of Ottawa, who was supposed to give a talk on “men’s issues and feminism’s double standards” in an attempt to deconstruct some of the assumptions and half-truths that have been backed into certain popular cultural tropes, many of which are not favorable to men.
Note, her goal here was simply to talk about these issues and shed light on certain inconsistencies that could adversely affect the perception of men. A reasonable aim, it would seem. Not so.
As soon as her talk began, activists in disguise who had entered the hall started shouting down her speech. With more commotion to follow. Effectively nullifying the efforts of the professor who dared to ask some questions about the effects of feminism on the status of modern men (4).
One could think of other instances. But the point about the lack of focus on men on the one hand, but an equally pressing and arguably more serious problem of the attempts to shut down discussions that affect the health and well-being of men is something to consider.
The phenomenon: that having such conversations on topics or issues that uniquely or primarily affect men, are dismissed out of hand, or even shut down by crazed activists, is also being turned a blind eye to by politicians. This takes us to the next part of this post.
The Politics of Ignoring Men
If you are from the United States and have followed (hopefully not too closely) the developments in the political arena in the past decade so, you may have noticed the language of groups.
Meaning, the manner in which politicians of various stripes come to position themselves as the representatives or better ‘fighters’ for the rights and freedoms of certain social groups: whether that be women, gay people, trans people, minorities, etc.
However, rarely, if ever does the subject of men, or the status of men, as a collective ever gets echoed as a worthy cause to be championed by the political class.
Until very, very recently, when a prominent politician from a State I will not name, stepped up and spoke on the subject of men and fatherhood and why it was important to help this group. And backing up his words by advancing legislation to support it, it came as a surprise.
Now it is not our intention to pick a side and blindly applaud this initiative.
Nor is it our intention to argue that politicians getting involved in aiding the plight of a social group, male or otherwise, is necessarily a good thing.
Rather our point is that the subject of providing dedicated focus to the plight of one social group-men in this case-has become such an alien concept.
Returning to that CNN interview, the expert who was being interviewed, actually stated the point on the underlying perception that any indication of helping men: that is by focusing on their sex-specific needs is deemed to be anathema to the concerns of women and other apparently marginalized groups.
The irony here, as the reader will no doubt notice, is that in a time where men are more likely to fail high school, be rejected entry into the top universities, and actually fail to graduate if they do enter it; in contrast to women. To say nothing of the troubles a lot of guys are having finding meaningful work or dates for that matter, it seems weird to ignore this group.
The last thing a society needs is an army of disgruntled, frustrated, aimless young men, with a lot of testosterone roaming the streets.
So what’s to be done? Well, for starters we can safely say that it will take some time before politicians start realizing the severity of this issue.
Whilst one can take comfort from the fact that there is some debate on this matter (a bit late in the day, if you ask me), and that possibly there could be favorable policy changes as far as men and boys are concerned. At least in developed nations like America.
But to count on these currents shifting in our (men’s) favor and actually staying there is an uncertain bet. Especially in the short to mid-term.
So I pose the question again: What’s to be done? Or rather, what could be done by you, the person reading this post?
Well, provided you are willing to make a few changes, work towards higher goals in life, and make a few investments along the way, we might have the right solution.
The Answer: Join an Army
Don’t get any ideas. Though joining the military may not be a bad idea for a lot of guys.
As this institution inculcates the principles of discipline, self-control, respect for authority, and the pursuit of excellence. Qualities that are severely lacking in the modern world.
Especially among guys who are struggling with ladies.
But if national service is not your favored route (and even if is) what all men need is a sense of being a part of something. Something bigger.
To be a part of a community of people, who are working towards something greater. In their personal and professional lives. And who are able to learn and teach each other. An army of purposeful men.
And that is what we provide with Bulldog Mindset. A community of goal-oriented men, who in the journey towards excellence in all areas of their life:
Dating and Relationships
Fitness and Health
Mindset and Philosophy
What we do offer is a set of solutions to people who wish to move forward in their lives. And the way we do so varies in accordance with the personal and professional needs of the person in question.
And all you have to do is get plugged into a system that provides the tools and information on your journey.
Make no mistake, the men who are struggling in the dating and relationship space are invariably struggling in other areas of life: like mental discipline, diet, and temperament.
Our job is to fix it. How? By providing what men sorely lack today: Leadership and the tools to go with it.
Look at it this way: If there is one word that can adequately explain the trials that men are facing in the modern world, particularly in the West, in countries like America; that word is leadership.
Boys become men. And the journey toward manhood involves learning, growing, and improving in ALL areas of life.
And the idea of growth is built on the Stoic principle that nothing comes easy in life. That sacrifices are a requirement for attaining success, and that mental resilience is the foundation of a strong, capable individual who is able to rise above the challenges of life.
Do want to succeed in life? Do you wish to become a high-value man, who is not among the lost souls?
Don’t wait for politicians to fix your problems. It is time to take things into your own hands.
Whenever someone brings up the topic of gender, sex, ‘men and women’; the persons or groups who are at the forefront of this debate often tend to advance a certain worldview or ideology. An ideology that generally pays little attention to the status of men.
Heck often times, men as a social group are often deemed to be the problem that society has to “fix”.
In this state of affairs, men, particularly men with passion, hope and the willingness to succeed need to make a choice. A personal and professional choice: Do you want to take control of your life, or do wish to be swayed by the currents of politics around you?
Let’s be clear, there is a reason why a lot of young men have ended up in this state. The debate on gender for what it is worth has effected many changes but has said little on the topic of men. And maybe that is a good thing. For as purposeful men who want to be in control of our own lives, it is time we made good on it by our own strength.
YouTube: CNN. 2023. Why the rate of single men in the US looking for dates has declined. [ONLINE] Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vK4y6C1Uuhw. [Accessed 9 March 2023].
abc4. 2023. More than 60 percent of young men are single, experts call it a crisis of connection. [ONLINE] Available at: https://www.abc4.com/gtu/more-than-60-percent-of-young-men-are-single-experts-call-it-a-crisis-of-connection/. [Accessed 9 March 2023].
BBC. 2019. Why more men than women die by suicide. [ONLINE] Available at: https://www.bbc.com/future/article/20190313-why-more-men-kill-themselves-than-women. [Accessed 9 March 2023].
The Fulcrum. 2014. Men’s rights event disrupted by protest. [ONLINE] Available at: https://thefulcrum.ca/news/mens-rights-event-disrupted-by-protest/. [Accessed 9 March 2023].