One year ago this month, it was “Breast Cancer Awareness Month.” The NFL put pink accessories on all its players, referees and game equipment for an entire month.
I remember thinking, “How annoying and hypocritical this is!” Professional sports are so crass and commercialized, I already feel guilty for being a fan. The NFL was clearly making a calculated marketing decision in doing this “pink gloves” business. In order to make their brutal, near-animalistic, hyper-commercialized, for-profit league of billionaire owners and millionaire players seem warm, cuddly, and generous — and in order to broaden their appeal with women — they make a few donations, slap a few pink socks on and make maudlin announcements about their noble intentions. I prefer my crassly commercialized products openly crass and openly commercialized.
While I still feel more or less the same way about the pink ribbons being spray-painted on the field, as far as the commercialization of compassion is concerned, there’s something that’s changed. What really bothered me before was that breast cancer is such a massive cause among do-gooders these days, whereas prostate cancer is not.
Breast cancer is a disease that women get; prostate cancer is a disease that men get. There are in fact more prostate cancer cases each year in the United States than there are breast cancer cases. If all human lives are equally precious, then prostate cancer is a more serious problem than is breast cancer.
But breast cancer gets far more attention, because it’s a disease that women get. Women are a designated victim class today. What happens to women happens to them qua women. What happens to men is just “life,” just tough beans. I don’t think this should be very controversial. Simply put, men’s health is less important to our society than women’s health. Look up life expectancies and suicide rates, and homicide rates, if you doubt this.
So what bothered me so much about the pink towels used by the NFL was that it was to me, a year ago, a clear example of the perfidy of feminists and the need for a male revolution in the Western world. Furthermore, the audience for the NFL is overwhelmingly male; literally tens of millions of American men. If they had a concerted yearly campaign to fight, detect, and defeat prostate cancer, it might actually save many many lives and prevent much suffering. It made me angry to see their transparently PC campaign for breast cancer then, although obviously not angry enough to stop consuming my weekly dose of televised football.
Now, all of this remains true on a factual level. Women’s issues are still given huge play in the media, in the law, and general society, whereas men’s issues are completely ignored or ridiculed. But I’m no longer enraged by it. I no longer want to frame my own life as that of a “victim of an unfair system.” I realized this when I watched my favorite Seattle Seahawks play a game on Sunday. They wore the pink gear just like everyone else. And my first thought was, “This is still somewhat maudlin, but it’s a nice thing for them to be doing. I hope it makes a difference somehow.”
Rehashing all these private thoughts in written form makes me realize that I was right a year ago and that it is still a case of injustice, or at least of disingenuousness. But what strikes me is how my emotional tone has changed. It’s liberating to view injustice with a non-victimized mind. Lex talionis is not my clarion anymore. Some people in the MRM would say I have betrayed the brotherhood. But I’d rather be a man than a victim. There are greater purposes in life than the egalitarian distribution of resources. A year ago I was anti-egalitarian except when my own group had something benefit from egalitarianism. Today, though I still care about fairness, I realize that radical, worldly egalitarianism is a trap.
What foolishness that I write on this blog will I repudiate one year from now?