Last Monday, Gillette – yes, the razor company – tweeted an ad that was supposed to lash out against toxic masculinity. However, they missed the mark.
It’s very good that Gillette opposes stuff like sexism in business, sexual assault and the objectification of women.
These are toxic and should absolutely be purged from our society. However, it will take strong men to purge these things, and Gillette should’ve capitalized on that to push traditional masculinity and show what it’s like to be a real man.
The issue is, in Gillette’s conquest against toxic masculinity, they didn’t just oppose toxic masculinity, but also traditional masculinity.
For instance, they missed the mark when they showed the Terry Crews clip of him testifying in front of Congress saying, “Men need to hold other men accountable.”
Terry Crews is absolutely right, but why didn’t they show any men holding other men accountable?
They could’ve shown a man speaking up for that woman in that board meeting to show the speaker that he valued what she had to say.
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That would’ve been setting a great example of how a real man would’ve handled that situation.
Furthermore, the ad conflated toxic masculinity with traditional masculinity. For example, when the dads were watching their sons wrestle in the yard at a friendly neighborhood barbecue.
What exactly is wrong with that? It is completely natural for young boys to wrestle. And, no father is going to sit there and watch a kid beat another kid at a friendly neighborhood barbecue if he thinks it’s getting out of hand.
It’s true, “boys will be boys” and wrestle in the yard. That doesn’t mean they’re going to grow up to be bullies or abusers. The insinuation of so is detestable.
Additionally, the ad also insinuated that the average man has harmful intentions. This is incredibly false and demeaning to men. This is exactly what they suggested in the scene where a girl walks by and this guy finds her attractive and tries to go talk to her only to be stopped by his friend saying, “not cool.”
What is not cool?
All we can assume is that he is a normal, everyday guy.
What makes this toxic?
There is nothing in the scene that implies he has negative intentions.
Are men or women not supposed to approach people they find attractive?
And, if not, how exactly are they supposed to meet new people? Get it approved on Tinder first?
Overall, the ad had some good and bad. They really should’ve focused on bolstering traditional masculinity because it is literally the antithesis of toxic masculinity.
They should’ve shown more examples of how a real man would’ve handled the situations – like they did when the guy got the bullies off the kid.
They could’ve had a really good ad if they would have focused on traditionally masculine men setting good examples for their sons and showing them how a real man would’ve responded in those situations.
Michael Jones is a senior in business at Auburn and contributes to The College Fix, a conservative blog and the Lone Conservative.
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