Imagine cruising down the street in the notorious black Escalade on shimmering twenty-twos or in the shocking pink Cadillac with hydraulics. Becoming filthy rich and famous and dining with some of the hottest stars like Jennifer Lopez, Beyonce Knowles and Halle Berry. Having the best looking body that is obtainable and the cutest and whitest smile known to human beings. Could these be some of the wants of the modern man? Or are these bizarre fantasies?
People say it’s great to be a man because we can walk topless on the beach in Tunisia without getting stoned to death, we don’t have to remember where we left things, and we can eat a banana in front of construction workers. Strangely, modern men seem to want attention and want to be able to fit in with other group of men. Could this be the reason why, most of us attempt to mimic the seemingly ‘perfect men’ in the persuasive advertisements of GQ, Progenis and Viagra? Or drive the fastest and most stylish car of the century? Or spend over two thousand dollars a year on fancy clothes?
The term, “new man,” is attributed to a series of advertisements for men’s wear that simultaneously depicts muscular masculinity and a passive mode of male sexuality. The trend in modern clothing has continued to flourish, with broad-shouldered double-breasted jackets giving way to more fitted three and four-button single-breasted jackets. Boldly colored shirts with matching ties and, more commonly, knitwear have replaced the white dress shirt. What interest men about these advertisements is a new framing of the surface of our bodies; one that emphasized not so much the assertive power of a muscular masculine physique but these bodies openly invites a desiring look from women.
The modern men of this twenty-first century wants to be able to afford the new technologies of cosmetic surgery that now offers the affluent and extraordinary range of ways of producing a more socially desirable body, from the old ‘face-lifts’ and breast implants to the newer surgical slimming and height alterations. The rush towards cosmetic enhancement could prove the increasing interest as the technologies become widespread. The advertisements for cosmetic enhancement claim to restore, renew, revitalize, replace or regain some lost object. The purpose of publicity is to make us dissatisfied with our present way of life. It offers us an improved alternative to what we are.
Cosmetic surgery is now thought natural for a woman, though not for a man. Nevertheless, the technology now extends to the surgical production of masculinity, with penile implants, both inflatable and rigid, to the fore. The technologies have not only expanded but so has the acceptability of the procedures for men. In cases such as body hair removal, it is becoming more socially acceptable for us to have cosmetic procedures than not to have had any.
All right! Enough with the technology and the physical aspect of the men! For modern men, not much has changed over the centuries. Eighty-seven percent of men today say their work is the most important thing in their life, and ninety-nine percent say they want a great sex life. Socially and emotionally, we truly want and seek for unconditional love…correct? And the only one we can get that from is a woman…right?
How can we receive this type of love if the special one in our lives has go to work, return, take care of the children, do the laundry, clean the house and cook dinner? There is never anytime for us – alone. There is always a complaint that, “I’m tired” or “I had a hard day”, when we try to get some love. The only way to solve this is to have things the way it use to be. The woman stay home, we go and work and provide for the family…simple. When we return home, work is done she is all rested and then we can have some time – alone. This should not be much of a problem since most women say that if money was no object, they would prefer to be a homemaker or “lady of leisure”. A survey in Australia proved this, as careers rated a top priority for only 5 percent of women age 18 to 65, and motherhood ranked as the number-one choice across the board.
There are even women, who work long hours of the night and leave her man home eating leftovers or microwaveables. We must eat right in order to survive and maintain our strength, to work and provide protection for them and the children. Therefore, women should do the cooking; they know how to do it best. These suggestions might seem that we would want women to turn into the docile and compliant companions of men just as surely as the army aims to turn its raw recruits into soldiers but, I mean …what happened with the man being the dominant sex?
I give added praise to those men who continue to pursue heavy manual work as opposed to modern men, like myself, who feverishly carry out office work. Heavy manual work calls for strength, endurance, and a degree of insensitivity, toughness and group solidarity. The masculinity of industrial labor has been both been a means of survival, in exploitative class relations, and a means of asserting superiority over women.
It has been given that superiority over women is inherent to any assertion of masculine power; from the creation of man, as a woman was made from man, but in this century and in the future it will be quite difficult for us to obtain such superiority, since women are moving further and further into the working industry, from teachers and nurses to politicians and state senators. Soon enough a woman will be the Chief Minister of the Turks and Caicos Islands or the President of the United States! Quite terrifying!
We want to be able to experience contented family relationships again and more importantly spending quality times with our sons. What happened with the relaxing fishing trips by the bay? And the most important part our lives, and even theirs teaching them how to shave – to remove the very hair that marks puberty – as a result takes its place in the set of routine skills that, us, modern fathers routinely pass on to our sons. However, this ritual is no longer passed from fathers to sons. We are no longer their ultimate role models.
Strangely enough, it does not seem like it’s us not having enough time for them but the boys not having enough time for us. They are always with their friends, to the movies, playing games or even worse…on dates. What happened with that quality time with us?
Unfortunately, I lived in a fatherless relationship and my mother had to struggle with six helpless children. Yes…my so-called ‘father’ left my mother with six of us, and myself being the eldest; I never got the chance to be in the shadow of my father, I never got the chance to even consider him as a role model. This is why we, modern man, want to redeem such a vital relationship in our lives with our sons, even those who did not go through the pain I went through.
That deep pain that lurked through my earthly body was only relieved when I discovered the face of my heavenly Father, yes, my true and faithful father. Many people may disagree with the existence of God and the need to believe in His existence but the modern man needs God to provide meaning and purpose to his life. Godless evolution, humanism, and philosophy cannot satisfy our basic needs. We did not just originally happen, God created us. Men need God to provide hope after death. All the philosophies of the world cannot offer hope beyond the grave. God allows us to choose how we shall spend eternity. Those who humbly submit to God’s will and teaching shall have the bliss of heaven and those who elect to disobey, shall spend an eternity in everlasting punishment. We must realize that death is not the end – it is the beginning!
The answer to the ills of society is not more gun control, increased security, mind controlling drugs and security cameras on every wall. We urgently need a restoration of biblical morals and values. This return needs to take place in religion, in our country, in our families, in our schools, and, of the greatest importance, in the hearts and lives of individuals. Yes, we, modern men need God – without God there is chaos!
The modern man of this modern world has many wants and desires, and everyone is unique and different. Some wants might be fulfilled and some will not even be considered. For instance, obtaining superiority over the opposite sex…women. But I say, whilst women become increasingly strong in their new roles in society, it is worth remembering that it takes, and always take, two to tango. I leave with you the words of Manhattan in the poem, Modern Man, “Little woman at home all day, That’s the right of a modern man, A day’s work for a whole day’s pay, Now he’s just a modern man”.