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Men Are Not Moral Bums

Men Are Not Moral Bums

A few days ago, I read an article entitled, “The Morality Gap: Are Men Moral Bums?” by Nicole Balin in The Huffington Post. Spoiler alert: they are, according to Balin. She points to a handful of studies that suggest that women are generally more likely to demonstrate acts of kindness. She argues that this is the result of socialization – men are taught to be strong and hide their emotions.

But I must argue with Balin’s conclusions. In my experience, it’s true that it is often easier for women to talk about their feelings than men – but men often demonstrate their feelings in other ways. My fiancé is probably more emotionally reliable than I am in many ways.  In the earlier days of our relationship, I was battling an eating disorder and he was nothing but completely supportive. He wrote a song for me, sends me funny texts, and leaves me silly messages on the whiteboard in our kitchen. But more than that, he shows me every day that he loves me and that I can depend on him.

Balin also points to anecdotal evidence from her own life suggesting that men are less socially aware than women. Well, in my life, I’ve met many men – including my fiancé – who have a very strong social conscience and live their lives accordingly, Yes, our social mores teach men that talking about their feelings is a sign of weakness and, while this is changing, there is much more that needs to be done on this front. But to argue that men are less moral than women is nothing more than bitter name-calling.

 

 

Related:
Equality Or Lip Service?
The Role of a Man in the Kitchen
The Hidden Spirituality of Men

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Sarah Cooke

Sarah Cooke is a writer living in California. She is interested in organic food and green living. Sarah holds an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from Naropa University, an M.A. in Humanities from NYU, and a B.A. in Political Science from Loyola Marymount University. She has written for a number of publications, and she studied Pastry Arts at the Institute for Culinary Education. Her interests include running, yoga, baking, and poetry. Read more on her blog.

60 comments

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4:53AM PST on Nov 27, 2012

"Men Are Not Moral Bums..." -Oh yeah...really...???

12:52AM PST on Nov 27, 2012

Thank you Sarah.

11:58PM PDT on Aug 22, 2012

A man can be so sweet and protective, as he want to be. And will be so sexy as a bad boy.

11:57PM PDT on Aug 22, 2012

A man can be so sweet and protective, as he want to be. And will be so sexy as a bad boy.

1:06AM PDT on Aug 7, 2012

I haven't read the original Huffington Post article - but also agree with some commentators that I try and avoid generalisations like that.
Morality is about one's code of conduct, about knowing right from wrong. It is not about your husband being supportive and romantic - although every woman would like to be treated like that for the duration of their marriges.
If you use an example of the business world, investment corporations, recent press scandals, the international banking world, right-wing racist murders and other crimes including murderers and rapists, anyone would be hard-pressed to say that most men are moral!

10:20PM PDT on Aug 6, 2012

Yeah Sarah, you beloved will be your behated soon enough. There is a 65%(fact) chance as you grow older together, he will suddenly find himself looking for his "younger self" in another woman. Then tell me how wonderfully moral he is.

Men are testosterone filled beings forever clinging onto their twenties. Only a very few, rare handful manage to embrace their age as it occurs and makes the mature judgements to accompany their age.

Most women I know do this effortlessly. Starting with my Mom.

8:51AM PDT on Aug 6, 2012

Call this a pet peeve of mine, but I particularly dislike generalization about people because of their gender. There are relatively few things about someone that are hard-coded into them by their gender, and that cannot be overcome. Thanks for calling someone on their gross generalizations.

10:00PM PDT on Aug 5, 2012

Men may not express their feelings openly, but, odds are, they will be the ones who do something special, that takes effort, quietly and not want to take credit for it.

1:03PM PDT on Aug 5, 2012

I am always wary of people who talk about other people's morality.

2:47AM PDT on Aug 5, 2012

I really get tired of hearing some women say things like: You know men, they're all the same. Sorry, but I have a gem, and many men are good people. I dislike such comments.

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