There’s plenty to agree with in Frank Bruni’s column today on ameliorating the culture that leads to disparagement of and aggression toward women. In fact, I’d probably endorse most of the proposals he makes. But, unlike Frank, I don’t believe that masculinity is entirely a cultural construct. Here’s how he puts it:
There are times when I find myself darkly wondering if there’s some ineradicable predatory streak in the male subset of our species. Wrong, Chris Kilmartin told me. It’s not DNA we’re up against; it’s movies, manners and a set of mores, magnified in the worlds of the military and sports, that assign different roles and different worth to men and women. Fix that culture and we can keep women a whole lot safer.
But there is a third option between DNA and culture. It’s called testosterone. It’s a very powerful hormone that makes men men (we are all…
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