There are now masks for MEN! Thank god. I was worried that masks, in general, were not manly enough, because what’s manly about a mask meant to protect people from the spread of a viral pandemic? At first, I laughed, because why would you actively look for something called a “manly mask,” but then I typed that into Google and wanted to claw my own eyes out.
The masks in question—just like many, many versions of genderless products marketed as being “for men”—are just like normal masks but are deemed manly, so that means men can buy them and wear them without, I guess, feeling like a fragile human who could potentially die if they come down with COIVD-19? (Or who gives even the slightest damn about trying not to spread the disease to others?)
Also known as “masks”. pic.twitter.com/k4qdI5m8sp
— Tressie McMillan Cottom (@tressiemcphd) June 15, 2020
Here’s my solution to these men who think masks are “feminine” or fragile or whatever: Let’s start telling them that men with big penises wear masks. Sure, neither masks nor penis size have anything to do with your masculinity, but that’s not stopping insecure men and their toxic masculinity, so we might as well turn their own logic back on them if it’ll help us all stay healthier.
Have you ever stopped and said something about a big penis and watched a sea of men chime in as if they all have dicks that are four feet long and wide? It happens, and it is baffling, and I don’t understand it because that’s absolutely impossible, and it’s not like I walk around saying that I have DD breasts when I clearly do not, but whatever. Let’s try my tactic for masks.
If the “masks equate to big dicks” method doesn’t work out, maybe we can start to target other areas of insecurities for men and use that? Like saying if you wear a mask, it means you could fight a lion with your bare hands and win? Or just … tell them they’re not allowed to wear masks and see how fast they feel the need to rebel.
You’d think after countless doctors have told us to wear masks, after hundreds of thousands of people have died worldwide, or even after Idris Elba ended up getting it, that men would maybe start to realize that they cannot fight an invisible virus with just sheer luck, but here we are, still having to make things “manly” in order for them to comply.
So, I propose we just start using their own documented stupidity against them. The point is that wearing a mask isn’t about your masculinity, it’s about understanding of how diseases work and caring about others more than your fragile tough-guy ego, but if we have to play your game, I’m willing to do it.
We’re at the point where we have to bargain with men like they’re little kids who won’t eat their dinner, but if it makes everyone actually follow health guidelines, then so be it. Seriously, if this manly-man marketing is really what we need to get men to wear masks, we might as well go all-in.
Wear masks. Stop endangering people because you’re afraid it’ll make you look weak. It’s a LITERAL VIRUS. It doesn’t care that you’re a manly man; it will take over your lungs and get others sick, and I’m not getting sick because of your fragile masculinity, KEVIN.
This is going to be known as “toxic maskulinity,” right? https://t.co/HGctNEJsE6
— Sarah Mackey (@sarahjanet) June 15, 2020
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