#MasculinitySoFragile Pokes Fun at Society’s Unhealthy Male Ideals

#MasculinitySoFragile Pokes Fun at Society’s Unhealthy Male Ideals

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Last month, #MasculinitySoFragile trended on Twitter as users fired off a storm of Tweets about fragile masculinity.

What is fragile masculinity? It’s not the belief that men are bad or weak. Instead, it’s the belief that society’s attitudes regarding masculinity are bizarre and harmful. Society discourages men from asking for help or talking about their feelings or treating women as equals or eating fruit or speaking in anything other than a low monotone. To do any one of these things will get a man branded unmanly.

While society’s ideal man is an invulnerable one, the concept of masculinity is incredibly fragile. Though a Real Man is expected to wrestle a bear without hesitation, a typical man shrinks away from dancing at a party; he can’t pay another man a compliment without mumbling “No homo”; he can’t drink delicious red wine punch without changing its name to MangriaThat’s what fragile masculinity means, and that’s why Twitter was poking fun at it.

Many tweets focused on the way masculine fragility breeds broken relationships between men and women:






As I write this, the above tweet has over 3000 retweets (RTs).

Some Tweets poked fun at recent MRA tantrums (mantrums?) over pop culture, like the Men’s Rights outcry over Fury Road’s female lead, or the backlash against the all-woman Ghostbusters reboot.





Some Twitter users commented on the relationship between society’s warped attitudes about manhood and society’s warped attitudes about LGBT people (with a well-deserved jab at Roland Emmerich’s Stonewall):





Some tweets poked fun at men’s anxiety over using “feminine” consumer goods:




Some tweets were downright heartbreaking, as men opened up about how society’s toxic ideals of masculinity had damaged their personal lives:






As the hashtag swelled to the #1 spot on Twitter, angry MRAs swarmed it like ants to a picnic. One charming gentleman decided to prove how totally not at all insecure he is by threatening to beat up women (or, as he wrote, because he is apparently a Ferengi, “females”):

mech of justice challenge

Unfortunately for him, he got a response from actress/kickboxer Pia Glenn:

pia accepts

This interesting development sent Twitter into a flurry of excitement. How would @MechofJuticeWZ respond?

The answer? He didn’t. He was still very active on Twitter though, typing angry responses to other women posting on #MasculinitySoFragile. And yet for whatever reason (perhaps the fact that her acting resume lists her height as an even six feet) he did not respond to Pia Glenn’s throwing of the gauntlet.

fear or hot pockets

Finally, the meninist keyboard warrior responded to Glenn’s challenge. Indirectly. By replying to someone else.

mech copout

But his craven attempts at fleeing the fight did not escape Pia’s notice.

mech copout 2


Still, Pia persevered, tweeting to #MasculinitySoFragile unironically so as to satisfy @MechofJusticeWZ’s rules of engagement:

When the brave coward did not respond, she attempted to goad him into battle:


pia is relentless

She offered him many opportunities to follow up on his word of manly one-on-one combat:
when is our fight

no con here

pia is willing

weak and dishonest

But eventually Pia Glenn was disqualified from the ring, apparently for being a Replicant:

Alas, it appears that the great Pia Glenn vs. Angry Twitter Bro fight, our generation’s version of the tennis match between Billie Jean King and Bobby Riggs, was not to be. Nor was the @MechofJusticeWZ vs. @WildCougConfess fight:

another challenger

But let’s give him the benefit of the doubt. Maybe he didn’t scurry away from a physical fight with a woman because of fear. Maybe he was busy fighting a more important, more masculine battle, perhaps against a drug cartel, or ISIS, or the North Korean government, or…

corruption in gaming journalism.

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