This morning I got into a back and forth conversation with Facebook friends about the subject of “manhood” and who it is that defines how a man should act.
While our conversation got off topic (facebook discussions usually do) the idea of Biblical manhood is incredibly important to me since I live in a village without men.
Technically this isn’t true…there are men in the village of Barrouallie. But the majority of them have given up their role as a man in the community. In other words they aren’t working, providing for or protecting loved ones, and solving problems.
Instead they prefer to drink rum and smoke weed……
About fifty feet away from the Church I attend is a small shop. All day long men will congregate on the porch, and sit along the road
- Getting drunk
- Begging for money
- And cursing loudly enough to be heard up the street
This kind of laziness combined with an abandonment of family responsibilities (it’s not uncommon for a man to get a girl pregnant, then either leave the village, or even the country!) Has led to a matriarichal society where the mothers, grandmothers, and Aunts take up the role of a father.
That’s not to say a woman cannot do the work of a man, but SHE SHOULDN’T HAVE TO! Vincentian women are some of the toughest people I know because they have to become everything for their children. However it isn’t fair for them to do this while the majority of men refuse to accept their responsibility.
The saddest thing is many young men have learned to continue this cycle of laziness and irresponsibility
Last year I was having a conversation with a young man who was having a sexual relationship with his girlfriend. When I asked what would happen if she got pregnant he calmly replied “I’ll leave the country.” I’m not sure if he was serious, but that is a pattern of immaturity he saw in men growing up.
The thing is I don’t think the men of SVG just woke up one morning and decided they didn’t want to be providers anymore. It was a slow gradual giving up of their responsibilities till what they are can no longer be defined as man.
It is true we must reject “toxic masculinity” but we must be very careful not the reject masculinity itself.