A Response To "Why Men Aren't Really Men Anymore"

Paul Hudson thinks that men aren’t men anymore. We couldn’t disagree more.

It’s a common trope in the media today: The death of manliness. Shows like "Mad Men" and "Boardwalk Empire" hark back to an earlier era when manliness was more prominent. Manly men shave with straight razors and never leave the house without a hat and coat. They open doors for women and socialize in clubs. They work hard in manufacturing and construction, come home to a neatly kept bungalow. They wash their cars every Saturday and eat tons of roast beef and potatoes.

Of course, there are a few problems with this fascination with the past and the “death of manliness.” First, the idyllic manhood of the past never really existed. I’m not saying that there isn’t a time when men preferred collared shirts and topcoats to t-shirts and leather jackets. What I’m saying is that there’s nothing inherently manly about one or the other. Further, the men of yesteryear had a major advantage that men today don’t have.

Think if you will of the 1950s, the backdrop for the time that "Mad Men" takes place in, its prologue. Sure there was a job for anyone who wanted one, which allowed men the disposable income necessary for whatever pursuits they found beneficial.

This was also because they lived in a world where women for the most part didn’t work, men of color were at the back of the line for jobs, 80 million people had been removed from the workforce and two continents were flattened in the last world war.

In short, it’s not the men of today who have it easy; it’s the (mostly white) men of days gone by who had it easy.

Men want things handed to them? Shenanigans. Men want a shot at making a life of their own and society isn’t giving it to them. Men today graduate college (or even high school for that matter) to a world where jobs are scarce and for the most part menial.

College costs more than ever before and has a lower return on investment than it did in the past.Men have to live at home longer, not because they “aren’t men,” but because they’re swimming in debt with few opportunities to get out of it.

If anything is keeping men in a state of arrested development, it’s a lack of options to advance themselves out of the state they find themselves in.

However, I reject even the premise that this is the case. At The Art of Charm, I meet literally thousands of men every year. Rather than being scornful of them, I am continually impressed by how hard they strive to better themselves.Even men who are still living at home, trying to get out of debt, living with mom and pop have dreams, dreams that they work hard to make into realities.

In short, I feel sorry for Paul Hudson. I’m sorry that he’s surrounded by men who would rather watch porn than have sex. I’m sorry that he only knows men who stalk women online rather than going out to meet them.

I’m sorry that the only men he knows have given up on their dreams to pursue a life of Call of Duty. Because the men that I know are dynamic, intelligent, strong and doing everything they can to improve the lives that they lead. Perhaps he’s really talking more about himself than anything else.

The Art of Charm exists to help men to learn how to become better men and the response has been overwhelming. We teach men how to meet women while being respectful. We teach them how to be stellar conversationalists, giving and taking. We are giving them the tools that they need to make every interaction they have with every person meaningful in order to make the world a better place. We show them how to always be pushing themselves to make it to the next level. When we’re done, we make them part of a community of men looking to do the same.

Men are hungrier to do this than ever before. Giving men the tools to succeed as men is much more productive -- and I’d argue, far manlier -- than berating men for their perceived failures. I’d invite Mr. Hudson to join the conversation and transformation that we’re a part of at The Art of Charm.

Jordan Harbinger | Elite.

Jordan Harbinger is a Wall Street lawyer turned Social Dynamics expert and coach.  He is the co-founder of The Art Of Charm, a dating and relationships coaching company.  If you're interested in The Art of Charm residential programs, apply for a strategy call with a coach.  Follow him on Facebook or Twitter.

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