Male Disposability: 1/19

Are men disposable?

In the fight for male dominance, there is room for only a few at the top. What happens to rest of us?


Until recently, only men went to war. Millions of men have been sent to die as soldiers.

Forty-four percent of the homeless population are single men. One in four are veterans.

The majority of people warehoused in prison are men: one out of 18 men are under correctional control in the US today, compared with one in 89 women. Violence against men, particularly in prison, is largely ignored and accepted.

One in six men is a survivor of sexual abuse.

Although men’s mental illness is diagnosed at lower rates than in women, and women attempt suicide more often, men complete suicide at three to four times the rate of women.


 Yet there is a cultural aversion to seeing men in pain, or as victims. Today, thousands of veterans live in physical and psychic pain from their injuries. Male survivors of sexual abuse and other violence are not offered support. There are no abused men’s shelters.

Those who don’t measure up to the ideals—for male beauty, power, stoicism, virility, and other masculine markers of success—are told that we will find ourselves alone, broke, and helpless. We’ll be unable to achieve complete manhood, to enjoy intimacy with a partner, or to pass on a legacy to children. Men who are fathers are told that they are the less important parent, a stereotype we still struggle to overcome in fighting for paternity leave and custodial rights. And more direly, those men who cannot measure up as workers and who cannot find employment at a living wage, lack the basics for survival.


It’s clear that the way men are treated as disposable has far reaching implications. We are looking for the stories that illustrate these connections, the images to place in the minds of people who have never considered the plight of men. What are the ways in which men suffer? What is your story, as a “disposable man”?

Submissions for this theme are due by Saturday, January 19, for consideration. Send your completed submission (500-2000 words)  in the body of an email to Justin Cascio, Senior Editor of The Good Men Project, at


Read more Calls For Submissions.

Image credit: Hello Turkey Toe

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  1. is the series going to be published?

  2. I am not sure that I understand the motivation behind asking a question, that by all reckoning reads like a rhetorical question. You already site all of the stats that are already known by most and are for the most part, agreed upon. Although I must add that the idea that women are pulling their weight in the military is far from true. There is no widespread movement by women to do their fair share in the military.Coming from a military family, my father served in Korea and my brother in VN, I don’t see the point in further underscoring what we know to be true, that people don’t care.

  3. M J Stewart says:

    When faced with the woes of life people turn to others; my GOD, I hope it is someone anointed with the Holy Spirit. Many have been fortunate to have met me at their crossroads. I’m not concerned about the so called rule book. Act like you desire success and push non-supporters aside.

  4. Justin, it’s too late to share my article on this topic, but I am planning to write a book on the plight of migrant workers, many of them male, in the Gulf Region. Thank you for raising this topic and perhaps, our paths will cross in the not so distant future. I predict that there will come when a time, when the post-feminist narrative will evolve in the future, and our society will need to acknowledge to difficulties of being a man.

  5. Why do men need to be fixed genetically what does that even mean? Do we need to be selectively killed off and then bred? I mean this is bullshit, wars are bad but the women attack each other for now reason in catty manners if women got a hold of enough power they’d go to war. In fact they have started wars throughout history! Cleopatra, Queen Mary of Scotts she went on a genocidal campaign of non-Catholics

  6. Richard Aubrey says:

    Crap. Just reread this and see it makes no sense. Sorry.

    are literate
    are numerate
    have an IQ above 80
    can pass a drivers license test
    graduated from the eighth grade
    are felons

    Should be, the homeless, even at the highest BS number, are a lower percentage of the population than those who are
    ARE FELONS–that one was right.

  7. Women are treated a whole hell of a lot worse than men worldwide throughout recorded history and today. And also let’s remember that women are not the ones starting wars and sending men to fight and die in them. No woman wants her beloved child male or female to die in a war. No wife is happy that her huband is going to war unless he’s really horrible to her. I don’t understand the constant male belief that everything is a competition or a war to be won. Why is it so difficult to just be alive and be civil to others without having to be famous, rich, bigger, badder, better than everyone else. I’m truly lost as to what causes this need to compare groups and figure out which one is superior or inferior. Ask Indian and Chinese women and men which gender is disposable. I’m not saying there shouldn’t be shelters for men or mental health. What I’m saying is that the problems that men face are a result of male dominance in the first place. It’s a vicious cycle / circle like a dog chasing it’s own tail. Until we end that cycle then life for people will be bad in general…unless of course we start genetically engineering men to be absolute darling angels. I like that idea 🙂

    • “Women are treated a whole hell of a lot worse than men worldwide throughout recorded history and today. And also let’s remember that women are not the ones starting wars and sending men to fight and die in them. No woman wants her beloved child male or female to die in a war.”

      What a load of bullshit, men have suffered some of the most extreme forms of torture in existence. Both genders have suffered tremendously throughout history, neither is ahead. I like how you say women are treated a hell of a lot worse yet speak of women not wanting men to die in wars, kinda reminds of me Hillary Clinton’s speech saying women are the primary victims of war because they lose their husbands n family members….further proving males are disposable and aren’t even given the fucking decency or respect to acknowledge MEN are the primary victims of war in most cases (although war kills both men n women so really both genders can be the primary victim) but the family members are secondary victims, not primary.

      Women too exist in our society, women too are responsible for wars. They benefit and are harmed by wars, just as men do. The overwhelming super duper majority of men do not start wars, infact wars are started probably by less than 0.001% of men. I can’t believe in this day n age of education we still have people that cannot understand the concept that the few men who have power DOES NOT MEAN ALL MEN HAVE POWER. Most men n women are forced to follow the leadership actions of a very very very very very small group of people, and in previous times that group wasn’t a group but often a single person. Do you think most men want to goto war and get killed because of some asshole in power that doesn’t even get off his ass (or her ass) to fight the war?

    • What I’m saying is that the problems that men face are a result of male dominance in the first place. It’s a vicious cycle / circle like a dog chasing it’s own tail. Until we end that cycle then life for people will be bad in general…unless of course we start genetically engineering men to be absolute darling angels. I like that idea

      the same patterns of dominance, hierarchy, power, abuse we see also in women only prisons, women only religious orders, and even on :-O … women-centered blogs

    • Did you ever hear of the white feather girls, WWI, Boudicca, ect.?

      Why do men strive to be the top dog? mating potential. Why did women start wearing makeup? mating potential. Its what got us to where we are now. A place were we can now worry about and help the weak.

      And please, the patriarchy. Its a class based system with the rich and powerful at the top, including women, usually entire families. (Name the largest landholder in the world. Queen Elizabeth the Second) As people on average have less and less children, and through the effort of early feminists, many of these massive estates will end up in the hands of women and we will see that the same power dynamic is still there, power+money>average+working.

    • John Schtoll says:

      Actually harry, you are incorrect. But you know what. I am not good and expressing my thoughts so I will give you a link to something you should read by someone (a woman) who says it much better than I ever could. Here name is GirlWritesWhat (and I wish she would write for GMP).

      h ttp://

      Read the first post about her response to someone else about the whole “Women have had it worse thruout history”

    • Mr Supertypo says:

      “Women are treated a whole hell of a lot worse than men worldwide throughout recorded history and today. And also let’s remember that women are not the ones starting wars and sending men to fight and die in them. No woman wants her beloved child male or female to die in a war. No wife is happy that her huband is going to war unless he’s really horrible to her.”

      Thats a meme, both genders are warlike and both genders suffer.

      And yes women do send their child in war and they even do it with pride. Read some history.

  8. @ Justin – I wrote a first draft for this call for submissions, but it’s 4,089 words. Is 500 to 2000 words a hard limit? Editing this weekend.

    @ Eagle35 – I had both male and female abusers, and while male survivors are often ignored in society, I know that those abused by only females probably have an even harder time being heard. I’ve been thinking about writing something about the fallout from female abusers, but my perspective may not be what you are hoping to find here. I’ve always appreciated reading your comments; why not write an essay on this topic yourself? I would value your viewpoint. I know what it feels like though; I’m a male survivor of a child sex ring and so few people even know what that is, and many who do know don’t want to hear about it. It’s not ever easy to speak out when we fear nobody wants to listen.

  9. Richard Aubrey says:

    Some of you may recall the days of Ronaldus Maximus. Things were going so well that homelessness had to be a feature of every news cast and even popular television series. “Our policies must be working,” said The Great One, “they’re not calling it reaganomics any longer.”
    We had the entirely BS number of 3 million homeless. Actual attempts to count were actively sabotaged.
    But, even going with the BS number of 3 million, what do we see?
    We see 99% of the population homed, or housed.
    Only one percent homeless–accepting the bogus, activists’ number for the discussion.
    That’s a lower percentage of the population than;
    are literate
    are numerate
    have an IQ above 80
    can pass a drivers license test
    graduated from the eighth grade
    are felons

    you can no doubt think of others.

    So there’s an immensely strong combination of forces getting people in out of the rain on a permanent basis. Without, as it happens, any organized government program or public service announcements or special classes in school why it’s a good thing to have a home. So strong, stronger than practically any other combination of forces in our society, that those who are left behind are smaller than any other group affected, one way or another, by the forces involved. From which it strikes me that there must be something about the less-than-one-percent that is more, or less, than simply not having a roof to hand.
    One way or another, in their individual ways, do they resist? Not purposely, but if they have to be ejected from a shelter for being disorderly and go to jail, how is a more conventional setting going to
    There is a VA transition housing project I know of where the guys have to live in a civilized fashion and have a plan they’re working on, and must show progress. It’s free to them, along with the counselors and whatnot. There are people who simply will not do that.
    Eventually, we have to see that there are some hard core of the homeless who will not be otherwise without involuntary commitment.
    And that’s a whole ‘other thing.

  10. Richard Aubrey says:

    So, when, exactly, does the disposing start?
    Herewith an article by the anti-privilege man his own self, Warren Farrell. Who asks the question, why are all the mass shooters boys?

  11. Actually about 75% of homeless people are men. Other wise this is a very good spot light

  12. Herschelle says:

    Society has more sympathy for women who suffer from disease, poverty, homelessness, unemployment, and loneliness etc.

    Women get more sympathy than men for suffering from the same problem.

    • This is so true and very few are aware of why this is the case. I am planning to get an article together for Justin on this very topic.

  13. Here’s a link to a potent article on homelessness and men.

    The cultural and largely unconscious assumption of male disposability plays out in many arenas. This article helps understand how it plays out in homelessness. The attitudes are so ingrained that most people lack even a rudimentary awareness and when attention is brought to their sexism they recoil. It is only recently that anyone is starting to point out that men deserve both choice and compassion. If you are pointing this out to people keep your kevlar on.

    • Heh… we talk on a regular basis (the writers are all invited to participate in weekly conference calls with GMP editors) about how to grow a thick skin in this business. It’s so much easier to fire off a comment (no offense to you, Tom, or anyone commenting here) than it is to write the complete article needed to change hearts and minds.

      Thank you for posting this link. I think we absolutely need an article that focuses on how our biases (and a bias is a kind of superstition… see Jeff Swain’s piece on this tomorrow) affect how we see homeless men and therefore, how little help we offer.

      This is what the series is going to be about, Tom: all of these ways we render men invisible. The invisibility cloak isn’t something they put on, it’s a filter on how we see them.

  14. You should also look at what happens to a man when he becomes the victim and survivor of female abuse. He dissappears, poof, in more ways than one.

    There’s another mode of male disposability.

  15. Excerpt:
    “Forty-four percent of the homeless population are single men”

    I’m not sure what single has to do with it. If whole families are homeless, then this will necessarily include married men.

    Also, I’m assuming this stat is drawn from census figures?

    Those are misleading. 70% of adults in transitional housing are women, but if you look at PIT (point in time) surveys of the homeless 90% of the chronically destitute homeless are men.

    In other words the social safety net reaches out far more to women than it does men.

    • It sounds like you know more about this. Would you write an article on the subject of homeless men for this call?

    • Richard Aubrey says:

      whole families are unlikely to be homeless.
      I have some relations who work with the homeless in a moderate sized town. Almost all of them are men with drug or alcohol problems. We’re talking about having no place to live. A consortium of churches puts them up–about sixty of them–indoors with breakfast from mid-autumn to early spring. It’s in a cold area. Maybe ten percent women.
      Also, my relations are involved with transitional housing. Mostly women.
      It appears that men are more likely to ruin themselves with drugs and alcohol to the point where they have no social credit, which is to say not even their families, if there are any, will take them in, and some institutions can’t manage them, either. So they’re out.
      You can’t lock these people up, and some can’t even stay in free housing consistently. My brother-in-law has to call the cops to take the disruptive to jail frequently.

      • Richard said: “It appears that men are more likely to ruin themselves with drugs and alcohol”

        This has been the default understanding for years. In the recent past people are starting to realize that trauma and grief PRECEDE the alcohol and drugs. If you look at the surface you see alcohol and drug use but underneath that is almost always the trauma/grief that is overlooked and not considered in men. If you treat the alcohol and drugs without treating the unresolved grief you get nowhere. No one wants to acknowledge or listen to men’s emotional pain. Even some alcohol treatment centers and therapists. A man’s emotional pain is taboo.

      • James Williams says:

        I have had some dealings with the homeless in the UK. Perhaps not to the extent that you have. 90% of chronically homeless being men is what I have found here. Many are victims of some kind of abuse that is never recognized or reported or done anything about. However, most of them have self esteem issues. They will often be addicted to something (substances or gambling) which masks their psychological pain. They inflict drugs or destitution on themselves because they cannot cope or want to somehow punish themselves as a symptom of their own self loathing. For many the way out of things is self help (if they have the mental fortitude), complex support (rarely available) or death. Of course there are a smaller proportion of women on the streets, but I suspect no less in numbers with the kind of problems that the men endure. There just tends to be more physical help available for such women and they also tend to attract more sympathy.

      • Richard Aubrey says:

        My relations also work on a personal basis with a woman who’s having trouble. It took forever to convince her, for example, that shopping at Walmart for groceries was better than shopping at the gas station. That cooking from scratch stretched your dollar further than buying prepared food from the deli counter. That dishes should be washed and not left on the floor. That an abusive man shouldn’t be in the home.
        She also gets counseling and is in a Habitat home. Various forms of cash and kind social benefits to eke out her part-time job.
        She is being dragged through life by the stacking swivel and if my sister-in-law has to take some time off, the whole thing stops as if she were on square wheels.
        Part of her problem is that her family resents what they see as her success and tries to undermine her.
        One wonders if society has the resources to apportion to such a degree to each needy person. My relations are retired, in relatively good health, blessed with big hearts, but I’ve never asked them if the same is done–by anybody–for a man.

        • When I consider how wealth is concentrated in our society, and how much is squandered on “defense,” I have no doubt we could afford to help every such person, women and men and everyone else. If we did it for a generation, the next would know how to care for one another, and for themselves. I don’t feel jealousy on behalf of men that this woman gets help when I know there are men in worse shape that no one helps at all; I want to change society so that we remember that they both are human beings whose lives can be improved, whose suffering can be reduced, and for relatively little cost; that they are us, but for circumstances; and that we would remember what it is that we are trying to protect ourselves from, anyway.

          • Richard Aubrey says:

            So, Justin. Have you a number which would be adequate for “defense”?
            Keep in mind it’s about 4-5% of GDP, which isn’t going to make much of a difference even if we give it all up.
            Any number at all, Justin. Give us what you think would be a good level of defense spending. Since you’ve thought about it, you no doubt have something ready for us.

            • It’s not about the dollar amounts, but the percentages of our efforts that go into paying for weapons versus taking care of people who are suffering. The psychology of an entire culture that spends half its federal budget on defense, and a small fraction of the pie on things like schools and veterans’ benefits. Did you read the article that Tom links to on homeless men? Don’t you think we owe those men more than the cold shoulder we give them?

              • Richard Aubrey says:

                “owe” is one thing. Actually making it work is another. My relations’ work with the woman, I thought, was making the point that she will not, would not, do the simple, logical ordinary thing. Will not contiinue without continued badgering–or advice. Whatever her problem is, lack of IQ, inability to make logical connections, whatever it may be, there’s no amount of money that can help her, absent flooding her with it, or having somebody else handle it for her. But she’s not far enough gone to merit a conservatorship. She has to be dragged through life. Others make tough, or not so tough, choices. She was given a snowblower. Didn’t use it. Wanted somebody to shovel her walk and driveway. Not that she’s lazy. She didn’t know how to use the thing, didn’t want to learn, and figured if nobody else did it, she didn’t need to.
                The homeless men aren’t homeless because there’s a shortage of roofs. They’re homeless because they will not stay in whatever’s available, nor accept that they must be minimally acceptable to the family/institution trying to house them. To house people like this takes involuntary commitment, a concept with a very bad history.
                There is a new concept for alcoholics; the “wet” apartment. I guess you give them a place to live and somehow or other they get booze and they can drink there. But there’s a problem. It’s paid for by taxpayers who see food stamps going for delicacies, EBT cards used in strip bars and casinos, while they themselves are stretching the dollars they have. Until that gets solved, there’s going to be pushback.
                Zeroing out the defense budget altogether–got that number yet?– won’t pay for it.
                Years ago, in a particularly bad winter, Ed Koch, then mayor of NYC, had cops and busses picking up the homeless and taking them to places to stay warm. Civil liberties people went along with them–uninvited–telling these poor, confused people, “you don’t have to go”.
                See “The Crystal Castle”. Mom says New York makes it too easy to be a slacker. Give you everything. Why work?

                • What I hear in your descriptions are that there are a lot of people who genuinely need help, but for one reason or another are deemed unworthy: they “should” be able to take care of themselves, they “should” be able to not drink or spend their limited money on strippers, and so on. The other thing I hear is that the help they need is not really that expensive. In the town where I live (the conservatives call my state “Taxachusetts”) there are lots of decently-paid college kids who provide personal care to people with disabilities. Everything from needing someone to shepherd them down to the department store to buy proper winter gear, to driving them to their weekly meetings. As you point out, there are enough roofs: we just have to decide that it’s better to house the drunks than to let them die of their sins in the cold. So it’s all a matter of human will, and much less about having the money for it. If we decide it’s a priority, we’ll spend on it. That’s always been the case.

                  • Richard Aubrey says:

                    Justin. Actually, wrong. Unless you can lock the drunks in, iow, involuntary commitment, some of them won’t be housed. Ditto the mentally ill.
                    The woman my relations work with is housed. But it’s an uphill struggle.

                    But there is the matter of pushback. EBT cards at strip joints and casinos and liquor stores annoys the folks who are paying the taxes. Maybe, if you could stop that, and the aforementioned secondary economy in excess food stamps–point is, everybody knows about it and that’s where the pushback comes from–there’d be enough money for more services for those who need them.
                    Now, whether they “should” have the wherewithal to not spend their EBT cards on strippers is not the point. It shouldn’t be their decision. If they decide to do that, then there will be pushback. Because that’s money coming from people who earn it and can’t spend it on anything because the State took it from them and gave it to people who didn’t earn it and can spend it, it seems, on anything they like.
                    As an example:
                    I was talking about Obamacare to a lib once and mentioned doctors I knew when I was working who are retiring early because of what they anticipate, and what regs and taxes already do to them. They’re not practicing and we don’t have their services as a society. “That’s the problem,” she said, “we’re” ( as in the GMP Style Book, “we’re” means everybody but the speaker) all greedy.” “Okay,” says I. You’ve called them a name. How are you going to get them back to work.?” Far as I could see, calling them a name was as far ahead as she’d thought, or was satisfactory.
                    Point is, the kine that tread the grain are part of this equation and calling them greedy or uncaring for paying too much attention to their own families, or to EBT cards used at strip clubs may satisfy, but it isn’t going to keep them from doing whatever they can, including going a bit John Galt.
                    And then what?
                    Personal responsibility is commended to all of us.
                    One of my relations in the homeless activity knows a guy who is on welfare and gets food stamps, but he sees him show up at the church breakfasts, waddles off to the free lunch, and plays computer games the rest of his life, which is going to be short at the rate he’s putting on weight.
                    Perhaps the inability to see himself as self-supporting and not a load on the rest of us shouldl be considered a disability. You think? But, either which way, he’s contributing to pushback in his little way.

                  • Justin, I too have wondered if we could just ‘break the cycle’, would that work. Many years ago, while working on the NYC subway track replacement on the D line in the East Tremont section of the Bronx. The cops were riding FOUR to a car! Firetrucks with bullet holes in them. Young moms ‘scoring’ drugs, their toddeler and pre-school age children in tow. I used to fantisize about having enough money to buy these poor kids and get them out of there. I’ve always wondered if you could rescue 1 entire generation, just ‘Break the Chain’.

              • Richard Aubrey says:

                Why the defense budget? Which is the cart and which is the horse?
                Why not the Cornhusker Kickback or the Louisiana Purchase, or CA’s high speed rail from noplace to noplace for billions of dollars?
                I believe the Louisiana Purchase was $300 mill. That would buy a lot of treatment.
                But it wouldn’t come out of the defense–‘scuse me, “defense” budget–so that wouldl never do.
                The items mentioned were earmarks, unnecessary spending to buy the Obamacare votes of Sens Landrieu–LA and Nelson–NE.

              • Richard Aubrey says:

                Justin. Is it better if it comes from the defense budget? Just trying to figure out which is the cart and which the horse.

                • No, it’s just the most obvious way that our budget is ridiculously out of balance.

                  • Richard Aubrey says:

                    So what’s the number that would be in balance?

                    • It makes sense to me that we should spend 100% of the required amount to house, feed, and care for our citizens who are unable to care for themselves. Then if you have anything left, you buy some guns if you really think you need to. It just doesn’t make sense to buy lots and lots of weapons to protect our starving, sick, unhoused populace.

                    • Richard Aubrey says:

                      So if we spent the money necessary–presuming we could get the hardest of these cases involuntarily committed–to get them all housed and fed, would you be unhappy if it all came from someplace other than the defense budget?
                      I’m beginning to get the picture.
                      In the late Eighties, a lib group in our state which usually got onto various causes just before they cratered, but whose money-raisers I found out by accident made a commission, put out the horrifying news that defense spending was only 80% as effective at stimulating the economy as other govt spending. The faith-based group I was working with glommed onto this as water in a thirsty land. So I said, well, at twenty cents on the dollar, we can afford twice as much, easily.
                      Dead silence. Loved it. The problem was that, up to this point, defense spending had been implicitly absolutely zero at stimulating the economy. Shortly thereafter, all of the groups peddling this stuff quit, practically the same day. I think they all discovered to their horror they’d been discrediting their previous push. I mean, if rational, ordinary people find we’re being defended at twenty cents on the dollar, it would be hell convincing them to want to stop it altogether. All of which confirmed me in my belief that, if we didn’t have poor people to “need” the money in defense spending, we’d have to invent them.

  16. “Are Men Disposable.” You’ve go to be joking even asking that. I mean, you basically answer your own question in the article that follows. Men are totally measured by their value to soceity (other people). We value the ‘War Hero’ but don’t give a thought to the Millions who died beside him. We honor the men in charge of building great things (Panama Canal , Hoover Dam etc.) but at best, give passing mention to those who died building these projects (The ones who survived especially the ones injured and crippeled, dont even recieve that much). Look, don’t think I’m crying the blues. I realize being born with a Y chromosome, I will never be of equal value as my wife or daughters as far as are Gyno-Centric soceity is concerned. It just breaks my heart to realize that neither will my son or my grandsons.

  17. Richard Aubrey says:

    Ian. Diplomacy only works if the other side thinks taking up arms isn’t worth the trouble. One way to convince them of that is to have an armed force which would make the price for them of taking up arms too high.
    The other way to convince them of that is…. I forgot.
    Somebody must know. Acquiescence, maybe.

  18. Come on. As a so-called disposable man I feel that this male disposability thing is a bit bollocks really.

    • Next time there is a world war and you’ve been conscripted for being male, will you still sing that tune?

      • It would pretty much suck, but then sometimes you just luck out. I wouldn’t blame my male-ness though, or the female-ness of females. I’d be more pissed with either my government or the other government for being a bunch of bell-ends who can’t resolve conflict through diplomacy. I.e., it’s not a punishment for being male, it’s the consequences of being unfortunate to live in a time and place that means your duty is to take up arms.

        • Well I for one would be extremely pissed, and would be fighting tooth n nail to drag women into combat with me. Why should they stay behind whilst men are forced to fight? Hopefully if it ever happens again all able bodied people would be selected and not just the men, but I hope it never ever happens for anyone.

          • Unfourtunatly Archie, here in the good ol’ USA all MALES are required to register with the Selective Service Bureau on their 19th birthday. Faliure to do so can lead you to be turned down for federal student loans or Federal backed home mortgauges. My son, who’s 21 recieved a letter from the federal govt. stating that! Ironically, it came a week after he enlisted!

  19. Richard Aubrey says:

    Years ago, I had a social worker/marriage counselor who was my client, not I his. We talked about various items on the edges of this issue.
    He referred to a couple he was seeing, married three years, in which the guy had been trying to be considerate, only to be told by his wife that his balls had been clipped by…I forget..but as far as his wife was concerned, he didn’t have any.
    Just about ruined the guy. Doing what society told him to do and…he lacks balls.
    So you don’t have to be down and out street guy to get discarded, in one way of speaking.

    • Richard, there’s a quote I read on this very site a little while ago (sorry, I forgot the name of the article) it so resonated with me I wrote it down. It’s credited to someone named Jack Donovan (I honestly don’t have any idea who that is) “A man who is more concerned with being a ‘Good Man’ than being good at being a man makes a very well behaved slave.”

      • It comes up in this interview with Jack Donovan, and it’s in his book.

        • Richard Aubrey says:

          Interesting piece. Not bothering to be PC about anything.
          I recall when, in the Sixties, masculinity became kind of infra dig. And then there was the SNAG, the Sensitive New Age Guy.
          Being Good came from all sides with nothing to oppose it. Propaganda works because it is constant and unopposed. As an example, I once ran into a US citizen in El Salvador who was busted for having half a ton of Warsaw Pact weapons in her root cellar. She said the government propaganda was so consistent and unending it even had her–the rebel–half believing it.
          So a lot of guys got misinformed. And believed it. Took it in good faith.
          I suppose being annoyed at the idea, especially when women saw them trying to be Good and laughed, is justified.

        • Thanks Justin. I just read the piece and it was great!

          • Thanks. I was fascinated with Donovan’s ideas. I thought that he was pretty spot-on about how we define traditional masculinity, though we probably disagree on what to do with that information.

            • Maybe not as far as you think. Look, even though I may disagree with you, sometimes, you strike me as a man who follows his ‘Moral Compass’ and I do respect you for that.

  20. In my psychological practice I see men discarded daily. They experience this as soul destroying, and they know it. Despair and shame precede thoughts of suicide, and sadly some act on this. Others, in righteous indignation, lash out in rage, against the society and the specific classes of people who devalued them. As difficult as it is to witness, I ask myself, if I were repeatedly devalued, discarded, dispossessed, and disposed, would I react any differently?
    The easy “out” is to aim the blame at these men, rather than ask of ourselves, what did we do as a society to disregard the humanity of some – those born male and of low mate value? Where is equality for those we shun? Did we ever get to truly know them? Can we get past whatever imperfections they possess, to search out the beauty they were born with?

    • Graeme, your comment is such a powerful testimony to why the upcoming series about Male Disposability is both valid and needed. I’d love to see a full article from you about your experiences with men around this issue and I hope you’ll consider submitting one for the series.

    • Mark Good says:

      I think most people could get past the imperfections they possess if in fact they did get to know them, but for some reason that seems to take more effort than people are willing to give. People, men specifically, are expected to fit the mold that society dictates. Anything outside of that…

  21. Richard Aubrey says:

    Oh, yeah. The American Civil War casualties, if applied to our population today would be about 8 million dead young men and a substantial number more crippled into social and economic uselessness.
    Things seemed to go along pretty well, except for the bereaved and the hundreds of thousands of women deprived of husband material. But, yeah, we were back and back pretty quickly.

    • In the Ken Burns doc. it was mentioned that at the battle of Antitiem , there were 7,800 casuilities in the first 15 MINUTES! The soliders lined up front knew they didn’t stand much of a chance so they would write their name and hometown on a piece of paper, then pin it on their back so their kin would get word of their death(since they would be buried , unmarked mass grave style, on the battlefield). Since Army regiments in those days were more like groups of local malitias, all the young men of a town could be wiped out in one battle.

  22. Richard Aubrey says:

    Literally speaking, yes. Check out The War of The Triple Alliance. Some reports had as many as 90% of Paraguayan men from fifteen to sixty dead in the war.
    They’re back.
    It’s the women you have to protect.
    So we have two questions: Is it nice to consider men disposable?
    If men or women, one or the other, have to be mostly disposed of due to some catastrophe, which should it be?
    See Paraguay.
    Should men be treated better? Yes. Next question.

    • War is a male concept. War should not exist…….. people should not kill one another to solve a problem or take resources from others etc…. All people should be treated with respect and value not just one gender or one race or one age group or one religious group.

      • I disagree strongly with the idea that war is a male concept, its a human failing, plenty of women cheered men and young boys onto war during WW1 + 2, some women even went around in groups shaming men who objected to conscription or signing up. War is a concept of people who want something someone else has and wants to take it away from them. Some nasty women do this with cunning manipulation, some nasty men do this with force. Both use others (soldiers) to do their dirty work at times.

  23. Mark Good says:

    I know it is hard to understand the pain of not being able to pass on your legacy to a part of you. The pain of knowing you will never experience looking into the eyes of a smaller part of you, what should be a result of the easiest natural process in nature – to procreate. I have known that pain my entire adult life and for some reason it does in fact make me feel less adequate as a man… incomplete.

    • We have a global population of more than 7 billion that’s too much. I’m a woman and I don’t want to have kids…. not in this world. I’m not sure what it is about the world and life that is absolutely worth experiencing to the point of having to bring life into it to experience it too. I have pondered this “need to survive / need to provreate” mechanism all my life since I found out how babies were made and things about the world and I cannot seem to get on the procreation band wagon and I cannot understand all the people who are on it. The world is not a paradise so why do we seem to act as if it is. Maybe it’s dna maybe it’s something else but in my humble opinion procreation is not all that important especially right now. I think adoption and fixing the lives of the humans that already exist is exceedingly more important than just making more of us and as a result pushing ourselves closer to extinction the same thing that we try to avoid by having kids.


  1. […] Note: This story came in response to the call for submissions on the disposability of men. Note that it contains graphic sexual violence and will be disturbing to some […]

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