Cartoon: Toxic Masculinity Stew

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Transcript of cartoon

At the top of the strip, there’s a drawing of various unidentifiable shapes floating in a liquid in a pot. Lettering on top of the drawing, in cheerfully cartoony letters, says “Toxic Masculinity Stew.”

Panel 1
A man in a chef’s shirt talks directly to the viewer. He has a mustache, is bald, and looks to be middle-aged but vigorous. He’s holding a long spoon in one hand and making a “thumb’s up” sign at the viewers with his other hand; there are various bowls arrayed in front of him, with neon green stuff in the bowls, and a big stew pot to his right. (Throughout this strip, all colors are a bit desaturated and dull, other than the neon green.)
CHEF: Welcome! Today we’ll be making “toxic masculinity stew.” Yum!

Panel 2
The chef is stirring some neon green stuff in a pan.
CHEF: We’ll start by sautéing some feelings. We’ll bury these at the bottom of the pot, so no one will ever see them!

Panel 3
The chef hold out a neon-green egg towards the viewer. The egg is visibly cracked.
CHEF: Add a delicate sense of manhood. The slightest thing can make boys feel that this has been shattered! What fun!

Panel 4
The Chef mixes something in a bowl.
CHEF: In a separate bowl, put ht eidea that “the sex” is something held by women. Mix it with the belief that if a man can’t get “the sex” from a woman, one way or the other… Then he’s not a real man at all!

Panel 5
From above the pot, we see the chef’s hand holding a shaker (like a salt shaker) and sprinkling neon green specs into the stew.
CHEF: Now sprinkle in lots of gear of being soft or gentle or vulnerable. Nothing spoils this dish quicker than boys accepting these parts of themselves!

The Chef holds out a spoon towards the viewer. The spoon is dripping with a thick, neon-green liquid.
CHEF: Simmer for 10-40 years and there you have it… a lovely toxic masculinity stew! It tastes repulsive and bitter, but don’t worry. We’ll force it down.

A tiny panel below the bottom of the strip shows a woman yelling at the cartoonist.
WOMAN: Criticizing how society harms men means you’re anti-male!

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102 Responses to Cartoon: Toxic Masculinity Stew

  1. 101
    Mandolin says:

    Gracchi – I see in passing you are addressing me by name. I want to make it clear so that you don’t waste your time: when I said I was no longer interested in conversing with you on this topic due to your behavior, I meant it – I’m no longer reading your comments on this thread.

  2. 102
    Gracchi says:

    Richard Jeffrey Newman,

    I indeed do not have the time to provide citations for all of these claims, although I am willing to make an effort to show evidence for one such claim, if this is requested in good faith. I thought that the person that I was debating with might want to choose one (strong) claim of mine that they would disagree with and challenge me on that.

    By giving a list, I tried to maximize the ability for others to find a claim of mine that they think they can effectively debate against and/or give evidence against.


    Are women with a medical condition not cis women, then?

    In the context of that sentence, they are cis women with a medical condition that caused something abnormal to happen. In the context of the type ‘cis women,’ they may not have all the traits that make up that type (although that depends on the exact medical condition).

    Those medical conditions are biological, too, so presumably they should be included in our understanding of the natural variation of cis people.

    This is really a linguistic debate at this point.

    I consider it implicitly assumed that when we talk about the way in which a being or thing works, we are talking about the situation where the mechanism works correctly and/or is not broken. However, in other contexts we are much more permissive about using the term when the being or thing is not working correctly or is broken.

    For example, these two sentences appear contradictory, but can both be used in English:
    – A car has wheels
    – This vandalized car has no wheels

    The first sentence is talking about cars in the context of typology, defining a car by the minimally required traits that make it function in a way that we consider to be car-like. In this context, a vehicle with no wheels is not a car.

    The second sentence describes a specific object in the context of what it was and/or what it could be, which allows us to call it a car, even if it doesn’t have the minimally required traits to be of the type ‘car.’

    So ‘car’ in the first sentence doesn’t actually mean the same as ‘car’ in the second sentence. It is a different linguistic construct, for which we use the same term.

    There are some who have argued that we should not have these kinds of ambiguities, complexities and words that have different meaning based on context. However, AFAIK all natural language have these issues. We could instead use either a controlled language or a formal language, which tend to disallow many ambiguities and complexities.

    However, I suspect that none of the people on this forum want to learn such a language or want to be bound by its limitations (which are severe). If we stick to English, then your criticism is invalid, because one can both be respectful to women with a medical condition by calling them women, while nevertheless still making a trait that they do not have a part of the type ‘woman.’

    Doing what you suggest is fundamentally destructive to the ability to have types at all. I’ll explain with the car example. If we change the type ‘car’ to also include objects that do not have wheels or any other elements that make a car function, then anything can be called a car. My house can then be called a car (and no, I do not live in a car :P ). Because I consider this impractical, I want to types to refer to the minimally correct functioning object or being.