Boys Will Be Boys. I’d Rather Be a Man.

“Grab them by the p—y. You can do anything.”

Seriously, Mr. Trump? Seriously?


Politics aside, sir, your lewd words appall me. Indeed, your entire approach to women as nothing more than objects to serve your nihilistic appetites churns my stomach. Ironic at first glance, isn’t it, such a claim coming from a man who barters in words of sex and sensuality on a daily basis? But see, here’s the thing. There’s a reason I write the way I do, and on the topics I choose to write about. Can you guess what that reason is, sir? Of course you can. Just like everything else in this broken down world lately, it truly is all about you.

But don’t go feeling too special just yet. My disdain reaches equally to all those of your kind. And believe me, I’ve met and known my share. I know from firsthand experience the detachment from accountability that can come from the billionaire lifestyle. I’ve seen it rot the mind from within. Like a child left unchecked in the candy store, who dares to demand your responsibility? What hand ever existed in your insulated world to slap yours away and teach you right from wrong?

Perhaps that’s the heart of your problem, and of all those who mirror you. You’ve developed no compass to guide you. You’re driven only by your basest hungers run wild, leaving you less emotionally evolved than the poorest vagrant among us. But worse than that, sir, your empathy is broken, and with it your capacity for humanity.

This is why I write like I do, as a counterpoint to your demeaning approach, which lesser men look up to for guidance. Like it or not, you are a public figure on the grandest stage. You’ve forced this on us all. By your own unsavory admission, you’ve proved yourself a bully, like so many others, blinded to the marvels of women in your incessant quest to conquer more of them than the next guy.

You’ve displayed this and more through your own words and conduct, bonding with the other boys in the only way you seem to know how—through marginalization rather than celebration of the most precious resource this world has left to offer. All that self-professed celebrity. All that opportunity. All that entitlement handed you in life. And yet, you used precisely none of it to expand your understanding of the fascinating female mind…only to extend your hand for the groping. It’s disgraceful. But I fear it is also contagious, and it’s most certainly a rapidly spreading disease.

In my short time as an author, I’ve come across countless others who hold themselves to a similar standard as yours. I’ve witnessed grown men promoting their books while actively soliciting nude photos from their fans. I wish I was making it up. I’ve had other men—and I stretch that term to its breaking point just to fit these sad specimens within it—attack me and others rather than facing their own insecurities when afraid their spouse might be straying. Women I see as valued colleagues, they clearly see as property, to be ordered about but never approached or addressed as equals. And science claims the Neanderthal died out…

I’ve lost count of all those for whom I’ve lost respect along the way, despite only ever expecting decency of anyone. We treat women like cattle to be corralled at our leisure, and then wonder why we aren’t taken seriously at our craft.

Blinding, isn’t it, the glaring irony of that plight?

The difference is, of course, that we as men choose to call it down upon ourselves, and have only ourselves to blame. Is it any wonder that change comes so reluctantly when we do so little to demand it? Indeed, when we do so much to stymie it?

The symptoms of our chauvinistic ways are wide-ranging but the sickness is easy to spot. And evidently, no station of society is immune. It begins with a seed of “locker room banter” but quickly spreads into full-blown disrespect. The more likely one is to hide behind the rhetoric of “boys will be boys,” the less likely that person will ever stop. As long as a fraternity exists behind the scenes so adept at culturing the absence of culture, the cycle will continue to perpetuate itself. Those who fear the mysteries of women will seek instead the company of men, immersing themselves in an escalating game of delusion over a prowess that doesn’t exist.

Locker rooms. Country clubs. Capitol Hill. It’s all the same, all variations on that fort we once built in the backyard, replete with “No Girls Allowed” over the door. The difference is, some of us stepped out of that boys’ club years ago, realizing the rules of membership forbade many of the best and brightest among us. We opted to side with the fairer sex. The gentler sex. The sex wielding more might than some will ever have the guts to admit. But I fear we are still woefully outnumbered, as underscored by the vile revelations polluting the news today.

Well it’s time we shout out, “Enough!” And the more collectively, the better. We need to push back against the bullies. I don’t care who they are. It’s time for we men, however many of us remain, to stand up and be counted alongside the women these “boys” would seek to demean. Not as arcane protectors of some damsel in need of our salvation but as equals through and through, side by side and locked in solidarity against this surging cancer of Neolithic behavior that infects us all so long as it infects just one.

Maybe they’re right. Maybe boys really will be boys. And that’s exactly the problem. They don’t grow up, however old they get or whatever position they hold. Fortunately, change need not start at the top and trickle its way down. Nor need it come from elders who would abuse their clout and power like adolescents run amok. Perhaps this time it should work its way up the ladder, beginning with all of us. Today.

This has nothing to do with politics; it never did. It has to do with character and I, for one, have had enough. Each of us makes his own choice whether to demean and derogate or to hold ourselves and others to a standard of equality. Race, gender, religion, all of it. We are the end product of our actions, and of our words. I am proud to use mine for advancing the humanization of sensuality, and for exploring the endless potential of emotional and physical love. And from this day on, whenever I doubt the potency of such efforts, I will think back upon the words that slithered from your lips and the wealth of depravity they convey.

This is no “distraction” from the vital matters impacting our world today. This is our world, and these are the very issues that comprise it. Broken as it may be, it’s the only one we have. And it appears there’s still so much to be done. An example needs to be set, not by abstaining from praise for such lecherous conduct but by rising to vocally condemn it.

In a world of hangers-on, I’d rather stand apart. And I know many others would as well. Shun us, target us, revoke our perks of membership. Whatever you do, just don’t forget to change the sign over the door to your little club. Actually, no. Let us do it for you.

“No Girls Allowed. No Real Men Interested.”

A “MasterClass” in Subservience?

Let me say this up front, please pardon the rant to come. As a general rule, it isn’t my style to dig into the business of others but I do feel a protective instinct toward my fellow writers—especially the gifted and less experienced among us.
Here it is, a humble opinion for whatever it’s worth. Something really rubs me the wrong way about this James Patterson “co-author competition” and those of its kind every time they spam my social media page. Yes, “there are a lot of people who have the talent.” Ironically, Mr. Patterson is not one of them. And honestly, given his reputation as a notorious hack who outsources every word he puts his name on, I’m not entirely sure why any legitimate new author would risk attaching their name to his for one phantom shot at glory.
Seriously, $90 for what amounts to a lottery ticket granting the winner the “opportunity” to write his next book for him and put your name under his? Let’s have some dignity, guys. The sob stories and con jobs I see littering the comments on these posts only further the reality that this entire scam is a last-ditch dramatic effort, a plea cast into the void that blind luck will work where hard work has failed.
“Oh, Mr. Patterson, you are such a wonderful man and writer…”
“Oh, Mr. Patterson, I have always idolized you and looked up to you, and named my first three children after you…”
Enough! Let’s be clear about this, I don’t begrudge the man his empire built on the backs of others. There is definite genius in his method. Still, I would like to believe that any true author who has the talent and a vision of their own, however rough the road they’ve traveled, values their ability and place in the world more than this. I support the little guy, however big he may become. He (or, of course, she) is the one who did the work and survived the strafing gunfire to crawl back up out of the trenches. The one who made a name of their own without any interest in having someone else do it for them. Why hitch your rising star to a sinking ship? Why pay through the nose for the illusory hope of leveraging your own future to line another’s pockets?
It is “programs” like these that play on the dreams of so many—the quick strike of riches we seem to believe any brush with celebrity surely brings. They blind us to the glaring reality of their substance with frilly promises of things that never will be. They prey on the allure of wealth without the work—perhaps the only skill their kind are truly qualified to teach. But at the end of the day, who wins and who loses?
It is one thing to throw your money at the chance to learn writing from a man notorious for not writing. I doubt that’s the greatest harm that could come of it. No, perhaps the greatest threat of all would be the prospect of actually winning. Of becoming the next in line to have their dream hollowed out, fed on by the vampires of verbiage and then left behind, forgotten, a husk too broken to refill.
Take your chance if you must. Line up, buy a ticket, and pray to the gods of writing that they deliver you the quick score. Offer yourself up as the sacrifice of the day. It’s undoubtedly easier than waking to continue the good fight tomorrow. I know we live in a reality TV world and there may be no going back from this ledge. But ask yourself this—do you want to be famous, or do you want to be legitimate?
Sure the two can co-exist. When done right, they often do. But you don’t gain respect by achieving fame, especially not of the fifteen minute variety. You earn your fame through the respect you deserve. I’m sure a lot of us writers often ask ourselves, “why do we do it?” It’s a reality check that can’t be checked often enough.
Do you do it out of love for the craft? Out of compulsion that cannot be quelled? If so, then you already have my admiration and that of the industry at large.
Do you do it because it would be cool to be rich and shoot to a mountaintop with no particular view? Well then, I’ve got a class you might be interested in…