I was a kid in the 1980s. We had hair metal, Boy George, George Michael, etc. And although not every musician was gay, even those who were gay, still recieved a great deal of respect. Hell, you would have to had been blind to look at a man like Boy George, and not seen homosexuality. It was the 1980s, man. An era punctuated by faux red leather, hair spray, and rubix cubes. It was a brave new world. We adored our gay celebrities. Hell, we had Liberace! A man who was in fact so openly gay, I believe Milo Yiannopoulos secretly blushes with envy.
But even through the flamboyance, these gay men were still in fact, men. In high school in the 1990s, I had gay friends. I’m a Gen X’er. We were edgy, we accepted anyone, and anything. We lived by the very Aleister Crowley (Thelemic) philosophy “Do what thou will.” Our acceptance was our defiance. We cared not what adults did behind closed doors. We saw a future where our gay peers would have the same rights that we then enjoyed. And I take pride in helping to see that reality come to fruition.
And yet, somewhere along that path, men changed. But not for the better. Enter the “Beta Male.” What is a beta male you ask? According to Urban Dictionary’s definition:
An unremarkable, careful man who avoids risk and confrontation. Beta males lack the physical presence, charisma and confidence of the Alpha male.
Wow, they got that right. I think it was somewhere around 2006, I first noticed young men with “pretty” hair, wearing women’s pants. This left me confused and perplexed. I recall even asking gay friends. “What’s up with young guys wearing girl’s pants?” The reply usually went something like – “Oh my God, I don’t know!”
Even my very openly gay peers were confused by this.
Look at the very term: Beta is the second letter of the Greek alphabet. So, a simple beta male definition is this: betas are the secondary class of men in society. They receive second place in leadership roles, social settings and life in general. While alphas blaze their own trail and create trends, beta males follow in alpha footsteps.
As men, being gay or straight, we’re programmed with a certain amount of testosterone. This gives us the desire to lead, fight, protect, hunt, gather and…..to be men. It makes no difference if we are gay or straight. We want to be masculine and take risks. Even the gayest of the gay, will at times need a good stiff drink, and a roll in the hay. His DNA calls, regardless of sexual preference. Yet to the beta male, these ideas are not only foreign, they’re terrifying. No, the beta male is not a risk taker. He’s a walking liability. If you’re female, and find yourself in a relationship with a beta, he in fact, is the risk. To your safety.
I’ll give you an example. I once befriended one of these “betas.” I was in a relationship with a young woman I adored. She had friends. Friends have boyfriends. One of these boyfriends was a beta. By no fault of my own, this freak of evolution made his way into my personal space. On an evening when yours truly was not present, there was an incident. A bad one. An ex-boyfriend came calling. In a drunken rage, he persisted to split her eye open, while her beta, man child, fled the scene in pursuit of his own safety. Yours truly (myself) then spent the better part of a week in rabid search of the abuser. Man child just couldn’t stack up when the chips were down.
The word shameful is an almost blasphemous understatement. Yet, this is the modus operandi of the beta. Danger equals run. Forget the beautiful woman whom you share a bed with. This same woman who gives you her body at night, and dreams of a future with you. That guy is scary, “Run doood!”
Yet I see it among men my age as well. I hear things like, “I’d love to own a handgun, but my wife won’t let me.” Men who are afraid to excercise a mere opinion, in their own homes. Or, heaven forbid, live on mutual terms with their female counterparts. No, they avoid conflict at all costs. Even when this conflict is a civil discussion, where they may be forced to man up and voice an opinion. That causes feelings, sometimes feelings are scary. Feelings equal conflict. Conflict equals Run. And when they’re not running away, they’re avoiding at all costs.
I’ve seen these same men let their wives go to bars with men they’ve never met. “She’d never cheat on me.” OK guy, you go to the bar with a random hottie sometime. What’s that? Oh right, you have housework to do, silly me.
To the beta, masculinity is not only foreign, it’s the enemy. It’s something they can never be. The idea of firing a rifle, or killing their own food, is on par with shoving a rocket up his ass and flying to the moon. It’s never going to happen, no matter how big his girlfriend’s strap-on is. So they view these things as outdated, mysogonistic. “and like, soooooo 20th Century.”
I’m not the most masculine guy. I stand five foot ten, and weigh a whopping 160 pounds soaking wet. But I’ve known danger, my friends. And I’ve known fear. I remember when my son was still a baby. We were caught in a bad storm. I remember parking my car near an overpass, while a tornado raged near by. We played peek-a-boo, while he smiled and laughed. I was terrified, he was not. As men, we can know fear and mortal terror. We cannot, however, run. There are times when the storm, or battle will rage, and we must look the Devil in the eyes while the bullets soar past our face. It’s not an easy task, but it’s our duty.
To the beta, this is not possible. To him, self-preservation is key, no matter the cost. Yet there’s a vast difference between “macho” and masculine. Masculine is natural. “Macho” is insecurity. Normal men see through it. It’s the loud, chest-pounding, obnoxious guy who generally falls first. His fragile ego is like glass. I put him below the beta. At least the beta knows his insignificance.
However, the beta respects women (as we all should). But his “respect” is a product of fear. Surely, he can’t have his own opinion. Opinions lead to conversation. Conversations lead us to emotion. Raw emotion leads to passion. Passion can soon spiral out of control into responsibility. This has no place in the beta’s life. A dull, meager existence, void of conflict is the end game. “Sure, I’ll wear a pink hat and hold your umbrella.”
“By all means, go to the bar with a strange guy. Dinner will be ready when you get home.”
Yet, I like betas. They’ve thinned the competition. Trust me, guys. Your girlfriends’ know you’re pussies. You’re a place-holder. A doormat, if you will. You’re not permanent. She will find a real man, eventually. You’ll fail her when the chips are down. At some point, she’ll meet someone else. A man wearing work boots, with dirty, bleeding hands. The type of man who comes home smelling like diesel fuel and rust. She’ll look at you one night and wonder “Is this an investment, or a liability?”
Your pretty hair and girlish figure won’t cut it anymore. The faded Obama sticker on your Prius will come to represent an experiment in manhood that has run it’s course. She’ll move on to better things. You’ll be reduced to the company of your male peers. Sitting in coffee houses, discussing Austrian economics, and the future of socialism. She needs someone who can make her feel safe. She wants to feel feminine, and you just don’t make the cut.
It’s quite obvious, I’m no feminist. Nor am I a sexist. I view women as my equal. I also don’t claim to understand women. But I understand raw emotion, and human instinct. We like to feel secure. I know this, because I was once a child. I remember the security I felt in the presence of my elder males. Be it my father or my uncles. I remember the smell of motor oil, and black powder. I remember my father’s tattered work boots, or his Ruger revolver lying on the kitchen table. And I remember the sense of security I felt in his presence.
I’ll tell you a secret, fellas. Women like this feeling too. No matter how much they hate to admit it. They want a man who will hold them close at night, and make them feel like the queen of their own world. I can assure you, no beta male cuckboy is fit for a throne in their eyes.
Nor are most of you even fit to kiss the very ground she walks on. But they’ll let you, for now……..
So hang on tight to your soy mocha latte, and have a bag packed. You’re not permanent, you’re just a human fidget spinner, to be played with and forgotten. A Manthropological mistake.