The Democratic Party Needs to Talk About Men’s Issues

Fatherly | 7/31/2019 | Andrew Yarrow
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There are many possible issues for Democratic candidates to discuss, but one set that is almost certain to be absent: the myriad problems facing American men. The very phrase “men’s issues” conjures up images of bitter, angry white guys who fail to realize their roles as oppressors. In the era of #MeToo, even talking about men’s problems can brand one as tone-deaf and sexist.

Also in the era of #MeToo, millions of American men are becoming disconnected from work, children, and family, suffering from poor physical and mental health, and facing issues of addiction and isolation. Yet, most Democrats — who purport to speak up for those who are struggling — seem to go out of their way to avoid these matters. Instead of offering policy solutions, they offer rhetoric, often in the form of concerns about “traditional” beliefs and norms of masculinity. Meanwhile, problems persist. And problems facing men of color continue to be seen only through the lens of race, not gender.

Time - Men - Women - Democrats - Republicans

Once upon a time, men and women were equally likely to vote for Democrats and Republicans. That began to change with Ronald Reagan, the idea of a “gender voting gap” emerged, and that gap widened to 24 percentage points in the 2016 presidential election. Since the gap is even larger between white men and women, it might be renamed the “intersectional” gap, after the academically hip phrase meaning that race, gender, class, and other attributes must be examined together. It is widely believed that the 2020 presidential race will hinge on the votes of suburban moms, so it makes sense that Democrats would work hard to shore up if not expand their traditional base. That said, in largely ignoring issues unique to nearly half the population, the miss a massive and critical opportunity.

Democrats are right that we need...
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