Our coach, Will Scoggins, had watched our fight from a distance, grinning.He told me that the process of developing underlying trust as a teaminvolved spilling your guts along the way, even showing raw emotion. Hehad made clear from the very beginning that this was about rowing, but itwas also about growing up and learning, the hard way, how to avoid makingexcuses. The payoff was that we could use this wisdom in any situation lateron in life. To his way of thinking, the fight was a sign of progress—a sign of growing faith in one another.The fight on a cemetery hill with my rowing buddy summarized the kind of men’s movement that I respected a heck of a lot more than what I heardaccompanied by a lute.
In many ways, the Good Men Project was born not out of the men’smovement—or men’s rights movement, masculism, anti-misandry, orMGTOW (men going their own way)—but out of the brutal facts of our ownlives as fathers, husbands, and guys trying to make a living. In fact, I hadnever even heard of any of these philosophies until I started writing aboutmy own life and publishing the stories of other men. In the process Isomehow got myself in the middle of a political issue that to me completelymisses the fundamental challenge for men in 2011. There are plenty of waysthe law (particularly family law) and popular culture, as represented by themedia, have limited men. But we have no one to blame but ourselves. Wemade the laws. We control the media. We have, in the end, suffered too longin silence. Too many of us have knuckled under and become absenteefathers.Mothers have more rights than fathers, more women are going to college,and Oprah rules the gender discourse. So what? Do