‘Be A Man,’ The Biggest 21st Century Scam!

I was late for work. You see, I’m always late for work. I try. Believe me, I try. I wake on time and start getting ready earlier than the average person but somehow, I never beat the clock. My eyebrows either take longer than necessary or I can’t decide what to wear. Other times, it’s because my shoes are very dead and it’s taking too long to revive them. 

I had managed to get on a bus going to Oshodi 10 minutes to work time and I knew there was no way in the world I’d get there on time. We got to Charity bus stop and some people wanted to get down, three men. In Lagos, most times, the bus doesn't stop completely when passengers want to alight. It keeps moving, though not so fast. Two of them jumped out of the bus but the third could not. He kept appealing to the driver to stop. You see, Lagos conductors and drivers have no joy. They were born angry! That was when the angry driver said it, 

‘My friend go down. No be man you be?’


‘Be A Man,’ The Biggest 21st Century Scam


He did get down after many tries and after we had long passed his bus stop. I decided immediately that I was going to make this post. It’s been many months since then but I’m doing it now. Better late than never no?

That’s not the first time I’ve seen someone do it, bully a man because of something they don’t want to do or cannot do because ‘be a man’. What does it even mean to be a man? Not cry in public or even ever? Not let a woman ‘control’ you? Not show pain? Suffer and smile? Never show weakness? Lift weights? Save the day no matter how discomforting or inconveniencing it is? Be the hero no matter what it costs? Never express emotions? Not take insults from a woman? Jump out of a moving bus? Seriously? 

Dear man, as long as there is a penis in-between your legs, you are a man. You do not have to be it. You are it. As long as you are not lucky enough to have a veejay and boobs, you are a man. Okay, that was a joke but you get my point, no? There is absolutely nothing to show or prove. You do not need validation. It’s society’s way to control you as it wants to control everything there is. It is all a scam, the biggest 21st century scam there is, having to struggle to be what you already are.


‘Be A Man,’ The Biggest 21st Century Scam


Dear society, be decent enough to respect people’s decisions to do something or not to. Be wise enough to know that everyone has the right to do whatever and be whatever as long as it doesn’t in any way endanger the life of others or go against the law. Who makes the manual for how a woman or man should be? What happens if we do not follow the ‘manual’? We’ll probably stop functioning or breakdown like machines when not used according to how the manual says?

Life is too beautiful for limitations. We were all created to live freely, especially as adult. Do not carry an unnecessary baggage. If you must, do not put the baggage on another. ‘Enjoy’ it alone. We should let people do what they want to do without looking at them through the stereotype lense and telling them if it's what they should be doing or not; if they are being a man or woman or not.

There is no being a man or a woman. There's being human and that’s good enough!
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2 comments:

  1. I was having this same conversation with a friend of mine. I particularly love what American actor Justin Baldoni is doing with regards to this topic. His #manenough campaign makes a lot of sense. A man is allowed to be human too and to show emotions.

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    1. Exactly! I just googled him. He makes a lot of sense.

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