The Topic Of Hypermasculinity Within The Black Community
A clip of two major leagues baseball players, Ozzie Albies and Ronald Acuna embracing has gone viral on Instagram.
The tender moment caught the attention of commentators who joked that Acuna Jr was stressed and Ozzie was giving him a massage.
Hypermasculinity is a psychological term for the exaggeration of male stereotypical behavior, such as an emphasis on physical strength, aggression, and sexuality.
It was later revealed that Acuna had just found out that his mother had passed and his friend was consoling him. This sparked outrage and debate on social media. Many were angry at the commentators for their insensitive comments and demanded that they apologize to the players. Others felt like the men were displaying homosexual tendencies despite finding out the circumstances.
Comments such as:
Real men don’t hug up with other men
They doing the most
Society is trying to emasculate the black man
This has been a common narrative with in not only the African American community, but other cultures that deem any affection shown from one man to another as gay.
Speaking specifically on the black race in general, there is often a history of black men being told to control their emotions. If they cry, hug, console another man, are friends with a gay man, etc, they are told it’s gay. Any emotion other than anger will get you “labeled”.
This is a common theme that was also played out when actor Terry Crews confessed that he was sexual molested by a powerful Hollywood producer. Crews was bashed by many African Americans because he is a “big guy” and should have stomped the guy out. He was labeled as being soft and “selling out”, being “gay for pay”, choosing his career over his dignity. Russell Simmons advised him to drop the case against his abuser. 50 Cent even chimed in with a Instagram rant.
Many came to Terry’s defense and commended him for keeping his cool.
It has been said that our race as a whole has a ton of work to do. The subject of Hypermasculity is just scratching the surface. While many black women feel like this “training” that black men receive from the time they are young boys, has done more damage than good. Producing a generation of emotionally detached males. Many African American men feel like they are in a fight to hang on to what’s left of masculinity. They, like many others, feel like society pressures men to look and act more feminine. Showing affection towards another male crosses boundaries.
As far as the Braves team mates, media reports have recently changed to reflect that Acuna Jr’s mother is alive and well. So what we have now is two men simply showing affection for no apparent reason. Does this sway your opinion on the matter? Sound off in the comments.