February 19, 2010 3:10 AM

Commentary: The true meaning of manhood

We — and here, I mean both he and I as father and son and you and I as a society — have talked a lot in recent years about the meaning of manhood in an era of women ascendant and cracked glass ceilings. Some of us insist that meaning is found in a man's toughness, his imperviousness to slings and arrows and feelings like pain or love. Some believe it is found in a man's violence, his capacity to hit and kick with force, to shield and defend what matters to him. Some argue that it is found in a man's strength, his ability to lift and carry, to push and to break. I've always felt none of those things matters unless they are in service to something that matters more.

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