There are many men being mocked for realizing how they might have contributed to sexual harassment, assault, or rape and saying they want to change/modify behaviors and attitudes. Sadly, the mentality of “boys will be boys” is rampant in the world.
“Boys will be boys” doesn’t take into account that some behaviors should not be tolerated. I don’t want my daughters to violate other people. Should boys be permitted to do this simply because they have been labeled “more visual”, “more physical”, or “more active”? There are biological differences between men and women. Yes, men, on average, tend to be physically stronger than women. It is a byproduct of increased testosterone. These differences do not excuse inappropriate behaviors or attitudes.
When we tell women to buck up, to just accept this language, we do a disservice to both men and women. We aren’t challenging men to be better and we are making women endure objectification.
“Locker room talk” doesn’t have to be crass. You can talk about beauty in non-lustful ways. For those who are Christian, we are charged to do this!
“Let no evil talk come out of your mouths, but only what is useful for building up, as there is need, so that your words may give grace to those who hear. And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with which you were marked with a seal for the day of redemption. Put away from you all bitterness and wrath and anger and wrangling and slander, together with all malice, and be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ has forgiven you.” Eph. 4:29-32 (NRSV)
Ephesians 5:4 – Neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient: but rather giving of thanks.
Colossians 3:8-10 – But now ye also put off all these; anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy communication out of your mouth. (emphasis on filthy communication)
Colossians 4:6 – Let your speech [be] alway with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man.
2 Timothy 2:16 – But shun profane [and] vain babblings: for they will increase unto more ungodliness.
Matthew 12:36 – But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment.
James 3:10 – Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not so to be.
Philippians 4:8 – Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things [are] honest, whatsoever things [are] just, whatsoever things [are] pure, whatsoever things [are] lovely, whatsoever things [are] of good report; if [there be] any virtue, and if [there be] any praise, think on these things.
Can we make jokes and have humor? Yes, but as we see in Eph. 5:4, we are not to have filthy jesting. I have partaken of such humor unfortunately. I am called to repent and be transformed in the renewing of my mind though. I need to do this. If I make crass jokes am I being loving? No. I am known as a Christian through love, self-sacrifice, and encouragement. It is necessary we do this.
We should not sit idly by and accept lewd speech as acceptable “male” talk. Even women can foul in this area. Women shouldn’t objectify men either. We are to be self-controlled in word, deed, and thoughts.
“The [intrinsically] good man produces what is good andhonorable and moral out of the good treasure [stored] in his heart; and the [intrinsically] evil man produces what is wicked and depraved out of the evil [in his heart]; for his mouth speaks from the overflow ofhis heart.” Lk. 6:45 (biblegateway.com)
“10 Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.
11 Cast me not away from thy presence; and take not thy holy spirit from me.
12 Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free spirit.
13 Then will I teach transgressors thy ways; and sinners shall be converted unto thee.”
When we alter our thoughts, our words will change because our hearts have been revived towards purity and holiness. When our words change, we will begin to see our actions following suit. Then society will be transformed by the power of the Holy Spirit and his immeasurable grace. Praise be to God, the author and perfecter of our faith.