We are now in the era of super-duper machismo, with Donald Trump leading the charge. As one of his aides recently said, “The Alpha male is back!” Forget the orange hair and bottle tan, Trump is the most macho-acting man to take the reins of power since wood-chomping Ronald Reagan. He has no problems “down there,” as he announced, and he’s supremely confident, takes no guff from anyone, and of course, has oodles of the do-re-mi.
But it’s not just Trump. Bill O’Reilly, currently unemployed, has had an unapologetic, in-your-stupid-liberal-face personality for years. And then there’s Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, currently the biggest box office draw in the world. Or the whole crew of the most popular movie in the galaxy, The Fate of the Furious. We haven’t had so many icons of virility since Rocky roamed the earth.
To the point, and it’s a thorny one: If you are a male in a wheelchair, and lack the use of some of your extremities, how can you project a manly image in such an overtly masculine world? Of course, there are male chair users doing uber-aggressive sports, like indoor rugby, indoor basketball, and indoor bull fighting, for all I know. But how does the average male wheelchair user broadcast his masculinity? Don’t say through quiet courage or stoic mettle or magnanimous empathy for others. That stuff only cuts it in a feminist age, which may be coming soon, so stash those virtues away.
Let’s face it, for most of us, it is hard playing a tough guy in a chair. Everything you need to fake your way through a tough guy confrontation — the eye-to-eye glare, the menacing, too-close body language, the ability to snatch a chair and whack your opponent over the head — are all hard to do while sitting. You may have once been in a situation where you wanted to hit some punk