Pride Boys, Proud Boys and Tom Boys

Most of us are expected to favor one of these three options

Very Unpopular Strong Opinions Blog by Christyl Rivers

Boys will be noise

Last week in Idaho, the terrorist group known as Patriot Front failed to unleash hateful havoc at a Pride Month event.

They failed, maybe because they were just boys, and deep inside they had nothing to feel very proud or patriotic about? In the end, they got some negative publicity, and made some noise, but did not accomplish much else.

Even though the Patriot Front, is not the Proud Boys, I am somehow sure they are not real men — they are petulant boys — and they have no pride in the sense that progressives do. Those on the correct side of history struggle for equality, those who struggle for supremacy hold us all back.

Being proud of supporting equality is human nature. Being proud of being an idiot, unfortunately, is also human nature. It’s about belonging, and tribe. So long as our societal ‘norms’ feature beliefs and ideology that have been proven wrong again and again as acceptable, we’re stuck.

Homosexuality has been intensely studied and found extremely useful for community support, coevolution, and the larger ‘tribe.’ Survival, in other words. Of course, having strong women unashamed at having agency would also support survival.

Supporting antiracism and anti-sexism efforts is a long haul journey that our species achieves slowly. It often feels like one step forward, two steps back.

Inevitable backlash follows every prize attained. Look at women’s choice. Look at the emboldened savagery of ‘don’t say gay,’ or attacks on teaching the truth about race and legal history.

Pride is nothing to be ashamed of, and yet, we don’t seem to claim patriotism with the same fervor when we are aspirational about our nation becoming more diverse, more tolerant, less violent, and more sane.

Tom boys: why aren’t they called “Jane boys?”

I was raised with such internalized misogyny that being called “a girl” was a very brutal and humiliating accusation. It’s better now, but we can look at these so called “proud” boys and see that their version of “what is a boy, what is a girl, what is a man, and what is a woman?” are all based on rigid inflexible intolerance of “other.” Hierarchy, really.

Maybe you have never wondered why a ‘boyish’ girl is called a Tom boy. It’s weird, isn’t it? She is (usually) born a biological girl, but instead of being called a Jane girl, or even a Joe girl, she is a default “boy.”

That says so very much about what we historically prefer.

I will never have the pride and confidence of males my age. Our developmental psychology is not as inflexible as a hate groups, perhaps, but it is an individual reality for everyone raised in a very intolerant culture.

I absolutely believe in biology. If we paid more attention to it, I think we could learn biology invents all manner of accommodating cooperation. One thing biology does not support is outliers that disrupt the social contract by demanding special influence.

Prideful patriots

It is well past time to start waving our flags with furious pride. We patriots who aspire to a true democracy, an end to bigotry, a well spring of love for both creation and creator, have got to start demonstrating that tolerating intolerance is shameful and against nature.

The very domination and exploitation of Earth displays that we have very serious lessons to learn about pride and confidence. We must learn fast.

When we can learn from nature, we rightly see that diversity, and biodiversity are the twin foundations of what makes all life sustainable, tolerable, survivable, and so very, very beautiful.



Ecopsychologist, Writer, Farmer, Defender of reality, and Cat Castle Custodian.

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Christyl Rivers, Phd.

Ecopsychologist, Writer, Farmer, Defender of reality, and Cat Castle Custodian.