"You seem stressed that you gotta be acting that way."
Former President Barack Obama and Golden State Warrior Steph Curry discussed the issues surrounding masculinity at the annual My Brother's Keeper summit in Oakland. During the discussion, Obama insisted on the importance of changing the societal view of young men's display of vulnerability. “The notion that somehow defining yourself as a man is dependent on, are you able to put somebody else down, able to dominate… that is an old view,” Obama said.
He also addressed racism's role in Black men's apparent need to "prove" themselves with aggression.“Racism historically in this society sends a message that you are ‘less than,’ ” Obama said. “We feel we have to compensate by exaggerating stereotypical ways men are supposed to act. And that’s a trap.”
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The subject of toxic masculinity in rap music was also mentioned as it perpetuates these negative stereotypes, according to Obama. He addressed the way women are depicted in music videos as proof of the problem. “Ironically, that shows the vulnerability you feel,” Obama said. “If you were very confident about your sexuality, you don’t have to have eight women around you twerking… you seem stressed that you gotta be acting that way.”
“I got one woman who I’m very happy with,” he added.