Letter: Men behaving hazardously

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The Independent Online
Sir: The onslaught continues. The Royal College of Nursing is the latest body to chastise the male sex for "behaving badly" ("Men really are behaving badly - and only women can save them", 27 August). Real men must fight back now if they are to reverse the dangerous tendency to feminise all behaviour.

According to the report from the College's Men's Health Forum, we men tend to see our bodies as machines, "focusing on being fit, strong. energetic, and in control". Good. We are also less likely to seek help for problems because of our need to feel self-sufficient. Excellent. In an age when individual autonomy is being eroded by increasing state intervention, it is precisely these qualities which should be held up as an example to both men and women.

If greater risk-taking leads to an earlier death, so be it. Social, scientific, and artistic experimentation have always been generated in the male-dominated public sphere. The supposed feminine attributes of restraint and safety- consciousness are positively dangerous. These qualities are a recipe for a stagnant, dull world, where everyone lives until they are at least 120.

HUGH PETO

Edinburgh

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