from google, the definition of the phrase, “Boys will be boys” is ‘used to express the view that mischievous or childish behavior is typical of boys or young men and should not cause surprise when it occurs.’ Now, this phrase is used for many instances, and NONE, i believe, are okay. As a womanist, a feminist, someone who wants to see the dismantling of gender roles and more freedom to express yourself based on YOU, not based on standards someone has set in advance, I cannot sit here and pretend to agree with you Phil (DeFranco), which is fine, I’m glad we’re talking about this.
The phrase “Boys will be boys” is toxic. It is used to excuse behavior that would be called “unladylike” and is sometimes outright WRONG. Let’s give an example, yours really (Philip DeFranco) of two youngsters messing around and “play fighting” because that’s somehow seen as “normal,” someone says “Oh, boys will be boys.” One of the boys gets hurt, and they say, “Boys will be boys, he’ll be okay” this could ultimately lead to a lack of trust in authority. This exact subject is one we covered in my CHILDHOOD EDUCATION classes in high school. We cannot excuse the acts of some based on expectations. What’s the rule? No roughhousing, no hurting someone else. When someone hurts someone else or breaks the rule, we need to enforce that rule. If it’s an accident one time, it will lead to carelessness. We cannot excuse this type of behavior, and I will say that until my face turns blue.
Here are some things i’d like to establish:
1) Gender is fluid.
2) Babies have no concept of gender
3) Boys are not naturally rougher than girls
4) Allowing children to harm one another is not okay.
Now that these things are laid out, we’re going to dismiss the whole “BUT WHAT IF” thing about gender identity. For the moment, we will assume that these are Cisgender children, living their lives. If a girl hits a boy, she should get in trouble because she hit him, and as people we need to talk about our problems instead of resorting to violence. If a boy hits a boy, if a girl hits a girl, if a boy hits a girl, these situations are all equal when we talk about what should be allowed/excused. Nobody should be hitting anybody! Now, for the whole “but boys aren’t supposed to hit girls” argument, we don’t talk about this because we hate men, we talk about this because we’ve allowed men to get away with things for so long that we have to train them to be better communicators and playmates. We don’t preach “GIRLS CANT HIT BOYS” because girls really don’t do that very often, and when they do, we need to condemn those actions. VIOLENCE IS NEVER THE ANSWER. If we let boys get away with hitting girls “because they like you”, they’ll never learn to be good people, good men, good boyfriends, etc. Onward, I wanna talk about the whole “roughhousing is normal for boys” thing. This is not true, girls roughhouse too, but we teach them to be “civilized,” so are we allowing boys to be apes? neanderthals? uncivilized? We should not stand for letting people get away with not teaching our boys basic human decency because of their sex. “Boys will be boys” is a common tool utilized by caregivers/instructors who don’t want to believe that boys are anything more than macho, rough, and “manly” by nature and girls are pretty princesses for show. Girls are powerful, boys are emotional, and the similarities go on and on. If we look at one another not by our differences but by our similarities, it has been proven to give better inclusion results, better respect results! By letting people profit off of “Boys will be boys”, nobody wins. NOBODY.
Sincerely, a learning sociologist.