In his article “What’s ‘manly,’ what’s not for athletes: Fans bothered by Mark Sanchez’s GQ pics, Sergio Romo’s leave need to change”, LZ Granderson, senior writer for ESPN The magazine, explores the ways in which gender expectations impact the way athletes are perceived by their fans. In particular, Granderson looks at the reaction Giants’ pitcher Sergio Romo got when he went on paternity leave after his child’s birth. Juxtaposing Romo’s experiences to Tiger Wood’s he asks:

“Is it not hypocritical of us to demand that athletes respect marriage vows and their families, but then not want those athletes to take time off during such an important time? If we don’t want boys to be boys, then should there not be mechanisms in place for men to be men?”


From the article, one can deduce that Granderson is suggesting that paternity leave is one mechanism that can be put in place for “a man to be a man”. What other such mechanisms do you practice or have you heard of that allow for men to be fully present and a central part of their families’ lives and that of their communities? This month, I challenge you to ask that question to the people you work with, live with and are in community with.