This question may seem as silly as the question, “Why did the chicken cross the road?” Yet, it isn’t as silly as the question, “Which came first, the chicken or the egg?” So which came first, man or masculinity? Woman, or femininity? Why does it matter? These questions and more are the topic of discussion for this article.
The question of which came first, man or masculinity, may at first seem to be a fanciful and useless endeavor. Looking a bit harder at this question, we find that, at its root, it defines which identity has primacy and impact over the other. Recently a friend of mine brought my attention to an article that he was concerned about that showed a gene strand colored with a rainbow of colors. It turned out to be the July 19, 2019 Science News article entitled “Study details differences in gene expression among male, female mammals” where researchers found that “new research suggests many of those more outward-facing differences — like height and facial hair — are rooted in differences in the way males and females express their genes.” So, what does this mean in layman terms? This means that the physical qualities of height and facial hair are determined (i.e. expressed) by the masculine gene (XY) or the feminine gene (XX). Men, having the XY chromosome pairing, have their masculinity expressing itself through their genes as facial hair, added height, and other masculine traits. This sounds like it should be common knowledge, if you have the masculine gene pair, you should look like, and develop into, a man. So in light of the scientific study, the equation is, if you are masculine (have the masculine gene pair), then you develop into a male human being. Masculinity comes first, then the man.
Having answered the frivolous question of which came first, masculinity, or the man, now we come to the critical part of, “What does this mean?” In today’s society, the prevailing erroneous belief is that masculinity and femininity are changeable; through surgery and hormonal treatments a man can become a woman, and a woman can become a man. Making changes to the body does not change the innate gene’s masculinity, or masculine trait making ability in men, for instance. It can be temporarily masked by taking hormones, and the body made to look like the opposite gender, but the XY, or XX, chromosome structure will always remain to exert its influence. And this masculine, or feminine gene structure cannot be changed. Since masculinity and femininity start from the beginning and pervade the entire development and structure of a human body, a man or woman could not change their gender unless they changed their entire body from the very top, to the very bottom. The aforementioned scientific study ultimately proves that masculinity and femininity are essential and cannot be changed (See Botched Circumcision). It’s time we see that masculinity and femininity are not an endpoint, but the beginning.