Bruce Charlton is an angry man

An angry man indeed, for a godless, narcissistic and destructive trend is loose in the land. I speak, obviously, of...

weightlifting. (Via Vox Popoli).

Now, apparently this is qualified by intensive and extreme weight-training. From the comments, "moderate" weight-training is apparently kosher but I'm still not sure at what point a weightlifter is beyond the pale. Probably, we can agree these guys are narcissistic freaks but Bruce doesn't seem to grasp the distinction between bodybuilding and weightlifting either. Cardio seems to have escaped Bruce's critical eye, and it generates at least as much degenerative joint disease. It's also not terribly effective for a lot of obese people who (1) often lack the frames for effective running, and (2) are generally training their bodies to store fat.

Maybe I'm reading this wrong, but the overall tone strikes me as hostile to the very idea of weightlifting. I think the more important point to draw is a broad hostility to any expression of masculine strength. Contrary to Bruce's point, it is this hostility which is actually gnostic and anti-human, as in the popular culture's implausible butt-kicking babes and fat-acceptance. In the political realm, dominated by comfortable, aging Boomers, any form of male energy triggers the panic button, as with the Republicans' hysterical response to the Ron Paul movement. The lisping, effeminate Lindsey Graham, famed scold of angry white guys is by contrast considered a Republican icon.

"Weight-training" seems an odd target for traditionalist ire, given the modern epidemic of obesity, manifest to an appalling degree in Christian churches.


Anonymous said…
I agree fully with what you wrote- 100%. Except for your usage of "angry man." I know how you meant it, but that is what the opponents tend to call us, it is grating. Nevertheless, despite being a big fan of Chartlon's he is in error.
Anonymous said…
No, Charlton is right. I speak as a weightlifter and weightlifting fan, but he is right. God and/or the church never decried obesity, only gluttony. You take care of the latter by avoiding intake, not by increasing fitness on the other end.

The main thing to say in favor of weightlifting is that it corrects the lack of activity found in modern life, a deficit our bodies aren't designed/evolved for. But, again, God/church never decried office jobs, only sloth.
toots said…
Ha! I read the Charlton post. He's fallen into God-snobbery, poor bugger. Sounds like he got shot down somewhere sexually. Or, he suffers from an unstaunchable wound of resentment towards men more worldly and dominant than himself?

Good catch.