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On Life, Love and the Pursuit of Happiness

Why Bruce Jenner is a Guy's Guy

Robert Manni - Thursday, May 21, 2015


Yes, I know. It’s not Bruce anymore. And although we don’t know the new name yet, the guy who was once Bruce is now a she. And that’s a good thing for him, for her, and for everyone else. Why? This is who he is. And who are we to judge this poor soul? Amigos, there is not enough love in the world.

While watching Jenner’s revealing “coming out” interview with Diane Sawyer, I could not help but sympathize with this tortured human being. Bruce began the conversation with a take on his life from the view of the good Lord. Jenner said it must have been quite the joke when God made little Bruce and decided to put him into an amazing male physical vessel while also giving him the soul of a woman. Bruce shook his head as he laughed at the life-long challenge God had provided. Who of us has never felt out of place or that we don’t fit in or that people don’t get us, or see us we truly are? And now Jenner simply wants to live out his remaining time as the woman he kept buried deep inside for all those years.

The fact that Jenner began his coming out talk with this amazing example of self-awareness, humor and grace increased the respect I had already had for the Guy’s Guy I watched win the 1976 Olympic men’s decathlon in Montreal for Team USA.

At the time, he became an instant celebrity and American folk hero, gracing the front of the Wheaties box and inspiring young men all over America to grow up and be the next Bruce Jenner representing their country in the Olympics. And now, here he was at sixty-seven years of age, shaking his hair out of his ponytail and revealing to the world that all this time he’s been living the painful life of a man with the soul of a woman trapped inside. Hopefully he's now at peace. And hopefully Jenner can front a movement to bring awareness, understanding, and equal rights to the transgender community. Do we really care which sex he decides to date or what he does with his body? That’s up to him and now, to her. And who knows, maybe this is the long-awaited contribution we’ve been waiting for from the Kardashians. Take that, Kanye.

Jenner had been a late night punch line the past few years, as we saw him slowly allow his feminine side to emerge. Of course, many people saw him as a confused freak that did not know who he was. But, the opposite is true. Here is a man who actually knew exactly what and who he was. The problem is most of us looked at him scornfully while we held onto our preconceived notions about what men, women and their behavior should be, from our perspective. Jenner’s coming out (I don’t have a better phrase for his revelation) is nothing short of heroic. We get it now. You can be physically born one sex, yet have the soul of the opposite sex within. It’s complicated, but it does not make you any less worthy of love.

The Guy’s Guy credo is “when men and women can be at their best, everyone wins.” And that’s why Jenner is a Guy’s Guy. Let’s get something straight about being a Guy’s Guy. A Guy’s Guy is not a macho man. A Guy’s Guy respects his fellow men and women while living a life built on a foundation of treating people with respect. You don’t have to be a man’s man, a straight man or even a man to be a Guy’s Guy. It’s about making the world a better place, one man, one woman at a time. Jenner fits that bill just fine for me.

Throughout my life, when I’m in doubt about new concepts, new people, what seems like new behavior and cultural evolution, I step back and remind myself of a phrase to help me withhold judgment. These words have helped me choose love over fear, every time, without fail.

There is not enough love in the world.

It’s as simple as that. So next time you come across something new that you don’t yet like or understand, wait. While your judgment coils like a cobra ready to strike, consider these words. There is not enough love in the world.

This week’s Guy’s Guy of the Week? Do you really have to ask?

God bless Bruce Jenner.


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