Coming from a family of all sisters and an extended family of only nieces, I just assumed all babies were girls. Until I had my son, that is. All of a sudden the question of male role models became a more pressing one for me. So my friend Kate (who also has two young sons) and I set out to find some male role models we really believed in. Men who flipped masculinity on its head with their caring, compassion, and creativity. And they weren’t necessarily the ones we’d been seeing in the news or reading about in history books.
We’re so proud of the guys we found. Like the untrained artist from rural Georgia whose paintings wound up in the Smithsonian — and the cover of an R.E.M. album. Or the quadriplegic man who redefined accessibility by having his friends carry him all over Europe in a makeshift backpack. Or the 80-something climate change activist who’s been arrested half a dozen times for demanding a healthier planet for his grandchildren. Each one inspired by their faith and the Christ who first changed them.