June 23, 2022

IT STILL MAKES ME CRY:  Four years ago today, 12 boys–members of a youth soccer team–and their 25-year-old assistant coach were trapped by floodwaters deep in the Tham Luang Nang Non cave in Northern Thailand.  What followed was an amazing international rescue effort–a jaw-dropping combination of courage, skill, selflessness, and coolheadedness.

It took weeks to get all the children and their coach out.  But, against all the odds, all of them survived.  Alas, the same was not true of all their rescuers.  Former Thai Navy SEAL Saman Kunan lost consciousness during one of his dives and died.  Another Thai Navy SEAL, Beirut Pakbara, died a year later of a blood infection acquired during the rescue.  Bless them and their fellow divers.  They are heroes.

Here’s something I probably don’t need to tell you:  Many people–both men and women–helped in the rescue.  And that’s great.  But all the divers–the ones who risked their lives to save these children–were men.  Maybe, just maybe, masculinity isn’t so toxic after all.

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