Dondré Whitfield discusses 3 things that make a male into a man

The actor and author of “Male vs. Man” weighs in on how to unite Americans and explains what he believes is the difference between being a male and a man.
7:00 | 02/17/21

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Transcript for Dondré Whitfield discusses 3 things that make a male into a man
The past year left many looking at life from a different perspective, and Emmy nominated actor dondre Whitfield has set his sights high with his book, "Male vs. Man: How to honor women, teach children, and elevate men to change the world." Here to tell us how he's going to do that, please welcome dondre Whitfield. What's happening, dondre? Welcome to "The view." Joy has the first question. Thank you. Yes. Well, I'm only asking this question, dondre because I know you like to talk about politics. So weigh in on this. I mean, we were talking this morning about how Mcconnell and trump are now at each other's throats. We figured that would happen once Mcconnell turned on him. Do you have any thoughts? Yeah. Well, you know, this -- it makes it very clear that manhood is -- we are at a deficit in our society, and it has absolutely nothing to do with our socioeconomic and political state of being, right this has absolutely everything to do with what you are being taught. Donald Trump was taught how to be an accomplished businessperson, right?but he was never taught how to be a man, right? So he is the quintessential man. In my book, I talk about how males look to be served, whi men look or the servants. Only people who have gone to bat for him, tooth and nail, now because he isn't containing to be served by this earn. He is going on the attack again. You only revert to the things you are taught, and you don't come back to your manhood because of age. That is on the forefront right now. We have been talking a lot about unity, something our country is struggling with. Much of what's behind the issue seems to stem from the past. What do you see as the way forward through this? Yeah. That's such a great question, it really is about us being educated. I mean, sister joy said it earlier this morning talking about the importance of education. We really have to educate each other on each other's past. You know, if you have a rule not to wear shoes in your home and I came into your home, and I just trapsed around with my shoes on not knowing that you have a no shoe rule in your home, that would disrespect you. You would feel extremely hurt by that, but if I understood that that was the rule in place for your home that you have in order to protect your family from germs and from dirt and all of those things, I would never have done that. I would never have taken a step past that space once I came into the door because I want to let you know that I'm honoring you as I step into your home. So it really is about educating each other on our histories, on our traumas. That's how we build a pathway forward. Dondre, you've written a book as you've mentioned called "Male vs. Man," and some people might say those are the same, but you say otherwise. What do you see as the main difference between male and man? There's such a gigantic difference, sister sunny because male speaks to my gender. So there are only a couple of things that I needed to do in order to earn the the title of male, and that was to have a very specific body part, and really to be breathing. That was all I needed to do in order to earn the title of male. It's my gender. Man is my job. If no one ever teaches you, and you don't get the information and instruction, and then receive the accountability that you need in order to become a man, you never arrive there. So you don't turn into a man because you're 18 or you're 21, right? You only matriculatetetete into manhood based on thoho last three ththgs that I ntioned, and D fortunately,oo much of ourocietyhinks that, , U know you turnn into a man because of that magical age. Here's the thing. If you get to that space, when you age out of the title of being called boy, our society doesn't know what else to call Yo really many of our brothers are walking around as grown males, where their body they're wing the uninirm of a man. They have facial hair. They might have great pecs, but they're stuck in the spiritual and emotional capacity of a boy. But because they are wearing the packaging, they lack the performance because no one taught them how to be a man. Gigantic difference between those two. You and your wife have a 16-year-old daughter and a 12-year-old son, and you say you consider them your accountability partners for parenting. I'm a brand-new mom so I'm taking it all in. What does that look like in your Yeah, sister Meghan. Great question. I have a -- I'm very intentional about having a conversation with my children at least once a month to ask them what could I do to be a better father to you? So two nights ago I was talking to my son, 12-year-old, and I said, dre, what can I do to be a better father to you? He said, nothing. I said, come on, dre. I'm sure that you can think of something, and he took a second, and he said, well, dad, sometimes it feels like if you are under a lot of stress, it may cause you to be, you know, angry faster or frustrated faster. And I sat with that for a second and rather than defending it, I really began to rewind my tapes about my performance every day, and I said to my son, I said, dre. I said, you're absolutely right, and that's my fault and I'm going to make sure that that's better. The most -- one of the most profound people that you ever could have as an accountability partner are your children Beuse they haven't had the practice of learning how to lie yet, right? Not well anyway. So my son took a second, gave me what I needed, and I in turn took that and allowed that to elevate me higher in the space of my manhood for the sake of me becoming the father that he needs in order for him to properly matriculate it to his manhood. I love that. Joy. It's really wonderful. So dondre, you need to come back, okay? And talk to us some more about this because it's a fascinating conversation, really, and the book is called "Male vs. Man: How to honor women, teach children, and elevate men to change the world." It's available now. You can buy it in all good book places. It's probably on audible soon we'll be right back.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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