Well, shit. This question has a word Dave Tate isn’t about to say. The main concept of the question at hand is this:

"Has powerlifting become soft?"

Dave is not necessarily sure if it’s true that the sport’s gone soft. Sure, the times have changed, but a meathead’s still a meathead, and Dave is still a meathead.

Back in ye olde days, powerlifters got their information from magazines. That’s how people learned the big names of the game, and these ‘zines had structured a certain narrative around these lifters. Could be from a workout routine or a Q&A. The publishers could make the featured lifter a villain or a hero. The lifter in question had no control over their story. This was the only info Dave and other pre-internet era lifters had to work off of – except for when “the fucker” trained in your gym. Even if the magazines said this guy was a superstar who owns a Corvette, he might actually be a real dick who doesn’t even have a car.

With social media, you get the bigger pictures of who everyone is. You don’t know who they truly are, you just get what their digital footprint says they are, and that’s one big footprint. On social media, people can control their narratives, their stories, which is different compared to the smaller footprints that they’d leave in magazines.

Dave is quick to add this is powerlifting-specific. He can’t say if this is the same for any other sport or society in general. He knows what he knows, and he’s sticking with what he knows.

The modern lifting culture makes it so easy to sit around and pound your chest and brag about how wimpy people are. But how do you define strength? How do you know someone isn’t saying that you are weak? While most people Dave knows that are saying everyone is culturally weak or that men aren’t what they’re supposed to be, it’s coming from people that he would call wimps themselves.

The takeaway? Dave admits to being uninformed—he doesn’t watch the news— but he focuses on the things he can control. He’s gotten to the point where he doesn’t bother to pay attention. He used to say ignore the noise, but now he doesn’t bother to hear it:

“When you actually do focus on the things you’re supposed to focus on, you don’t really have the time to worry about all that other noise because you’re doing the such you’re supposed to be doing.”

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