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My Instagram and Facebook pages are sometimes tainted with a glimpse of the “brand” that is Dan Bilzerian: naked women, guns, and cash.
Bilzerian is a gambler, a publicity seeker, and notorious fuccboi. He gained his fame as a poker player and maintains it through his social media following. He feeds off the controversy of his smug and sexist posts, with captions such as “Just got dick sucked by 3 girls, happy, told pilots to fire up my Jet, cuz it’s 5am and I’m not tired so fuck it going to NYC”.
He is a man whose greatest interest in women is when they have no clothes on. Other posts include captions like “Last night at my party a midget fucked 2 girls in my bathroom” and “I haven’t got any pussy in a few days, here’s a pic from when I used to get laid”. I pretty much despise his existence, and find it sad that 70 of my Facebook friends “like” him.
Of course I could just block him and forget he exists—as his fans have pointed out. Yet I can’t help but be intrigued. He has over 12 million followers on Instagram and 9 million likes on Facebook. Why is this man is worthy of respect and admiration? Why do so many men look up to him and how is he cool?
Aside from the women and the excessive wealth, part of his appeal is his embodiment of a certain kind of masculinity. He embodies the myth that to be a real man, you have to dominate women. To be “manly” is to be aggressive, sexually and physically dominant. You can’t show weakness or emotions. Bilzerian is hyper-masculine to the point of absurdity.
It is alleged that he kicked a woman in the face at a nightclub in December last year. The woman did not seek to press charges and Bilzerian’s response to the reporter was “I know girls never fight over you b/c you’re a loser and everyone hates you, and nobody wants to fuck you, but how about you get you [sic] facts straight instead of publishing nonsense like your garbage website”.
Those who aspire to be Bilzerian desire his power over women’s naked bodies, his ability to watch them kiss each other while he plays with his gun. His posts convey the idea that women are nothing more than an accessory to a “fun” lifestyle, they are just objects to enjoy. (In reality these women are paid good money to be in his presence—because who would do it for free?)
To express the slightest vulnerability, to exhibit care and compassion, or to have a relationship with women based on equality, would not be “manly”. Dan Bilzerian demands respect from his social media followers, but he doesn’t deserve it. He represents a culture that values money, material greed and power over everything—especially in the hands of a man.
Interspersed with the pictures of women and guns are shots of his private jet, boats, cars and casino sessions. These are the things that symbolise success or someone who has “made it” in our society. A lifestyle like this seems to promise happiness and self-fulfillment.
Supposedly, Bilzerian was a lonely boy who got no attention because his dad was always working. He grew up in an eleven-bedroom mansion, and used daddy’s trust fund to kickstart his gambling career. His dad ended up in prison for financial fraud. Maybe it’s not hard to see why his life rests upon gaining the attention of his male followers.
That a man like Dan Bilzerian is looked up to by thousands says a lot about our society’s attitude towards masculinity and women, and the idea of what constitutes a good life.
Emma is a self-proclaimed 7 out of 10. 8 on a good day.