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The Manmade Plague of Fatherlessness

 

One of the most damaging things that has ever impacted our culture is fatherlessness.

Back in 1965 Departent of Labor Secretary Moynihan did a report on the inner city and his report showed that it was not race or poverty that had deteriorated the inner city African American community, it was the absence of dads.   We knew at that point, in 1965, that not having dads in the home was seriously injuring our families and our children.

But what did we do? Our politicians both from the left and the right marched ahead and did more and more to remove dads from homes. We went from Father knows best to father is a pest. Government slowly took on the role of substitute father. Welfare demanded no dad at home in order to get that welfare check. No fault divorce was instituted and then we created bogus expensive echo chambers called family courts that routinely removed men from their homes after they had depleted whatever income and savings the men might have had. We glorified single motherhood which was actually the root of our problem while we demonized males as being the source of all of our difficulties. It is hard to imagine a more sinister plot to ruin our country. Now we spend billions upon billions of dollars failing to fix the symptoms of fatherlessness while simultaneously turning a blind eye to the real problem, the chronic absence of dads in the home.

We are at the point now where nearly 40% of all school age children in the United States are not living with their father.

The research tells us plenty about this mess. Here’s a list of problems that are related to fatherlessness:

  • Suicide
  • Rape
  • Job Failure
  • Delinqueincy
  • Low empathy
  • Anxiety
  • Bullying
  • Drug abuse
  • Prison
  • Smoking
  • High school failyure
  • Depression
  • Alcohol abuse
  • Being bullied

The research could not be more clear about the connection of these things to fatherlessness. In fact the research goes a step farther. The work of Sara McClanahan literally shows that some of these results of fatherlessness are causative. That is huge. Never have I heard social science research claim something is causative, they always frame it in terms of correlation not causation. But the results of fatherlessness are now being understood to be causative.

Damn.

McClanahan points out that the evidence is strongest for outcomes such a s High School graduation, Children’s social emotional adjustment, and later adult mental health but there is plenty of data supporting all of the others.

Let’s take just one. Low empathy.

A longitudinal study found that the strongest indicator of empathy was father presence in the home. So often we assume that mom is the empathic one and would be the one to teach the children about empathy but the research shows something very different. In fact it showed that the importance of father presence was so critical it was three times as important to the child’s later empathy than the top three factors from mom combined.

Why would dads be connected to empathy? I am sure you are wondering this as did the researchers. Most are thinking now that it is the dad who sets the limits and does not back down or waver. Think about it, the child says I want my ice cream and dad says, nope, not till you eat your broccoli. The child says, no, I want ice cream now, dad says nope, broccoli first or no ice cream. This goes on for a while until the child realizes that dad will not back down and so they eat the broccoli and then get the ice cream. What happened? One element in this is that the child had to see the world through the father’s eyes. They couldn’t simply see their world through their own desires, they had to see them through dad. It turns out this act is practice at seeing the world through the eyes of another and this is actually the critical rudiment of empathy. The capacity to see the world through another’s eyes. If we can’t see the world through another’s eyes we will likely stay  in our narcissistic and self centered world. Dad’s limit setting is essential for the maturity of the child.

This is a stunning finding and if true you would expect to see a diminishing of empathy among our young people that would correspond to the increasing lack of dads in the home. Guess what? That is just what we see. A study showed that empathy was down 40% in 2010 college students compared to those in the 1970’s.  This 40% drop was from negative responses to questions like this one  “I sometimes try to understand my friends better by imagining how things look from their perspective.”  Wow.

Could  this drop in empathy be related to fewer dads at home? My guess would be yes.

So dads set limits, what else do they do? They roughhouse!

Guess what is being found about rough housing with kids? Research shows that roughhousing helps the kids be more socially adept and fosters their resilience. It teaches them the difference between play and actual aggression. When dad roughhouses they learn that being rough can be fun. They also learn the limits in this fun as dads tell them when they’ve gone too far.

And what about dads throwing their kids up in the air? Ever seen that? The dad throws them up and the kids scream with delight while mom frets and complains! The kids love it and dad knows exactly what he is doing. Guess what, they have found? Children who are tossed in the air are better able to take risks as adults. Again, this is a behavior that dads do automatically, both they and the kids love it and it has huge positive impact on their later development.

It’s hard to imagine how many other things dads do with kids that have been shamed that are actually helpful to their children? I am sure there is more to learn about this.

It seems very clear that dads are a crucial part of a child’s life. It’s also clear that certain groups have been trying to minimize this for decades. Politicians, feminists and lawyers come to mind. I think these groups owe dads and men an apology. It’s time we all worked together to be sure that dads and moms both have time with their children. .     Also know that there are some excellent organizations that are fighting hard to make this happen. Leading Women for Shared Parenting and the National Parents Organizations are two doing this important work. Check them out and support them!

My thanks to Warren Farrell who has been sharing chapters of his yet to be published book on boys. Some of this was used for this video.   It’s due out in March. We are all in for a treat!

Let’s not forget, men are good, as are you.

 

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The Everyday Hatred of Men: Part one, Patriarchy

(this is the script for the first video in a youtube series that I just completed on the Everyday Hatred of Men.  The series examines Patriarchy, Toxic Masculinity, Hegemonic Masculinity and then concludes with some ideas about why the hatred is allowed to stand. I will be publishing these here in order.  If you want to skip ahead and see the entire series you can see them here. TG)

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Rarely in nature do things go just one way. We live in a world that is filled with complexity and subtlety. And yet, when it comes to men we see three popular theories that are horribly one sided and hateful. The feminist Patriarchy theory, the academic hegemonic masculinity theory and the media’s whipping boy toxic masculinity.

Were going to have a look at all three. Let’s start with patriarchy.

Feminists have developed a clever system that they can call on to assign blame for most any problem they might have or see. They call it patriarchy. Basically it holds men as evil and accountable for the ills of the earth and women as its victim.

Here’s one of the only definitions I could find:

Patriarchy is the term used to describe the society in which we live today, characterized by current and historic unequal power relations between women and men whereby women are systematically disadvantaged and oppressed.

Uh huh, right, I believe the idea of women being oppressed in the us was the biggest lie of the 20th century. But let’s move on.

Listen to what Andrea Dworkin a feminist icon had to say about it:

Under patriarchy, every woman’s son is her potential betrayer and also the inevitable rapist or exploiter of another woman.

Every son is the inevitable rapist. Every son means all men. Got it. Now let’s hear from Mary Daly, another well known radical feminist

Almost everything has been stolen from us by the patriarchy. Our creativity has been stolen, our creative energies, our religion. I want it back.

So patriarchy is a narcissists dream, something to point all the blame at others and at the same time holding you as an innocent victim. Pretty snazzy way to blame men while being blameless.

You would think that after many years of making such ground shaking claims that these folks would have research to back them up. Nope, not that I can find. What I saw repeatedly when asked to prove the existence of patriarchy was the pointing towards the fact that more men are the ones in the positions of power.

Okay, gotta agree that men are dominant in positions of power but just how did that happen? These folks would have you believe that eons of evolution of our sex roles have been created just to disadvantage and oppress women! This is an extraordinarily ego centric and self centered claim. It actually reminds me of a 5 year old girl who’s birthday party and pony ride was rained out and she blames it all on her brother. It’s all Jimmy’s fault! He ruined my birthday. It’s all about me! Jimmy hurt me jimmy had a pony ride! She just doesn’t have the psychological maturity to see the actual factors that are involved and needs someone to blame.

When one does look for research about how and why our sex roles have differentiated as they have you get a very different picture. Let’s look at just one tiny aspect, that of testosterone. Scientists are now claiming that the major role of testosterone is to increase one’s striving for status. That’s right, trying hard to win, wanting to be at the top, competing competing competing. Since men have 10 to 20 times more testosterone doesn’t it start to make sense why there are more male CEO’s? The men are pushed by their biology to succeed. To hear more about testosterone and other factors that push men to the top you can see my recent video on that topic.

So wait a minute. Patriarchy is likely at least partially due to biology. Uh Oh. Feminists don’t believe in biology! They think that all of our differences are due to socialization, and that means that even patriarchy is due to socialization! They are what is termed cultural determinists. That means that they see the world only through the lens of how our culture constructs it. Biology be damned! Genetics be damned! Brain and hormones be damned!

So its not hard to imagine feminists getting confused about what is caused by biology and what isn’t. I can guess they might get upset about women not being as tall as men. Patriarchy! Start support groups, get legislation to make women taller, shame tall men. Get the idea? This may be a silly example but it is not far from their myopic gestalt challenged cries of patriarchy

The most perplexing part of this is how intelligent people have failed to call the feminist’s cards. Very few are willing to in argue the ridiculousness of patriarchy theory. When something is this one sided and wrong the most likely problem is likely a bully. I think that is happening here. No one is willing to tell the empress she has no clothes. Academia is petrified to cross the women’s studies gulag. Academia is filled with cowards.

There are some who are willing to question this. Most are men and as usual the men have both clarity and a sense of humor. Let’s take a couple of examples: Here’s one from Milo:

You see, feminists don’t really like to define the Patriarchy. They prefer to keep it nebulous and amorphous so they can conveniently blame it for everything that goes wrong in their lives. Not being paid enough? Patriarchy! Not getting a promotion? Patriarchy! Too many catcalls? Patriarchy! Too few catcalls? Patriarchy!

And then an urban dictionary poster named shikaku says patriarchy is:

The bogeyman that feminists blame for women’s problems or under-achievements because their big-girl pants apparently don’t fit. shikaku

And here’s one from Fidelbogen. He says patriarchy is:

A rhetorical device which props up feminist ideology by making it easy to impose a state of collective guilt upon half the human race, namely the male half.

Bravo gentlemen, thanks for stepping forward with the courage to challenge patriarchy.

So the term patriarchy has become a weapon used against men.

At the same time it is a shield to protect women from accountability. I can hear the feminists saying “but but but patriarchy hurts men too.” Yeah, right, that is like saying men are assholes and that hurts men too. Give it a rest. Hate is hate. Blaming a birth group for the worlds problems is hateful. We need to call it out wherever we see it.

Part two will look into Toxic Masculinity

 

 

tp see parts 1-4 you can access the menaregood youtube playlist here.

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