Fatherhood Still Matters

INVOLVED-DADS-Daughters1BCN editor’s note: please contact the author for reprint permission.

Imagine a world without dads. Ok, the exercise is over, because you wouldn’t be here to imagine if it weren’t for those who are 50% biologically responsible for your existence.

Nature is an extraordinary thing. It reveals to us how important every piece of the biological puzzle is to Life. Each gender, female and male, is significant and different and wondrous.

But what happens when we pretend that they’re interchangeable or dispensable?

The puzzle starts to fall apart leaving gaping holes. We see that in our modern society with the epidemic of fatherless that has swept across our country thanks to a destructive wave of liberal feminism. The sexual revolution should have taught our nation one thing: irresponsibility leads to instability. Today, 41% of American children are born into homes without fathers. Back in the 1940s, that was less than 5%. Abortion has become a violent form of birth control with 85% of America’s 1.21 annual abortions occurring among unmarried women. Roe never empowered women. It empowered men to have sex and run. This is what happens when people choose abandonment over accountability.

Nothing replaces a father. Not a woman. Not a live-in boyfriend. Not a government insistence program (which insist that fathers stay out of the picture).

The repercussions are serious as study after study reveals the impact of father absence. This isn’t to disparage single moms who do all they can to love and provide for their child(ren). But nature, nor Nature’s God, intended for women to play both the role of mother and father. Among children, lack of involved fathers has led to higher high school drop out rates, higher usage of drugs, higher rates of suicide, higher instances of teenage pregnancy, higher incarceration rates, higher instance of violent crime, higher rates of abuse and neglect (typically by live-in boyfriends who are not the biological parent), higher abortion rates, lower college graduation rates, lower employment rates…lower opportunities to thrive and succeed.

Hollywood mostly portrays fathers as buffoons and disconnected reluctant participants. Disney, one of the leading influencers of children and tweens, typically conveys a world where parents don’t exist altogether, just sassy, witty, self-absorbed kids who journey through life without a father’s guidance.

Our culture is being socially re-engineered to believe that men and women are interchangeable. They’re not. Sorry, Chris Matthews. Despite the clueless mainstream media assault on the definition of natural marriage, two men “marrying” doesn’t solve the issue of one man running away from the mother of his child and his responsibility to be a father.

Despite the fact that 72.3% of black children are born into homes without fathers, the nation’s oldest civil rights organizations including the NAACP and the National Urban League ignore the devastating epidemic. In fact, in the National Urban League’s 2013 “State of Black America: Redeem The Dream” annual document detailing the issues facing the black community, there’s not one single mention of “fathers” or “fatherlessness”. Yet “prison” is mentioned 33 times, “school-to-prison” 6 times, “poverty” 60 times, “vote” 86 times, and “jobs” 93 times. Fatherlessness is the most apparent yet most ignored social issue in the black community.

Many in the education establishment insist that changing the standards of learning will bring massive changes to communities, especially those more economically depressed. Common Core Standards, for instance, will never impact a child’s possibilities like a community whose common core includes involved dads.  Fathers who are present and continually engaged in their child’s life help shield against the social ills and crushed opportunities that are all too common in vulnerable, fatherless communities.

Father absence is painful regardless of race, ethnicity or socioeconomic circumstances. It is felt by over 24 million children in this country today.

This Father’s Day, many will not have a father to celebrate. That sobering reality is created by dads who’ve chosen self over sacrifice, social policies that try to exclude men, and an activist culture that ignores the urgent necessity of fathers. But this epidemic has a cure. It requires fathers, adoptive fathers, mentors and other role models to defy the national trend and put it in reverse. There are great resources on fatherhoood (herehere and here) to help educate young men to understand why they matter, how to treat others like they matter, and why fatherhood matters.

Women are invaluable. Men are invaluable. And children are our priceless posterity. They are worth every effort to provide an environment where they are loved, protected and nurtured and where their beautiful potential can be unleashed.

RyanBombergerRyan Bomberger is the co-founder and chief creative officer of the Radiance Foundation.

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