This article was rejected for publication in Ennis News. The reason was that this topic is too sensitive in the current social climate. Their reasons are valid. Newspapers, especially local papers, have to walk a fine line so as not to offend readers and advertisers in order to survive.
For myself, I consider this topic to be too important to remain silent. I do not intend to offend anyone. I hope my readers will see my point of view as an effort to help place the correct priority on the problems we address in our society.
I recently watched a TED talk online, during which the speaker used the term “dad-deprived boys.” I’ve read other information over time about how many young men and boys have grown up without the benefit of a father’s influence in their lives and the resulting consequences. Three reasons were given for single mothers raising children alone. The father may have been killed in war or by another incident, such as illness or accident. The biological father may have been a sperm donor only, with no intention of becoming involved. Lastly, divorces so acrimonious that the fathers were seldom or never in their children’s lives are realities. I thought of other reasons just as valid, not included, such as the father being a harmful or abusive influence.
I’ve seen numerous statistics showing a dramatic increase in single-mother households from the mid to late 1900s increased. If I were writing a book on the subject of children raised without a father, I’d spend time providing those sources and statistics in great detail. I simply don’t have room in this article for that, but most of you probably are already at least somewhat familiar with the subject.
For African-American single-mother households, I have seen statistics as low in 2019 at 64% and as high as 75% in other years for all black homes. Latino numbers are at 42-50%, and other whites are at 24-30%, excluding Asians. Asians come in the lowest at 15% of households. I hope you are not offended by these statistics and understand that working toward keeping both parents, working as a team, is what is best for their children.
As the gender equality movement has spread into every aspect of life, it’s been shown by numerous studies that boys without fully present male role models living in the home are far less likely to make good fathers or husbands. I have no argument whether women are as capable as men in most roles in life. It does appear, though, they do not fully replace men in the ability to teach boys to become skilled in their adult relationships and responsibilities as men.
That places no blame on those single mothers. Mothers and fathers in the best relationships balance the skills each has in rearing children. By their nature, mothers are generally more nurturing and protective of their children. The father’s role is toward bringing self-reliance, relationship skills with women, and face life’s responsibilities. This is not to say mothers, in many cases, have not parented well in assuming both roles and turning out outstanding men. By statistics, though, that is not the norm and places an undue burden on any single parent.
You may argue the points I’ve made about roles and statistics. The overriding fact is that boys look up to men for how to behave and function in their lives in male roles. If the only men in their life devalue or abuse females, are criminals, or are fathers who abandoned their families, then who do they model themselves after? Do they look at celebrities with fanciful lives as the best role models, or worse, do they think pornography portrays realistic successful relationships, average sexual situations, or the proper treatment of women?
Who is to blame for the problem? Men and women are both responsible. Some might say society or government is to blame, or one culture or another. Well, society, governments, and cultures are made up of individuals who make decisions that allow the situation to exist and perpetuate it.
I believe that we concentrate too much on marginal group problems when a larger issue looms. When was the last time you saw a march for family values? We must focus on promoting and keeping both parents working together and raising responsible and well-balanced boys and girls. They are our future adults and will be better prepared and more capable of solving the other issues besetting our society.