December 31, 2017 by Robert Franklin, Esq, Member, National Board of Directors, National Parents Organization
To what should we ascribe the presence of this article (Washington Post, 12/29/17)? My guess is that, ever since the positive article on shared parenting by Michael Alison Chandler, there’s been an orgy of recrimination among the editorial staff and groveling promises to return to WaPo’s usual abysmal ignorance on the subject of fathers, mothers and parenting. After all, the next two pieces following Chandler’s were Joan Meier’s letter and now the article linked to by Terence Mentor.
Still, I suppose it’s good to see that the eternal verities on that subject haven’t been lost. I refer of course to the failure of the WaPo commenter to know the first thing about his/her subject, but to blunder smugly along anyway. Truly, Mentor knows not of what he speaks.
His reason for writing is the habit strangers supposedly have of referring to fathers caring for their children as “babysitters.” Mentor’s a father himself and takes that somewhat amiss, not that many care. But then he proudly dons the armor of a social justice warrior and rides off in search of the Holy Grail of that movement, i.e. men to blame. Unlike Galahad, et al, it doesn’t take Mentor long to find it.
Who is to blame for this? The answer to that is obvious:
Dads are to blame.
Of course they are. Among the SJW crowd, it’s never been any other way. How are fathers at fault for complete strangers calling them “babysitters?”
The people with the social power (i.e., men) made sure that the responsibility of raising children fell squarely on the mothers’ shoulders for generations.
I guess what I’m trying to say is this: We shouldn’t complain about not being respected as parents when we gladly gave that right away for generations.
As with Meier, it’s hard to be so wrong in so many ways in such few words. Mentor has no concept of the basics of male-female/father-mother relationships. Biology? He’s never heard of it.
Consider that first sentence. According to Mentor, men forced women to care for children. Uh no, for millions of years of hominid evolution, women were the all-but-exclusive tenders of children. That was because, during and after pregnancy, their bodies produced the parenting hormones necessary to do that job. It’s true of essentially all social mammalian species. Do male wildebeests force females to care for young?
My guess is that, due to genetic variation, some males produced those hormones too. Those males showed an interest in children and gradually, women came to understand that a male with an interest in his own offspring was a better bet to father a child than a male who didn’t. The former would add his ability to protect the child to his status in the male hierarchy and his skill at getting resources. In short, mating with such a male improved the child’s chances of survival to adulthood, something females desired.
So, over time, females began to sexually select for that type of male, resulting in more males having the sex hormones that are necessary in either sex to parental behavior. But, as I’ve pointed out before, current science shows men’s biochemical makeup to produce secondary parenting. That is, men tend to step into the parenting role when women either can’t or won’t take it on. So women take the lead in parenting and always have, but for a pretty long period of our evolution, men have had the desire and the ability to step in as needed.
Should Mentor want to actually read anything that’s relevant to his chosen topic, he might consider a history of the family and how it changed dramatically at the dawn of the Industrial Revolution. Prior to that, men spent their days with their families, working the fields, toiling as artisans, etc. But when industrialization came along, their ancient role as provider to the family required them to trudge off to the factory or mine to earn the meager money on offer there.
Now, I suppose it could have been women who did that, and a few, of necessity, did. That men went to work and women stayed home again reflected biologically-based sex roles. But what if the roles had been reversed? What if it had been women to risk their health and lives in the workplaces of early industrialization? What would Mentor and the SJWs say about that? They’d blame men for heartlessly forcing women out of the house and into those hell-holes, just as they now blame men for not doing so. It’s just how the SJWs roll.
Unsurprising to everyone but Mentor and others like him, women still strongly tend to prefer their traditional role of mother. It’s a rare couple in which Dad is the primary caregiver to the kids. That’s not because men force women into parenthood, but because women tend to see parenting as not only their highest calling, but the one they choose when they can. Large majorities of working women say they’d work less or not at all if they could. Does Mentor know about them?
Has Mentor read any of the countless studies showing women opting out of paid work and into childcare? Does he know that the highest-functioning, best educated women often do exactly that? Does he know that there are 30 times as many stay at home mothers as fathers? Has he read the work of Dr. Catherine Hakim? Judith Warner? Anyone?
Mentor’s response to all this would doubtless be that women are simply witless dupes of a sinister patriarchy that somehow convinces the best and brightest of the distaff half of society to embrace a role none of them want. That of course is insulting to women, but more importantly, it’s not believable. The idea that something called a “patriarchy” browbeats perfectly intelligent, competent women into taking a role they dislike and don’t want explains gender roles better than millions of years of evolution is deeply stupid.
Indeed, the idea that male-female relationships are, at base, political, i.e. a matter of one exercising power over another is equally stupid. The basis is biological, which is why men and women alike cling to those roles despite decades of hectoring by SJWs.
I’ll have more to say on this next time.
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