Readers discuss the critical role that fathers play in parenting and what steps should be taken to remove stigmas and promote equity.Half of the comments are from women, such as this illogical feminist:
While Mr. Shedlin makes constructive suggestions about engaging fathers in the care and challenges of rearing children, in my pediatric practice I have encountered fathers who appear in my office in the days or weeks before custody decisions, claiming that they would like endorsement for their becoming active participants in their children’s lives. In child custody decisions, the best interests of children are served by continuing, stable, previously demonstrated caregiving, not by experimenting in potential benefits to fathers’ self-images and enrichment. There is no prescribed formula for good parenting. Custody decisions should be made based on the facts at hand.If "There is no prescribed formula for good parenting", then there is no basis for saying that any parent is better than any other. If parents are divorcing, then continuing the previous arrangement is impossible. Everyone wants decisions based on the facts, but she is the one refusing to endorse fathers "becoming active participants in their children’s lives."
LYNN K. RUDICH
Fathers in Woodbridge, Conn. might want to avoid this pediatrician
The lead pro-father comment said:
This report, preceded by a few days by another report, “The State of America’s Fathers,” produced by Promundo, is one of many indicators of the inadvertent social evolution I call the “Daddying Movement.”I guess these changes would be good for fathers, so you probably expect me to endorse them.
Both reports demand our attention and offer recommendations for action that it would be wise for us to embrace, including these:
1) Encourage men to enter professions involving early childhood, health and caregiving heretofore seen as women’s professions.
2) Teach all children about the importance and value of being caregivers.
3) In child custody decisions, keep the best interest of the child foremost, even if it challenges the assumptions that traditionally favor mothers.
4) Pass a national policy guaranteeing paid leave of equal length for mothers and fathers after a birth or adoption.
I do not.
This is a leftist vision. It denies human nature. It uses social policy to try to change peoples' preferences. It tries to use education to brainwash the next generation. It uses buzz phrases like BIOTCh to enforce authoritarian control over families, and over businesses. It pushes "equality" to silly extremes, such as treating birth the same as adoption.
You think I am overreacting? Look at his (supposedly pro-father) report:
As this report will show, holding a lower bar for fathers’ caregiving contributions works against our efforts to reach true gender equality at work and at home. ...Got that? The ultimate goal is not happiness, or productive citizens, or personal freedom, or family autonomy, or respect for traditions, or research-based child-rearing, or Christian ideals, or anything like that. The ultimate goal is "gender equity", and "pursuit of gender justice".
State of America’s Fathers provides recommendations on what it will take to reach equality in caregiving ...
While the report adopts a specific focus on the benefits of fathers’ rich involvement in their children’s lives, it keeps its eye on the ultimate goal: gender justice.a
We are not interested in pitting the needs of mothers against the needs of fathers. Rather, we want to move toward a country where everyone, regardless of gender identity or sexual orientation, is able to choose and define their own roles within the family – without discriminatory policies or restrictive cultural norms holding them back. Fathers’ and men’s increased care-work contributions bring such broad benefits for a simple reason, and it is not because the caregiving realm will be any better managed by men than women, or because men have superior abilities. Rather, men’s caregiving contributions stand to create broad personal and social benefits precisely because they open more spaces for parents of all genders to pursue full, uninhibited personal and professional lives. In other words, these contributions advance gender justice. The pursuit of gender justice is not a zero-sum game whereby gains for women mean losses for men, or vice versa. Indeed, true gender justice is an abundant and self-perpetuating resource, offering benefits and expanded opportunities to all members of society.
[footnote]a. The pursuit of gender justice can be defined as an effort to realize a world without any inequality of rights or opportunities based on gender, whether in relationships, families, communities, workplaces, or states.30
The report claim to address the problem of men not being more involved in child care, but the 140 pages fail to mention the biggest two:
1. Women are naturally and instinctively inclined toward child care.
2. Men doing child care are always under suspicion of being perverts.
I am under unfair suspicions of enuf things already, I do not wish to add pervert to the list.
Perhaps they dispute the human nature differences between men and women, but they are backed by every scientific study and by the cultural norms of every successful society. You can see it in 3-year-old girls playing with dolls, and boys refusing.
The report does not suggest using scientific research to see what works best, or letting people choose on their own. They demand gender equity, at whatever cost.
One of the NY Times letters praised a father for bringing cakes to school parties! I suppose a gender equity proponent would try to make sure that the school cakes are brought equally by moms and dads, and also equally by LGBT figures, if that makes any sense.
I have posted many times for equally shared parenting, but I am afraid that the movement has been taken over by crazy leftists.
In my view, parents should have the freedom and autonomy to rear their kids as they wish. The law should protect those rights, and to protect the customs that have worked well for centuries.
Maybe that means that the dad would rather earn the money to pay for the cake and the mom would rather bring the cake to the school party. Any attempt to equalize those roles is crazy. Also crazy is any attempt to give the mom custody of the child just because she has been bringing the cakes. In a free society, human nature will induce dads and moms to take different roles.
Recognition of human nature differences between men and women sometimes goes over the name of red pill. I see that there is a forthcoming amateur movie title The Red Pill, with interviews of prominent men's rights advocates and others.
Filmmaker Cassie Jaye delves headfirst into the mysterious and polarizing world of the Men’s Rights Movement. The Red Pill takes a magnifying glass to today’s ‘gender war’ and raises questions about what needs to be done in order to achieve true gender equality.This is a misuse of the term "red pill". The term red pill is usually means facing reality that everyone ignores. It means waking up.
But this movie is about politics, not human nature, and half the interviews are with women and feminists. It probably does give a good introduction to men's rights issues, but the premise is that we ought "to achieve true gender equality."
No, wanting to achieve true gender equality is blue pill, not red pill. True gender equality is neither possible nor desirable.
My arguments for shared parenting are that kids need the different influences from dads and moms, that it preserves parental rights, that it shelters the family from oppressive govt control, and that anything else seriously undermines marriage.
I don't hear anything else making these arguments. Apparently most political organizations eventually get taken over by leftists, and they have discovered that the best way to get their demands is to keep shouting "equality" over and over.
Count me out. I want to live in a society where men are men, and women are women. The happiest and most well-adjusted families are those where the dad is the authority on important matters, and the mom does most of the child care.