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1994-2009 , it’s about “Fathers,”

and is beginning to remind me of the Viet Nam war.

Began in secret, finally acknowledged, and I hope someday

we will have something better to talk about, as a nation.

These quotes are from June 2006

 

June 2006 – THE WAR ON FATHERS: How the ‘feminization of America’ destroys boys, men – and women

The June edition of Whistleblower magazine is a mega-eye-opener exploring one of the most crucial but little-reported (??) phenomena of modern America – what WND calls “THE WAR ON FATHERS.”

The evidence of this almost unthinkable scenario is everywhere:

 In public school classrooms across America, in every category and every demographic group, boys are falling behind. Girls excel and move on to college, where three out of five students are female, while young boys – who don’t naturally thrive when forced to sit still at a desk for six hours a day – are diagnosed by the millions with new diseases that didn’t exist a generation ago. To make their behavior more acceptable, they are compelled to take hazardous psycho-stimulant drugs like Ritalin.

This happens to be true.  But how is this a war on fatherhood?  And why should girls, or grown women, who are already socially conditioned to sit still; do for six hours a day either?  They are more likely to daydream and underperform in some response to this, or start intrigues, or other non-scholastically-engaged activity.   How is that any more acceptable for girls either?

Boys are more than 50 percent more likely to repeat elementary school grades than girls, a third more likely to drop out of high school and twice as likely to have a “learning disability.” And the suicide rate among teen boys is far higher than that of girls.

“What we have done,” explains Thomas Mortenson, senior scholar at the Pell Institute for the Study of Opportunity in Higher Education, “is we have a K-12 school system that seems to work relatively well for girls and does not work for a very large share of boys.”

(And he cites the same study I just did! but with diffferent conclusions):

I take issue with this “we.”  I was born in the 1950s, and I didn’t create the public school system, and, like “war”, it was not conceived, designed, or pushed to full fruition by women.  

Common sense says that children are going to learn better where there is some personal relationship with the teachers, and their classmates, that has half a chance of enduring past a semester.  And for them to individually recognized for WHO they are, not only how they perform.  This will have to require some “down” time and informal associations as well.  Putting them in large groups to absorb the nationalized curriculum en masse is a recipe for failure.  Moreover, there possibly IS something to the different rates at which boys and girls tend (overall) to be literate and fluent; there already is among different children of the same sex as well.  The age-segregation thing — as the rule, and differences, the exception — is unnatural in almost anything but armies.  Good grief!  It doesn’t happen in families, and doesn’t always in corporations or businesses either.  Why do it in school?  That’s a recipe for gangs, which — face it — we have. 

But declaring that situation, and this clear, systemic educational failure to be a “war on fatherhood” is ridiculous, and ignores that it fails girls just as well.  Any system rigged for one gender, or social class to succeed and another to fail, is failing allof them.  In fact one of the prime functions of this system, and characteristics, is to set children loose in large groups, where for sheer survival they must figure out a “gang” to belong to, a “type” to become. 

And I do not at all approve of our current administration’s promises to “fix” something that has a design flaw — which has been already identified — it sorts by sex, and it also sorts pretty thoroughly by income.  It wastes parents time and energy (propping it up by involvement, or by fundraising).  It dumbs kids down, and slows them down.  I 

For more information, please see “edwatch.org”  

A mother’s lament/rant on the public school system.

If you want to skip it this time, scroll down past the red ink, which it also has helped drown my household in, as a result, not to mention red tape.  I think there might be some forgiveness for my seeing some “red” on this issue!  

Also, this post is not copyedited, I’ve had several “saves” so far, and the most current one is not posted.  I am not going to proofread here (on such a personal “hot topic,” but simply want the thoughts, references, and information out.

I have participated in education in, around, before, and after public schools, as well as private, home, and some Catholic schools, and I’ve had my share of watching simply intelligent boys be labeled hyperactive.  IN one case, I had to throw out a 4-year old from a piano class, but he turned out to have been gifted, and I took him on as a private student.  I have taught boys bouncing off the wall (literally sometimes) but able to focus when they were allowed to be engaged — which singing tends to do, to some.  I have also had a daughter daydreaming in class while the entire class read aloud a book geared to several grade below her level.

Jonothan Kozol detailed in “I Won’t Learn From You” how some kids get into “Special Ed” that really don’t belong there.  John Taylor Gatto wrote of his struggles to get a fluently reading you lady out of a slower classroom.  A book on “JUMP” (Junior Undiscovered Math Prodigies) writes of how he worked with supposedly “slow” kids and their successes.  There are many more profitable things that can be done when someone fails to learn than labeling and sidelining them.  By and large, public schools don’t do this.  

My children were forced back INTO this system by a man cheated by it himself (it did not compensate for family lacks), who I’d just left because of violence.  I myself am still unlearning values I absorbed while in public school system (at which I excelled), one of which was slowing me down and undervaluing my strengths, and judging myself as a person by the things I was less adept at, rather than appreciating the strengths.  I know this affected how hard I pushed in my career, prior to marriage, although that came out pretty decent overall.  Now my kids are incorporating the same values.

When we homeschooled, both children were vivacious, engaged, ready to talk to adults, and with time in their schedules to play also.  They were, in short, themselves, and felt free to relate to both parents, the custodial one and the noncustodial one.  We moved in and out of various learning situations with relative ease, which is typical, and adds interest to the school day. They saw sunshine every day, and not just during gym class or a hurried lunch.

The style, motivation, and goals of us as a homeschooling family differed from the larger classroom, which teaches to the middle or bottom level.  As a parent, OR teacher, I’m never interested in my kids’ middle or bottom levels, but their top ones, and had a pretty good idea of where that was, because we lived in the same household, and I had adequate time to see them at work in a variety of situations.   

They both excelled although had different learning styles.  I watched in horror, and shock, as my own offspring became commodities in a war against allowing them to continue in this fashion because a woman had made a decision to return to it after a non-relative non-parent, non-educator (by lifelong profession) told her to stop.  Watching them give up great activities to participate in classrooms where some teachers, let alone the average student, couldn’t put a paragraph together without grammar mistakes, where math was slowed down, and one daughter’s major concern was literally daydreaming in class (and missing something) because they were reading the entire book aloud in class to compensate for kids who otherwise wouldn’t do their homework. . . and that book itself was aimed at a reading level far below hers — this was like torture to a parent. 

The school system took me out of their lives in any significant role — because we were a two-household family — and put me in a traffic jam instead, a place no single mother can really afford to be!  Time counts!  Our schedules were stressed whereas before they weren’t.  I have talked to wealthy professional mothers (same neighborhoods) who were equally stressed for the reasons of supplementing the school’s failures with after-school enrichments.  I tried to each some of their stressed out students too, and finally became more discriminating in who I would and would not take on as a private student.

NOTE:  My children, after years of the School wars, would disagree, and sought peace, at any price.  As a parent, I note that they are not yet fully grown, and may (or, OK, may not!) think differently afterwards.  I know what it cost our family.  And as a musician privileged with 13 years of private lessons, which helped me get into a top liberal arts college — majoring in music — I know that continuity in an instrument is required for some mastery.  Mastery of any sort of skill that requires this sort of development opens doors socially, often far beyond grade school.  This also goes for other skills, such as language, athletics, gymnastics, or for that matter science interest.  

To hold back multiple children from their long suits to help some children learn to read, write and count, sometimes under methods that are known to not work well (such as the deletion of phonics, for a period in US history, or the experimentation in math texts, about which I know something, and which a book called, appropriately (it’s a pun), “Class Warfare” addresses — has GOT to be a form of child abuse.  Many, many authors have already addressed this.  

If someone wishes to look for a major source of social problems, it would make much  more sense to look at significcant institutions in our country, rather than half its populace — women!  And declare that they have declared war on the other half in all situations where they left a marriage.  Or to declare a new national religion:  Fatherhood!  The real war is much more likely to be: inherited wealth “haves” from up and coming “have-nots.”

The Rhetoric of “Fatherhood” does exactly this:  It rides parasite style on existing situations (in this long post, I address two:  education, and war, with attendant PTSD), and co-opts them into the fire fanning the cause.  I have seen it also complain about the family law system in the ssame manner, calling it pro-mothers, when the facts are, it svery origin and design, by primarily men (southern California) is to prolong family strife (for an endless cash machine) and diminish the rule of evidence in favor of out-of-court situations where due process can be better violated.  I am talking about mediation, where there has already been criminal behavior.  

Back to Education as a “war on fatherhood” (implying, by feminists):

In 1990, John Taylor Gatto documented seven primary lessons this system ACTUALLY teaches.  Look them up!  Like me (I have scope and experience as a teacher, graduate, and having kids go in, out and back in to this system, while in my household, and have also dealt professionally with many parents, year after year, with kids in a variety of schools as well:  urban and suburban.  Beyond that, I read a lot!), as teh New York State Teacher of the Year at the time, he explains correctly in his little book called “Dumbing Us Down” what this system actually does, as opposed to its stated mission.  That he doesn’t mention “war on fatherhood” or unfairness to boys or girls may  have been because this was before the founding of the “National Fatherhood Initiative,” or it might have been because that’s not the situation.  He DOES mention that it breaks down family units and true communities, as opposed to false, and fleeting networks.

Another author, Samuel Blumenfeld (I picked males, guys, OK?) wrote “Is Public Education Necessary” and narrated some of its history.  That’s  rhetorical question, folks!  Diane Ravitch has written a book called “the Language Police” and she worked FOR the U.S. Dept. of Education, a Dept. our Constitution said nothing about originally.  Other books such as Adult Illiteracy, The Literacy Hoax, and many others have categorized its failures. No matter, where there is a government contract, there is an ongoing proposition.

I ran afoul of a recent product of the California Teacher Credentialing process in my own custody and divorce in the 2000s. The same personality took issue with my homechooling (which had been our standard) but none with the violence, not even while the RO was on, instead, characterizing my decision to homeschool as “emotionally violent.”  Say What??

 I was shocked !! at the prejudice and tunnel vision involved, and at the callousness to the impact on our family household (including its income) in these matters.  Our kids are not to be testing grounds for drugs, theories, or human behavioral management techniques.  They are not to be strip-searched, punished military style for something their classmates done, indoctrinated, sorted by sex and age, locked down, taken hostage, sexually assaulted (or harassed) by teachers OR fellow-classmates, or shot to death in or near a school, yet this has happened and continues to happen.  This is not what childhood is for.  

Moreover, childhood passes fast, and it shouldn’t be squandered.

I worked in and around homeschoolers — the student/adult ratio was enough to keep a watch on violence, abuse, hate-talk, and I guarantee you, these kids wouldn’t have thought ganging up on or about stoning me, as a middle school band teacher (female) recently was in this county.  I knew the parents of the children I taught.  I also know that these people have the power to hire great teachers and fire bad or unreliable ones.  I appreciated working with children who were intelligent and had some self-control, this was good for all of us.  Moreover, apart from a few relationships around music, the friendships with kids and parents alike that my children formed in this manner were among their most stable and long-lasting ones, lasting beyond a change of schools or personal interests in life.  They knew each other as PEOPLE in a variety of situations, which traditional school doesn’t allow. 

And neither girls nor boys deserve to be locked up in one box, while parents work in another during daylight hours, when a better way is available.  I know the finances of this personally also.  It was totally impossible for me to accomplish, in my situation as a single mother with weekly visitation to Dad (in a nearby county) with my kids IN this system what I could had I been given permission for them to exit it.

But the reason I could not relates directly to this school systems’ need to perpetuate itself, and pick off the stragglers who otherwise might put them to shame.  My kids experienced parental stealing by their angry father because I as a mother dared to say, this is NOT good enough for our children!  ANd that attitude — that doing this — came from the near-lethal (and I do mean that literally) combination of fatherhood promoters (such as these below) and the financial “ancillary interests” serving the public school system.  

I will take on any one in fair, open, debate on-line on this matter, with some moderation.  This school system is cheating both genders, which should not be blamed on one of them.  Moreover, the school system is generally speaking “progressive” and leftist, while the federal government appears to becoming — through these HHS grants I keep speaking of — more and more influenced by conservative right-wingers, who like to keep their women under control, and in large part from supposedly religious bases.  Your blogger here has not only experienced this, but also read on the issue of domestic violence as addressed in conservative Christian mainstream press (i.e., Focus on the Family, Promise Keepers, etc.)  Books such as “Battered into Submission” and others address their silence on this plague — physical violence backing up other forms of violence, within personal relationships — is always a plague when it’s system- endorsed.  Dr Chesler addresses its format in the other fundamentalist religion, Islam, when she writes on honor-killings.

When a school system is actively pro-LGBT and not very friendly to Christianity (as opposed to, say Islam), and a government agency is pushing a Christian agenda through, the natural consequence is conflict.  Both approaches are likely to engender a reactionary exodus from the system, or reaction to it.  Add to this, underperformance intellectually when a school is more about indoctrination that education, and we have a cesspool of conflicting ideologies and power struggles, both within the school and between parents and the schools.

 

Most human beings don’t appreciate being the target of a mass label of any sort.  This is a way to sort fruit, cattle, or sheep, not people.

Te American public, across the board, and is hostile to competitors, principally homeschoolers.  In other countries — such as Germany! — homeschooling is illegal, which should be a message to us all about what direction this is heading.  Our economy would be better off with private, market-based competition, and allow people to re-engage in their own communities.  Schools throughout Chicago have demonstrated alternatives.

 

Here’s one tirade:

The problem,” said David Kupelian, managing editor of WND and Whistleblower, “is that misguided feminists, intent on advancing a radically different worldview than the one on which this nation was founded,

What would that worldview be — life, liberty, and the pursuit of manliness? . . . . .  “Puh-leez!”

As I pointed out in my post of 06-01-09, the exact opposite appears to be true.  In general, baseline sanity (as with family court in general, when it comes to labeling) the ground-zero truth is often 180~ reversal of the proclaimed truth.  

FOR EXAMPLE, HERE:

I posted the original documents for us to look at, also, or links to them:  Declaration of Independence, Gettysburg Address, and Martin Luther King, Jr.’s speech, at the Lincoln Memorial (1776, 1863, 1963) all talk about JUSTICE.  In seeking freedom from being colonized by England, the signers pledged their lives and their fortunes as well.  In 1863, on the battlefield of a war, commemorating the cost of not letting the South secede and keep their slavery trade going — then-President Lincoln reminded his audience BRIEFLY of 1776.  The concept of slavery was supposedly anathema.  In1963, another civil rights leader said, that promise was made, but for a certain sector has not been realized.  Notably, both Lincoln and Martin Luther King, Jr., were later assassinated.  All around this, women had been seeking to vote, at a minimum.  

In 1994, VAWA said :  STOP! hitting and killing us because we are women.  Stop it!  It was not a “we hate you because you are men,” but a “what about justice?  We are people too!”  Anyhow, “Whistleblower” (the source) drones on. . . . 

have succeeded in fomenting a revolution. And that revolution amounts to a powerful and pervasive campaign against masculinity, maleness, boys, men and patriarchy.”

 

No, if along the way, manhood has become associated with the ability to oppress, we have a problem indeed.

Also, in the process of patronizing feminists verbally, let’s get consistent.  Either they are misguided, and to be pitied and instructed, or they are wicked and evil revolution-fomenters, disturbing your peace and (Patriarchy), therefore to be hated, because they DO know better but are simply mean, nasty, family-haters.    . . . .   No wonder this is a call for mental health practitioners in the business; make up your mind!  Which is it?  Dumb, or bad?  And while you are deciding which one women as a whole are (that’s ALL women who want to leave their marriages, or protest abuse of them or the children, and expect protection from this, etc.  OR who not only expect BOTh to be (a) protected from assaults AND (b) to have the former assaulter continue to provide for his offspring (yes, you breed’em you feed’em, and it takes two, still, to start one…), for you own credibility that this is not a murder trial, but if it were, either the person would be deemed mentally competent, or not. This type of inflammatory speech, incidentally, isn’t, because it can’t choose between even those two. Among other reasons, which I hope to illustrate below, along with some sensible talk by men addressing issue that pertain, at least, to veterans.

Intelligent discourse (exchange of dialogue, or consideration of ideas/theories) is not possible, really, around these kinds of propositions.  Add to that, we know now the Responsible Fatherhood Healthy Marriage Federal funding behind “teaching us our lesson,” so the poor and oppressed paradigm doesn’t really stick.  As well as (I hope to also show) some of the funding behind the media portrayal of these issues.

“Issue highlights include:

Note “war;” “win/lose” and fear-mongering vocabulary below:.  Get out the paint and drums:

  • “Banning ‘mom’ and ‘dad,'” by Joseph Farah, who exposes the latest in bizarre and dangerous legislation by the California legislature. 

Did the word “bizarre” come from some of these access/visitation grants?  My ex used that one, of a very normal activity we were engaged in, although his description of it made it sound like Guantanamo.   Bizarre & Dangerous together conjure up some great images, if the intent is to play them emotions and other rabble-rousing.    (I am thinking he’s referring to Prop 8, or the attempt to switch the marriage registration forms from reading “Husband” and “Wife” to Party 1 and Party 2?   For gay marriages, I suppose, it could be simply “Husband and husband” (til further notice) and “Wife and wife” I suppose.  Or “Ms.” and “Mr.” — but in any case, I don’t think it’s nearly as bizarre or dangerous as the fatherhood movement, presently, which is affecting the justice processes in the U.S.

  • “The fathers’ war” by Stephen Baskerville, a troubling look at how increasing numbers of America’s military men risk all to serve their nation in wartime, only to be divorced by their wives and lose their children

 

Let’s consider the phrase “be divorced by their wives and lose their children” in its proper context, as to Vets:

 

Whistleblower author, you didn’t know that War messes with men, and women, both?

Mr (or Dr.) Baskerville must not have served as infantry, or in actual combat?  And he doesn’t understand that PTSD happens?  And in a soldier, can become lethal, including to his own family?

Let’s hear from some serious authors (not just serious about their own causes…).  Senator McCain (See US Veterans article below) served  in war — did Jeffrey Leving, David Blankenhorn, Wade Horn? ??  (We know about Clinton, he didn’t fight, and he didn’t “inhale”. either..)  

NYTIMES:  Across America Deadly Echoes of Foreign Wars

January 13, 2008, By DEBORAH SONTAG and LIZETTE ALVAREZ

Individually, these are stories of local crimes, gut-wrenching postscripts to the war for the military men, their victims and their communities. Taken together, they paint the patchwork picture of a quiet phenomenon, tracing a cross-country trail of death and heartbreak.

The New York Times found 121 cases in which veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan committed a killing in this country, or were charged with one, after their return from war. In many of those cases, combat trauma and the stress of deployment — along with alcohol abuse, family discord and other attendant problems — appear to have set the stage for a tragedy that was part destruction, part self-destruction.

Three-quarters of these veterans were still in the military at the time of the killing. More than half the killings involved guns, and the rest were stabbings, beatings, strangulations and bathtub drownings. Twenty-five offenders faced murder, manslaughter or homicide charges for fatal car crashes resulting from drunken, reckless or suicidal driving.

About a third of the victims were spouses, girlfriends, children or other relatives, among them 2-year-old Krisiauna Calaira Lewis, whose 20-year-old father slammed her against a wall when he was recuperating in Texas from a bombing near Falluja that blew off his foot and shook up his brain

BAD WOMEN, SEPARATING FROM THEIR TRAUMATIZED, LEAN, MEAN FIGHTING-MACHINE HUSBANDS.  THEY ARE PARTICIPATING IN A “WAR ON FATHERHOOD.”

NOW, IF IT HAD BEEN A FEMALE HEAD OF STATE THAT SENT THE US INTO IRAQ ON (FALSE PRETEXTS) AND THEN SAID, ‘WELL, WE’RE IN, WE HAVE TO FINISH THE JOB NOW — OR AFGHANISTAN, OR ANYWHERE ELSE,AND ALL THE FEMINAZIS WERE  EGGING HER ON, THEN PERHAPS YOU COULD BLAME FATHERS RETURNING HOME AND LOSING THEIR FAMILIES ON WOMEN’S WAR AGAINST FATHERHOOD.  SOMEHOW, IT DOESN’T RING AS REAL AS THESE ARTICLES, BELOW . . . . . 

These men, and I bet some of then are responsible fathers, too, are actually DOING something about the struggle the veterans have coming home. . .

(1)

Odysseus in America: Combat trauma and the trials of homecoming

By Jonathan Shay, MD, PhD;

Foreword by Senator Max Cleland and Senator John McCain

Book review by Helen A Williams, MS

New York: Scribner; 2002. ISBN 0-7432-1156-1 352 pages. $25.00

Those moved by Jonathan Shay’s first book, Achilles in Vietnam (1995)1–an inquiry into Homer’s Iliad as metaphor for the deforming effects of military combat on character–are in for another compelling read. This time, Shay examines The Odyssey and discovers that Odysseus’ adventures look a lot like the symptoms of what we now call posttraumatic stress disorder, or PTSD. Shay’s gift is to convey these symptoms as dramatis personae from The Odyssey cannibalizing the inner life of the Vietnam veteran.

Jonathan Shay is a psychiatrist in the US Department of Veteran Affairs Outpatient Clinic in Boston, where he began his career in 1987 working with Vietnam veterans suffering with PTSD. Based on Shay’s work with these vets, his second book culminates in a plea for changing the way the US military organizes itself to fight a war–or, at least, for changing the way the military had organized itself through December 2001. The book went to press in 2002, before the war in Iraq began (in March 2003). 

(2)

United States Department of Veterans Affairs

Boston’s Jonathan Shay Honored with MacArthur Fellowship

VA PTSD Psychiatrist Given “Genius” Award

September 25, 2007

WASHINGTON — A Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) employee in Boston, Dr. Jonathan Shay, has been awarded the so-called “Genius Award” from the MacArthur Foundation.  Shay, the author of two popular books about post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), has been a VA staff psychiatrist treating combat veterans with PTSD since November 1987.

Dr. Shay is living proof that VA is providing our veterans with the best health care this country has to offer, especially for the treatment of PTSD,” said Secretary of Veterans Affairs Jim Nicholson. “Our veterans deserve — and VA is providing — world-class health care.”

Shay was one of 24 Americans who each recently received a $500,000 grant from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, one of the nation’s largest philanthropic organizations, for “exceptional merit and promise of continued creative work.”  Shay combines a study of classic literature with 20 years of experience treating veterans inBoston to explain PTSD to both the public and health care professionals.

In addition to publications in professional journals, he is the author of Achilles in Vietnam and Odysseus in America, two widely regarded books that helped spread the understanding that PTSD is an age-old battlefield injury by comparing the works of the ancient Greek poet Homer to the experiences of modern combat veterans.

He also pioneered the use of certain anti-depression medicine, called “selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors,” for combat trauma, a treatment that now has broad endorsement for veterans with psychological injury.

(3) The men in my family, in re: military service:

 

The men in my family background did not come home and get betrayed by their wives, bad women.  This is how it went:

One cousin went to Viet Nam  and served.  He came home, and had a wife and two kids and was an upstanding man.  He was done in, eventually, by Agent Orange and died, leaving THEM.  The other cousin was disqualified due to poor circulation.

My Dad, I’m told, was held back here to work on a military-funded  project for a major research lab in NJ.  Naturally, as a kid, I was not privvy to on all of this.  Later, I learned more. from a book and the Internet than my own family ever shared.  One thing  I also learned, and remembered, is that behind MOST technological advances is a military purpose (and money).  He died early (65), why, I don’t know.  I am sure had he not died early, he might have put my ex in place when the battering began.  However, it’s also quite likely that childhood abuse was a factor in his life, and stress level overall.  DNK.  He overperformed and dedicated himself to study and work, and providing for us.

My uncle served in the war, and I never knew him that well as a person to start with, he was always kind of sidelined in the family; he was very talented artistically, and I have some cartoons of his, sardonic commentaries on how inhumane the treatment of his soldiers.  He typically had a silly smile on his face (mental illness?  Fetal alcohol syndrome?  Smacked around as a kid by his Dad??) and never said much.  No one would talk about this.  He never married, and died early; I wasn’t told why.

SIDE NOTE:  My Dad grew up with domestic violence, we were told.  I suspect some of it got to this uncle and may have accounted for how well he did in life, and how short a life he lived.  As he lived, so he died — though a niece, I was told next to nothing, then, or now.

In-law:  My father in law served in Korea, and came back, at least, paranoid schizophrenic, medicated, and is described by my ex as uninvolved / depressed.  My sister in law described him as a drunk (she refused to ride home in the same car with him from the airport).  His household was definitely dysfunctional and he was most likely uninvolved as a parent because he was on medication and depressed.  Eventually, well after one son divorced, remarried & was jailed for incest, and another one got a restraining order with kickout for domestic violence, and I guess after a daughter had multiple kids with a man who wouldn’t support them, my father in law blew his life out with a bullet to the head.  Certificate reads “acute chronic depression.”  

A brother in law I never met served in the military, came back, and remarried a woman with children.  He was the one jailed for incest — not long enough as far as I am concerned.  He since remarried almost 20 years older than than himself and judging an on-line  photo, and his track record, I’d say she was desperate.   

This was NOT “women leaving their husbands,” and it was not woman’s war on manhood.  Perhaps THE logical conclusion of this version of manhood IS war.  Period.  Manliness  = fighting someone.  I don’t know.  I don’t go for it.  Not safe!


  • “The war on fathers,” by David Kupelian, an in-depth look at what’s really behind the feminization of America.

    Who knows — perhaps the “feminazi” (as we are called) came at one point from having to deal with generation after generation of war-torn fathers, brothers, orphans?  Perhaps these men were coming back and acting out what they’d lived in war. . .  And we protested.

    Anyone who wishes to blame the ‘feminists” for everything has an ahistorical perspective.  Where did we come from to start with?  Not wanting to be the new slave class?  Nationally speaking — and these FR guys DO obviously get national platforms to speak from — they own many of them, and pay for others (which can be traced at least in part) – – have externalized and targeted women as their personal “demons,”  For being women, for not going along with the stereotyped gender roles, for wanting to leave the home and work, even if the household is suffering for lack of their doing so, for failing to crawl low enough – —   A bigger, better man would face his own issues and think about maybe why she left. . . . . I know the man I left has apparently not done that yet.  He’s simply found more people to agree with him, and got them all worked up (and incited to action), also.

  • Why men are being attacked,” by Dr. Laura Schlessinger, who says: “It isn’t all about hating men – it’s largely about disdaining and dismissing them.” 

I don’t disdain men overall.  For one, that’d be foolish — I work with choirs, and it takes all kinds to sing, deep voices and high voices, “SATB.”  Historically within music, I have worked with male and female, let alone straight and gay, old and young. The children’s choirs I hung out with, some were boys and girls, and some girls only, and some boys only.  It takes all kinds.  I married and had children, which indicates at least a nominal ability of some sort, and stuck it out for almost a decade.  I drew the line somewhere between the collections of weapons (more than one kind), destruction of my credit, attempt to keep me without transportation, and being concerned that a suicide was imminent.  Not to mention being physically assaulted in front of my own kids, and lectured, too.  Enough was too much.  

Now, I want a little space, some peace, and sanity within the family court, only to find it is more interested in funneling funds to tweak the male/female family balance because of earlier concerns about welfare vs. child support and the establishment of what looks, sounds, feels, and is experienced like the establishment of a new national religion.  Now THAT, I object to.

Those who have lived with certain personality types understand how setting a limit can be interpreted as declaring “war.”  

I do reserve the right to determine when someone is talking sense, or nonsense, speaking treasures of wisdom or rubbish coming from sloppy, emotional, thinking.  I do reserve the right to not be assaulted in my own home — and for this, I eventually had to have one of us leave — him!  (we rented, don’t get all worked up about family property — I had chaos to deal with, from years of the chaos of violence.  And plenty of debt.  No assets — at all.  Period.  None, other than books, I suppose.  An old car…, and not the only one…)

 

  • “Has the bias pendulum swung against men?” Fewer college-bound, higher suicide rates, shorter life spans suggest males getting shaft.  (OR, maybe they are not doing something right?)

NOTE:  I am ONE woman, not ALL women.  Most women I know are not “ALL” women.  To attack us  — to the point of killing! — because of perceived injustices by other women shows delusional thinking no different than attacking all people on the basis of race, national origin, or for that matter, body size, or faith.  The rhetoric simply makes no sound sense.

  • “Paternity fraud rampant in U.S.,” showing how 30 percent of men assessed for court-ordered child support are not actually the fathers of the children receiving the support. 

Cites please?  And if this is so, it is likely made up for the ones who ARE the fathers not paying it.  Plus some fathers who are having custody switched and now their wives pay, or are jailed.  

  • “‘Shared parenting’ seen as custody solution,” a look at bills in New York that would require courts to treat mom and dad equally. (Courts have never done this, and do not do so now, thanks to the U.S. HHS  // ACF programs and many more initiatives from at least as far back as 1994, and ongoing.  Millions of dollars gone towards these initiatives.  See elsewhere on site.)
  • “Resolving the boy crisis in schools” by Jeffery M. Leving and Glenn Sacks, showing how today’s public schools are profoundly unsuited for the genuine needs of boys.         

    I lived and worked in Mr. Leving’s home greater metropolitan area.  

    I do not think he was practicing on the Chicago’s South Side.  I was there in the 1970s and 1980s working under a man who talked less and did more to help support and supplement inner city public schools through inspired excellence in music, the Unitarian church, to help boys AND girls get along together in mixed ensembles and non-age-level-separated situations.  Another unique (for his generation) thing he did, starting in the 1950s (before Maryland had fully ratified women’s right to vote, and told Congress so!)  was get some of the kids from the privileged Chicago Laboratory (private, upperclass) school  and others on the North side of town to function, at work and play, and on tours and rehearsals, with some on the South and West sides.  This was (the late) Rev. Christopher Moore. I came in from Oberlin Consevatory, and learned a thing or two as well.  

    I respect that man (shortcomings and longsuits) because I saw his work and service. Unlike Promoting Responsible Fatherhood, it’s not getting families killed or put back on poverty — except ONE child, “Virgil White” who was shot for quitting gangs through this group.  It enriched their lives and infused something terrific INTO these public schools — singing.  He also got kids OUT of the schools to sing together after school, and concertizing in front of a variety of others.  This group is still going, and infusing emotional, musical and other cultural life into the city, and the lives of the boys and girls (now  young men and women, or some gray-haired ones).  In 2007 they had their 50th anniversary celebration, brining across male — and female; young — and old – musicians from across the country and across time.   We (I came, too) sang for almost 3 days straight and filled the Lyric Opera House as to both audience and stage.   

    They also had something better (more noble) to focus on than gender, and gender alone.  OR marital status. Good grief.

    Guess why I was unable to bring a daughter along?  Not in small part because of what demagogues like these were pushing through Congress, and then down through the Health and Human Services Department by way of Child Support Enforcement (or non-, as the case may be), and other programs that were set in motion while I was:  1.  working to put music back in the schools, and not for high pay; 2. as a woman, pursuing a B.Th because it was part of my faith, and still doing music, and 3.  During marriage, getting slapped around, in marriage, in front of pastors, family, employers, and others without intervention.  And thereafter, in the family law system, when I was again attempting go rebuilding the profession marriage had trashed.

    I can testify that the family law and child support systems are in bed financially with several others, and that groups that helped weaken the VAWA laws and enforcement of existing family codes in place to protect women — and children — and men from beating on them and hounding them out of work — couldn’t/wouldn’t even stick for a mother whose kids were stolen on an overnight visitation, and refused to enforce child support collections diligently either before or afterwards.  

    So I went to that 2007 50th anniversary of this group (Chicago Children’s Choir, incidentally) without my daughters, and inbetween the 6th & 7th court hearings in one year, ALL of them jumpstarted with a felony crime that no one will take responsibility for to start with:  child-stealing.  

    Had they come, they would’ve had an eye-opener culturally (my daughters have scarcely left the state they were born in, to date) and seen adults respecting their mother, been musically inspired beyond belief, and heard a choir from South Africa sing also.  (A group from here has also toured South Africa, and some of them sung for Nelson Mandela).  Why should I, because I am female, and single, be prevented from bringing my offspring in front of such wonderful opportunities?  How does this figure into the “feminazi war on fatherhood” because I protested that injustice?  One daughter is accomplished musically, and still sings in a choir.  This would’ve been a great opportunity.  What kind of mindset would make that opportunity, for a lower-income single mother (which we became primarily through the courts to start with!), impossible for some growing daughters?

    We are indeed in dark times. To me, that’s just totalitarianism.

    I’d rather SEE a sermon — or hear a concert — than hear a sermon any day.  

    I think perhaps we need as a nation to start choosing our leaders from poorer backgrounds, uniformly, and not people who come straight out of college into law school, clerkships, judgeships, and privilege.  Our current President apparently didn’t, but what about the rank and file of Congress?  I think “royalty” is highly overrated, and the Fatherhood and Healthy Marriage is about neither topic, but about dumbing down the general level of conversation to TWO identifiers only:  1.  Gender and 2.  Marital Status, both of them to be considered privileged, when neither of them is really a character indicator.

    Humanity is much more diverse, as are the issues important to debate nationally.  And neither wealth nor poverty are, of themselves, sole indicators of how well a child is going to do in life.  Let’s get out of the fields of virtual self-fulfilling prophecies, and predictions, and take a closer look at PROCESS (as in, due process) in the court systems, among other places.

i recommend a closer look at Tom Mortenson’s blog:

“postsecondaryoppotunity.blogspot.com.”  There are valuable lessons on it, including one on the recent omission of the “family income” category in US Census work.  One of the most stratifying institutions we have today — and one that was supposedly in place to do the opposite — is the k-12 educational system.  Because of what comes out, only wealthier communities, or those where nonprofits committed to certain causes exist, to put it back in, as they still do ( from what I recall) in Chicago.  Moreover, the monopoly has to be willing to let go some of its privilege and acknowledge failure.  ONE of the failures is also character failure.  One character builder includes competence, but it is not the only one.  Another one is service, and participation in meaningful communities.

I think it’s also time to look at the dependence of our national economy on the public school system. Whole sectors would have to be dismantled if it were, yet it is failing students.  I say this as a former teacher and parent, supplemented by experience and reading.  Childcare cannot solve everything, and boys in particular, need their mothers when they are very young, and to not be age and grade-sorted with girls, and then stigmatized because they are different.  And children who literally DO learn differently, should be allowed to — they are among the creators and inventors, we are drilling out of the population by reducing things to a standardized test answer.  Such kids need TIME and some freedom to experiment, and permission to fail also without stigma.  Edison did, after all! And Einstein.

That’s all for today.

This blog is becoming unwieldy (electronically), and I recommend that readers perhaps explore some of the links, and do their own research particularly on what our government is doing with tax dollars.  There are few subsitutes for a little direction and a lot of googling, mixed with real-life experience and informal, unmonitored conversations with lots and lots of people from many walks of life.

If life is work, church/mosque/synagogue/single community organization, school, and commute — when does this happen?

What are we living, working, schooling, and campaigning/worhipping FOR?  The right to direct someone else’s lives, or restrict their opportunities, or living one’s own, peaceably?

Above all, children are not property.  Of all things, parents should know this.  Too many entitities are making merchandise of them.  When parents divorce, Sometimes it’s “no-fault,” but sometimes there are legitimate faults or crimes.  At this time, one size fits all does not work, and shouldn’t be forced to at public expense in the courts any more than it does in the school system.  ANy more than an employer should be forced to keep incompetent employees affecting its bottom line and public reputation.

As a nation, the US Government is the EMPLOYEE of the American people, as well as employing many in the exercise of its authority.  It is in too many different businesses for sure, and has forgotten who it was to be Of, By, and For.  Looking at who is greasing the wheels of Congress, and presuming to speak for an entire nation without openly consulting them on its policies, this has gotten entirely out of hand.  

Like most bulldozers, or for that matter outsized tanks, it lacks the finesse, and substitutes force.  and works best with a free rein in a large area.

People who work primarily as employees, paying taxes, have been bulldozed over at teh behest of private foundations running institutes at major universities driving data for federal purposes not voted on.  It is paying salaries of judges who are sometimes caught with their pants down, or taking kickbacks, and trafficking in kids too (I refer to a federal judge in Texas on sexual harassment, a NJ judge on pornography involving kids,  and two judges who sent juveniles, improperly, to detention centers, in Pennsylvania, among others).  

I’m tired of this — as a mother, and former musician (as to employment) both practices require finesse and a degree of freedom to work right.

As to this post, I apologize for the length and its condition (not up to “snuff”) but hope that some of its links, references, and ideas may spark something in a reader for follow up, or to reconsider some of the rhetoric in light of, perhaps education, versus the gender or ideology wars.  Maybe there is a better way!


Written by Let's Get Honest

June 3, 2009 at 11:34 am

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martinplaut

Journalist specialising in the Horn of Africa and Southern Africa

Let's Get Honest! Blog: Absolutely Uncommon Analysis of Family & Conciliation Courts' Operations, Practices, & History

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