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Thanks to Trevor Martin

Male Identity Crisis

Social Engineering Has Produced Killer Kids

By Richard Lessner Manchester, New Hampshire
Union Leader, August 12, 1998

The majority of violent crimes are committed by young men between the ages of 15 and 25.  Increasingly, however, we are seeing horrific crimes being committed by younger and younger boys.

In an Arkansas school yard, little-boy killers dressed in fatigues gun down their classmates.  In Chicago, boys 7 and 8 are accused of murdering an 11-year-old girl for her bicycle.  Teachers polled nationwide say that student violence is the worst problem facing the schools; 40 years ago it was talking in the classroom.

Here in New Hampshire, we still are trying to make sense of the slaying of 14-year-old Robbie Mills of Laconia, who was murdered, police say, for his bicycle.  An 18-year-old is accused of this senseless crime.

How do we account for the rising numbers of violent children?   Doubtless many factors are at work, but one of the most important may be the crisis in manliness.  Writing in the current issue of the Weekly Standard,  Walter R. Newell, professor of political science at Carlton University in Ottawa, Canada, details the rising toll we are paying for our foolish experiment in gender leveling.

For more than 30 years, Professor Newell notes, we have pursued a prolonged effort at social engineering.  The aim has been to eradicate any psychological or emotional difference between men and women.  The rationale for this vast social experiment has been the radical feminist notion that any concept of manliness inevitably leads to aggression and violence against women and rigid hierarchies of power that exclude and marginalize.

Baby Boomers were told not to be hung up on providing distinctly masculine role models for boys and to de-emphasize differences between the sexes.  At the same time, we have endured the breakdown of the family, rising divorce rates and, thanks to the misguided sexual revolution, an explosion of out-of-wedlock births and single mothers.

Many of these un-fathered boys model themselves not after loving, faithful, hard-working bread winners, but after super-macho male sports figures fathering children willy-nilly like rooting boars or the violently misogynist rock stars of MTV.

Un-fathered young men are prone to identify their maleness with violence and aggression because they have no better models.  "It seems plain enough," Prof. Newell writes, "that we are missing the boat on manliness; for there are forms of pride and honor that would be good to impart to males.  Indeed, manly honor, and shame at failing to live up to it, are the surest means of promoting respect for women."

Though there are always exceptions, the single most powerful predictor of violent behavior among boys and young men is fatherlessness.  Absentee fathers, researcher Barbara Dafoe Whitehead finds, is a more important factor in adolescent crime than poverty, lack of education or minority status.

Boys and girls are different -- physically, hormonally, emotionally.  We need to recover a sense that to be a man means to be "honorable, brave, self-restrained, zealous in behalf of a good cause, with feelings of delicacy and respect toward loved ones."  So the first step is to recover a positive tradition of manliness from three decades of feminist stereotyping that identifies any expression of masculinity with violence, dominance and aggression.

According to the prevailing orthodoxy, however, there are no differences between boys and girls; all have exactly the same capacities and ambitions.   Yet as Prof. Newell asserts, all that 30 years of such conditioning have done is to drive manliness underground and distort it by severing it from traditional sources of restraint and civility.

In our therapeutic society, moreover, we have psychologized normal male behavior, what once would have been regarded as boyish high-spiritedness.  The object, however, should not be to suppress such normal male energies -- or medicate them with powerful mood-altering drugs [ritalin, etc] -- but to channel them into the development of a mature masculine character.

Note by Fathers for Life

Ritalin is routinely prescribed for boys to cure them of their nature of behaving like boys.  The symptoms of that "affliction" are often "diagnosed" as ADHD (attention deficit hyperactive disorder) or ADD (attention deficit disorder).
   There may be cases where such a diagnosis is warranted, but those appear to be relatively rare.  If there is truly a real cause of ADD or ADHD, it is far more likely to be terrifyingly simple and has now reached epidemic proportions: alcohol consumption by pregnant mothers.

Kim Meawasige, a social worker with Native Child and Family Services in Toronto, agrees. “During my first five years working the front line with street-involved kids, I began to see a pattern among natives with adoption breakdown issues,” she explains. “An estimated 65% of all children are apprehended because of alcoholism, and as we investigated, we began to realize many of the children were suffering from FAS [fetal alcohol syndrome]. A lot of them are in trouble with the law and many have been moved between 30 to 56 foster homes in their lifetime, with the blame always on hyperactivity, ADHD [attention deficit hyperactive disorder], or being placed in a non-native home, when the reality was they had FAS.”

The fetal alcohol crisis, by Candis McLean
Report Newsmagazine
September 25, 2000 Issue, Full Text
In addition to the tragedy caused, the cost of women binge-drinking while pregnant now exceeds that of the national debt

It is important to recognize that ADD or ADHD are not diseases.  They are terms used to describe groups of symptoms, not the causative disease(s) or other problems that cause those symptoms.  While the problem diagnosis is very quickly made and with little effort, it says absolutely nothing about the fundamental problem cause or causes (which can be a group of different and often unrelated, often even only imaginary, problem causes, such as that boys naturally don't behave like girls).
   No boy has ever been cured of being a boy.  That has never even been achieved through any sex-change operations.  However, boys can with success be chemically or psychologically, so to speak, lobotomized.

Feminists will shriek, of course, that any effort to restore a traditional understanding of manliness would be to return to the era of patriarchy and the oppression of women.  In this view, the lives of our parents and grandparents were hell-holes of male aggression.  Yet our 30-year social experiment has succeeded not only in liberating women, but in producing killer boys.  This, it is said, is progress.

Our hubristic effort to undo biology is failing and the history of Western civilization is not the long nightmare of male oppression of women that the feminists imagine.  Perhaps a more traditional approach to our understanding of what it means to be male would provide a better foundation of respect between men and women than the speculative fevers of feminism.  And perhaps the best way to convince boys and young men to treat others with respect is to raise them in the traditional virtues of manliness.

See also:

Feminism For Male College Students A Short Guide to the Truth, by Angry Harry (Off-Site)

Posted Aug. 1998
2006 03 04 (added link to Feminism for Male College Students)