Making Men Redundant (and Harming our Children)

It had to come to this. Add one part political correctness, two parts social engineering, and three parts biotechnology, and what do you get? The redundant male. Scientists in the UK have said that they are now able to produce sperm without men. As reported in New Scientist, the British researchers say they can turn female bone marrow into sperm through the use of special chemicals and vitamins.

The Newcastle upon Tyne University scientists say the process could be available in two years, having already performed the technique on mice. The process of course can further smooth the way to cut men out of family life altogether, allowing lesbians and single women to have their own children.

Indeed, the social engineers and minority activists groups are well aware of the potential here. An American analyst is trying to patent the technologies both for female sperm and male eggs. Calling himself a “troublemaker,” he says he wants to undermine the argument for heterosexual marriage.

The new biotechnologies, along with the new ethics – or lack of them – have meant that men have increasingly been shoved out of the picture. Family life is being radically redefined by the new biomedicines and the social engineers. But a question remains: what about the children? Will the brave new worlds of reproductive technologies have any implications for those so conceived? Is this in fact in the best interests of the children?

Assessing the Evidence

Fortunately, we already know the answers to these questions. Over four decades of social science research has shown the very negative consequences children experience when not raised by their biological father. Simply put, father absence has been shown to be a major disadvantage to the wellbeing of children. The following is a very brief summary of the evidence for the importance of fathers and the need for two-parent families.

Consider some economic consequences. In America, among families with dependent children, only 8 per cent of married couples were living below the poverty line, compared to 47 percent of female-headed households. In Australia, a recent study of 500 divorcees with children five to eight years after the separation found that four in five divorced mothers were dependent on social security after their marriages dissolved. Figures from Monash University’s Centre for Population and Urban Research show that family break-up, rather than unemployment, is the main cause of the rise in poverty levels in Australia.

Educational performance is also affected by father-absence. American school children who became father-absent early in life generally scored significantly lower on measures of IQ and achievement tests. A study of Australian primary school children from three family types (married heterosexual couples, cohabiting heterosexual couples and homosexual couples) found that in every area of educational endeavour (language; mathematics; social studies; sport; class work, sociability and popularity; and attitudes to learning), children from married heterosexual couples performed better than the other two groups. The study concludes with these words: “Married couples seem to offer the best environment for a child’s social and educational development”.

A Melbourne University study of 212 children found that fathers, even more than mothers, had a major beneficial influence on children in their first year of school. The study found that kids with regular father involvement were more cooperative and self-reliant in school than kids who did not have father involvement.

Criminal involvement is also greatly impacted by parental divorce and growing up with dad. A British study found a direct statistical link between single parenthood and virtually every major type of crime, including mugging, violence against strangers, car theft and burglary. In Australia, a recent book noted the connection between broken families and crime. In a discussion of rising crime rates in Western Australia, the book reported that “family breakdown in the form of divorce and separation is the main cause of the crime wave”.

The likelihood of drug involvement also increases. A US study found that among the homes with strict fathers, only 18 per cent had children who used alcohol or drugs at all. In contrast, among mother-dominated homes, 35 per cent had children who used drugs frequently. And a New Zealand study of nearly 1000 children observed over a period of 15 years found that children who have watched their parents separate are more likely to use illegal drugs than those whose parents stay together.

Sexual problems also mount. Studies from many different cultures have found that girls raised without fathers are more likely to be sexually active, and to start early sexual activity. As one authority put it, “father-deprived girls show precocious sexual interest, derogation of masculinity and males, and poor ability to maintain sexual and emotional adjustment with one male”. New Zealand research has found that the absence of a father is a major factor in the early onset of puberty and teenage pregnancy.

A British study found that girls brought up by lone parents were twice as likely to leave home by the age of 18 as the daughters of intact homes; were three times as likely to be cohabiting by the age of 20; and almost three times as likely to have a birth out of wedlock.

A child’s mental and emotional wellbeing is also put at risk. From nations as diverse as Finland and South Africa, a number of studies have reported that anywhere from 50 to 80 per cent of psychiatric patients come from broken homes. A Canadian study of teenagers discharged from psychiatric hospitals found that only 16 per cent were living with both parents when they were admitted.

And there is a much greater risk of child abuse when the biological father is absent. A Finnish study of nearly 4,000 ninth-grade girls found that “stepfather-daughter incest was about 15 times as common as father-daughter incest”. In Australia, former Human Rights Commissioner Mr Brian Burdekin has reported a 500 to 600 per cent increase in sexual abuse of girls in families where the adult male was not the natural father. A recent study by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare found that “a relatively high proportion of substantiations [of child abuse] involved children living in female-headed one-parent families and in two-parent step or blended families.”

Conclusion

One leading expert in developmental psychology from Cornell University, summarises the evidence in this fashion: “Controlling for associated factors such as low income, children growing up in [single-parent] households are at greater risk for experiencing a variety of behavioral and educational problems, including extremes of hyperactivity or withdrawal; lack of attentiveness in the classroom; difficulty in deferring gratification; impaired academic achievement; school misbehavior; absenteeism; dropping out; involvement in socially alienated peer groups; and, especially, the so-called ‘teenage syndrome’ of behaviors that tend to hang together – smoking, drinking, early and frequent sexual experience, a cynical attitude to work, adolescent pregnancy, and in the more extreme cases, drugs, suicide, vandalism, violence, and criminal acts.”

Another expert puts it this way: “There exists today no greater single threat to the long-term well-being of children, our communities, or our nation, than the increasing number of children being raised without a committed, responsible, and loving father.”

With the rise of fatherlessness Australia and the Western world has also experienced a marked rise in social problems. And the brunt of these problems have been borne by children. We owe it to our children to do better. The radical social engineers may salivate over news of maleless sperm, but this is bad news indeed for our children. Once again, the selfish whims of adults are trumping the legitimate concerns of our vulnerable children.

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8 Replies to “Making Men Redundant (and Harming our Children)”

  1. Good luck to the mice, they must look after mice things. But humanity has much more responsibility and if femininity wishes to go it alone they will have a brave new world to contend with. However, the human male sperm carries half the characteristics of the male/female union as well as the genealogies of each family involved. What an exciting complex mystery it is when the product arrives and how great is the need for the protecting father figure. One wonders what the female/female product would be?
    To me the great poem by Thomas Hardy “Hereditary” spell it out:
    I am the family face
    Flesh perishes, I live on
    Projecting trait and trace
    Through time to time anon,
    and leaping from place to place
    Over oblivion

    The years-heired features can
    In curve and voice and Eye
    Despise the human span
    Of durance – that is I;
    The eternal thing in man
    That heeds no call to die

    Peter Rice

  2. This is no less than a huge, arrogant slap in the face of God by humankind. It makes me physically sick to my stomach. Are men redundant? Heavens, no! Would I want to live in an all woman world? Not in my wildest nightmares.
    I’m linking to you, Bill.
    Dee Graf

  3. Dear Bill, the steps leading to this fatherless world for our children is being marked out by the UK Secretary of State for Education, a gentleman by the name of Ed Balls.
    Teachers should not assume that their pupils have a “mum and dad” under guidance aimed at tackling anti-gay bullying in schools. It says primary pupils as young as four should be familiarised with the idea of same-sex couples to help combat homophobic attitudes. Teachers should attempt to avoid assumptions that pupils will have a conventional family Pupils are enlisted in the war on homophobiaIt goes on to suggest the word “parents” may be more appropriate than “mum and dad”, particularly in letters and emails to the child’s home.
    When discussing marriage with secondary pupils, teachers should also educate pupils about civil partnerships and gay adoption rights. The guidance – produced for the Government by gay rights group Stonewall – will be formally launched today by Schools Secretary Ed Balls.
    I believe that we are approaching a time when to save our children we will not be involved in just a spiritual war but one of flesh and blood also.
    David Skinner, UK

  4. There are many fronts on which our children’s welfare is being assaulted. The family is the foundation of our society and a war is being waged at every level against it. Unfortunately, that war rages on inside Christian churches as well. I have moved from a supposedly ‘spirit-filled and focused’ church that supports (as I found out – even recommends) the liberal notion of separation and remarriage (“not God’s best but acceptable through the grace of God where there’s ‘too much water under the bridge'”) to one that is Christ-centred and family-focused. The differences in attitudes toward marriage and family are vast. While one accepts an attitude of justification for breaking up families for a happier life for one or both spouses the other proposes unyielding forgiveness, commitment to the marriage covenant and restoration. ie. ‘until death do us part’ (what a novel concept!) for the happiness of all.

    It breaks my heart to see so many families and children’s lives torn apart by needless separation and divorce, the irony being that if the estranged couples put half the time and effort into ‘sorting themselves out’ and the restoration of their relationship as they do in separating and trying to build what they had with someone else, there would be very few divorces, much more joy, and significantly less social problems such as those outlined in your article. In an era where as much or possibly more divorce happens within the church than outside I think this would be a great place to start.

    I strongly recommend http://www.elijahhouse.com.au from this perspective.

    Garth Penglase

  5. The women’s lib movement has a real lot to answer for in eroding the worth and importance of men in society. While most people (Muslim hardliners excluded) would probably agree that it is a good thing for women to their value in society recognised and ‘celebrated’, it has pushed way beyond that brief to include IVF for lesbians, single mothers by choice, and the reduction of the male portrait to “hairy, smelly, lazy, disruptive, violent and generally rather a bad thing” as Minette Marrin puts it in her incisive article from a liberated yet realistic woman’s perspective. She, like the vast majority of females know that they need men, that we need each other, and that each brings specific attributes and qualities that are particular to each sex and specially required for a correctly functioning family.

    http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/comment/columnists/minette_marrin/article2937002.ece

    Garth Penglase

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