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Small-Town Values and Two-Parent Families

Fatherless families = violent crime in a community. Period.

by
Paula Bolyard

Bio

August 5, 2013 - 7:00 am
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rogue11

We live in a small town, Doylestown, Ohio, population 3000, 1.88 sq. miles. Technically, we live outside the “Village” in Chippewa Township which brings the total area of our community to 36 sq. miles and swells the total population to 7000.  This weekend we celebrated our annual Rogues’ Hollow Festival, enjoying small town America at its finest. The weekend began with a parade and it seemed that anyone with a church, a civic group, or a tractor joined in — the sidewalk overflowed with senior citizens and young families with children scurrying to grab candy tossed from floats. There was great music, Lion’s BBQ chicken, corn dogs, and of course, funnel cakes. The weekend culminated in a Saturday night fireworks display.

As the fireworks began, my husband and I ducked into an alley between two local businesses to get a better view. Occasional couples or groups of teens passed through as we watched the fireworks, and one unfortunate group walked through at the same time as the Village mayor and a Township trustee. For some odd reason, the mayor barked, “You kids! Get back there!” and pointed them back to the main street of the festival. The kids looked a bit startled, but mumbled their “OK”s and obediently headed back to the street.

I don’t know if the boys — they looked to be around 14-years old — knew that the man was the mayor or that he had no actual authority to order them back to the festival. But they did what they were told without question. The encounter took me back to my childhood, to the neighborhood I grew up in where everyone’s parents sort of did have the authority to discipline everyone else’s children. And if the neighbor’s parents saw you stepping out of line, you could be sure your parents (and all the other neighbors) would hear about it by the time the streetlights came on. Respect for the authority of your elders was unquestioned. My parents preached it and they modeled it as did most other adults in our community. Two-parent families were the norm; the first divorce sent shockwaves down the street. I remember hearing neighbors talking about it in hushed voices — divorce was still so uncommon then that it was scandalous.

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All Comments   (6)
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You and I would have had fun in my (former) book club, Ms. Bolyard. I mentioned with grace and humility that single parenthood is a tragedy and I hoped for all children to have a mother and a father. The book club ladies were outraged at me. One of the women in the book club was a single mom who'd gotten pregnant accidentally after a one night stand and was "bravely" raising her child on her own. I protested that I considered her choice to keep her child alive rather than killing brave indeed, but wouldn't she rather be raising her child with a father? You would think I'd proposed burning her at the stake like a witch. I was kicked out of the book club after being told that "Single motherhood is a beautiful choice, not a tragedy." I didn't miss the book club, honestly. But it does illustrate the problem we face in a culture that has placed single motherhood on a par with sainthood. The facts are clear, and damning. But people like this don't want to listen.
50 weeks ago
50 weeks ago Link To Comment
We can thank the media for glamorizing single motherhood. I don't know a single mother -- not one -- who does not feel handicapped by not having a mate to share the load (physically and emotionally) with. FWIW, I think either your book club friend was bluffing or she has a tremendous amount of help from friends and relatives.
50 weeks ago
50 weeks ago Link To Comment
OK, Mrs. Bolyard, we've had a discussion or two and I'll dare the slings and arrows and maybe even sound like a Christian fundamentalist or a Muslim. In a small rural community there aren't nearly as many women who work outside the home; wage work is the world of men. The larger the town, the more women work outside the home.

Before WWII, men and women had very little unsupervised, or unobserved, contact; they moved in different spheres until marriage and even after marriage the woman had her role and the man his. As late as my college years in the '60s, early '70s, there was almost no such thing as a girl by herself. Hell, it was your life's goal to get a girl by herself. I was a rather randy sort so I knew a few "bad girls" who'd slip away, but the vast, vast majority of females were always in the company of family or other females. Some still do it today so prying a girl away from her friend is still a significant life skill, but not so many any more. The woman on her own, by herself, is a relatively new phenomenon.

The reason for that "pathetic" divorce rate is a work culture in which you spend more time with someone of the opposite gender to whom you're not married than you do with the one you are married to. I spent most of my working life with roughly half, sometimes more, of my workmates or subordinates being female. I could have slept with a lot of them and did sleep with some of them. When you spend a work day together, especially a stressful work day together, it comes pretty naturally to go wash the day down together and then it really, really, really doesn't come naturally to have her get off the hotel elevator on her floor and you on yours. Let's have dinner, let's have a nightcap just comes naturally and you have to work very, very hard not to do that; sometimes maybe you don't work so hard.

I've had a fling or three and I've investigated a Helluva lot of sexual harassment complaints. My conclusion is that all it takes is alcohol and proximity, and sometimes, most of the time, just proximity is enough. You put men and women together long enough and there will be screwing, and that's where that divorce rate comes from.

51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
I agree that feminizing the workforce has had drastic effects on our culture, which has led to increased divorce rates and possibly an increase in homosexuality. Think about it this way, if I work with women most of the day; compete with them for promotion; wear the same style of uniforms (military) and then they expect me to be kind and gentlemanly on top of this? If I wanted to date a beer-drinking, competitive workmate whose roles were no different than mine, why wouldn’t I wander over and date another guy or be attracted to other, more feminine women?
50 weeks ago
50 weeks ago Link To Comment
I don't disagree with most of what you've said. Dr. Allan Carlson, a professor at Hillsdale College, makes essentially the same points in his book, "The Family in America: Searching for Social Harmony in the Industrial Age." He blames equality laws for forcing women into the workplace -- many of whom would not have done so if wages for male "breadwinners" hadn't been depressed as a result of the new economic "equality" paradigm.
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
You know, it's heresy, but doubling the workforce has halved the wages. The vast majority of the women I worked with were as good or better at the technical aspects of the work as I was; most certainly were better, or at least more willing, at detail work than I was. It was the rare one that had good supervisory judgement because they tended to be emotional about supervision; if they thought the employee was a "good person," they'd cut a lot of slack, if not, they wanted to kill him or her, especially him. Once you got to high-level management there was a real divide; some women were really shy of controversy and others wanted to out macho the macho guys and kill everybody. That out-machoing the guys is a real problem with women in the workplace, especially in law enforcement and corrections. I did a lot of investigations and disciplinary matters about harassment or promotion discrimination where the woman was a really foul-mouthed, ass-slapping rowdy who could tell "dirty" jokes with the best of them - right up until the one she didn't like or the guy she wanted to and didn't have a fling with or had a fling with and wished she hadn't did something she didn't like.

I can't say much good about the character of most of the women I worked with - or the men, myself included. The vast majority of women in mid to high level positions were serial monagamists on husband three or more who would really just go to the next best offer and cheat on him for an opportunity to get their toes curled. Most of the guys were actually better behaved because we were afraid of them; you never knew for sure whether she wanted you or just want to take you out so she could have your job.
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
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