How empathetic parenting creates selfish kids

From Reason:

Warren Farrell, author of The Boy Crisis, was once associated with the feminist movement. Then he changed his views. “I don’t agree with the part of feminism that says, ‘Men are the oppressors and women are the oppressed,'” Farrell tells Maxim Lott, a senior producer of Stossel on Reason.

For example, men die five years earlier than women, have more dangerous jobs, and are often passed over for custody. Boys are two times more likely than girls to commit suicide. Boys are 29 percent less likely to get a college degree than girls.

So why do men earn more and have more influence in government and business? A big reason, Farrell argues, is that men are filling social expectations to become the family breadwinner.

“Our dads and our grandpas, they made sacrifices… to make more money, and then the feminist movement turned all of that sacrifice on the part of men against men,” Farrell says.

Both sexes struggle, but Farrell thinks the feminist movement’s single-sided focus on women’s inequalities has led to an atmosphere that harms boys. A dramatic increase in fatherless households –which Farrell believes is largely responsible for boys’ problems – goes ignored.

Study after study finds that having both a mother and father is best, at least for straight families. (Gay families may do just as well; Farrell notes that the overall evidence is inconclusive.) “Even when we control for the amount of money a father and mother earn, children with dads still do much better,” Farrell notes.

The rate of fatherless households has increased partly because of welfare programs that “tear the family apart by giving the money to mothers when fathers are absent,” Farrell argues, “and not giving money to mothers when fathers are present”…

Continue reading at Reason…

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