Monday, December 26, 2016

The Greatest Gift

you can give a child is secure attachment in a two parent--male and female--home. This is how we are wired, in my view.  Men have something to offer--most notably an increased sense of security, and ideally emotional stability--and women of course are wired for nurturing and mirroring.

In my view, this is biology.  It may be politically inconvenient, but there are very real consequences to doing experiments in children's development.

As I think about it, I think insecure attachment is likely the core problem with the black community in this country.  The data is clear that children from one parent homes do worse in virtually every metric you can measure, and as I have noted repeatedly, if you compare white kids raised in single parent homes you see all the same problems that plague the black community.  You see increased criminality, failure to complete free schooling, teen pregnancy, drug and alcohol abuse, delinquency, and I would guess lower average IQ's.

Babies can't speak.  They can't remember.  None of us can describe our early childhood, but the scars or blessings, as they may be, remain, and remain highly relevant in every moment of every day.

It is impossible for me to believe that very many young girls provide the security babies need to flourish.  They lack the emotional skill and maturity at that age, and in a great many cases they are likely scared: scared of the responsibility--having in a great many cases been raised themselves by a scared mother--and justifiably scared of poverty.

And mothering as a vocation, as something admirable, as something noble, has been under continual attack for many decades.  If I might alter slightly an old saying, the hand that rocks the cradle CREATES the world.  All of us come from somewhere.  All of us were helpless for a number of years, and all of us breathed an atmosphere of calm and peace, or fear and pain.  Most of us of course are somewhere in the middle.

I continue to believe that urbanization, the decay of a sense of place and local culture, frequent moving for jobs, and the decline of the extended family have all made the average American less secure in their attachment than was the case 100 years ago.  We are smarter, certainly, IQ-wise, technically, but in our ability to feel deeply, to love deeply, I wonder if a great many of us are not scarred in ways we cannot see, diminished in something possible but unexpressed because unknown.

It was Social Security and Medicare that got us old folks homes.  This I believe.  A century ago, grandma lived with the family, and took care of the kids, typically with a stay at home mother.  There were multiple hands rocking the cradle, many sources of love and nurturing, and much more TIME to nurture.  There was hard work and hard times sometimes, but those are small problems compared to the feeling of being lost and alone.

You can own the world and be alone and miserable.  This is obvious.  And you can live in a one room shack with  a dirt floor and feel rich, because you are nested within a HOME, with people who love and care for you.  Kids in Africa and India who literally shit in the street can grow up happy and content.  Kids in America who retreat at an early age to commune with electronics in their comfortable rooms, with air conditioning and plentiful food in the house, can and with increasing frequency DO become despondent. This is human nature.  We need each other.  We need loving families.  We need emotional security.  We need a sense of place, of community, of people around us who share our values.

These are all obvious truths, but who is speaking them, outside of people the Left brands as somehow evil? What can the "utopians" offer us but a number and a cell?

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