Dads Against the Divorce Industry
DA*DI is devoted to reinstating the societal valuation of Marriage and the traditional, nuclear American Family, with particular emphasis on the essential role of FATHERS.
DA*DI offers contemporary reports and commentary on culture; its aberrations and its heroes.
On closer inspection, the scene gives way to countless dots of color, which by themselves provide only a hint of the scenic perspective. And so it is with culture.
On the canvas that is culture, the dots are the highly individualized nuclei which blend together in a common tapestry. A fine arts degree is not required to understand that Seurat would not have attempted to comingle oils, water colors, and chalky pastels to create a single canvas. The canvas media must be uniform, or at least compatible, in order to create predictable and pleasing results. Culture is no exception, as illustrated in the current American malaise.
Remember for the moment that when the Truman Doctrine and the Marshall Plan were adopted, there was greater uniformity and compatibility in the American fabric. Prior to the end of WWII, the divorce rate was negligible (16%) and despite a brief spike following the war (30%) remained at about an average of about 25% until the babyboomers began to "mature." Then, it more than doubled. G-d was not yet dead, despite Nietzsche's demand that He be so, and the influence of the permissive and beloved Dr. Benjamin Spock had not yet created a generation of narcissists. Family was universally accepted as the union of one man and one woman and their offspring. America was morally and relationally tethered. Just as Seurat's "Sunday Afternoon" is described in the Encarta, America (had) achieve(d) 'an atmosphere of monumental dignity through the balanced arrangement of its elements', despite some remaining flaws.
It was this balanced arrangement; this moral uniformity and compatibility that gave potential and credence to the big picture ambitions of Truman and Marshall. The dots were easily connected and their contrasting colors and individuality did not detract from, but gave vibrance to the coherent whole. America was more than the sum of its parts. It was an idea and an ideal anchored in morality and the smallest nuclear unity - family.
A great painting and the-big-picture share the same fundamental characteristics. They are both the product of a great many small strokes of the brush. And "culture", or lack of it, is analogous to the big picture. A nation of self-comforting, feel-good narcissists cannot establish continuity and compatibility. Traditional, pre-Spockian family and moral order are the iconoclasts of narcissism.
America can benefit greatly from leadership that acknowledges the essential roles of morality, family and fatherhood. And the current administration has shown some real courage in acknowledging and celebrating the "sanctity of life" in the midst of a culture of death. This provides a penumbra of respectability and motivation to those who are already motivated, and those who are weighing the decision, to pursue a moral course.
But the canvas of culture will not be restored without the small strokes that are essential to "a proper judgment" of America's course. And the strength of America's resolve will only be preserved by a sense of shared beliefs that diminish cultural paranoia.
To make such judgments, and to feel safe in their skins, individuals need to rely on their personal experiences, based on moral tenets, and tested on the canvas of an intact family. Just a decade ago, Paul Barton, formerly with the Education Testing Service, titled his study: ""America's Smallest School: The Family," and he emphasized "the presence of two parents in the home" as being essential to building a learned mind.
In his analysis of learning, George Will summed it well: "American children spend 9 percent of their time in school, 91 percent elsewhere. The fate of American education is being shaped not by legislative acts, but by the fact that, increasingly, 'elsewhere' is not in an intact family."
Daniel Patrick Moynihan predicted, four years before Woodstock; " ... there is one unmistakable lesson in American history: A community that allows a large number of young men to grow up in broken families, dominated by women, never acquiring any stable relationship to male authority, never acquiring any rational expectations about the future -- that community asks for and gets chaos."
Thus, before we embark on a new course for global leadership, we are well advised to first prepare the next generation to properly judge America's leaders and their course. Essential to that preparation is the restoration of the traditional family - and most importantly, bringing fathers back into their homes.
Family and Fatherhood - are the several small strokes that create genius on the canvas of culture and leadership.
Gerald L. Rowles, Ph.D. [Clinical Psychology] is the founder of DA*DI. Since founding DA*DI in 1994, he has been devoted to researching, advising and disseminating information on the issues that he believes threaten to engulf and diminish the American culture; the same issues that are driving the divorce industry and the deconstruction of the family and fatherhood. DA*DI's latest campaign proclaims Dads Have The Right Stuff.
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