If you want to enjoy this Father’s Day and celebrate being a Dad, or indeed celebrate your own father, it might be wise not to read the latest ‘paper’ from the White Ribbon Research Series titled Fathers, Fathering and Preventing Violence Against Women. Regretfully it appears to be a piece of error-ridden radical-feminist ideological rhetoric that could have been published back in the 80’s at the height of misandrist feminism.
Here are a few choice quotes – please don’t read on if you want to have a relaxing Sunday – and, no, we’re not making these up:
“Many [fathers] are emotionally abusive and controlling”
“Many [men] condone [violence against women] by not taking it seriously, or by failing to speak out against it”
“The tendency is for men to assume that their mere presence in a family – as a father figure and role model – is what is required of them”
“The idea of fathers making a unique contribution to their children… risks reasserting traditional gender roles and downplaying key issues of gendered power inequalities”
“Most fathers would be surprised to learn that many of the things they do on a day-to-day basis, many of the beliefs they hold, ideas they express and actions they take, contribute to the perpetuation of men’s violence against women”
“The concept of a ‘male role model’… is built on the assumption that femininity is subordinate to masculinity and by implication, that women are inferior to men”
“Many men choose not to learn the skills of caring for children”
A longer critique of this paper will be published at a later date – stay tuned. We are disappointed that the White Ribbon Foundation, which had appeared to be moving in a positive direction, seems to have taken such a backward step. If White Ribbon wants to engage men and fathers in their campaign, a good start would be to stop the man- and dad-bashing.