I grew up in a single parent home. My mother, for the last 20 years, has worked tirelessly to provide the absolute best situation for my well-being. I’ve seen her exhausted after a long day of work so that she could make sure I had food to take back to college. I’ve seen her hands full of grocery bags, trudging her way down our sidewalk, and she began to tell me the details surrounding my father’s absence as I grew older.
Realizing how worse off I could have been without a father has resonated with me for years. I can say I’ve been truly blessed to have been put into a loving mother’s arms for my entire life. Unfortunately, for those who grow up without a father, they often find themselves on the streets, in extreme poverty, or turning to crime. With the latest school shooting and calls for gun reform clogging up the media, it is worth examining the correlation between fatherless homes and the crime rate among those children. Fatherlessness is an epidemic, and, no matter our status in society, should be taken seriously.
Some people argue that children need a father to keep them grounded. Children need a forceful male figure in their life to keep them humble and civil during their highs and serve as a motivator during their lows. If we look at this from a gender perspective, a fatherless home is more detrimental to the well-being of a male child because if a father figure is absent, we can argue that a female without a father can relate to her mother. While the consequences of not having a father are present for female children, it may not be as severe as a male child growing up without a father. Single motherhood can be successfully done, but it is impossible for those mothers to be a father, so there could be more instances for their son to act out.
Turns out, there is a direct correlation between fatherless homes and young males turning to drugs and violence. According to CNN’s list of the “27 Deadliest Mass Shootings In U.S. History,” most grew up without fathers in the home. This is not a coincidence, but rather a disturbing fact.
Drug use, alcohol use, and poverty are all elevated when in a fatherless home. According to a study published in mnpsych.org, there is a heightened risk of drug and alcohol abuse in children from fatherless homes. Also, the risk of poverty is substantially higher. Since men, on average, earn more money than women, children living in a female headed household are more likely to be poor than children living in a male headed household.
Still, for both mother and father living alone, the poverty rate is elevated. In female headed homes only, children are in poverty a whopping 47.6% of the time, which is four times the rate of married couples. According to a Pew Research article, the poverty rate for single fathers is roughly one quarter, at 24%. Though the percentages are relevant, it is important to note the vulnerability of children living with only one parent.
While fatherlessness effects every race, it is most prominent in the black community. PragerU and Larry Elder give us a more complete reasoning behind this unfortunate fact. The video goes on to explain the fatherless rate being as low as 5% in 1960, ballooning to 41% in 2015. Additionally, according to the Kids Count Data Center, the fatherlessness rate among blacks in 2016 was a staggering 66%.
To be blunt, fathers who leave their children are some of the worst human beings roaming the earth. To blatantly disregard your blood, in an act of selfishness, is morally bankrupt and detestable.
After the Parkland, Florida shooting, or any mass shooting for that matter, the MSM put their gun control agenda into overdrive. Instead of blaming inanimate objects, let’s look at the consistent root of the problem. As I stated above, there is a direct correlation between fatherless homes and violence by those children. Of course, reducing fatherlessness is not the solution to all the world’s problems, but it’s certainly a start.
While legislation cannot be made to stifle this trend, the least we can do is bring attention to the issue, and hold soon-to-be fathers and current fathers to an infinitely higher moral standard, in hopes that grown men stay at home and raise their kids.