This week I found myself reading in the Book of Habakkuk. He was a prophet who lived in Judah toward the end of King Josiah’s reign (640-609 BC) and at the beginning of the reign of King Jehoiakim (609-598 BC). He like many of us today was wondering how God could let the evil continue without doing something about it. He viewed God’s ways as unjust and even unfathomable. “…Why do you make me look at injustice? Why do you tolerate wrongdoing?…there is strife, and conflict abounds…law is paralyzed…justice never prevails…wicked hem in the righteous, so that justice is perverted.” [Habakkuk 1:2-4]. He had a real problem understanding. Through the replies he received from God he learned that the just must live by faith. He learned that the evil in Judah would be punished by the Babylonians and in turn the evil Babylonians would be punished. The faithful would in the end receive mercy and be rewarded. This book reminds us that God is ready, willing, and able to hear our questions and concerns, whatever they maybe, however perplexing. So now let us continue with the current state of our nation and look at continued situations that may have you, as well as me, wondering when it will come to an end.
As a result in the decline of good paying jobs for men, far fewer young men get married than just a decade ago, and far fewer stay married. About one in five American children live with only their mothers. That is double the 1970 rate. Millions more boys are growing up without fathers. Young men are now more likely to live with a parent than with a spouse or partner. By the way, I do not really like the term “partner”. It makes ‘shacking up’ sound OK. That’s the case for many young women.
Men are even falling behind physically. A recent study found that almost half of young men failed the Army’s entry-level physical fitness test during basic training. Fully 70% of American men are overweight or obese, as compared to 59% of American women.
Feminists scoff at the notion of a crisis among men, but ignoring it doesn’t help anyone. Men and women need each other. One cannot exist without the other. When men fail, everyone suffers. Millions of American men make less than their fathers did. This is a depressing betrayal of the American dream, but it is also a recipe for societal collapse. I also see it as a failure associated with ‘man’s politics’ trying to put ‘the politics of God’ aside. God had a plan for the family. When men’s wages decline, families fall apart. This has been the subject of many studies over the decades, and with consistent results. One study released in 2017 found that when men’s wages fell relative to women’s, young people stopped getting married. A falling male wage reduced “the attractiveness of men as potential spouses, thus reducing fertility and especially marriage rates.” Researchers also noted a dramatic increase in out-of-wedlock births when men made less. An economics professor at MIT noted that with the decline in marriage there is “a rise in the fraction of births that are disadvantaged, and as a consequence the kids are living in pretty tough circumstances.”
Numerous academic studies have reached identical conclusions. Research from 2015 found that “when a randomly chosen woman becomes more likely to earn more money than a randomly chosen man, marriage rates decline”. Those who do marry report being less satisfied and more likely to divorce. Low male wages are a driving force in family dissolution. That’s why affluent neighborhoods in which men make more have a higher proportion of married couples, and fewer divorces. The opposite is also true, and that leads to a cascade of social problems, which over time become a disaster: Men who make lower wages marry less and father more children out of wedlock. These children, growing up without fathers, tend to make lower wages themselves in later life. For decades this was a universally recognized pattern in inner cities: the cycle of poverty. Now the same destructive vortex is common in rural America. In both cases, the cause is the same: a lack of well-paying jobs for men.
A society filled with idle men is an unstable society. Men need to work or they fall apart. Men without work can become susceptible to the evil schemes of the few. The middle east is such an example. Those fighters are not 9-5 husbands, fathers, and community members. They wake up in the morning and go to bed at night with nothing more than terrorizing and killing others on their minds for whatever reason. Work is central to a man’s identity in a way that it is not for the average woman. With fear of violating feminist orthodoxy, policy makers can’t say this out loud or respond accordingly. Instead in a decadent ruling class society the ways it has rationalized it has failed young men is by constructing fantasies about a future world where mass male unemployment will be a sign of success. In 2015, a journalist named Derek Thompson wrote a piece in the Atlantic titled, “A World Without Work”. He predicted, “the 20th century will strike future historians as an aberration, with its religious devotion to overtime in a time of prosperity, its attenuations of family in service to job opportunity, it conflation of income with self-worth.” The elites in Washington loved the piece. They were particularly grateful for Thompson’s optimism about the collapse of manufacturing jobs in places like Youngstown, Ohio. Thompson suggested that repeated cycles of unemployment were in fact enabling self-realization. This is some of the foolishness establishment feminists rally around.
Is this the plan God had for His creation? How can a family exist under such conditions? The reality is that they don’t and the failure of the family does no favors for man or woman. With each year the failure becomes more and more condemning to our society and will take generations to correct, if ever, unless the churches in God’s name don’t get involved and realize that ‘man’s politics’ are destroying His plan. With each year ‘God’s politics’ and ‘man’s politics’ move further and further apart, unfortunately with the support of many ‘church going’ Christians. Next week we will look further at the dangerous impact this is having on our nation, our families, and our future generations.
– Bob Munsey