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Deadbeat Dads, Shared Parenting, and Child Support

I will begin by stating that I am a supporter of shared parenting of children of divorce or in non-married, separate parents where custody is desired by both parents and where both parents are neither abusive nor incompetent. I am also against alimony, palimony, spousal support as well as child support (except in cases where shared parenting is not possible or desired)… While I believe that most fathers (given the chance) would be willing and able to provide for their children and would welcome shared custody, I am also well aware that there are those that won’t. I have no sympathy for them for they are the ones who (by virtue of being poor examples) stand in the way of responsible fathers and who are pointed out by opponents of shared parenting as being the reason why fathers should not be given custody.

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Michael Kimmel and the Angry White Man

Kimmel’s position is basically that because the man used his hand to slap his wife instead of picking up a kitchen knife and stabbing her combined with his statement about not wanting to kill her demonstrates that he did not lose control. This position is seriously flawed. A loss of control is indicated by the impulsivity of the act. The fact that he did not want to kill her may indicate that he simply didn’t think about killing her long enough to form intent. That he did not think to pick up a weapon may be indicative of the impulsiveness of the act. He used the first available weapon, his hand.

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The Decline of the American Father

The decline of the American father on television has mimicked and even promoted the decline of the real-life American father. Father Knows Best was a 1950s television series starring Robert Young as Jim Anderson, an insurance agent and idyllic father, who guided his family through difficult times with sage advice. It was one of several tv series that, over the years, portrayed a positive image of men as fathers. However, in the early 1970s, a dramatic shift occurred. The infamous Archie Bunker (played by Carroll O’Conner), and Harry Boyle (Tom Bosley) began to change all that by portraying fathers as opinionated, somewhat bigoted and oppressive, and an object for anger and rebellion. By the 1990s, Homer Simpson, Al Bundy (Ed O’Neill), and Raymond Barone (Ray Romano) completely decimated the credibility of TV fathers. They were complete idiots and buffoons who showed little interest in their children and shirked their responsibilities. But has television merely been a reflection of the decline of the father, or has it influenced it?