Sometimes I read stuff that just riles me anew. By now I should be de-sensitised to emotive (yet essentially empty) grandiosity; ignorance of fact and shallow thinking. Sadly a section of the upcoming generation has been schooled to repeat seductive but superficial reasons for all manner of societal maladies.
I attempted to put a response in a letter to the editor but, I don't know. I've been arguing this so long my pen-to-paper expressions feel as trite as whatever prompts them.
In Green co-leader Metiria Turei's column about protecting children from child abuse the words women, kids, mothers, families and midwives appear repeatedly. The word father does not feature. The only inference to men at all appears in the line, "...protecting kids and women from violence and abuse....". This type of unconscious dismissal of fathers, and worse, the perpetuation of the idea that only men abuse women and children, is disgraceful. Official child abuse statistics show that women commit around half of all abuse and neglect, and in 2010 made up 35 percent of apprehensions for child assault.
Like it or not, all the evidence shows (and Metiria Turei calls for evidence-based policies) that children are safest in committed two-parent families, yet social policy of the past forty years has reduced the likelihood they will grow up in those environments.
Ms Turei prides herself on being a feminist and all the gains feminism has brought. But feminist-driven government intervention is also responsible for the alienation of fathers and men from the lives of children. Therein lies a substantial factor in the child abuse problem.