Category: Fathering

Mail Bonding

Holding the Line Against the NFL The NFL Players Association, the union that represents players in the National Football League, is engaging in victim blaming tactics. They are fighting the league’s six game suspension of Ezekiel Elliott for domestic violence. The union is appealing that suspension and they have every right to do so. They do not have the right to blame, shame and attack the victim in the process. If you see any articles related to this in your local media, or national feeds, please speak out about this strategy. My fear is that if we don’t call out the behavior this kind of deflection and attack will continue. We demanded that sports groups respond differently, and the NFL is making progress. We can help shift the culture faster if we address these kind of public attacks on those who report abuse. Rita Smith Denver, Colo. The writer is a senior advisor to the NFL on domestic violence issues, and the former executive director of the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence.   Engaged Fathers: More than a Dream Last year I was an intern at the NGO Sonke Gender Justice in Cape Town, South Africa. My research was with children whose fathers had attended the international MenCare program. It opened my eyes; I saw how important the subject of fatherhood was. I saw how important to them, important...

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From Absent Fathers to Involved Dads

Absent fatherhood in South Africa has been on the rise since 1996, when only about half (49 percent) of fathers were reported to be present in the lives of their children. On the African continent, only Namibia has a higher rate of absent fathers. Only 37 percent of fathers in South Africa were present in the lives of their children in 2015, according to data released by the government study “Statistics South Africa.” As a result of this high rate of absent fatherhood, women are bearing the brunt of raising children, and children are growing up without the positive...

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Daddy, Where Are You?

In 2013, Belgian hip-hop artist Stromae released the single “Papaoutai.” In the song, he expresses frustration with his absent father, continually asking in the chorus: “Où t’es, papa, où t’es?” (“Daddy, where are you?”). In the accompanying music video, a young boy tries to reach his unresponsive father. The boy claims that though everyone knows how to make babies, nobody appears to know how to “make fathers.” Tragically, the boy is unable to connect with his father, and in the end we see him becoming like his father: absent, uninvolved, and unresponsive. The video not only alludes to the...

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Fall 2017

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