Wednesday, October 26, 2016

The Crisis in Masculinity

From Maggie Gallagher:
Eberstadt here perhaps underestimates men’s reluctance to admit to pollsters a failure or a weakness, but still, this reflects an enormous change in masculine norms. In the past, men would rather have it be known they aren’t working because they can’t find a job than that they chose financial dependence on others. As Eberstadt writes, “This mass retreat from the workforce has been possible to ignore because these men are largely socially invisible and inert.” No Male Lives Matter rallies or riots, no union or political organizing on their behalf. The complaints of men are invisible in public discourse in part because we have defined our social goal as getting more women to work. The Atlantic on July 25 published an essay by Derek Thompson, “What Are Young Non-Working Men Doing?” Since 2000, “the participation rate of 16-to-24-year-olds with just a high-school degree has fallen 10 points to about 70 percent,” he observed. Where are they? Living in Mom’s basement, as Hillary Clinton derided Bernie Sanders supporters for supposedly doing. Thirty-five percent of 18-to-34-year-olds live with parents, more than the 28 percent who live with a spouse — this is part of the fruits of the divorce and unwed-childbearing “revolution.” Many of these parents are likely to be single mothers, as few working fathers are willing to support idle sons indefinitely. (Read more.)

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