[Marxism] Obama Calls for More Responsibility From Black Fathers

Rosa Rot roosaroot at gmail.com
Tue Jun 17 06:52:34 MDT 2008

2008/6/17 Ruthless Critic of All that Exists <ok.president+marxml at gmail.com>:
> On Mon, Jun 16, 2008 at 8:20 PM, Mike Friedman <mikedf at amnh.org> wrote:

>> but victim-blaming and scapegoating in the absence of social
>> supports and a social policy that guarantee jobs, health-care, daycare, a
>> decent education, etc. In fact, It becomes a way of diverting attention
>> from precisely society's responsibility for children's wellbeing by
>> blaming the evident failure in this regard on "dead-beat dads."
> True. But focusing *only* on social supports and social policy can
> equally become a way of diverting attention from precisely the
> father's responsibility to his children.

what in your opinion is the father's responsibility to his children,
and how can you separate that from the economic structure? If men
generally earn more than women, and if paternity leaves are less
common and shorter than maternity leaves, these structures in
themselves carry a definition of what a "father's responsibility" is,
i.e. to financially provide for the family,  which coincides with
fathers being absent. Within these condition, it can be argued that
it's "rational" and the "best for the family's well being" if the man
takes on the role as a breadwinner. I'd say that focusing on these
social structures is exactly the only way to problematise and
challenge patterns of family responsiblities.

> Also, please let us not be politically correct and ignore the fact
> that cultural factors do play a role. I have often heard it argued
> that the disruption of family which was routine in slavery led to a
> diminished expectation, within black culture for black fathers, and
> higher cultural tolerance for the father being "absent". This seems at
> least reasonable to me. This is not "blaming the victim", but

I'd be interested in how do you define these "cultural factors". How
do you separate the "cultural" from the "social", i.e. blacks being
overrepresented in underpriviliged social-economic strata? We're all
part of the same economic system, blacks and white, and I'd think that
it's first and foremost socio-economic and political factors that
explain the reasons for "absence", for both whites and blacks.

> To ascribe all causality for  everything *mechanically* to economics
> is vulgar-marxism.

I'd suppose that's the case also for leaving out the
political/economic dimension of this phenomenon.

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