The op-ed below was posted on a number of web sites including Men’s News Daily on Tuesday, February 2, 2010. For one site with a particularly appropriate picture accompanying the text see: http://www.therealitycheck.org/?p=11092
Gordon E. Finley, Ph.D.
The Gender Silent Majority
Gordon E. Finley, Ph.D.
On February 1, 2010, President Barack Obama released his proposed budget for the coming year. Most commentaries focus on debt, deficits, taxes, and unemployment. With the trillions of problems in Obama’s multi-trillion dollar budget, however, it is easy to overlook his gendered social engineering approach to the budget process and its impact on boys and men.
The tip off comes from the work of an investigative reporter for the McClatchy newspaper group, James Rosen, who published “Obama budget aims at solidifying women’s support.” His article was based on a budget document entitled “Opportunity and Progress for Women and Girls” which included the following quote: “We’re looking at a lot of significant funding increases for women’s programs in a year when the president has ordered a three-year, non-security, discretionary spending freeze,” Kate Bedingfield, a White House spokesman, said.
To fully understand the impact of Obama’s budget proposal on all members of society, it is instructive to review five points in President Obama’s track record on gender. As will be seen, hope and change in the Obama administration have bypassed boys and men.
The first bill signed by the President (Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act) was part of the larger radical feminist campaign to eliminate the purported gender pay gap. However, Obama’s own Department of Labor, after an extensive review of the literature, found that there was no gender pay gap (http://www.consad.com/content/reports/Gender%20Wage%20Gap%20Final%20Report.pdf).
Second, President Obama established the first cabinet level White House Council on Women and Girls. However, all sound social and economic science data argues for the need for a White House Council on Boys and Men. Specifically, boys and men are falling behind at all levels of education from elementary to graduate and professional schools. Not surprisingly, this has led to the recent media attention devoted to a Pew report showing that younger women are more highly educated and better paid than the men they seek to date and perhaps marry.
Third, to sell last year’s Stimulus Bill, President Obama promised “shovel ready” (read “male”) jobs to rebuild America’s infrastructure. However, in response to radical feminist protests and even in the face of the reality that 82% of the jobs lost in the current recession were lost by men, President Obama gave 40% of the Stimulus money to female dominated occupations.
Fourth, had ObamaCare passed, and it yet may still pass, the nation would have been blessed with ten major Offices of Women’s Health and zero Offices of Men’s Health. Critically, however, epidemiological health data shows that boys and men are far more in need of an Office of Men’s Health than are girls and women in need of yet more Offices of Women’s Health. Specifically, Offices of Men’s Health are needed to focus on male problems such as higher suicide rates, higher death rates on about nine out of the ten leading causes of death, and not surprisingly, lower longevity. Not to be forgotten, too, is prostate cancer.
Finally, President Obama’s budget proposes a 22% increase in funding for female victims of domestic violence on top of the billions already being spent on these ideologically based programs. However, decades of sound social science research overwhelmingly has demonstrated that men and women initiate domestic violence at approximately equal rates with the more recent data showing a striking increase in violence by women. Further, men represent at least 40% of the physically harmed victims and the federal government declines to fund equal protection and support for battered husbands and battered men (http://www.mediaradar.org and http://www.dailyfinance.com/story/a-hidden-crime-domestic-violence-against-men-is-a-growing-probl/19297449/).
In this contest of ideology v. science, ideology clearly is winning. But why should it? In my view, it is long past time for The Gender Silent Majority to stand up and face down what basically is fraudulent ideology. The Gender Silent Majority obviously consists of boys and men and perhaps less obviously it also consists of girls and women who want boys and men in their lives. The latter group includes mothers who love their sons, daughters who love their fathers, sisters who love their brothers, and women who love their husbands along with a host of other male relatives and friends. All together, the Gender Silent Majority easily comprises well over 50% of the population.
So, how does The Gender Silent Majority convince the nation of their views, hold out hope for boys and men, and implement change? Since the Democratic Party, unfortunately, is so locked into such a stridently unyielding and fraudulent gender ideology, the Gender Silent Majority come November has but one choice — to vote ABD — Anybody But Democrat.
Gordon E. Finley, Ph.D.is Professor of Psychology at Florida International University in Miami.