Wednesday, February 04, 2009


Lemme tell you a little story

There's no other way to say it ... I'm a baseball freak. Visit my home office some time and you'll see evidence of such: signed baseballs in square cases, framed black and white photos of classic ball parks (Ebbets Field, Fenway Park, Polo Grounds), a framed Nashville Xpress jersey, a Nashville Vols poster, and other assorted baseball bric-à-brac. (Never heard of the Nashville Xpress or the Nashville Vols? Ask me 'bout 'em, and I'll delight in imparting their respective histories.)

I started playing organized baseball when I was 8-years-old. Over the next ten years, I played baseball almost year-round. I played in summer and fall leagues until I was 12; I played in summer and fall leagues, and on travel teams, until I was 14; and I was a single/double-slappin', base-stealin' second baseman for four years in high school. Oh, and I've played some sandlot ball in my post-high school years.

I hate to toot my own horn, but I know a lot about baseball fundamentals. Hell, I know a lot about baseball, period. I can't tell you how many times over the years I've been told by friends and family that I should try my hand at coaching baseball. Two years ago, I decided to do just that.

First up was Nashville's Boys & Girls Club. Now, I was a Nashville Boys Club member when I was 11-12-years old. I not only tore up the Boys Club basketball courts and baseball field, I read about 1/3 of the books in the Boys Club library. I told the Boys Club folks -- er, the Boys and Girls Club folks -- such when I volunteered my baseball-coaching skills and services, and I never heard nothing back from them.

After not hearing nothing from the Boys Club, I contacted the "commissioner" of the Dixie Youth Baseball program in Hermitage, Tennessee -- I have a friend whose son participates in said program -- to volunteer as a baseball coach. What he told me floored me, and it's something I will never forget. I was told that I wouldn't -- couldn't -- be considered for a coaching position because (a) I didn't have a child who'd be playing, and (b) I didn't have a child who'd be playing. According to the commissioner, any male who wanted to be a coach and who also did not have children was automatically pegged as a potentially child molester ... automatically, for liability purposes.

Jesus. I just wanted to impart what I know about fielding and pitching and base-stealing -- not to mention things like how to "season" a glove properly. It says a lot about the state of our society that I can't consider -- let alone do -- just that for "liability purposes."

I mention all this because I just ran across this post. 'Tis very interesting (to me, in the above-mentioned context, anyway):

Troubled children are being deprived of male mentors because many men are afraid their good intentions might be misinterpreted, two charities have warned....

NCH and Chance UK have issued an appeal for men to join their mentoring scheme for children who need special support because of behavioural problems.

The charities commissioned a survey which found that 13% of men who don't volunteer with children said it was because of fears they might be perceived as a possible paedophile. Reference

The child 'protection' industry, in collusion with the tabloid media and the radical feminist lobby, have, over the last two decades and more, manufactured a climate of such paranoia that the relationship between men and children has been seriously eroded.
Boys are being classified as having increased behavioural problems for two reasons.

Firstly, they really are exhibiting more disturbed behaviour; the social breakdown that they find themselves in the middle of is having an effect on them. Many of them will have no father in their lives, and will be living in poverty. They have no positive role-models, no discipline, boundaries or structure in their lives, and exist on nutritionally poor diets. The feminist-designed classroom is unsuitable for them, and they find themselves bored, sidelined and derided in school, so their behaviour deteriorates as a result.

Secondly, with men deserting the teaching profession in droves for fear of false allegations, the teachers are almost all female. In many cases, the female teacher is offended by what is in fact normal boyish behaviour, and tends to pathologise it. Thus the boys are more likely to be labelled as having behavioural problems, whether they do or not.

When children's charities are still sufficiently in touch with reality to recognise that there is a problem, they call for male volunteer mentors, only to be met with the same lukewarm response. Men do not want to be mentors for the same reason that they do not want to be school-teachers. A man cannot express an interest in working with children. There are, as everyone knows, devil-worshipping paedophiles lurking in every suburban street.

Although the role of the tabloid media in creating this climate of fear and mistrust cannot be ignored, their motivation is a relatively innocent one; they only want to make money. There are others whose agenda is more political and altogether more sinister, who actually seek to demonise men, to destroy marriage and the family and to separate men from children. They have been very successful at pursuing this agenda over the last two decades, largely thanks to society's naivete.

It is not only boys who are paying the price; men's lives are impoverished as well, and the whole of society will suffer in the long-term. As this generation of disturbed boys fails to receive the help it needs, and grows into a generation of disturbed men, we will see a spiral of further social decay; family breakdown, crime and fatherlessness.

The academic Left and in particular, the feminist movement, are the people responsible for this. Until we develop the political will to challenge the radical feminist lobby, the plight of boys will never improve, and the social problems we see around us will continue to worsen.

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