Sunday, April 09, 2006

N.Y. Times op-ed on leadership and fathering issues. The lead op-ed article in today's NewYork Times is by author Allan Garganus and discusses the scandal surrounding the Duke University Lacrosse team. Although Garganus never specifically mentions the term fathering, he discusses the atmosphere at Duke and focuses in on the behavior of boys on sports teams at prestigious universities. Garganus notes
The university once offered respite from our country's most rabid competitive impulses. Once upon a time, there was even a core curriculum assuring that every student in every field had read the same great works, including sacred texts, Shakespeare, the Greeks. Once science reigned unchallenged by religious strictures. Once institutions of higher learning ranked ... higher. Now corporate America, athletic America, Defense Department America, form a unified competitive team. Duke's head basketball coach was recently offered tens of millions to lead a pro team. He refused, receiving a fancier leadership title and the full attention of Duke's new president. "
In his conclusion, Garganus states
When the children of privilege feel vividly alive only while victimizing, even torturing, we must all ask why. This question is first personal then goes Ethical soon National. Boys 18 to 25 are natural warriors: bodies have wildly outgrown reason, the sexual imperative outranks everything. They are insurance risks. They need (and crave) true leadership, genuine order. But left alone, granted absolute power, their deeds can terrify. The imperative to win, and damn all collateral costs, is not peculiar to Durham — and it is killing us. Why is there no one to admire?"
I can only add, where are the fathers? And by that I mean the fathers of these particular boys and fathers in general, who seem to be invisible in our culture.


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