Tag: fathers

Quote of the Day: Be Dad


I am serving as a delegate in the Texas State Republican Convention and have to take off in a few minutes. Since I don’t have time for a quote of the day, I am going to run a column I originally wrote for Father’s Day in 2014 as my QotD.

An article in The Atlantic magazine reports children whose fathers were actively involved in their lives during their teen years, especially during high school, are more likely to finish college than those who do not.

Dad, Argentina, and the Best Steak I Ever Had


Growing up, I couldn’t wait for Sunday night. That’s when my father would cook dinner. My mother was an extraordinary person –a Master’s degree from USC, a member of the Red Cross team that followed Patton’s Third Army through Europe during World War II – but the woman could barely boil rice. Our weekly menu usually revolved around Swanson’s Salisbury steak frozen dinners and canned chop suey. But on Sundays, everything changed. Dad would don his grease-stained apron, flash his special set of stainless-steel tongs, and throw a couple of thick porterhouse steaks on the backyard grill. Oh, how this man loved a great steak. And his steaks were the best steaks I ever had in my life.

That is … until I went to Argentina.

I had arrived in Buenos Aires several years ago with moderate jet lag and a major appetite. I purposely hadn’t eaten in almost 24 hours so I would be significantly hungry and might actually finish an early dinner – something I don’t do very well the older I get. I asked around and chose the nearest parilla with the best reputation: Los Remolinos on Calle Sulpacha in Retiro. “Great steaks – what’s more …” But I stopped everyone right there. The other reasons didn’t matter. I knew steaks were legend in this corner of the planet and that’s what I wanted. A steak. A great steak.

Quote of the Day: Men of Integrity


“Being a man of integrity simply means your intentions, as well as your actions, are pure and righteous in all aspects of your life, both in public and in private. With each decision we make, we either merit more of God’s trust or diminish His trust. This principle is perhaps most clearly manifest in our divinely appointed responsibilities as husbands and fathers.” — Richard J. Maynes

Jeff is my older brother. When he was a young man, he read about Job in the Bible. He was impressed with Job’s integrity and decided from that time on that he would be a “man of integrity.” He also had good examples with Dad, Grandpa Mitchell, and our uncles. (Grandpa Mitchell died on Father’s Day in 1994.) Jeff has always been a good example to me. He’s always been a man of his word. I also married a man of integrity!

We Are in Freefall


In a world gone mad, Marxist zombies riot, burn, loot and murder in every major city in America (and many European capitals) over the death of the hero/criminal George Floyd. Corporate America, Hollywood celebrities, etc., fall all over themselves to confess their white guilt. Statues and monuments are torn down and it no longer matters if what they represented was good or not because it’s total nihilism. And the people who are charged with the authority to maintain order and protect us stand by and do nothing.

Under these circumstances, it’s not hyperbole to say that our country is in moral and intellectual freefall.

Rafael Mangual joins Kay Hymowitz to discuss evidence suggesting that children are often better off when criminal parents are imprisoned—the subject of Mangual’s story, “Fathers, Families, and Incarceration,” from the Winter 2020 Issue of City Journal.

A common criticism of incarceration in the United States, notes Mangual, is that it harms children by taking parents or siblings out of their homes. But recent studies show that children living with a parent who engages in high levels of antisocial behavior may be worse off than kids with incarcerated parents.

Mothers and Fathers


My number four son is now a police officer, a few months into his first year on the job. He spends his evenings and nights driving his patrol car around a New England city, staying awake, keeping the peace.

He tells me that about once a week he responds to a domestic call involving a minor. With few exceptions, they’re variations on the same theme: a single mother with one child, a son, who is unruly and defiant and whom she can’t control. My son tells me that his department responds to at least one of these every day — this in a relatively small city.

Rest in Peace, Philip Charles Gabriel


Three weeks ago, my dad talked to me for the last time. Three days ago, he died.

During those final weeks, any words surprised me. He was diagnosed with dementia eight years ago, four years after that with Alzheimer’s disease, and hasn’t been able to converse for several months. Every visit, he was a bit quieter, a lot thinner; a little less like Dad.

But he could still manage that sweet smile I remembered from my youngest days. Dad was gentle, peaceful, and seemed happy for visits, even when he didn’t know who we were. My brother, sister, and I would sit around dad’s couch or bed; he was content to eavesdrop on our conversations, occasionally revealing sparks of recognition.

Quote of the Day: Fathers and Sons


“Every father should remember one day his son will follow his example, not his advice.” – Charles Kettering

I worked as an engineer for many years before shifting into technical writing. I have three adult sons. All three are engineers. I did not advise them to be engineers. I advised them to follow the careers that would serve them best.

Just in time for Father’s Day weekend, the Behind the Blue Wall podcast brings you some of the most terrible and culturally unacceptable advice on being a dad ever recorded. In other words, it’s 100% honest.

The editorial page editor of the Boston Herald and four-time father Tom Shattuck (aka “The Great And Powerful Tom” of radio fame) talks about what it’s really like to be a dad, particularly when you’re someone who doesn’t like kids.

Father’s Day and the Longest Day of the Year


Here it is, the gloaming, Midsummer Day. On a deeper, darker gloaming, in another place in 1960, we kids danced around outside and then Dad came home from work. It had been one of his long days. He looked tired out, even wearing a shirt and tie, and he was carrying packages and smiling.

Honor Thy Father


We make a big fuss about mothers in our culture. Think of how often politicians offer sympathy to “heroic” single moms who are doing such an amazing job. Many do, and of course, their lives are extremely hard and they deserve sympathy. As a mother of three sons, I cannot imagine how I would have managed alone. That much having been said, this Father’s Day is a good time to remember that fathers are crucial to their children’s happiness and success.

Here is a small sample of what good husbands/fathers do for their relations: 1) Their wives are healthier, wealthier, and happier than single or divorced women; 2) their daughters are less likely to have eating disorders, be dissatisfied with their appearance, have behavior problems, have a child out of wedlock, or suffer from depression; 3) their sons are less likely to drop out of high school, get in trouble with the law, or drink to excess.

Fathers perform this magic and more – but the key is marriage. The faithful bond between spouses transforms guys into men who earn a lot more money, keep their children safe and happy, and uphold neighborhoods and communities.

Member Post


Note: I posted the below essay on my personal site this past Sunday, the 4th.  Reposted here with some family encouragement.  It would have been a good candidate for the “Gratitude” writing assignment, but the anniversary of his passing was more fitting: My father passed six years ago, today, after a long battle with lymphoma.  […]

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This is a little untimely, since Father’s Day was obviously a few weeks ago. However, I got some positive response to my storytelling podcast on Stanislav Petrov and near-Armageddon at the height Cold War. Thus, I thought I might share this one as well. Unlike the historical tale of Petrov, this one was a very […]

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The War on Men


shutterstock_162854771You don’t have to be a “revolutionary” presidential candidate to know that there’s something seriously wrong about the way boys are growing into men in this country.

Most of the media is obsessed with fraternities, creepy boys with “affluenza,” and lax brosMost of that reporting follows a familiar template: bad (white) boys and their victims. It’s a reliably monotonous litany because that frees them from the responsibility of looking at what happens to (mostly non-white) boys who grow up in poor neighborhoods. Short answer: nothing much good. From Citylab:

How adults in the U.S. fare economically depends, to a large extent, on the quality of the neighborhoods they grew up in. But boys and girls who live right down the street from each other don’t always end up, economically speaking, in the same place. And that’s most likely because their childhood environments affect them differently, a new working paper by economist Raj Chetty and his colleagues finds, with boys having an especially tough time.

Member Post


Once a week, we gather as a family for a few minutes for a teaching moment, songs, games, prayer and a snack. Often, it seems like these family nights are going right over the heads of our rambunctious 4-year-old and 15 month old. Last Monday at family night, E told the kids a true story […]

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Book Review: The Dadly Virtues


Book Review Dadly Virtues

“The Dadly Virtues: Adventures from the Worst Job You’ll Ever Love,” edited by Jonathan V. Last, Templeton Press, 2015, 192 pages, $24.95

Being a dad may be the hardest job in the United States today. Dads get no respect, and are pictured in popular culture as chumps or buffoons. Yet no job can be as satisfying. Fatherhood is the theme of The Dadly Virtues: Adventures from the Worst Job You’ll Ever Love, edited by Jonathan V. Last.

Seventeen meditations on fatherhood, the book covers just about every aspect of fatherhood, each written by a different author. These include dealing with that newborn, dad’s role in instilling a sense of adventure in your children, religion, sports, siblings, pets, school, telling your kids about the birds and the bees, dating, college, marriage and more.

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I’m not a particularly big fan of greeting card companies. They’ve conspired to create too many artificial holidays to push their product. I’m no big fan of left-wing film makers, either. But this four and a half minutes hits an obvious nerve with me. Directed by Oscar winner Barbara Kopple this is the story of […]

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A friend pointed me to Ryan T. Anderson’s talk about marriage as an answer to RJD’s Honest Curiosity about the Secular Objections to Same Sex Marriage. It’s fifty-five minutes and well worth the time of those honestly curious about what the secular arguments against SSM are. Ahem. Anderson states up-front that his presentation will exclude arguments from […]

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