Quickie Post — Fatherless Young Men and the Larger Societal Consequences

Conor on his first river trip, at the oars

Twitter pal and real-life friend, Joe Biello, posted an absolutely stunning video, by Good Kid Productions that every sentient human on the planet, who has any interest in us having a prosperous future, needs to watch. It is THAT good. It covers in-depth the August 2020 shooting of Jacob Blake, an African-American male whose arrest started the Kenosha riots, as well as fueled the Black Lives Matter movement. It demolishes the myth of Jacob Blake as some victim of white supremacist policing, while casting light on the other, downstream-cascade actors in the Kenosha riots, namely Kyle Rittenhouse, Joseph Rosenbaum, and Anthony Huber. Blake headlines the story as a fatherless man, whose father left his mother while she was still pregnant, to start another family with a woman he had impregnated. The hidden story behind Jacob Blake’s arrest was that he had sexually assaulted the mother of his own child that day, and was attempting to kidnap all her kids by piling them into her car. Which is why she called 911, that started the tragic series of events that day.

Here’s the piece: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BzAMjU14z4w

Apparently, you have to watch it on YouTube. The title is: The Broken Boys of Kenosha: Jacob Blake, Kyle Rittenhouse, and the Lies We Still Live By.

The one thing the victims all had in common were they were fatherless men, and makes the compelling case that the real root of all the actors’ dysfunction was the lack of a father in their lives. Of course, one can’t do a randomized control trial for this kind of thing. But I encourage everyone to watch it. It is THAT good.

Not surprisingly, the one documented psychopath in the mix — Joseph Rosenbaum, who had literally just left the mental institution CARRYING HIS DISCHARGE BAG after a suicide attempt earlier that day — that showed up at the protest, was severely sexually molested by his stepfather, who ended up spending time in prison for his crimes. The other victim, Anthony Huber, was an unwanted child, abandoned by his father, who found some refuge in the skateboarding community in Kenosha. He had spent most of his adolescence and young adult life in correctional facilities. Now Huber’s father is attempting to sue the city of Kenosha for wrongful death and his loss. Mind-boggling. Once again, in Structural-Memetic-land, what we’re seeing behind this particular situation is the development of a Disqualifying Narrative — a story so far out of the stretch of most folks’ comprehension, it literally beggars belief. Unfortunately, it’s only outside of contemporary narratives such as White Supremacy and Police Violence against African-American men, can one get close to understanding the root cause of the trauma.

And Kyle Rittenhouse, the 17 year old ostensible White Supremacist? His father is an unemployed alcoholic, who punches his mother in the stomach when Kyle is 4, causing the couple to divorce.

The other primary point of the video is how our understanding of the Jacob Blake situation got scrambled. It is an exemplar of this post — how psychopaths use well-worn mental models (in this case, racism and white supremacy) to distort the truth and gain power and control. I am at a loss on how to move the needle on this at a large scale. But at least now, I’ve plotted the dynamic.

What’s my view on this? I can’t really give a ton of personal details, but I’ll tell you when I left my marriage and my two kids’ mother when they were 8 and 10, I operated in some kind of fog that the narratives I had been fed were true — that my kids would be fine, as long as I wrote the check. That turned out to be profoundly not true, and what followed was a long conflict to get custody of my sons, which I did. What was amazing about that fight, though, was how profoundly all the institutions I had to deal with were against contact between a father and his kids. It was summed up in one session with one of my sons counselor, who told me “this whole town thinks you’re crazy. Everyone knows that after a divorce, a successful man like yourself leaves those kids behind and goes and starts a new family with another woman.” They couldn’t understand at all why I fought.

I know I’m leaving out a lot of story, and that is just the way it must be. My two sons, whom I got full custody of at something like 14 and 12 (I forget, to be honest) have gone on to be two of the most successful humans on the planet. I hung in there, and I’m glad (and grateful) I did. But if the system can continually kick someone as crazy-persistent as me in the face, a white male with the power and privilege of both societal status, and one of the best educations available — as Utah Phillips might say of my position, armed to the teeth with the weapons of privilege — what are the outcomes for more average, or disenfranchised populations?

From my perch as an engineering professor, having educated literally thousands of young men (and women) , I can tell you from interacting with them that fatherless children is another civilization-ending crisis. It is hard to grok how many of kids I’ve talked in the same situational boat. And while the outcomes for all are not nearly as radical as those involved in the Blake/Rittenhouse situation, when anyone asks me “so what do you do for a living?” I tell them succinctly — “I raise kids.” Young women too.

We might start at least addressing the problem publicly. While we still can.

P.S. A final footnote — this is supposed to be a Quickie Post! — the mainstream media coverage clips shown will make you never believe any of the media figures ever again. What is the most interesting aspect of this? How NONE of them have ever apologized, nor fixed their original depiction of events. The mind reels. All of you waiting for Tony Fauci to say he’s sorry — you might consider this case.

And yeah — I know you expect me to say this, but the linked posts in this post are solid work. You should read them if you really want to understand how the mainstream media works. Do remember that I am usually critical of my own writing, but the upside is if I say the ideas are good, they are at least worth considering.

6 thoughts on “Quickie Post — Fatherless Young Men and the Larger Societal Consequences

  1. Thank you for writing this. I watched the video and found myself conflicted when Bill Barr appeared. I got beyond that and will now never casually accept at face value conventional media interpretation of events like this one. Will share this article and documentary with others. There is so much thought provoking material and so much to learn about the effect of buying into a narrative without critical thinking.

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  2. Hey, appreciate your posts fella. Found you through the Seneca Effect facebook group. Keep it up please, it’s great to see a fellow STEM-type working at media / memetic studies.

    Regards, Seaver

    On Fri, Nov 25, 2022 at 2:26 PM It’s About Empathy – Connection Ties Us

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  3. Jolly well told. If I had a $5.00 bill for every fatherless child I treated when I practiced as a psychotherapist, I could buy a major news outlet, fire everyone, and start over.

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  4. Aloha from Idaho. I watched the video that you recommended to me about fatherless boys. The connection to the three young men chosen to demonstrate what boys without fathers experience in a broken system that fails everyone, eventually, is perplexing . My two youngest children, a boy and a girl grew up without their father in every aspect of their lives. The interesting thing to me is having been the parent who was ever present is the weak link. The absent father became everything that they focused on to grow strong. Hey, I’m the one who tried my best: emotionally, food & shelter, education, consistency, meeting needs, sports, piano lessons, long talks all the while ingaged in my own undergraduate degree program and baking pies for extra money. All the while, the father was gone, no support money—psychological silence, and no direction for our children, not even a pair of shoes. Both my children have suffered as I have exhaustingly been up to bat alone. The absent father situation is a pandemic to all who endure the worry, the pain and sorrow of wayward life routes that end in the loss of magnificent, innocent, beautiful babes. The whole masculine society is at the root of this terrible phenomenon. Families are broken, mothers are broken and young children are broken.

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