Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Developing the right sort of men...

I linked to it in the last post on Kirby Puckett, but I think this article from Townhall.com deserves to stand on it's own:

American manhood will prevail - Mar 6, 2006

by W. Thomas Smith, Jr.
I’m often asked whether or not America is still producing future generations of the right sort of men. Not just good men—a man is either good or bad—but tough, clear-headed, un-emasculated, young male leaders capable of standing up to future threats against this nation. After all, as Dr. Walid Phares concludes in his book, Future Jihad, what most Americans “may not want to accept is that the pre-9/11 peace is not coming back soon, and may not come back at all.

Worse: the future foot-soldiers in the enemy camp are physically, mentally, and emotionally prepared—albeit misguided—young men (and a handful of women) who have no qualms about sacrificing themselves for the cause of our destruction. And despite awkward attempts at gender-norming in our own camp, young American males will no doubt be the members of our own society looked-to to stem the tide. The nation will continue to look to men – not women – because most Americans still believe most men are better equipped physically, physiologically, and psychologically for the kind of work required to thwart terrorism (U.S. Army studies over the past 15 years reveal the vast majority of women – civilian and military – have no desire to fight anyway.). Some argue it’s a difference in how we are wired. Others say it’s how we are socially groomed. Arguments aside: when the wolf is at the door, we still want the strongest, most aggressive person with the biggest stick.
Moreover, women are currently barred from serving in infantry and special operations units, and for good reason beyond the aforementioned obvious. “Good men protect and defend women in the face of a physical threat,” writes Kate O’Beirne in Women Who Make the World Worse. “If men in uniform are going to be sex blind when it comes to protecting their comrades, American mothers will have to get to work instructing their sons that it’s okay to hit girls.”

That ain’t going to happen.

So let’s face it, it’s still up to young men to protect us, as well as other young men who will lead them. So what about those young men? Are we—in the land of excess and deliberately dumbed-down masculinity—still turning good boys into great men who can counter the incalculable numbers of boys in other parts of the world who are simultaneously being transformed into terrorists?

You bet...

...Such men are critical for our nation’s defense. For while American kids like Max are studying hard and practicing harder; their teenage Islamist counterparts are learning to fire Kalashnikovs and detonate explosives, all the while being fed a steady diet of ‘death to the infidels!’

In the end, the American boys will win. The reasoning is simple: Participation in organized sports is on the rise. Full-contact sports like wrestling, football, even boxing (though the latter is not nearly as prevalent as it once was) builds character. And character prevails in ballgames, boardrooms, and on the battlefield...

...And make no mistake: the male amateur athlete is the proverbial ace in the hole in any of America’s future conflicts.

In the 19th Century, Britain’s famed Duke of Wellington, Sir Arthur Wellesley, purportedly said, “The Battle of Waterloo was won on the playing fields of Eton.”

In the tradition of the “Iron Duke,” I would add that the 21st-century battles for Kandahar and Fallujah were won on wrestling mats and football fields in small towns all over America.
Amen. Now please, no more "participation awards" for youth sports...the politically correct notion that every child should get a trophy regardless of attitude, improvement or ability is an aweful example to set. If you do that, please also give a "most improved", "MVP", or "best sportsman" award. The kids that perform well need to be recognized, and the kids that don't need to learn from example.

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