Men - natural leaders
(c) By Alan Barron (reproduced by permission)
2 April 2006
What modern woman says:
"Finding roles for women isn't the problem. Finding one for men is." Margaret Mead anthropologist.
What the Word of God declares:
"For the man did not come from the woman, but the woman from the man. And the man was not made for the woman, but the woman for the man." (1Co 11:8-9)
In 1727 Jonathan Swift wrote the immortal work," Gulliver’s Travels". As you may recall, in Swifts work Gulliver went on a journey. In Brobdingnag Gulliver is a midget in a land of giants. After surviving the land of the giants Gulliver reaches a new land- Lilliput.
In Lilliput, instead of being a pygmy, Gulliver is now a giant who towers over the diminutive Lilliputians, who were only about 15 cms (6 inches) tall. But Gulliver got slack! He underestimated those little leprechauns and paid the price.
The Lilliputians were smart, smarter than Gulliver gave them credit for. They quickly immobilised him with their cotton-sized rope and staked him out on the ground. No matter how hard he tried, Gulliver couldn't get free. A big giant bound by tiny pieces of thread that could easily be broken by hand!
What happened to Gulliver has happened to men today. Like Gulliver, men have been overwhelmed by Lilliputians – the "women’s movement" which should be more accurately called the Feminist movement as it - and always has – represented the aspirations of doctrinaire militant Marxist feminism, and not the average woman.
In today's egalitarian world any suggestion men should be regarded as the head of the home is regarded with much distain. Women can do anything while men are not permitted to be "sexist", especially not as heads of their own households. In fact, sadly, many so-called "evangelical" churches are hostile to any idea that there should be what they perceive as a "hierarchical structure" in marriage and women are alas, actively encouraged to fill leadership roles in many Churches.
Once upon a time, male decisions makers decided that the giant size problem called "male dominance" (alleged male bias, "the patriarchy", etc) was something terrible that needed urgent redress as this problem "oppressed" women. This giant called, "male dominance", was to be bound, so that women could be freed from male domination and find "liberation".
Now the giant called 'male dominance' was secured
Feminism insisted legislators pass laws which purportedly would secure "equality" between men and women. In their haste to placate the carping, whinging hordes of bitter feminists, copious amounts of legislators tripped over themselves to be the first to pass such laws. Myriads of `equality' laws were passed in virtually every western country.
First came equal opportunity that was then quickly followed up by affirmative action laws that bound the giant’s legs. The giant was still not secure so more laws were needed to immobilise the giant. "Non sexist" educational policies coupled with 'special measures for women' bound the giants hands. His head and arms were bound by a welfare system completely overhauled so that it fully implemented the feminist social engineering agenda which effectively denied men natural justice in the so called Family Law Court system. To add insult to injury, gender inclusive language policies were also brought in to cut off the tongue of the patriarchal giant.
At first it seemed a daunting task to secure the giant. Many thought that this could never be done. But mission impossible had been achieved, and the bloody battle that was expected, turned out to be a pushover! It all seemed so easy!
In a few short decades, centuries of social convention and wisdom was not only stopped but reversed. And who was this giant called "male dominance"? Why, it was not the devil incarnate, but ordinary men like you and me, descent hard working men who are loving husbands and fathers who have been punished for the alleged "sins" of their fathers.
According to feminist theory (which we all know floated down from Heaven written on plates of gold), gifts and abilities are distributed equally between men and women. Given a level playing field it is argued, there should be as many female leaders and decision makers as there are male ones. If not, then it must be institutionalised discrimination, meaning patriarchal attitudes that have, and are allegedly, hindering the equal participation of women in leadership.
But are leadership abilities equally distributed between men and women? The assumption that leadership abilities (and desire for leadership) are equally distributed between men and women has no scientific basis, is it supported by the Scriptures, nor the realities of life. In short it is a load of poppycock.
There are four reasons why I reject the notion of female leadership. I do not believe leadership qualities are randomly distributed between men and women. They are:
1 Biological factors
2 Sociological considerations
3 Religious teachings
4 Personal reasons.
1 Biological factors
Research into biological/psychological differences between the sexes has concluded, on many occasions, (for example Brain Sex by Moir and Jessel), there are innate differences, and many aspects of human behaviour being biologically determined.
Without too many exceptions, in nature, the role of the male is to lead and to protect the female. Human beings, in this respect, are no different from other species. Males, because of certain biologically propensities then, gravitate to positions of power and leadership more than females, (the key words here are `more than') - all things being equal on a level playing field. Male leadership is normative in nature, as Professor Steven Goldberg rightly argues in The Inevitability of Patriarchy. Gender, therefore does - to a significant extent - determine leaders.
The design of nature, which is diametrically opposite to the modern "women's movement", is not to equalise the roles of men and women. Rather men and women should have complementary roles. Males, in both the animal and human realms indicate instinctive behaviour to lead and to protect and to be self-sufficient. Females, on the other hand, tend to seek security in numbers and have a greater propensity to suckle and nurture their young - thus indicating that a type of complementary relationship should exist between males and females.
To say such things of course is not politically correct, and while biology may not be destiny, it is statistical probability.
2 Sociological considerations
Male dominance is the natural state of being. This should not startle or disappoint us—it’s simply a statement of fact. The formation of social structures should reflect the realities of life rather than some unscientific `equality’ model that has as much relevance to a modern society as does the tooth fairy. It is wrong to insist that outcomes between the sexes should be equal, and to strongly assert there are no substantially differences between men and women.
For many reasons, men are overwhelmingly more inclined to an obsessive and successful focus than women are. Some of the reasons are biological. The evidence is overwhelming that men and women are genetically dissimilar in ways well beyond the obvious physical differences. Reinforcing the biological differences are equally powerful cultural and psychological differences argues George Gilder. Quite simply, men are dependant on earning money for their sexual role in the world, as Gilder so rightly points out. In general, without earning money, a man cannot win a woman or marry her. It’s important that our sons recognise this fact.
While glossy magazines may say the modern "liberated woman" is interested in a man’s "six pack" and buns, the reality is far different. Research shows women when looking for a marriage partner, are attracted to men primarily in terms of their capacity to be a good provider. Physical attractiveness is well down the list. Women marry men who earn more, or at least the equivalent of, their own income.
Although sociologists say all this is changing, the fact is the modern woman shows no inclination to marry toy boys. Indeed, the more money a woman earns, the bigger the gap between her income and the larger income of her husband. Marriageable women usually demand that their men out-earn them.
The sexual and marital prospects of a woman, on the other hand, are little affected by her earning power. Unlike the man, the woman has options. She can drop out of the workforce at any time she wants without jeopardising her prospects for marriage. (This difference alone would be enough to explain the different numbers of men and women in executive positions.)
For a woman to stop working and to opt to raise a family is in no way culpable says Gilder. It springs from an entirely commendable desire on the part of most women to gain more time with their families. The fact that more men than women succeed, therefore, is not difficult to explain.
Gilder says what needs to be explained, is the incessant attempts at social engineering by bureaucrats and social reformers who show somewhat of a pervasive bitterness and resentment at the lack of female role models in the workforce and the dominance of men in the halls of power (these are simply the manifestations of the facts of life.
Sociologists have yet to document a society where outcomes between men and women have been equal, or anything like being equal. Even Margaret Mead never claimed to have found a society where the outcomes between men and woman were in a state of equilibrium.
Modern western society has indicated via its equality laws, tax system and the divorce courts - that it no longer believes in patriarchy (the family unit as the basic building block of civilised society and of men's importance to provide for his family).
Instead, argues Professor Daniel Amneus in The Garbage Generation, modern decision makers have opted for a kind of matriarchy, (funding `alternative lifestyles', single parent (female headed) families, working mothers etc). The delicate balance of power, mutual respect and sharing of responsibilities between men and women in marriage (which patriarchy implemented) is now being destroyed.
The breakdown of the patriarchal society means a loss of male power, employment opportunities and accountability to their families. Amneus says that in the brave new world of equal opportunitistic feminism, men have become superfluous to women, society and, worse still, to their own families.
Amneus backs his claims with research and comparisons of regressive Stone Age societies with modern western nations. When men have no clearly defined role to play in society and to their families, they soon become apathetic and sexually promiscuous. When men are marginalised from their families, the government steps in and acts as substitute parent via welfare handouts and provision of services/accommodation.
The rise of feminism/women's liberation argues Amneus, has resulted in not progress but a decline in western culture. He says that it took countless hundreds of years for society to evolve to that place where in a civilised society men would share equally with women in family responsibilities. Men earn this right by working and by committing themselves to support their wives, and children of their union. Married men are the best workers and achievers. Men are at their best when they seek to lead and provide for their families, by wanting to better themselves and contribute something positive to society.
Male initiative and innovation have made western culture what it today. The feminist lobby controls and manipulates the male political system. Amneus says that by taking away the male breadwinner role has undermined men’s desire to marry and to act as providers and protectors for their families, thus the moral framework of modern civilised society has been seriously compromised.
Peter W Blitchington makes a very valid point in his excellent book `Sex Roles and the Christian Family', - "By design, all of God's creation is concerned to avoid self-sufficiency (the aim of feminism). Husband and wife are also both interdependent on each other. Everything about our earth and its inhabitants is designed to promote harmony, Interdependence and unselfishness".
Blitchington argues that when these propensities are not harnessed to an appropriate sex role, trouble ensures. The Creator has endowed each sex with certain biological propensities toward one role or another, men to lead/provide, women to nurture/suckle. Sex roles, mother and father, says Blitchington, husband and wife, are not just arbitrary categories into which people are squeezed. Rather, they are broad patterns and principles of behaviour which define the optimum way in which men and women can relate together, enjoy intimacy, and provide a context in which children can grow up healthy and strong. The paternal role is more than just one component in this pattern of complementary roles. It is the crucial pivot - the foundation -upon which both family and society revolve.
Nature is clearly `sexist'. It is not the intention of the Creator that both sexes be identical in personhood or in function. Men and women are equal in terms of status, BUT THIS DOES NOT IMPLY SAMENESS OF FUNCTION. The intent of nature would indicate that the sexes should have a complementary relationship to the other sex.
3 Religious teachings
Many men today feel uncomfortable about exercising headship or leadership. This is because the "hierarchical structure" as it is called, imposes authority over a woman and this lends itself to the division of labour with clearly defined sex roles in marriage. Because of this division, it allegedly implies women have an inferior status to men. (I also think that some men are reluctant to embrace the traditional male role because it means shouldering extra responsibility.)
While the Bible teaches men and women are equal in status and dignity, never-the-less says headship is to be exercised by the husband. The Bible makes it clear submission is a voluntary decision on the wife's part, and a man has no right to enforce his authority on his wife—this is not the Biblical way.
The Godly wife submits to her husband, as unto the Lord. For his part, the husband is to love his wife as himself (Ephesians 5:23-33). A man who loves his wife loves himself. This being so then men are to love, care for and respect their wives keeping in mind their wives are in need of their spiritual guidance and protection (1 Peter 3:1-7).
But if a woman is subject to her husband, does this make her any less of a person, less equal in value or status? I don't think this necessarily follows. The Bible says the Lord Jesus is subject to the Father, yet the Scriptures also affirm the total equality of the Triune Godhead. Let me illustrate. At work, we submit to our bosses. Because I am subject to my boss, does this make me "inferior" to him? Of course not! It simply means he has been given a different role to play in the company than me. Being "subordinate" does not diminish me in any way, it only means my role is defined (and limited) in relationship to another person.
Being a good leader and devoted husband and father is very important in the home as it engenders trust, respect and harmony. A wife looks up to her husband and expects of him fidelity, loyalty and leadership. Children too look to their fathers as role models.
The Biblical model of leadership is not that of the autocrat who does what he likes when he likes, and has scant regard for the feelings of his wife (and children). Rather, the Bible says those who lead should be the servant of others.
In addition, husbands should love their wives as themselves. For their part, wives should respect and love their husbands. The Bible also admonishes fathers not to provoke their children (make them angry), but to bring them up with love and understanding, disciplining them with tenderness and care.
Let me say again, the Bible makes it clear that a husband cannot enforce his authority on his wife. The Godly wife voluntarily submits to her husband’s leadership because she acknowledges this to be in accordance with the revealed will of God.
On the other hand, many women and men push for an "egalitarian" modern in marriage, which calls for an inordinate equality in roles, and this includes leadership (shared between husband and wife). This is not a model taught in the Scriptures—despite the fallacious interpretations placed on Galatians 3:28 by some.
Being the leader of your family means taking full responsibility, the buck stops with you. While certainly this is a very daunting and challenging role, handled correctly and with love and patience, it can also be a very rewarding experience. Fathers, and mothers, have the most important job in the world—moulding their children so that they develop into mature, caring and responsible adults.
Being a leader does not mean we, as fathers, remain aloof. When we look at the way Jesus exercised leadership, He displayed friendship, sympathy, and understanding and regarded it as a privilege to serve. This then is our model. Understanding our children is difficult at the best of times because they grow up so fast and are constantly changing. Children's needs change over time as they mature, and the way in which you discipline your children should be appropriate for the child at their stage of development.
Being a good leader of our home also requires definiteness of decision. If you are like me it takes you a while to make up your mind. That's ok, the thing is do not waver or be given to constantly changing your mind, unless you have a good reason for doing so. Children like to know the boundaries, and they certainly can push right up to that boundary! But the thing is if you constantly waver, chop and change, you will not only cause uncertainty and mistrust, but also you run the real risk of losing their respect.
Thus we need to be clear about three things: one, marriage is normative for all men and women (singleness is not regarded as normative); secondly, God mandates having children—children are not "optional extras." Also, marriage between a man and a woman is the context in which God desires children to be born and raised (procreation should be the deliberate choice of both husband and wife), and thirdly, the Bible says men are to be the head and chief providers for their families.
4 Personal reasons
A few years ago I happened to be in Sydney and decided to visit my old Army barracks where I was stationed during my National Service in 1969-70. As I wandered around the barracks, I noticed a squad of soldiers practising drill on the parade ground. The drill Sergeant was a short rotund female, and her high-pitched voice rang over the parade ground as she barked orders to the men in her squad.
It sounded so strange I thought. Her voice was thrill, and lacked the deep authoritative tone of a male voice. I thought to myself, I would not like being told what to do by such a thrill voice, it sounded so unnatural.
I don’t like being told what to do at the best of times, and I certainly don’t regard it as natural for a woman to boss men around, or for men to be under the authority of a woman. I don’t think I’m alone in this. And I think most men would admit this if they had the courage of their convictions but many, wanting not to appear `chauvinist' say they really don't mind being under female authority. I don't believe that for a minute. Most people have an intense dislike of being shouted at and bossed around by someone in a shrill voice. In nature we find males, generally speaking, assume leadership roles whether we are talking about animals or humans.
I personally don’t like being bossed around by women. This is quiet apart from any Biblical consideration. Even as a juvenile in High School, I resented being told off by both male and female teachers, especially the latter. It just doesn’t seem right.
I don’t like women lording it over men - full stop. And if the situation arises, in work or elsewhere that I have to be subject to female authority, then I do so out of a sense of pragmatism rather than a sense of duty or conviction. Chances are a man placed the woman in the position of power, so it’s not women I’m railing against, but rather the misguided notion that leadership should be equally shared between men and women.
In a world dominated by feminist thought, any man who dares resist a female’s authority over him is quickly labelled and made to feel embarrassed by his alleged male chauvinism. All I can say is, "So bite me!" I have my convictions and I’m not going to change them to suit the pagan ideologues of this world.
To get to the top takes more than just qualifications, intelligence, hard work, people skills and dedication. (I freely grant women, as well as men, have these abilities). But it also takes assertiveness, risk taking and a willingness to negate some family responsibilities. These characteristics are more common to men than to women. Research shows that even if a woman is career orientated, she will still want to spend some time with her family (Dr Catherine Hakim), and women generally have a greater reluctance to brush aside their fellows in order to reach the top.
Some may object and say; well that's precisely the point! Women in management are desirable because females bring a different style of leadership; that is, it is argued, women bring a less aggressive, more intuitive style. It is also alleged that women tend to govern by consensus rather than favour the authoritarian masculine style. These softer skills, it is alleged, are more in demand today rather than the aggressive, dominating style of men.
The last statement is highly contestable. Aggression is generally speaking, found more in men than women. However, an important element in the ability of a company to stay ahead of its competitors is its ability to be innovative and to take risks (fortune favours the brave). Some women have what it takes, good luck to them. However, men have, generally speaking, greater assertive skills so necessary in today's competitive marketplace.
Risk, entrapeauneurship and the need to find and development new products drive capitalist economies. Men also tend to be more innovative as 99 per cent of the world's inventors are male. It so happens that most of the entrapeauneurs and top business people are men no matter where you go on the globe.
Affirmative action policies then for women are counter productive in the long run. Current legislation requires companies with over 100 employees to report back to the government on what it is doing to increase their female participation rate at all levels, including middle and senior management. It is fashionable today to overlook a man and give the nod to a lesser-qualified woman so to appease the equal opportunity bureaucratic demigods. Men are being over looked, not because they are inferior in performance to women, it's just that the pressure is on to hire and promote women.
Governments now expect employers to be in the social engineering business by providing special measures for women including child-minding centres at work. To add insult to injury, the taxpayer picks up the tab to the tune of over one billion dollars annually for childcare as working women pursue their selfish ambition to place their careers ahead of family responsibilities. Those pushing equal outcomes are ignorant of the great damage being done to our social fabric by recruiting women in large numbers to the workforce.
The quality of family life has declined markedly in the past few decades. This is because men are NOT allowed to be men –to be assertive and act in a traditional male way. Male unemployment and suicides rates are up as men are squeezed from jobs and management positions they should have held. Male status continues to take a battering in popular culture as the virtues of femininity are extolled daily while masculine values are undervalued.
I believe that the drive to equalise the roles of men and women and in placing females in leadership positions, is not a fight against `male bias' as such as a retreat from reality and common sense, a rebellion against purposes of God, the designs of nature, and is not only waging a war against men, their rights hindering fairness but also family life and mutual respect between the sexes. It is, in addition, efficiency and productivity in the marketplace.