Big Red Car here. Happy Father’s Day to all Dads in the entire world and, hey, the entire galaxy.
Dads are very, very important people in the development of the world and families and in the lives of their children.
Let me tell you why.
Poverty is traditionally measured in economic terms — money, possessions being the typical yardsticks help up to determine the condition of being in poverty. It is a comparative measure.
In reality, poverty is just as well measured by considering the future of folks who are trapped in that state — what does their future really look like? Can they throw off the bonds of poverty and escape? If so, what mechanisms are helpful to that struggle.
Alternative measures of poverty
Poverty can arguably be measured and predicted by assessing various other measures. Here are three that readily spring to mind.
1. Access to education;
2. Access to technology;
3. Access to parental supervision.
In most instances, these three measures are tied together and are cell mates with economic poverty but they are much more subtle as they are in many ways a life sentence to poverty. Worse they typically come in a 3-pack.
Education is the great leveler in American society. This is why The Boss is so keen on education — flaming liberal really.
He asks only that education simultaneously be harnessed to the notion of creating taxpayers. It is OK to turn out a few poets but please make damn sure they have an alternative and money making trade or skill.
The CTA v LTV of obtaining an education that creates a long term taxpayer is the best investment the country can make. Think about it.
Technology is tied to job skills. America is now a skills driven “brain” economy and the “brawn” jobs that have been seemingly temporarily reduced or shipped overseas are never, ever coming back.
If you cannot compete on skills and, in particular, technical skills — then you are doomed to a substandard level of economic existence. You may be doomed to poverty. Harsh reality.
Access to parental supervision
Of the three alternative measures of poverty, access to parental supervision is perhaps the most subtle. Parental supervision can be a driver for education and technical expertise because that is what parents do.
In existing lower economic strata of America, parents are often missing in action because of historically weak family bonds. This is a huge social discussion.
When they are present, they are engaged in making a living often at the subsistence level. Time is not available for parenting because time is so precious to trade for money. To simply be housed and fed.
The low level of parental supervision is often a combination of at least these two characteristics — fractured families reducing the number of parents available and the preoccupation of parents with subsistence working conditions.
This has the further unfortunate impact of denying or making infinitely more difficult access to education and technology. Access to both education and technology are functions of economic capacity.
When there is a weakened state of parental supervision there is a dramatically degraded capability of accessing education and technology. It is a triple threat.
Not only is parental supervision a critical consideration but even when fractured families are created through divorce, wealthier families actually are able to provide considerably more assets — wealth and parental supervision — to their children.
A divorced man and wife from a superior economic strata in society are likely to eventually remarry. While divorce is rarely good for children, this new structure provides twice the potential supervision and participation in the lives of the children to say nothing of multiple sets of grandparents.
This phenomenon contributes to a heightened level of supervision just from the perspective of bench strength but also a heightened probability of funding the long term access to education and technology.
Even in the midst of trauma, some children are able to land in a situation which will ensure their protection from poverty, access to education, access to technology and a heightened level of parental supervision.
This highlights why Fathers are so incredibly important to the future of America, families and children. When Fathers are present the ability for one to work themselves out of poverty is present — not a two hand dunk shot but substantially improved.
The American Dream is a love story woven around a future oriented immigrant whose children live the dream that the immigrant parents and grandparents bought with their sweat and toil. The American Dream is all about the journey out of poverty.
Fathers are critically important to the fabric of our society and while today is a day honor them and to express our gratitude — it is also a day to recognize their importance and appreciate their role in our society.
[Hey, Moms, this is Father’s Day — ya’ll are really more important but let that old dog have his day, eh? We will get you next year. You know a Big Red Car loves the Moms, right?]