Founder and Editor-in-Chief Mike LaSalle announced the retirement of MensNewsDaily.com today. After nearly 9 years of continuous operation, the world’s premier men’s news and commentary site will end its operations Ã¢â‚¬Å“over the next month.Ã¢â‚¬Â
The introduction of MND came at a pivotal time in American history, in the aftermath of legislative thrusts against fathers and families that had broad legal, social, and political ramifications. In the 1980s, at the peak of PC and particularly feminist doctrinal influence, Congress had moved the federal government into the business of family. This triggered a ruling in 1993, in which the US 9th District Court of Appeals ripped marriage and family from their private roots and replanted them solidly in the public (government) domain. (P.O.P.S. v. Gardner) During the 1990s, the mass media, backed by a bipartisan political coalition, an army of bureaucrats, and a new publicly funded child support collection industry, held growing criticism at bay with a hate campaign against men generally and fathers in particular, and did nothing to inform or educate the public on the radical political changes that were taking place.
Few people were prepared to respond. Most were uninformed, and upon encountering the facts it was difficult to believe them. The established political order in the United States was, after all, defined by the Constitution. Courts had always recognized marriage and family as the most important and essential private institution in human existence. They are also clearly not within the scope of federal regulatory authority. So how did they get it? Socially and fiscally conservative rhetoric had been thrown into the family law debate during the 1980s, angling in via Ã¢â‚¬Å“welfare reformÃ¢â‚¬Å“ and the Ã¢â‚¬Å“deadbeat dadsÃ¢â‚¬Â theme, with ideas on government-enforced personal-responsibility, a rather obvious oxymoron upon reflection. Social and fiscal conservatives bought it and supported reforms without seeing the big picture. The reforms aimed far beyond welfare entitlements and struck more deeply at the heart of American life than most people could find imaginable at the time. More than a few still struggle with it.
There was a critical need to inform the public and explain to newly divorced fathers why things were the way they were as well as to battle against the continuing waves of anti-male, anti-father propaganda. Divorcing fathers faced two new burdens. As a result of family law reform, many were being irrecoverably economically devastated and then being thrown in jail for being unable to pay arbitrarily high child support amounts. They were having their futures stolen from them. The second is that even their closest friends and families, uninformed, saw them as obsessed whiners when they attempted to talk about their experiences and explain the causes.
Their blaming government and feminism from the perspective of victims was seen as emotionally-driven and their Ã¢â‚¬Å“conspiracy theoriesÃ¢â‚¬Â were seen as a sign of obsessed psychological imbalance or an immature rationalizing of their circumstances. They were told to Ã¢â‚¬Å“act like a man,Ã¢â‚¬Â have a Ã¢â‚¬Å“stiff upper lip,Ã¢â‚¬Â and that so many men had survived the experience before them. They were also told to get a good lawyer, at a time when even divorcing lawyers were shooting judges and battling injustice in their own cases. They were offered psychological counseling. Most people were blissfully unaware that things had changed. For many divorced and divorcing fathers, it was like living in an episode of the Twilight Zone.
Such dramatic change can’t be kept secret forever. By Bill Clinton’s second presidential campaign, the thunderous applause for anti-father rhetoric (and the code-phrase Ã¢â‚¬Å“welfare reformÃ¢â‚¬Â now expressed by Clinton’s slogan Ã¢â‚¬Å“ending welfare as we know itÃ¢â‚¬Â) was exchanged for the rumbling of the crowd. Too many divorcing fathers were telling similar stories. A few brave journalists were telling them too. And people had seen the effects, not only to the bottom line of the welfare budget, which was growing out of control, but to their working, non-entitled, responsible friends and family members; loving fathers who deserved a life as much as anyone else. The swelling discontent however had come too late to save marriage, which had been callously executed by the 9th Circuit Court decision of 1993.
During George W. Bush’s second term, the Massachusetts Supreme Court delivered a judgment that a ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional. Offering civil unions as an alternative was not acceptable. It seemed a queer ruling in the face of over 200 years of judicial acceptance. It’s one that can only be explained by the fundamentally changed legal status of marriage. But no one had as yet effectively thrown their shoes into the national propaganda machinery. Republicans blamed Ã¢â‚¬Å“activist judgesÃ¢â‚¬Â (the wrong ones) and debated Ã¢â‚¬Å“defense of marriageÃ¢â‚¬Â acts to define marriage as exclusively between a man and a woman, missing the point entirely. The redefinition of marriage as a public policy left indiscriminate equality as the only remaining Constitutional consideration. In 2010, as the lame-stream media debates judicial power verses the will of the people on Prop. 8 in California, it’s clear that our shoes still haven’t damaged the propaganda machinery enough. The People are not yet sufficiently informed, but they do see that something is amiss.
Much has changed since the 1980s and men who are determined to address political problems need to find their place in the 21st century. Nothing has been so informative and provocative as Barack Obama in the White House with a Democratic Party majority in both houses. Industry take-overs, a poor version of socialized medicine passed in opposition to the public will, global warming policy based on fraud, out-of-control spending, blatant cronyism, in-your-face corruption, political indoctrination in schools, pledges of allegiance to Barack Obama rather than to the flag and the country; with politicians proclaiming that there are no limits to federal power, laughing and demonizing those who support the Constitution, they’ve done much of the work for us.
You (men / fathers) need to understand that the political problems that you face are but one instance of a larger problem. You need to understand that you are not part of an isolated minority. You need to understand what over-reaching interpretation of the Commerce Clause means and how it effects the relationship between government and the people. You need to know what other issues have been effected by the same root causes. You need to understand that the millions of people who have taken to the streets to express their grievances and demand a return to Constitutional rule are your fellow soldiers in the same civil war.
And they need to know it too. When you arrive on the battle-ground, address the troops. Tell them specifically why you are there and how your grievances are related to theirs and the larger problem. Let them know that the spearhead of this war struck first at fathers while they slept, that the people’s loss of that battle led to the broader fight they now face, and that none of us will ever see freedom again until the family is returned to its rightful place.