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Endangered species: American Dad

Honor, thank fathers this weekend

There’s a lot of talk about endangered species. But the most important endangered species in America, may not be a plant or a wild animal. The most endangered species may actually be in your home, a friend’s home or next door.

The endangered species I’m talking about is the American Dad.

This coming Sunday is Father’s Day, the one day set aside each year to honor the American Dad. Honoring and thanking the fathers in your life should be your highest priority this weekend.

Fathers typically don’t ask for anything. Something as simple as a phone call will do, especially in this day and age when fatherhood is often dismissed and sometimes demonized. Let the fathers in your life know how important they are to you, their children and their community.

And they are important.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, approximately 40% of children do not have regular access to their biological fathers. Those children missing that connection are missing part of themselves.

When you look at issues of children growing up without Dad – both in fatherless households and in blended homes – the statistics are sobering:

• 85% of children with behavioral problems come from fatherless homes.

• Children who grow up without their “real” dad at home are four times more likely to live in poverty.

• 90% of all runaways flee homes where their biological father is not present.

• 71% of high school dropouts come from home where the father isn’t present.

• 70% of pregnant teenage girls come from fatherless homes. Moreover, teenage pregnancy is 3.5 times higher among girls that don’t have their dad at home.

• 90% of men in prison grew up without their father at home.

And the list goes on.

To complicate matters, family courts rarely keep fathers on a level playing field with mothers. Schools preach about parental involvement, but then decline to comply with parenting plans requiring joint decision-making. And societal changes would have you believe dads don’t matter.

The point is children need their fathers. And the importance of fatherhood should be celebrated, not just this coming Sunday, but every day.

The fathers in your life, your community, make a big difference. Recognize them. Honor them. Make sure the American Dad isn’t on your endangered species list.

Happy Fathers Day.

– Roger Harnack is the publisher of Free Press Publishing. Email him at [email protected].

Author Bio

Roger Harnack, Publisher

Author photo

Roger Harnack is the co-owner/publisher of Free Press Publishing. Having grown up Benton City, Roger is an award-winning journalist, photographer, editor and publisher. He's one of only two editorial/commentary writers from Washington state to ever receive the international Golden Quill. Roger is dedicated to the preservation of local media, and the voice it retains for Eastern Washington.


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