With special guests:
- Tom Golden and
- Jack Kammer.
This week on Dads on the Air we talk to two members of the recently established “Proposal for a White House Council on Boys to Men”, Tom Golden and Jack Kammer from the USA. They are two leading members of a multi-partisan Commission of thirty-four nationally-known scholars and practitioners, who have submitted a proposal that President Obama create a White House Council on Boys to Men.
The mere presidential announcement of a White House Council on Boys to Men makes visible an invisible crisis. A White House Conference on Boys to Men to present “best practices” within one year after the Council is created, will prove invaluable to the future well- being of our Men.
Designed to tackle a nationwide crisis of boys and men, the Commission identifies the following five main components:
- Education. Boys are behind girls in almost every subject, especially reading and writing. Yet boy-friendly programs (e.g., recess and vocational education) are being curtailed.
- Jobs. Our sons are not being prepared for jobs where the jobs will be. Yet women rarely marry men in unemployment lines.
- Fatherlessness. A third of boys are raised in father-absent homes; yet boys and girls with significant father involvement do better in more than 25 areas.
- Physical health. Life expectancy has gone from one to five years less for males than for females, yet federal offices of boys and men’s health are non-existent.
- Emotional health. Boys’ suicide rate goes from equal to girls to five times girls’ between ages 13 and 20, as boys feel the pressures of the male role.
Each of the five crisis components is potentially handled by a different department of the government; therefore coordination and prioritisation is best handled at the White House level.
With a Short-Term Investment of One million dollars, the Long-Term Savings will add up to Many billions of dollars. (For example, boys who are cared for become men who care for–men who pay taxes for schools rather than drain taxes for prisons.) The quality-of-Life Savings will be Priceless.
Tom Golden, LCSW is the author of two books about men’s unique paths to healing. The first is titled Swallowed by a Snake: The Gift of the Masculine Side of Healing and the second is called A Man You Know is Grieving: 12 Ideas for Helping Him Heal From Loss. Tom has given workshops on this topic in the U.S., Australia, Canada and Europe. His work has been featured in the NY Times, the Washington Post, on CNN, CBS Evening News, ESPN, the NFL Channel and others. Tom serves on the Maryland Commission for Men’s Health and lives outside Washington DC.
Jack Kammer, MSW, MBA returned to school at the age of fifty-four to earn Masters degrees in Social Work and Business Administration. He did so to document, highlight and take action on male gender issues and the social problems that arise when those issues are ignored and mishandled. He specialises in the Race and Gender effect on marginalized African-American men and boys in urban settings. He is also the author of If Men Have All the Power How Come Women Make the Rules: and other radical thoughts for men who want more fairness from women and Good Will Toward Men: Women Talk Candidly About the Balance of Power Between the Sexes. He has a new book (2009) for boys and young men, titled Heroes of the Blue Sky Rebellion: How You and Other Young Men Can Claim All the Happiness in the World.