Fox News recently reported that the NYPD is chomping at the bit to arrest former film producer Harvey Weinstein. You may recall that dozens of women have accused him of rape and sexual abuse.
Sean Lorna, a 42-year-old teacher at Franklin L. Williams Middle School, was arrested last week in New Jersey on charges of sexually assaulting students. He faces three counts of sexual assault by contact, one count of third-degree aggravated criminal sexual conduct and five counts of second-degree endangering the welfare of a child.
Our own president is in the news for having an alleged extramarital affair with a porn-star; not to mention the every day headlines about his childish behavior, on-camera profanity and ridiculous tweets.
Two-thirds of American men admit to watching pornography on a regular basis, with the number of Christian men nearly equaling the national average. Men are more likely to engage in binge-drinking, more likely to abuse tobacco and more likely to develop drug addictions.
Over 20 million kids are living in fatherless homes. Those who are still lucky enough have dad at home are often ignored in favor of video games and television. Although the divorce rate is currently lower among millennials, it remains staggeringly high for adults 40 and older. Millions of grown men — including many who claim to be “Christians” — are still abandoning their families, their friends, their jobs, their churches, their responsibilities, their values and their faith.
Of course, we assume this is all just perfectly normal and natural. Indeed, it’s become so commonplace that we hardly realize it’s even happening. We slap all sorts of excusatory terminology on it. “Oh, Bill's just having a midlife crisis,” we say. Or, my personal favorite: “He just needs to go out and find himself.” Never mind that Bill has ditched his wife and kids in the process or that he’s ignored his highest spiritual callings. Never mind that he’s completely destroying his life and the lives of everyone around him. That’s certainly not important, right? All that matters is what Bill wants. All that matters is what Bill feels. Everyone must revolve around Bill. Everyone must make excuses for Bill’s stupid decisions. Unfortunately, many men in today’s culture may never emerge from this dark abyss of moral depravity and spiritual immaturity. Once they’ve entered this mindset, they become so obsessively self-centered that only God Himself can bring them back. And that will only happen if such a man is willing to surrender himself to his Creator.
But, that’s an entirely different and more complex discussion than I want to have today. Instead, let’s focus on the fact that — with so many poor examples of moral manhood in our society — it might, just might, be time for men everywhere to try living differently. I’m not writing specifically to the Hollywood elite or the politicians in Washington, although God knows many of them need to heed the same advice. I’m simply suggesting that the average American adult man should be striving to adhere to basic standards of integrity, decency and maturity. This is not just for his own personal spiritual, emotional and mental health; it’s also for the well-being of our society as a whole.
To be clear: This isn’t a profound or revolutionary idea. I haven’t had some sort of grand philosophical epiphany. For most of civilized human history, adults behaved like mature, rational, moral, principled, coherent adults. Men were no exception. The vast majority of them were hard-working. They remained faithful to their wives and their children. They were dedicated to their jobs. They kept their word. They treated women with respect and honor. They didn’t run away from their responsibilities just because things got hard.
Today, that’s changed. There’s an entire generation of young adult “men” — and a growing demographic of middle-aged men — who believe that they should be able to do whatever they want, and live however they want, regardless of the consequences. Do you know how they arrived at this psychotic conclusion? 1) Because they were taught to live this way by their parents. 2) Because they’ve bought into our culture’s deceptive narrative that such behavior is perfectly acceptable, normal and even praiseworthy.
Maybe if today's clueless parents started to instill even the tiniest bit of morality in their boys, we wouldn’t have the sort of epidemic we’re currently facing.
Maybe if the average American man started to live with more integrity and maturity, this nation would be a better place.
I think it’s worth the effort. Don’t you?