Took my son to a fair with a bouncy house. Little boys jumped around inside. The outside was ringed with women clustered at the windows, shrieking at the boys if they even came close to physical contact. They dragged boys out, scolding and shouting. Not a father in sight.

Boys are naturally energetic, aggressive, competitive. They crave to run and play and test themselves against each other. Doing so teaches them limits and restraint at the cost of inevitable injuries. They are designed from birth to pursue rough circumstances to grow stronger.

Mothers are risk-averse. They carry children for 40 weeks and, understandably, want to keep their child alive and unharmed. Their goal is to get him to adulthood where he should die of old age with no remarkable hardship or struggle. She’s going to shelter him from every risk.

Fathers are needed to balance this out. They advocate for the boys and lead them away from the shelter of their mothers. They support them in rough play and teach them the rules before letting them engage, to minimize injuries during the steep learning curve.

We are a nation of grown men raised by overprotective mothers and detached fathers. Our fathers never advocated for us and largely abandoned us to feminine supervision, where we learned to never run or jump or talk too loudly. We fear ourselves and other men.

This bouncy house is our macro society in micro. Fathers absent, mothers shrieking and scolding, and boys trying to learn about themselves and how to connect with other men. Boys interrupted from doing so and left confused and incomplete, dragged away to be punished for playing.

The longer we fathers stand absent from our sons, the more starved and desperate they will become. Suicide rates among teen boys are already skyrocketing.

The more courts prevent healthy fathers from connecting with sons, the more boys are going to die.

Women can keep boys alive. They can feed them, nurture them, clean their ouchies, and teach them empathy, but they cannot turn boys into men. Nor can they teach boys how to live in a sea of testosterone and violent urges.

Boys need fathers and mentors to guide them into manhood.

Violence itself is inherent to humans. And violence is amoral, neither good nor evil.

The violence of a man snatching a child is the same as a woman shooting him to rescue the kid.

A woman beating her children with a whip is stopped by her son’s fist as he protects his sister.

Men must understand their urges to commit violence. They must learn empathy. They must know their place in the dominance hierarchy, and how to fight for what’s right.

And they must know how to draw closer to other men to have their emotional needs met and feel complete.

A world of boys raised by shrieking female supervisors terrified of their inherent maleness will lead to greater death through suicide and murder.

The answer is more healthy manhood. Fathers and mentors involved with boys to teach them the restraint and honor of good men.

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