Government has no money to maintain fatherless children and no capacity to deal with the social consequences
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By Dr Mabila Mathebula
There have been disturbing reports that during the national lockdown teenage girls have been rendered pregnant by their male counterparts. Tragedies and disasters usually teach us valuable lessons, though they may not have good students.
In January 2011 The Star newspaper reported a disturbing situation at Mavalani School in Limpopo. In 2010 when the country was enjoying the Soccer World Cup, 50 girls fell pregnant. There was a group of 15 parents who sat at the gate of the school daily to assist these future mothers in delivering their babies.
Some people may say that they are not affected by the scourge of teenage pregnancy because they belong to the middle class and not the “underclass”. The underclass is a group that has veered so far from conventional, responsible behaviour that its members seem to have dropped completely off the social scales that measure class. The reality is that we are all in the same boat and if the boat sinks, we will all sink.
Jared Taylor threw down the gauntlet to American society in 1992: “Pregnant women whose men run out on them starve. Their children starve. Any society that kept this up would quickly become extinct. This is why every society has built up such elaborate traditions, customs, laws, and taboos around sex and marriage. Any society that lets its adolescents bring forth generations of fatherless children would collapse”.
Before the invention of reliable contraceptives, Western societies enforced responsible reproduction through a fierce condemnation of sex outside of marriage.
This is a clarion call for faith-based organisations to intervene and come up with a strong awareness message to address this scourge. The commercialisation of religion has also led to this situation because the “servants of God” are pushing the money agenda as opposed to the moral agenda. That is why Bahaullah said: “We use fire to test gold and we use gold to test our servants.”
On the other side, politicians are pathologically obsessed with power while Rome is burning eternally.
The commercialising of religion and the advent of the “prosperity gospel” have collapsed the stigma against single motherhood, weakened the ironclad rule that men must support their children and have encouraged that sex is fun, babies are cute and women want to be mothers. Jared Taylor also observed: “The family is no longer biologically necessary. Any woman with a child knows that she can count on a cheque in the mail. She needs no husband, and her child needs no father. The government is their family.”
The disagreeable truth is that the government does not have enough money to maintain these fatherless children and has no capacity to deal with the social consequences. A 1988 study revealed that if anyone wants to predict whether boys will later become violent criminals, the clearest warning sign is that they are growing up without fathers. Their fathers are either dead, in prison, on drugs, or just not interested.
The boys who render these girls pregnant should also go on paternity leave when the girls go on maternity leave. This will result in equality based on the principle that equality includes gender equality.
*Dr Mabila Mathebula has a PhD in construction management.
*Views expressed here are not necessarily those of The Star or IOL.