16 February 2014
I am reviewing Allan C. Carlson’s new book, The Natural Family Where It Belongs: New Agrarian Essays (Click Here if you would like to begin with Part 1 of this series).
Chapter 9 of this book is titled "Patriarchs Triumphant?" It is an academic defense of patriarchy. There are a lot of people (men and women alike) who practically recoil in horror when patriarchy is discussed in a positive way. If you are one of those people, you won’t like this chapter.
Women are no longer restricted to the domestic hearth, but have the whole society in which to roam and be exploited.
Women cannot successfully raise children on their own. When they try to do so in large numbers, the results are poverty, violence, and misery (for proof, simply visit the average American urban ghetto). Women need some entity that will help them secure property, gain food and clothing, and control the boys. There are only two practical options: either the private patriarch (who is, in the end, simply a contemporary form of the husbandman found in the agrarian past), a figure who is adept at breadwinning and taming the lads; or the public patriarch (i.e., the welfare state), which provides food stamps, public housing, and day-care subsidies and eventually jails a large share of the lads. The first choice is compatible with health, happiness, wealth creation, and political liberty. The second choice is a sure path to the servile state. Women of the world, there is no third way here: which patriarchy do you choose?
Furthermore, just as women cannot successfully raise children on their own, I dare say that men cannot successfully raise children on their own either. This "family thing," with one man and one woman, husband and wife, working together to raise their children, is ordained by God. He designed it to work a certain way, and it can be a beautiful thing. That's what I believe. End of sermon.