Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Trying to Stop the Bleeding From a Bad Prager U Video

Following up on yesterday’s entry on the Prager University video trying to fool men into thinking legal marriage is good for them, I wanted to report that Dennis Prager had the host of the video (Wilcox) on his weekly “Male/Female Hour” that runs on Wednesdays. Having him as a guest on the show was probably planned ahead of time, as Prager frequently does that when new Prager U videos are posted. However, Prager did note that the video has gotten a lot of reaction, much of it negative.

Starting out, Prager said it is a “crisis” that more people don’t want to get married. He does admit that the family laws of most states aren’t fair to men, but he says that in his generation, to be a man meant getting married and supporting a family. Which is funny, because another woman can do that, including legally now.

Prager went on to say that there is something going on in this country that is dissuading “even decent men” from wanting to “grow up” and get married. See how he slips in growing up? As if you can’t be grown up without being married? He’s right, though, about something going on. Even men who don't identify as MGTOW or marriage strikers are avoiding marriage. It is entirely possible that the 2020 census could reveal a dramatic drop in marriage rates, even more likely with the 2030 census.

Prager asserted that it is “more responsible” and “common sense” to marry, then went on to say how annoyed he is at the responses to the video where men say they don’t want to work harder. This warrants a tangent. Life has changed a lot. Men can now do enough work to support themselves and contribute to society without having to work their guts out for their entire life. I know it was different when we were mostly an agrarian world. We're not like that anymore.

Wilcox said that we do well when we embrace virtues, and analogized athletes working and sacrificing and the end result being good. But what’s the good result? They haven’t given a good result for the man. If you want to talk about athletes, let’s consider a bunch of men running a race, and the ones who marry have to wear a bunch of sandbags and jump hurdles, while the other runners run unimpeded. This isn't practice. This is THE race. Why is it better to be impeded?

Wilcox went on to ask "What's the alternative?" especially when having kids. What if someone doesn’t want to raise kids? After all, that’s a whole separate question. Will they dare attempt a video that purports to provide the benefit to a man in having children? Anyway, the alternative, if one wants to raise a child, could be 1) living where common law marriage is not recognized, and 2) behaving as though married when raising the kids. How would the kids know the difference? They wouldn’t unless one member of the couple decided to act against the interest of the kids. If there is never a breakup, then what’s the difference? Two people can set their minds to treat each other as spouses without registering it with the state. They can even get legal arrangements through an attorney so they'll have inheritance and hospital visitation and the like.

Wilcox went on to say that “most marriages do go the distance.” That means a majority (just barely) don’t legally divorce. But no, most marriages aren’t happy and functional and lasting.

Wilcox cited a pattern of recent decline in divorce rates, but that’s likely to people not marrying to begin with.

Prager then asked if you'd met two middle-aged men, one divorced and one never married, which one would you think is the mature one, or would be good for a woman to marry, or would you hire (even though Prager cited it it is illegal to discriminated that way in employment)? Well we all know what Prager thinks. He says the guy who divorced at least tried. I’d want to know WHY a guy never married. It makes a huge difference.

It is NOT necessarily better for a woman to marry (and again, this presumes the guy would want to marry) a divorced man, because a divorced man might be paying alimony, child support, dealing with children and child custody issues, and possibly a terrible ex wife. That's baggage a never-married, child-free man doesn't bring.

Wilcox cited “stably married” men in the workplace. However, what is meant by “stably”?  I’ve been married for more than ten years and I will not be divorcing for at least another ten (unless my wife files or does Strike Three). That sounds stable, right? And yet I often have to miss work due to my marriage. I am negatively distracted while working because of my marriage. How stable is it when there are weeks she won’t even communicate with me other than to give me orders?

Prager goes on to again say “we” would think “more highly” of the divorced guy for being willing to take on the commitment. I think such a guy was duped. Or, if he knew the realities, made a reckless decision.

Prager says the video has good things that "happen to a man" when he marries. As if by getting married, good things just fall out of the sky. No, the video makes it clear that the guy ends up having to work more to support his family, and Prager assumes that’s a good thing.

At least, after saying a man should marry if he wants to “grow up”  he noted that there ARE single men who are mature, but he says like  with everything else that's true about life, exceptions are irrelevant. “I grew up getting married,” he said. Well good for him. Prager and his guest couldn’t even fill the hour (more like just 34 minutes) on how marriage benefits a man, so they moved on to talking about how it is of benefit to a woman and Prager took an unrelated call.

Prager then said if we polled 10,000 single mothers, most would want a good man in their life. Yes, that’s what they’d SAY in a poll, but what did they DO? Did they marry a good man, and treat him right? And only then have children per his mutual agreement? No! Almost never. Instead, they got knocked up, either by a bad boy of by a good man they drove away. OF COURSE they’d now want some guy to pay their way (and that of their children) through life.

Wilcox  admitted the perils to men of getting married, but again asked what's the alternative for raising kids. This is pretty much an admission that the video is not really made for the benefit of men. Dennis jumped in and said even without kids, you will “develop” if you marry. There are many ways to “develop” though, without marrying.

Wilcox said married men are less likely to be risky because their testosterone lowers. So men... get married and lose testosterone!

Finally, Prager said "I have never met a man who married and didn't become a better man for it." What does that even mean? Someone else could just as easily assert “Every husband I’ve met is either miserable or deluded.”

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