Saturday, May 18, 2024

Re-Post: Harrison Butker’s Call to Prioritize Family Over Work Is Correct!

We have Harrison Butker's commencement speech posted on Common Cents.  And this editorial is superlative - please read it and pass it on!

In a recent commencement speech at Benedictine College, Kansas City Chiefs kicker Harrison Butker made a series of pointed statements covering a wide range of issues, from Pride Month to Catholic leadership and work. The 20-minute address has caused immense backlash, particularly for what he said about women.

The comments concerning women led some commentators to proclaim that Butker wants to put women “back in the kitchen,” and some to go as far as to claim his speech is at odds with his Mother, a renowned academic medical physicist. Sadly, different variations of these takes have proliferated on social media.

However, there is one big problem.

Harrison Butker’s speech does not contain a single disparaging word towards professional women. He congratulated the women in the audience and told them they should be proud of their accomplishments. There is not a single line proclaiming women should not be allowed to work or discouraging women from working. He also made no attempt to tell women what to do, acknowledging that some will go on to have successful careers. Despite criticisms from a chorus of internet feminists, a search of the speech transcripts will not produce any evidence of hate towards women or their career choices.

So, where is this outrage coming from?

Harrison declared that women have been told “diabolic lies.” He stated that having a family is more exciting than a job for most women graduates of conservative Catholic schools. Harrison positively referred to his wife’s experience as a college graduate turned homemaker.

These assertions were spun into an attack on women in general and working women in particular. Yet, the armchair critics conveniently omitted that the Super Bowl-winning kicker and devout Catholic made several mentions of vocation throughout his speech. He often emphasized the home as the primary vocation for everyone and did not restrict this to women in any way.

In the same speech, Harrison was blasted for stating that women should put family over career. He repeatedly emphasized that being a husband and father is his most important vocation, and he explicitly rejected any assertion that men are not needed in the home. Does this mean he truly believes all men belong in the kitchen? Of Course not.

In a rush to criticize Harrison, secular society never entertained the possibility that he could be right. When we tell women they can just wait, are we telling them about the increased risk of pregnancy complications in older age? Are we telling them that waiting will naturally slim down the pool of quality prospective spouses? Are we telling young women and men the truth that a job will never love you back?

The career-first approach did not work for men who missed key moments in life to appease corporate overlords, and the push to model young women into the molds of our absentee workaholic fathers of yesteryear should be challenged.

Women today are more likely to be single, less likely to be married, and more likely to be depressed. This is particularly true among young liberal women. Likewise, we have a crisis of unattached single men living in hopeless despair. The segmentation of society has been linked to everything from rising inequality to rising suicide rates.

As marriage rates plummet, and with them family formation, it is about time to call a truce in the battle of the sexes. Women do need men, and men need women too.

Despite what critical theorists may say, wild bears are not safer than men. Men are not useless. The decades-long push to dismantle traditional social structures has not been without cost. In that respect, Harrison Butker's speech should be welcomed as a breath of fresh air.

As seen on RedState.

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