Fatherless Britain

As Britons recover from the worst civil disturbance to hit their country in 40 years, many are asking why did it happen? The violence, arson and thievery that that swept through British cities 2 weeks ago shocked the world. A predatory breed of mostly inner-city youths joyously plundered shops and destroyed businesses and beat-up people for fun.

In a recent speech, the British Prime Minister vowed to help parents, improve schools, foster a sense of responsibility and decrease welfare dependency among the poor.

As well intentioned as his words may have been, government cannot solve the problem of Britain’s criminal youth. The collapse of the married two-parent family, soft punishment of criminals, and lack of enforcement of the drugs laws has created a nation that is bullied by a lazy, violent, selfish class of youths who number in the millions.

Poverty was not the cause of this childhood savagery in British cities. The problem with British youth goes much deeper. Multi-generation fatherlessness is the chief cause.

In Britain many are desperately calling upon parents to keep their children in at night but this only demonstrates shallow thinking. Most of the thugs do not have responsible parents—the parents themselves are either too drunk or given over to addictions or drugs to care much what their teens and children are doing day or night.

Most of these children come from mother headed households. Over the past 40 years there has been a mass exodus of fathers from the homes of their children. The most crucial factor behind a boy’s development is a father who is fully committed to the family, living in the home. Of course there are many single moms who are dedicated to raising their children with a strong sense of right and wrong, but clearly the role of single mom is very, very hard.

In Britain successive generations are being raised only by mothers, through whose houses pass uncommitted, selfish males leaving the all-ready wounded children more damaged.

The careless view of marriage was encouraged by the Welfare State, which subsidizes single parenthood and encourages the idea of the absent father. Welfare dependency further created the entitlement culture–that the world owes them. The British tax system punishes married couples when the wife does not work, and the school system leaves children to decide for themselves the right and wrong of sexual behavior.

In short, Britain is leaving its children to raise themselves—moral authority is almost non-existent in millions of children’s lives. Marriage is the anchor of a healthy society. When marriage is treated frivolously—a thing to be played with—it is just a matter of time before that nation begins to fight a massive crime problem and incurs a diseased economy.

In Britain criminal activity is mostly excused on the basis that the criminal couldn’t help himself, as he was the victim of circumstances such as prejudice, poverty and unemployment. For too long the criminal has been considered the “victim” of society. This foolishness must stop.

When a society ignores the Ten Commandments and treats the marriage covenant as if it is a cartoon an increase in crime and deeply damaged children is the outcome. We are no different here in America. Our contempt for God’s laws is leading us in the same direction as Britain.

The prophet Hosea warns…

“…my people are destroyed from lack of knowledge. “Because you have rejected knowledge, I also reject you as my priests; because you have ignored the law of your God, I also will ignore your children” (Hosea 4:6).

Children need a clear understanding of right and wrong; they need to see that there are severe consequences when choosing wrong behavior; and most of all they desperately need to be raised in homes where their biological fathers are present.

Steven LeBlanc

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