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Absent Fathers and Poverty

July 04, 1999

Re "Absent in Bradley's Equation and Absent in Poor Families: the Father," by Ronald Brownstein, June 28:

One of the factors boys in the juvenile justice system have in common: Most have missing fathers. Indeed, some of the boys are missing fathers. I have taught a 14-year-old who has a child and a 17-year-old with three. I also taught a 15-year-old who is one of 24 children by one father and who knows how many mothers.

I have also taught pregnant minors. It's amazing how quickly fathers disappear when girlfriends become pregnant.

MARY ANNE VINCENT

Corona

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Brownstein has penned a very good article that stops just short of being excellent. Concluding his essay with words like "justice" and "obligation" to suggest that men and women stay together for the sake of elevating children out of poverty will motivate few. And he has already demonstrated in the body of his discussion that throwing money at the problem has been ineffective. No, you must seek the Lord's grace to refrain from sexual relations before marriage and be continent afterward; to respect your spouse as yourself; and to devote the necessary time to child-rearing.

This is dismissed as folly by many because their self-adoration--especially with regard to sex on demand--interferes with their ability to perceive the truth. But that does not negate the reality of our human nature and the divinely crafted blueprint for living a happy life.

GREGORY POLITO MD

Whittier

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