Week 42 in the year of our Lord 2020

In which we discuss antimothers & insecure fathers

7 minutes to read

One of Michael’s favorite feminist works is Firestone’s The Dialectic of Sex: The Case for Feminist Revolution.

He loves her honesty, consistency, and straightforwardness. She just says what everyone knows:

Feminism, at its core, is a rejection of motherhood.

It’s anti-motherhood.

Firestone claimed that “the heart of woman’s oppression is her childbearing and childrearing roles” (p. 72).

She went on to propose a sexless future where babies are grown in artificial wombs.

She was treated as the craziest of the crazy 2nd wavers. But guess what…

She wasn’t a crazy feminist per se. She was just an honest one. Moreover, she had the gift of “vision.”

She knew what it would take to realize a truly feminist future. Hence, you get papers like Anna Smajdor’s “The Moral Imperative for Ectogenesis” (2007).

What is ectogenesis?

Ectogenesis is artificial-womb technology. In an a Real Clear Science article, Bioethicist Sasha Issac writes that “the technology could have important social benefits for women.”

What are these social benefits she speaks of?

It’s anything outside of motherhood. She writes:

…if foetuses were to develop in artificial wombs, women would finally be free to pursue their interests and desires outside of their reproductive duties.

Finally free, in other words, from motherhood.

Feminism is anti-motherhood.

Just last year, journalist Naomi Schalit wrote an article entitled “Shulamith Firestone: why the radical feminist who wanted to abolish pregnancy remains relevant.”

Why is she still relevant in Schalit’s view? Any guesses?

Did you guess abortion?


Schalit explains:

…her work resonates with the principles of the reproductive justice movement, which demands the right not only to end an unwanted pregnancy but also to parent under conditions that allow both children and parents to flourish. … What makes her book worth returning to is its central recognition that the capacity to become pregnant is the ground upon which much exploitation and inequality still operate, and that addressing this will require society to think in radical ways.

Anti-motherhood was and remains an essential component of the feminist vision of the world. Some feminists are just more honest than others. The radical, secular ones are much more honest than the moderate, evangelical ones.

On the other side of the coin, here’s Michael on a way that you can better support your own wife to be a good mother:

For years, I’d expect my family to leave me alone for a period of “decompression” when I got home from work.

I’ve always worked in highly relational/conversation based positions. I’d often arrived home in an overstimulated state and disappear to my office.

My wife would want me to deal with a discipline issue with a kid or be interested in what happened in my day. My kids would want to tell me about their day or have a thousand requests requiring permission from dad.

But I just wanted space.

I was fried.

“Give me a min, guys.”

I slowly came to see that this was a missed opportunity. It was a failure of leadership. The way I re-entered my home after a long day of work played an important role in the forming of my home’s culture.

A man doesn’t just provide resources.

He provides leadership.

I decided that I would use “re-entry” as an opportunity to provide leadership with 3 habits:

  1. I didn’t listen to anything on the way home. I used the drive to pray, organize my thoughts and prepare myself to do some more work. Habits two and three flowed from this first one, and start the moment I walked through the door:
  2. When I got home, I asked my wife if there were any discipline or pastoral issues that needed a father’s touch (Heb. 12:11). There are many situations in which a mother needs the father to step in. Jump on those!
  3. After dealing with my kids, I moved on to telling my wife something about my day. She’s been with kids all day. Zero adult conversation. Moreover, she is the key support to the mission I’m engaged in. I want her to know what she is accomplishing by being a helpmate to me.

Here’s one thing I didn’t do, though—still don’t. I see a lot of complementarian pastors chiding men for not chipping in with the dishes and laundry.

I rarely do either.

I’m not above it.

She just usually has it knocked out.

Plus, me fathering my kids and encouraging her does 10x more for the wellbeing of our household.

A house doesn’t need a second mother.

It needs a father.

These habits have helped me get to that work the moment I walk through the door.

Find what works for you.

Look for ways to seize all opportunities to lead your home.

Weak fathers aren’t just a problem in the home. Guy Kawasaki’s “Bozo Explosion” concept is deeply relevant to church planting and church growth.

The Bozo Explosion occurs when managers are too insecure to hire employees better than themselves.

This creates a top-down culture of insecurity and mediocrity.

The same thing happens in churches.

Insecure pastors run off competent men they perceive as competitors and appoint lesser men as a way to maintain control/influence.

This results in a very unstable and ingrown church environment. Moreover, it leads to pastoral breakdown and burnout.

We’ve watched pastors build churches up to the level of their competency, only for it to get stuck and eventually break apart because they will not appoint men who are their equals or betters.

The church is a body made up of many members.

This is one reason we don’t blame masculine men for checking out of Western churches. It’s miserable for men. The leaders are effeminate nice guys or AMOGs. The worship is homoerotic love songs to Jesus. The sermons echo all the tropes of the zeitgeist.

But we’ve got to take them back.

We mention these things because we have been building a new online community called Tyrannus Hall. The aim is to support Christian men who are seeking to establish their houses in strength, workmanship, and wisdom. It is not meant as a replacement for a local congregation, but it does serve as a safe haven if you have had to withdraw from one; a place where you can still find fraternity, discipleship, and teaching as you work to re-establish a local community of Christian men who love God’s design for man.

Michael and I have selected some trusted men to facilitate this group along with ourselves. A key goal has been to find men who can serve the community in notably better ways than we can. The job we have been given is to build up God’s house—not our own names. We are distantly aware of how unqualified, unprepared, and generally laughable we are for this task, and we have a vague inkling of how arduous and intense a battle it will turn out to be. It would take a comical kind of self-destructive narcissism to not want every single man on our side to be better than we are.

We are opening up Tyrannus Hall to new members in November. You can read more about it below, along with the requirements and dues. If it sounds good to you, add your name to the waiting list using the form at the end of the page:


Is Voddie still on the whitelist in Big Eva? Not sure he’d be welcome in most Reformed churches these days…


Talk again next week,

Michael & Bnonn

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