Tuesday, May 30, 2006

"Boy Crisis"

Just yesterday at AB's BBQ we were saying that parents can no longer say things like, "You can do it when you're 18 and you move out..." because no one seems to ever move out anymore --at least boys don't. I know so many people in their 30's still living with their parents. George Costanza syndrome?

My opinion on that? Parents are too lenient these days. My parents imposed the whole "while you're under my roof" thing. I had a strict curfew and hard-core rules --the result being I couldn't wait to get the hell out. As it should be. If you can have your girlfriend/boyfriend sleep over, stay out all night and drink with your friends in the living room --why leave?!

"...A phenomenon that is getting a lot of media attention as part of the so-called "boy crisis" and one that cuts across all demographics -- rich, poor, black, white, urban and rural. According to the Census Bureau, one-third of young men ages 22 to 34 are still living at home with their parents -- a roughly 100 percent increase in the past 20 years. That is not true of young women. Why?

Before growing into unmotivated young adults, boys are more likely than girls to be diagnosed with ADHD, be in remedial classes and become dropouts. Boys are now significantly less likely than girls to go to college.

Race is certainly a factor; for boys of color the impact is more harsh. An African-American boy is more likely to go to jail than to college and his chances of dropping out of high school are higher. White boys are more likely to graduate from high school, but then many of them attend college for a year or two and never earn a degree. They become the rudderless McConaughey character.

So what's going on? Maybe it has to do with changing school curriculums, environments that are less boy-oriented or a workforce that offers fewer blue-collar jobs. Maybe it's some combination of all of the above, or other factors we haven't yet identified.

Whatever the reason, it is clear that gender gaps are wide and growing. A National Endowment for the Arts study that spanned over 20 years found that girls read for fun far more than boys.

What was once a small difference has grown into a chasm.

Part of the source of that discrepancy lies in the shift in reading curriculum over the past 25 years." (Read the whole story)

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