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14 February, 2009

IN SEARCH OF FATHERHOOD(R) -- WINTER 2009 ISSUE

THE CHALLENGE

WHEN YOU’RE IN DOUBT
OR FACING ADVERSITY,
WHOM SHALL YOU

TURN TO?

WHEN YOU’RE FEELING DISTRESSED,
OR UPSET AT THE SOMEONE,
WHOM SHALL YOU
LOVE THE MOST?

WHEN YOU’RE FACED WITH DISAPPOINTMENTS,
OR A BREAKUP,
WHOM SHALL YOU
CONTINUE TO CARE FOR?

AND WHEN YOU’RE ALONE,
AND FEELING DEPRESSED,
THE PERSON WHOM SHALL NEVER
LEAVE YOUR SIDE,
IS THE PERSON WHO LOVES YOU THE BEST
YOU!
■ CARRY GREAVES ■
[PUBLISHED WITH AUTHOR’S PERMISSION]

In many ways and for many reasons, a new door of opportunity has opened. The glimpse of light that exists at the proverbial long dark tunnel is growing brighter and stronger. That is not to say that life is perfect. Far from it. A plethora of challenges confront Men – especially Men who are Fathers – throughout our global village. Challenges in the form of rising unemployment, credit freezes, mounting mortgage foreclosures, and the dramatically upward spiral of prices for goods and services -- the byproducts of a global economic crisis -- are creating adversities, distress, and disappointments for Fathers throughout our global village as they struggle to create and implement options that will empower and strengthen their families and the communities in which they live and work and positively shape the minds and souls of our children – our future – our bridge to the future.

In the United States, men’s health has become a critical issue. American women are outliving American men by approximately six years. It is estimated that approximately 22.1% of men in the United States have coronary heart disease. According to the American Cancer Society, prostate cancer accounts for approximately 9% of all cancer-related deaths in men and at least 186,320 new cases of prostate cancer were reported in 2008. Approximately 5,000,000 individuals in the United States have Alzheimer’s Disease. It is estimated that 1 in every 10 men will be diagnosed with Alzheimer’s Disease by their 55th birthday. The challenge for Men and the medical and scientific communities has been and continues to be increasing research and research funding for prostate cancer, colon cancer, heart disease, hypertension, diabetes and Alzheimer’s Disease; the creation of and greater access to resources which address their unique health issues; and the passage of legislation which will establish an Office of Men’s Health within the United States Department of Health and Human Services that would do for Men’s Health issues what the Office of Women’s Health, established in 1991, has done and continues to do for Women’s Health issues.

The challenge for Fathers, Fatherhood Practitioners, Fathers’ Rights Advocates, Mothers, educators, social entrepreneurs, business leaders, academic and educational institutions, and concerned individuals throughout our global village is one that involves creating key “pieces of the puzzle” that will provide our children – our future – the bridge to our future -- with the tools they will need to help them transcend the environments that they were born into and to mature into compassionate and productive adults who will utilize their skills, talents, and intellectual capital to empower and strengthen the communities in which they live and work and to create options for themselves and their children -- their future – their bridge to the future.

Yes, life is far from perfect. But we all have the power to make each day better than the day before. It is a power that resides within the depths of our soul. All we have are ourselves and each other as MR. CARRY GREAVES in his poem, The Challenge, masterfully points out. In a very curious manner, we are being moved by the challenges that currently confront us to rely on ourselves and each other and to tap into the power that resides within the depths of our souls. The challenges that confront Fathers, Fatherhood Practitioners, Fathers’ Rights Advocates, Mothers, educators, business leaders, academic and educational institutions, legal professionals, grassroots community organizations, legislators, law enforcement professionals, health care professionals and providers, and social services professionals and providers have opened a new door of opportunity for each of us to “check our egos at the door” and work with a collaborative spirit to create and implement key “pieces of the puzzle” that will resolve economic, educational, and health issues that are impediments to strengthening and empowering our families and building a better world for our children – our future – our bridge to the future.

THE HONORABLE THOMAS ANDREW DASCHLE is a father of three, grandfather of four, and a former United States Senator who has served as a Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress in Washington, D.C. where he focused on health policy issues. Born in Aberdeen, South Dakota, SENATOR DASCHLE also served as an Affiliate Professor in the Georgetown Public Policy Institute at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. SENATOR DASCHLE authored Critical: What We Can Do About The Health Care Crisis with DR. JEANNE M. LEBOW and SCOTT S. GREENBERGER and Like No Other Time: The 107th Congress And The Two Years That Changed America Forever with MICHAEL D’ORSO. SENATOR DASCHLE’S book, Critical: What We Can Do About The Health Care Crisis provides key “pieces of the puzzle” to resolving America’s health care issues and proposes the creation of a Federal Health Board that is “modeled loosely on the The Federal Reserve System”. A myriad of jaw-dropping statistics that explain why the wheels may be falling off the wagon of America’s health care system are laid out by SENATOR DASCHLE in his article, New Facts On U.S. Health Care: U.S. Ranks Poorly With Other Wealthy Nations, which is featured in our HEALTH FORUM section.

Two phenomenal gentlemen who are Thought Leaders on Men’s Health issues -- ARNON KRONGRAD, M.D. and MR. VIRGIL H. SIMONS – make their debut as Contributing Editors in The Challenge issue of IN SEARCH OF FATHERHOOD®.

ARNON KRONGRAD, M.D. is a urologist, pioneer of laparoscopic radical prostatectomy which is described as a minimally invasive prostate cancer treatment, and the Founder and Medical Director of The Krongrad Institute (http://www.laprp.com). Board Certified in Urology, DR. KRONGRAD in the 1990s, served as Chief of Urology at the Miami Veteran Affairs Medical Center. During his tenure at the Miami Veteran Affairs Medical Center, DR. KRONGRAD developed an interdisciplinary clinic for men with prostate cancer. He has worked with the World Health Organization and the American Cancer Society. DR. KRONGRAD is also the Chairman of The Prostate Cancer Project, a non-profit organization and the author of Behind The Mask, an editorial series of The Miami Herald. DR. KRONGRAD is a masterful storyteller. His article, Still Life With Carp, which speaks volumes about the importance of Fathers will tug at your heartstrings.

MR. VIRGIL H. SIMONS is the Founder of Prostate Net (http://www.theprostatenet.org), a non-profit organization which was created at a time when there were very little resources for prostate cancer patients – particularly, African American prostate cancer patients. His pioneering work on men’s health issues has provided prostate cancer patients with access to valuable information and resources. MR. SIMONS, who holds a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Business Administration, is an entrepreneur who created a financial management group and an international trading company and is the author of a book – The Online Guide To Fighting Prostate Cancer. In our THOUGHT LEADERS section, SIMONS talks about, among other things, his role models, what inspires him, the need for the establishment of an Office Of Men’s Health, and his organization’s holistic approach to educating the African American community about prostate cancer and the resources and treatment options available to it.

Can the court be asked to implement a parenting plan which modifies an original divorce decree when the terms and conditions of the original divorce decree that govern visitation times were written for children who were not of school age? Is an ex-wife obligated to provide her ex-husband and the father of their children with the addresses of places she takes their children while they are in her custody when the addresses in question are the homes of men that the ex-wife is dating? DEAR ALBIE, an advice column for Dads written by a Dad, MR. ALBERT “ALBIE” RUTLEDGE, offers a few answers.

MS. NICOLE DANTZLER, the daughter of MR. AND MRS. LEONARD DANTZLER, is one of the Millennium’s great young literary talents. Ms. Dantzler made her debut as a Contributing Editor to IN SEARCH OF FATHERHOOD® in our Summer 2008 issue. She introduced our readers to NIKKI’S PLACE. A Publishing/Journalism Intern for IN SEARCH OF FATHERHOOD®’s INTERNATIONAL FATHERHOOD AND MEN’S ISSUES INTERNSHIP PROGRAM, MS. DANTZLER--through NIKKI’S PLACE--enlivens our CHILDRENS CORNER section with her colorful and rhythmic prose. MS. DANTZLER and NIKKI’S WORLD returns to CHILDREN’S CORNER where she dazzles us with a thought-provoking poem – This Day Will Come. Incidentally, the concept for CHILDREN’S CORNER was created by one of IN SEARCH OF FATHERHOOD®’s staunchest supporter – a very brilliant and creative gentleman -- who has empowered and strengthened his family and the community in which he lives and has worked. He continues to be the center of his family’s universe. So, who is this gentleman? Well, I’d love to tell you, but he prefers to remain anonymous! But I can tell you that he will be celebrating his 95th birthday in March 2009! IN SEARCH OF FATHERHOOD® wishes the gentleman in question a very Happy 95th Birthday!

MRS. BARBARA KAY through her columns which are published in Canada’s National Post (www.nationalpost.com), a Canadian English newspaper based in Don Mills, Ontario in Toronto, Canada, continues to be a strong advocate for equal parenting. MRS. KAY’S advocacy of family values and the important role that Fathers play in families and in society is clearly demonstrated in her article, A Slander On Canadian Men.

When MR. WARWICK MARSH, the Founder of Australia’s Fatherhood Foundation (www.fatherhood.org.au) asked for IN SEARCH OF FATHERHOOD®’s assistance in publicizing the worldwide observance of International Men’s Day on 19 November 2008 in the United States, we did not hesitate to support him. Mr. Marsh, yours truly, and American Fatherhood Practitioners BRIAN D MOLITOR, Founder of the Malachi Global Foundation (www.malachiglobal.org) and RICK JOHNSON of Better Dads (www.betterdads.net) orchestrated a media campaign that informed Fathers, Fatherhood Practitioners, Fathers’ Rights advocates, online social networks, and the electronic and print media of the worldwide observance of International Men’s Day on 19 November 2008. International Men’s Day was proposed in 1999 by former Russian President MIKHAIL GORBACHEV at a United Nations conference in Vienna, Austria. The idea of a special day for Men inspired me to write Why Men Are Important.

There is a School Of Thought which espouses the philosophy that each of us has one obligation when welcome into the world. And that obligation is to transcend the environment that we have been born into. Poet, Self-Empowerment Guru, and Senior Contributing Editor to IN SEARCH OF FATHERHOOD® MR. CARRY GREAVES offers us key “pieces of the puzzle” to transcending our environment, reaching our full potential, and integrating change into our current lifestyle in Enriching The Spirit.

The challenge for many parents, educators, and school administrators throughout the United States continues to revolve around the issue of how to raise the expectations of our children – our future – our bridge to the future and motivating them ”to want more, be more, and do more”. While I am not a parent or an educator, I am troubled by statistics that point to a rising increase in the high school dropout rate, teenage pregnancies, and criminal activity. Now, not all of our children are dropping out of school, getting pregnant, or engaging in criminal activity. Many of our children are staying in school, achieving academic excellence, graduating, moving on to college with raised expectations, and are motivated to “want more, do more, and be more”. I am concerned about the children who are raised in households that do not instill in them the power and value of an education; a passion for excellence; and the belief that there is no limit to what they can achieve. A key “piece of the puzzle” that addresses the concern for children who do not come from home environments that encourage them to learn and achieve academic excellence has been created by JIM SMITH III (http://www.jimsmithonline.com), the Managing Partner at Digital Network Group, an information technology and management consultant firm and President of Kinetic Potential, Inc. (http://www.kpscholars.com), a mentoring and life development organization. Smith, who holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Physics from Occidental College, a Master of Science degree in Industrial Engineering and Operations Research from the University of Massachusetts and a Master of Business Administration from the Wharton School of Management at the University of Pennsylvania where he concentrated in Finance and Entrepreneurship, unveils his key “piece of the puzzle” which will help our children to raise their expectations and “do more, want more, and be more” in a “straight-no-chaser-take-no-prisoners” article entitled It’s The System, Stupid.

Our FATHERHOOD NEWS BRIEF will transport you to Belgium, Brussels to explore the status of The Vienna Declaration on Men’s Health which was launched in 2005 at the first EUROPEAN MEN’S HEALTH FORUM; to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania where we learn how the HOUSE OF UMOJA, INC., an internationally acclaimed organization that has positively shaped the minds and souls of approximately 3,000 adolescent males in the City Of Philadelphia since 1968, is moving that city in 2009 to Think Green, Think, Peace, and Give The Gift of Life; and to Los Angeles, California where researchers at the UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA have identified glucose-regulated protein GRP78 as a culprit in the aggressive growth of prostate cancer.

If you are searching for books to add to your reading list, I have three suggestions: 2011: The Global Depression written by DR. RUBEN JAMES, an author, global economist, Thought Leader on Global Economics, and economic consultant to the Canadian Government and the United Nations Economic Commission; A Promise To Ourselves: A Journey Through Fatherhood and Divorce written by film, television and Broadway actor ALEC BALDWIN with MARK TABB; and A Father’s Right written by non-custodial father, native New Yorker and actor ANTHONY GALLO. Have I read these books? Yes! And you’ll find my review for each of these literary works in BOOKS FOR DAD.

While the jury is still out on whether there are sufficient health and parenting resources available for Men, IN SEARCH OF FATHERHOOD® has compiled a list of resources that may be helpful. I hope that you will find what you need in our GLOBAL FATHERHOOD RESOURCES DIRECTORY.

Our POETS-IN-RESIDENCE section features the literary artistry of Messrs. JOHN D. EVANS, a Special Education Case Manager and Learning Behavior Specialist with the Chicago, Illinois public schools, author, folklorist, and award-winning poet who is pursuing National Board Certification while earning his Doctorate of Education in Educational Leadership from Argosy University (Illinois); CARRY GREAVES, a free-lance journalist, poet, Self-Empowerment Guru and Senior Contributing Editor to IN SEARCH OF FATHERHOOD®; and DON MATHIS, a Fathers’ Rights Advocate, frequent Contributing to IN SEARCH OF FATHERHOOD®, and the publisher of an international Fatherhood publication – The Fourteen Percenter.

D.A. Sears, Managing Editor - IN SEARCH OF FATHERHOOD(R)


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