Saturday, November 13, 2010

Stuff I Never Got Around To - Part 1

The past couple weeks have been absolutely crazy with work. If I had stopped after one week and taken the rest of the month off, it would've been considered a pretty decent month. Two weeks in it's a really good month, and there's still plenty to go. But between the massive workload, long hours, some travel, and wanting to actually see my family at some point, I haven't had much time to write. Sorry, sometimes it happens.

So now that I have a few minutes free, I thought I'd search through my list of 'blog ideas' and write about something that I just never got around to. I've got quite a long list, so this could be a running item - if I get around to it. Today's entry from the dustbin of ideas comes from November of 2009. Here goes.

You may recall - well, you probably don't at this point - hearing news of this study about the noticeable effects of single parenting. In short, some scienticians took some rodents that normally are dual-parented. They removed the fathers from some of the families, and compared development of the control group with the single-parent rodents. To the utter shock and amazement of everyone who heard the results, taking away the fathers was bad, mmmkay?

A few commentators picked up on this study at the time, bringing it up just long enough to issue a collective "Well, DUH!!!" before moving on. I mean seriously, is it even the least bit surprising to anyone who knows anything about anything that having a father is better than not? I first read about this from the great Al Mohler, who does a nice enough job connecting the study to Biblical data, especially the emphasis on the vulnerability of the fatherless and our mandate to care for them.

But I wonder if the obviousness of the study's findings made it too easy to rush past without pondering the most significant aspect of the study - and how it obliterates a line of argumentation on a seemingly-unrelated social issue.

When I first read this article, my first reaction was amazement at the main finding - that a 'nurture' condition had been conclusively shown to alter the physical structure of the brain.

Now why is this significant? Ponder that, dear readers, and see if you can identify which issue this applies to. Leave thoughts in the comments; I'll provide hints of where I'm going if you need.