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Rep. Owens introduces resolution promoting fatherhood, ‘vital’ role it plays for children

FIRST ON FOX: Republican Congressman Burgess Owens is introducing a resolution in the House of Representatives to promote fatherhood and its benefit to society, particularly in the black community, ahead of the upcoming Father’s Day holiday.

“Fatherhood is essential to the development of all children, and that the increased involvement of fathers in the home will lead to economic prosperity, educational excellence, and improved social mobility for children across all racial and ethnic groups,” the resolution states. 

Owens, a former Super Bowl champion safety in the NFL, told Fox News Digital on Tuesday that he has witnessed firsthand how the disintegration of the nuclear family and fathers not being present has negatively affected the black community and hopes to help address that issue with this resolution.

“In the 60s when I was growing up as a youngster,” Owens explained. “Our community was one of the most prosperous, when I say prosperous I mean patriotic, believing in America, entrepreneurial, and we just believed in meritocracy, so we had families and in those days 70% of the men were married to the mothers of their children. We had the highest percentage of black men and boys going to college.”

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Owens continued, “So I saw firsthand what it is to have fathers who took the responsibility of committing to their families and making sure that their sons grew up not only knowing how to be good men, but also their daughters knowing how to recognize one.”

“This is what we have to get back to because I’ve seen the last 50-60 years what happens when the family is destroyed and fatherhood is taken out of the picture,” Owens said.

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The resolution cites Census Bureau data showing that 18,400,000 children in the United States live without a father in the home and contends that “research shows children do best when raised by two parents in a committed and long-term marriage.”

Owens explained he has been working on the resolution with fellow retired NFL player and philanthropist Jack Brewer who told Fox News Digital that it’s time for males in America to “man up” and time for “wishy-washy” politicians to stop being afraid to stress the importance of men being the head of the household.

Jack Brewer, former safety for the Minnesota Vikings, speaks during a panel discussion at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) 

“You take the father out of society you’re going to have a disaster,” Brewer said. “And unfortunately, in our country right now we are witnessing that disaster.”

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“I pray that this resolution is something that can hold politicians accountable and for supporting and allow the American people to see who they are voting for,” Brewer added. “If they’re willing to speak for the families, if they’re willing to stand for the common man and not sugar coat it.”

The resolution is also being sponsored by Florida Republican Congressman Byron Donalds who said in a statement to Fox News Digital that “fatherlessness in the United States has led to a rise in crime, substance abuse, incarceration, decreased social mobility, and economic strains.”

“How we, as fathers, empower, teach, and develop our children plays a direct role in their well-being, mental health, and ability to preserve through adversity,” Donalds added. “Promoting federal policies which incentivizes two-parent households directly correlates to economic prosperity, academic achievement, and generational advancement. As someone raised in a single-parent household, I understand the integral role a father has in a child’s societal and cultural development—and that’s why I am proud to stand with Rep. Owens in support of this resolution.”

Rep. Byron Donalds, R-Fla., speaks to Fox News at CPAC 2022.

Owens acknowledged the bitter divide that exists between Democrats and Republicans but said he hoped that Congress could find ways to get the federal government to stop “incentivizing” fathers to leave the family via current welfare programs.

“How about getting back to things like opportunity zones,” Owens said. “One of the things that I’m convinced of is when we have anyone, male or female, that really see themselves as being participants and being part of the free market there’s a different attitude, there’s a sense of commitment to the community.”

At certain times when Owens was growing up, he told Fox News Digital, 56% of the black community was a part of the middle class and the percentage of black entrepreneurs was 40%.  Restoring the nuclear family is a key to restoring those statistics, Owens says. 

“I know that’s a shocker to many who might be reading this,” Owens said. “But I grew up in a time when the black middle class was vibrant it was everywhere because we had so many business owners. It went from 40% to 3.8%.”

Owens says that he believes the success of the nation breaks down to “four tenets” of faith, family, the free market, and education. 

“In terms of timing, I couldn’t see a better time to be honest to have this conversation just before Father’s Day because it’s time for us to start highlighting the importance of the role of father, and I’m just so thankful that I had a good one to help me with that growing up.”

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