I think Harrison Butker is right: Women are wired to want to be wives and mothers | Opinion

When I told my youngest daughter that I was writing a column about women, without missing a beat, she said “That’s odd, you’re not a girl.” Our culture starts early in building the wall between men and women that Harrison Butker so cavalierly breached.

How dare a Catholic guy tell young ladies at a Catholic school some Catholic stuff about being Catholic women in our fallen, sinful and profoundly not Catholic world.

His trespass on the sacred domain of doctrinaire feminism was such an offense that hundreds of thousands of people are calling for Butker to be fired by the Kansas City Chiefs where he is some kind of kicker. Even the National Football League had to take time away from America’s favorite sport to say it does not agree about the proper role of Catholic wives and mothers.

Well, I am no longer Catholic, but let me say from a more secular point of view, Butker (and God) are right. Most women will be happier if they lean into the vocation of wife and mother. That is what they are wired to want and be.

For most women, the idea that you can have career and family without sacrificing one for the other is a mirage. It is true that for many women, being a wife and homemaker is financially unrealistic, but that does not change the fact that they’d be happier if they could.

Men and women are 12% to 24% happier if they are married. Women are even happier if they are married and have children — “40% reported they are ‘very happy,’ compared to 25% of married childless women, and just 22% of unmarried childless women,” according to the Institute for Family Studies, a conservative-leaning think tank according to Media Bias/Fact Check.

Of course, there are exceptions. Plenty of women are happy in their careers. Happy without a man and babies. For my daughters, I want the freedom for them to choose if that is their calling. They, like all women, are individuals, not statistics.

But in our culture, the course of putting career over family has become the default and it is a recipe for the discontent that so wracks our nation. It is a sure source of unhappy children, too. Children are simply better off with a mom and dad and tradition.

Research shows that kids with a mom and dad are more likely to graduate from college and be upwardly mobile, along with a host of other advantages over kids born to the single moms who are increasingly common in our society. Moreover, while there is little rigorous research comparing kids raised by stay-at-home moms with those raised in typical day care settings, what there is shows negative consequences for too many hours spent in daycare.

It has become fashionable of late to say that gender is fluid and that men and women are. Interchangeable. No and no. Children need their moms to lean into what makes women special and for their dads to do the things at which men excel.

If you fight nature, the results are not going to be ideal. The largest study of peer-reviewed male-to-female transgender surgery recipients showed the suicide rate doubled after surgery.

People know this in their hearts. The physical reality of motherhood makes women vulnerable in a way most men will never face in their own lives. Women need a protector and provider and that’s how women vote.

Married women tend to vote with their husbands for Republicans and the tradition that serves them well. Women for whom things have not worked out with men vote for a daddy government to protect and provide.

In fact, as much as there is a gender gap in politics, there is a marriage gap according to Pew Research. Married men are 22 points more Republican and married women are 26 points more Republican than their never-married counterparts.

We’re all more than the sum of evolution and our genes. Women can be great leaders. Men can be great nurturers. But Butker told the young women of Benedictine College that it is not the way to bet.

The house usually wins — so do God and the nature he created.

David Mastio, a former editor and columnist for USA Today, is a regional editor for The Center Square and a regular Star Opinion correspondent. Follow him on X: @DavidMastio or email him at dmastio1@yahoo.com