- The Washington Times - Sunday, May 10, 2015

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

The conservative menfolk are gathering on Monday with much on their minds: their children. The group - prominent journalists, mainly - meet at the American Enterprise Institute in the nation’s capital to talk over a forthcoming book on fatherhood. All have contributed to it. The book? That would be “The Dadly Virtues: Adventures from the Worst Job You’ll Ever Love” by Jonathan Last, a senior writer at The Weekly Standard. He brings a few of his creative buddies to join him on the podium - P.J. O’Rourke, Jonah Goldberg, Steve Hayes, James Lileks, Tucker Carlson - to name a few. A total of 17 conservative father/journalists contributed to the book itself - due in stores on May 18.

It offers their collective take on dad, dadhood and dadisms. Mr. Goldberg writes about “the moral case for pets”; Mr. Carlson offers “praise of adventure - how to fill a child’s life with excitement and danger (without getting them killed). The founder of The Daily Caller recalls making his kids a potato cannon and then firing Barbie dolls out of it. Matthew Continetti shares his own “newborn terror - the moment you realize that ‘bundle of joy’ is a euphemism for something very different.”

The journalist dads gather for the two-hour event late Monday. It is significant enough to draw coverage from C-SPAN’s Book TV, which will air the event in the near future. The hosting American Enterprise Institute will live stream the gathering online here beginning at 6 p.m. ET, and will post a full video on Tuesday. Mr. Last, who functioned as both author and editor of the book, describes fatherhood as a mix of fun, fury and failure. But he’s honest, and so are his contributors, fathers all.

“Fatherhood isn’t just manliness. It’s the purest form of the good side of manliness, the side that brings light into the world,” Mr. Last writes. “If we are failing as a nation, it may be because we’re failing at manliness. And if we are failing at manliness, it’s probably because we’re failing at fatherhood.”

The book will be published by Templeton Press, which explains, “The Dadly Virtues is a tongue-in-cheek collection of encouragement and guidance for any stage of fatherhood, from pacifying babies to prepping for senior prom, from cutting the cord to getting the first, ‘Best Grandpa’ t-shirt.”


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