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During my teen years, a time when so many young girls feel ugly, fat and awkward, I felt beautiful. It was not something I thought. It was something I felt.

I have contemplated this phenomenon and have come to realize that my earliest memories include my father's voice, and the words which come back are, "Aren't you Daddy's pretty little girl?"In today's world, father's role has been devalued to the degree that he is considered by many to be superfluous once the essential conception has taken place. The tragedy of this miscalculation is manifest in every courtroom and jail in our nation. Fathers, real fathers, are simply not expendable.

Of all of the societal damage resulting from the feminist movement, respect for fatherhood has suffered most, and the resulting loss is surely the most tragic and far-reaching. Little girls and boys need their fathers' approbation to keep them stable, to help them to know how a real man behaves, a real man who loves and reveres his own wife, his girls and his boys, a real man who will work and sacrifice to whatever degree necessary to protect and provide for this little group of humans for whom he is responsible.

If a dad teaches his sons and daughters that they are of great value, they are of value indeed. If he does not, many of them will never be really sure.

Muriel Sluyter

Dolores, Colo.