Fatherhood Is Not About Fairness

Kramer family 1901--prior to David's birth

It wasn’t about fairness with David Kramer—especially by our modern definition. His folks emigrated from Germany with their farming work ethic and not much more. 

When David was four, his father died. Surrounding farm families helped keep their ranch solvent until at age 13, he took over the arduous duties.

1940 Ritzville, Washington

From then on, David worked the land, first with teams of horses, then with crude harvesters, until finally a modern combine lessened the work for others, but not himself. 

He put his seven brothers and sisters through college and shared the farming profits the rest of their lives, but David never had the chance to finish high school. In a very real way, he became the father for his family.

He didn’t expect to be reimbursed because that’s just the way it was back then.  Was it fair that he never had the opportunities his siblings had? No, but it wasn’t about fairness, it was about duty and honor.

During the time young men got married, he was struggling to make enough money farming. There were barely enough hours in the day to provide sustenance to all who depended on his efforts. Six days he toiled, and on the seventh he drove twenty miles to the little church in town.

My grandmother & dad

When he was halfway to forty, a close relative needed help—she and her young son. Leaving an unfaithful husband wasn’t easy in the 1930’s. This wasn’t a love story; it was what a duty-bound man needed to do. He married her and adopted her young son.

David Kramer was the father of my father. He raised my dad with a strong work ethic, honesty, integrity, and that a man’s duty involves sacrifice.

We have unrealistic expectations about fairness in our nation. Fatherhood isn’t about fairness—it’s long hours with rewards not seen for months or years.

My grandfather, David Kramer

It’s about caring for others, providing for them, guiding them, and prayerfully having them do the same for those they will care for one day.

Fatherhood is God’s idea and it’s a blessing—for many. Happy Father’s Day to all those amazing, self-sacrificing, family and God-honoring dads—our nation depends on you as much as your children do.

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