(re-post because lol tumblr forgot my tags the first time =_=)
I feel the need to point out that Iemitsu is not, in any way, a scumbag. Yeah, he’s kind of a dick, but it’s not him just being a jerk pointlessly. He’s not just being an asshole to be an asshole.
I know Amano makes us forget that this is a manga about the mafia (well, her own messed up, caricature of the mafia, at least), but Iemitsu is one of those pieces that has always been a reminder of that. Sure, he shows up and is comically funny sometimes and a drunkard, but besides that, we’ve learned that he’s pretty hardcore. It’s what I like about him — Iemitsu is one of the few things in this manga that actually recalls some actual seriousness with this whole mafia business.
He’s not going to pamper and hold his son’s hand through everything. Obviously, if that’s the way he was, he wouldn’t have been absent for so much of the kid’s life. No. Everything Iemitsu does, he does because he wants his son to survive. He knows that the way Tsuna is now, with how forgiving and naive he is, will get him killed in a world like Iemitsu lives in (and you know, he probably feels quite a lot of guilt for Tsuna getting dragged into this whole mess anyways; it’s not like he had a kid and thought YAY, I’M GONNA RAISE A FUTURE MAFIA BOSS. No, I don’t think that’s the case at all, especially considering Tsuna wasn’t even the first in line for being the Vongola boss anyways).
For Iemitsu, I think, it’s more of a ‘I’d rather he hate me and live’ than for Tsuna to love and respect him and end up dying because he wasn’t cut out for the world that it’s Iemitsu’s own fault for dragging him into (even if he can’t help whose blood he has). It’s not exactly ideal parenting, obviously, but if he was a scumbag, he’d have broken Tsuna’s watch when he had a chance the first time. If he was a scumbag, he’d have just let Colonello fire without warning, not given Tsuna a minute to make his choice.
It’s tough love, but I think that’s exactly what Tsuna needs. And sure, Tsuna’s angry right now, and doesn’t understand any of what’s going on, but I’m pretty sure in the end, he’ll get it. And he’ll come out a much better person because of it, too.