The last few weeks have brought an unusual convergence of voices from both the center and the left about a topic that is typically part of conservative rhetorical territory: poverty and single-parent families. Just as some conservatives have started talking seriously about rising inequality and stagnant incomes, some liberals have finally begun to admit that our stubbornly high rates of poverty and social and economic immobility are closely entwined with the rise of single motherhood. Read more…
by Hilary White
The study, titled “The myth of long-term stable relationships outside of marriage” undertaken by the Marriage Foundation, found that 45 percent of British teenagers between the ages of 13-15 are not living with both parents and that 9 out of 10 children born to unmarried, cohabiting “partners” will be living in single-parent households by their teens. Read more…
by Michael Cook
The New York Times investigates the rise of single-motherhood among lower class whites. “I don’t think that anyone sets out, when I get older, I’m going to be a single parent,” says this woman. It’s pretty tough for a single mother and three kids to live on US$25,000.
In a previous post, I discussed a Life-Style Leftist blogman’s outraged response to a perfectly reasonable statement about a very sound study, and analyzed the rhetorical strategy of accusing your opponent of saying something he didn’t say. In this post, I want to talk about the substance of the study, what it shows and what it doesn’t.
It is always dangerous to speculate about people’s motives of course. I’ve never met Zach Ford, the blogman over at Think Progress, so I don’t know exactly what he is thinking. But I can say this: the logic of the marriage redefinition movement requires its advocates to deny that gender matters.
If gender is to become legally irrelevant to marriage, the logic of their position drives them to claim that gender is irrelevant to parenthood. The gender of parents doesn’t matter. The gender of children doesn’t matter. There is no difference between “mothers” and “fathers:” those are just empty, social constructs. There are only generic parents. In fact, everyone is a generic person. There are no sons and daughters either, only generic children. So, the impact of an absent father on a girl should be exactly the same as an absent mother on a girl, or an absent father on a boy, or as an absent mother on a boy.
But now, take a look at the study that Mr. Ford claims that Mr. Stanton has mischaracterized. The title of the study reveals that it is profoundly about gender, “The
Trouble with Boys: Social Influences and the Gender Gap in Disruptive Behavior.” Mr. Ford characterizes the paper thus: “If anything, the Booth study supports arguments Read more…
An urban high school teacher in Connecticut talks about unwed motherhood, fatherlessness, and how it affects the kids in his classroom.
…Here’s my prediction: the money, the reforms, the gleaming porcelain, the hopeful rhetoric about saving our children—all of it will have a limited impact, at best, on most city schoolchildren. Urban teachers face an intractable problem, one that we cannot spend or even teach our way out of: teen pregnancy. This year, all of my favorite girls are pregnant, four in all, future unwed mothers every one. There will be no innovation in this quarter, no race to the top. Personal moral accountability is the electrified rail that no politician wants to touch… Read more…
Tomorrow on my regular Issues Etc segment, I will talk about David Cameron’s recent speech on the importance of the family.
Some of the worst aspects of human nature tolerated, indulged – sometimes even incentivised – by a state and its agencies that in parts have become literally de-moralised. So do we have the determination to confront all this and turn it around? I have the very strong sense that the responsible majority of people in this country not only have that determination; they are crying out for their government to act upon it.
I will be drawing on these sources:
A 2011 Report detailing the taxpayer cost of out of wedlock childbearing in the UK.
Tune in, and listen live!
Totally not cool. Those poor kids.
Twenty percent of US mothers have children with different biological fathers, a study presented at the Population Association of America meeting revealed today. Cassandra Dorius, from the University of Michigan Institute of Social research added that mothers of multiple children of different biological fathers tend to be less educated, under-employed, and have lower incomes.
Meaning: Multiple partner fertility defined as having children with more than one partner.
When Dorius examined patterns in families with more than two children, she discovered that 28% of them had different birth fathers. “It’s pervasive.”, Dorius added. Read more…
The Ruth Institute Launches Contest to Promote
Positive Views of Lifelong Marriage
SAN MARCOS, CA – The Ruth Institute, a project of the National Organization for Marriage Education Fund, announces its first annual Reel Love Challenge, a video contest for young adults, aged 18-30. The contest is open to all young adults, married or single, male or female, in college, out of college, or never been anywhere near a college. This contest is for everyone in the next generation to give their ideas about what sustains love over the course of a lifetime.
Young adults should submit 30 second to 3 minute videos on the Reel Love Challenge website answering either or both of these questions: What makes lifelong love possible? Why is it worth the effort? Contestants should enter soon and take advantage of the Early Bird Contest: $100 to the first 7 videos submitted before January 6, 2011. Read more…
One of the most studied aspects of childhood in recent decades is early, non-maternal childcare. Research tends to show benefits for a child’s cognitive development but not for emotional wellbeing and behaviour. Now a study has found that youngsters are less likely to succeed at school if their mothers return to work within a year of their birth. Read more…
From the author of a longitudinal study of the long term effects of early child care:
“In America today, it is normative for children to start childcare at some point in the first year of life and stay there until they start school. This is the case for over 50% of children,” he says. He continues: “Let’s imagine these are small effects. But let’s imagine a reception class of 30 children in which two-thirds of them have small effects that make them a little bit more aggressive and disobedient … versus another class of 30 in which only 10% of them do. Are those teachers going to be doing more time managing and less time teaching? Are those playgrounds going to be less friendly? Are those neighbourhoods going to be affected? Read more…