As discussed in previous chapters, caring for an infant takes time and energy which is therefore not available for other activities. Although parents are never fully prepared, those who are married, with a regularly employed wage earner and a reasonably stable existence generally have the resources to cope adequately.
The American Dream in Crisis. This is the America we believe in—a nation of opportunity, constrained only by ability and effort.
Americans have always believed in equality of opportunity, the idea that all kids, regardless of their family background, should have a decent chance to improve their lot in life.
Now, this central tenet of the American dream seems no longer true or at the least, much less true than it was. About the book, Brooks writes: Roughly 10 percent of the children born to college grads grow up in single-parent households.
Nearly 70 percent of children born to high school grads do. There are a bunch of charts that look like open scissors. In the s or s, college-educated and noncollege-educated families behaved roughly the same.
But since then, behavior patterns have ever more sharply diverged. The first two lines of that paragraph stopped me cold. Think about it for a second. Think about how many social science studies over the years have shown a definitive link between growing up in a single-parent household and diminished life prospects.
According to Brooks, the Putnam book presents evidence, both statistical and anecdotal e. The first response to these stats and to these profiles should be intense sympathy. We now have multiple generations of people caught in recurring feedback loops of economic stress and family breakdown, often leading to something approaching an anarchy of the intimate life.
The health of society is primarily determined by the habits and virtues of its citizens. In many parts of America there are no minimally agreed upon standards for what it means to be a father.
There are no basic codes and rules woven into daily life, which people can absorb unconsciously and follow automatically. Reintroducing norms will require, first, a moral vocabulary. They were destroyed by a plague of nonjudgmentalism, which refused to assert that one way of behaving was better than another.
People got out of the habit of setting standards or understanding how they were set. Social norms need repair up and down the scale, universally, together and all at once. About that self-segregation, this column speaks to the heart of what I mean by the Benedict Option, which calls for, yes, a degree of self-segregation.
The public schools are being asked to raise kids, and to provide them with the sense of structure, purpose, and values that they are not getting at home. I should say here that the moneyed, educated classes are closer to this chaos than they might think. The school does what it can, but money can only insulate a kid from moral chaos to a certain degree.
I remember when I was a kid, growing up in a small Southern town, there was a strong sense, widely held among people here, that there was a Right and there was a Wrong, and that Right and Wrong could be known. Was Right and Wrong as decreed by these norms always just?
The point was not that this way of life produced saints.
The point was that this way of life created a moral structure in which children could be nurtured by the community, and given the wherewithal to build stable, productive, dare I say good lives. There was no question of any of this being transactional, e.
The idea was that there was a moral order independent of ourselves, and we had to conform our lives to that moral order. The black conservative scholar Shelby Steele writes about the injustice of that old order.
When I was a boy growing up under segregation, racism was not seen as evil by most whites.
It was simply recognition of a natural law:/ Our History. Our History.
|INTRODUCTION||The Galileo Affair, with Andrew Dennis The Ram Rebellion structured short story collection|
we brought a two-generation focus to the issue of teen pregnancy and childbearing, emphasizing its impact on both teen parents and their children. Among our accomplishments: From to , we produced the congressionally-mandated Report to Congress on Out-of-Wedlock Childbearing.
--teen mothers are less likely to complete school, and more likely to need public assistanceThe children of teen mom's are more likely to have lower birth rates, to perform poorly in school, and are at greater risk of abuse and neglect.
HISTORY AND THEORY OF FEMINISM The term feminism can be used to describe a political, cultural or economic movement aimed at establishing equal rights and legal protection for women. In addition, in order to capture the complexity of issues surrounding out of wedlock childbearing, this volume contains a series of supplemental papers by experts from various social science disciplines.
Recent data show that percent of firstborn black babies to women 15 to 19 were conceived out-of-wedlock in –81, compared with percent of first born white babies to women 15 to 19, and percent of black mothers and percent of white mothers were . These figures are consistent with other reports: according to the National Center for Health Statistics, 39 percent of white and 90 percent of black teenage births in were out-of-wedlock.
According to Lerman () 65 percent of all 18–year-old males who were fathers in had married after the birth of their first child.