How much do single-parent households matter?
While the mainstream media and research groups have been focused on inequality, they have largely ignored family breakup. Why? Maranto and Crouch point to three reasons:
- University of Virginia sociologist W. Bradford Wilcox determined that children in high-income households who experienced family breakup fared less well emotionally, psychologically, educationally, and ultimately economically than their peers in two-parent families.
- Children of single or cohabitating, but not married, parents experience abuse, behavioral problems and psychological issues at higher rates than children of married couples, according to a study by the Centers for Disease Control.
- Just 2 percent of children raised in two-parent families experience poverty long-term, while more than 20 percent of children in single-parent families live in long-term poverty.
- Penn State sociologist Molly Martin estimated in 2006 that 41 percent of economic inequality generated between 1976 and 2000 was the result of changed family structure.
- According to researchers at the Brookings Institution, the U.S. poverty rate would be a full 25 percent lower today if the U.S. family structure resembled that of 1970.
Source: Robert Maranto and Michael Crouch, "Ignoring an Inequality Culprit: Single-Parent Families," Wall Street Journal, April 20, 2014.
- First, leftists do not want to side with social conservatives, despite the plethora of evidence.
- Secondly, minority families have experienced the worst family breakup, and bringing up the issue leads to fears of charges of racism.
- Lastly, because there is no immediate or quick fix to the family breakup problem: such a societal transformation will take decades.
Regarding the second reason I remember getting it in the neck from Tau Henare when the NZBR released my paper on Maori and Welfare in which I pointed out the correlation between the high rate Maori welfare dependence and ex-nuptial births. He wrote me a letter saying I was Maori bashing. In other words, racist.