November 14, 2017

Positivity: Research proves social conservatives right — Marriage helps families escape poverty

Filed under: Life-Based News,Positivity — Tom @ 5:55 am

From LifeSite News, via TheFederalist.com:

Tue Nov 7, 2017 – 4:02 pm EST

The one big factor separating poor families from comfortable and wealthy families is marriage, say sociologists.

Writing in The Federalist, Glenn T. Stanton of Focus on the Family reviewed the current literature indicating that marriage has replaced employment and education as the central factor in the financial well-being of families. His findings are startling.

The marriage rate is “sinking” among lower and middle-class American adults; it’s now down to 48%. It has, however, remained stable among the wealthy. And it’s “the proliferation of single-parent households” that “accounts for virtually all of the increase in child poverty since the early 1970s,” as Stanton quotes Jonathan Rauch.

In the early 1990s, sociologist Bill Galston said that to stay out, or climb out, of poverty, Americans needed to do only three things: graduate from high school, marry before having a child, and have that first child after the age of 20. Only 8% of Americans who follow these rules will be poor, Galston claimed, whereas 79% who fail in all three respects will certainly live in poverty.

This “success sequence”–high school, marriage, and only then baby carriage–still holds true today, and “working-class” women are three times more likely to have babies out of wedlock than wealthy women. Poor women are five times more likely than wealth women to have babies outside marriage. Both poor and working class women are twice as likely to be cohabiting than their richer sisters.

Marriage has a “extraordinary economic power,” Stanton wrote. “It boosts every important measure of well-being for women, children and men.” That includes income, health, savings, employment, educational success, happiness, recovery from serious illness–even a healthy diet.

“Marriage is an essential active ingredient in improving one’s overall life prospects, regardless of class race, or educational status,” Stanton observed. Astonishing as it may seem, the poverty rate for children living with two unmarried, cohabiting parents is similar to that of single-mother led households. Even so-called “shotgun” marriages, contracted when the bride was pregnant, help keep women and children out of poverty.

But doubters have asked if this is putting the cart before the horse. Does marriage really generate wealth, or does wealth generate marriage?

“That’s the criticism some scholars have had–the liberal scholars,” Stanton told LifeSiteNews. “But marriage itself is a wealth creating institution. That’s what the research is finding.”

Marriage creates wealth because marriage encourages men to become better, more committed workers, providers and savers. Married men are less likely to fall into substance abuse, they are less likely either to commit or fall victim to crime, they have better health and they’re even less accident-prone. “A married man is a far different kind of man than the single or cohabiting man,” Stanton told Lifesitenews. …

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