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irishjayhawk
07-02-2010, 11:19 PM
Meant to post this earlier.

http://www.nationaljournal.com/njmagazine/st_20100501_5904.php

Do 'Family Values' Weaken Families?
IF YOU WANT TO FIND STABLE TWO-PARENT FAMILIES, BYPASS PALIN COUNTRY AND GO TO PELOSI TERRITORY.
by Jonathan Rauch
Saturday, May 1, 2010

Can it be? One of the oddest paradoxes of modern cultural politics may at last be resolved.

The paradox is this: Cultural conservatives revel in condemning the loose moral values and louche lifestyles of "San Francisco liberals." But if you want to find two-parent families with stable marriages and coddled kids, your best bet is to bypass Sarah Palin country and go to Nancy Pelosi territory: the liberal, bicoastal, predominantly Democratic places that cultural conservatives love to hate.

The country's lowest divorce rate belongs to none other than Massachusetts, the original home of same-sex marriage. Palinites might wish that Massachusetts's enviable marital stability were an anomaly, but it is not. The pattern is robust. States that voted for the Democratic presidential candidate in both 2004 and 2008 boast lower average rates of divorce and teenage childbirth than do states that voted for the Republican in both elections. (That is using family data for 2006 and 2007, the latest available.)


You can do a good job of predicting how a state will vote in national elections by looking at its population's average age at first marriage and childbirth.


Six of the seven states with the lowest divorce rates in 2007, and all seven with the lowest teen birthrates in 2006, voted blue in both elections. Six of the seven states with the highest divorce rates in 2007, and five of the seven with the highest teen birthrates, voted red. It's as if family strictures undermine family structures.

Naomi Cahn and June Carbone -- family law professors at George Washington University and the University of Missouri (Kansas City), respectively -- suggest that the apparent paradox is no paradox at all. Rather, it is the natural consequence of a cultural divide that has opened wide over the past few decades and shows no sign of closing. To define the divide in a sentence: In red America, families form adults; in blue America, adults form families.

Cahn and Carbone's important new book, Red Families v. Blue Families: Legal Polarization and the Creation of Culture, from Oxford University Press, is too rich with nuance to be encompassed in a short space. But here is the gist.

For generations, American family life was premised on two facts. First, sex makes babies. Second, low-skilled men, if they apply themselves, can expect to get a job, make a living, and support a family.

Fact 1 gave rise to a strong linkage between sexual activity, marriage, and procreation. It was (and still is) difficult for teenagers and young adults to abstain from sex, so one important norm was not to have sex before marriage. If you did have premarital sex and conceived a child, you had to marry.

Under those rules, families formed early, whether by choice or at the point of a shotgun. That was all right, however, because (Fact 2) the man could get a job and support the family, so the woman could probably stay home and raise the kids. Neither member of the couple had to have an extended education in order to succeed as spouse or parent.

True, young people often make poor marital choices. But that, too, was usually all right, at least from society's point of view, because divorce was stigmatized and fairly hard to get. Even a flawed marriage was likely to be a stable one. Over time, the spouses would grow into their responsibilities.

That is what "families form adults" means. Many teenagers and young adults formed families before they reached maturity and then came to maturity precisely by shouldering family responsibilities. Immature choices and what were once euphemistically called "accidents" were a fact of life, but the unity of sex, marriage, and procreation, combined with the pressure not to divorce, turned childish errors into adult vocations.

But then along come two game-changers: the global information economy and the birth-control revolution. The postindustrial economy puts a premium on skill and cognitive ability. A high school education or less no longer offers very good prospects. Blue-collar wages fall, so a factory job no longer cuts it -- if, that is, you can even find a factory job.

Meanwhile, birth control separates decisions about sex from decisions about parenthood, and the advent of effective female contraception lets men shift the moral responsibility for pregnancy to women, eroding the shotgun marriage. Divorce becomes easy to obtain and sheds its stigma. Women stream into the workforce and become more economically independent -- a good thing, but with the side effect of contributing to a much higher divorce rate.

In this very different world, early family formation is often a calamity. It short-circuits skill acquisition by knocking one or both parents out of school. It carries a high penalty for immature marital judgment in the form of likely divorce. It leaves many young mothers, now bearing both the children and the cultural responsibility for pregnancy, without the option of ever marrying at all.

New norms arise for this environment, norms geared to prevent premature family formation. The new paradigm prizes responsible childbearing and child-rearing far above the traditional linkage of sex, marriage, and procreation. Instead of emphasizing abstinence until marriage, it enjoins: Don't form a family until after you have finished your education and are equipped for responsibility. In other words, adults form families. Family life marks the end of the transition to adulthood, not the beginning.

Red America still prefers the traditional model. In 2008, when news emerged that the 17-year-old daughter of the Republican vice presidential nominee was pregnant, traditionalists were reassured rather than outraged, because Bristol Palin followed the time-honored rules by announcing she would marry the father. They were kids, to be sure, but they would form a family and grow up together, as so many before them had done. Blue America, by contrast, was censorious. Bristol had committed the unforgivable sin of starting a family too young. If red and blue America seemed to be talking past one another about family values, it's because they were.

When you understand all of that, you also understand why you can do a good job of predicting how a state will vote in national elections by looking at its population's average age at first marriage and childbirth. In 2007, for example, the states with the lowest median age at marriage in 2007 were all red (Arkansas, Idaho, Kansas, Oklahoma, and Utah). The states with the highest first-marriage age were all blue (Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, and Rhode Island). The same pattern holds for age at first childbirth. Massachusetts is highest (about 28 years old), Mississippi lowest (about 23 years old).

A further twist makes the story more interesting, and more sobering. Cahn and Carbone find an asymmetry. Blue norms are well adapted to the Information Age. They encourage late family formation and advanced education. They produce prosperous parents with graduate degrees, low divorce rates, and one or two over-protected children.

Red norms, on the other hand, create a quandary. They shun abortion (which is blue America's ultimate weapon against premature parenthood) and emphasize abstinence over contraception. But deferring sex in today's cultural environment, with its wide acceptance of premarital sex, is hard. Deferring sex and marriage until you get a college or graduate degree -- until age 23 or 25 or beyond -- is harder still. "Even the most devout overwhelmingly do not abstain until marriage," Cahn and Carbone write.

In any case, for a lot of people, a graduate education or even a bachelor's degree is unrealistic. The injunction to delay family formation until you are 24 and finish your master's offers these people only cold comfort.

The result of this red quandary, Cahn and Carbone argue, is a self-defeating backlash. Moral traditionalism fails to prevent premarital sex and early childbirth. Births precipitate more early marriages and unwed parenthood. That, in turn, increases family breakdown while reducing education and earnings.

"The consequential sense of failure increases the demands to constrain the popular culture -- and blue family practices such as contraception and abortion -- that undermines parental efforts to instill the right moral values in children," Cahn and Carbone say. "More sex prompts more sermons and more emphasis on abstinence." The cycle repeats. Culturally, economically, and politically, blue and red families drift further apart as their fortunes diverge.

Whether Cahn and Carbone are right will take time and subsequent scholarship to learn; but their story is both plausible and sobering. Plausible, because it brings so many aspects of the culture wars into sharper focus. Sobering, because the economic and cultural forces battering traditional family norms show no signs of abating -- but the new, education-centered pathway to adulthood is often least accessible to those who need it most.

|Zach|
07-02-2010, 11:22 PM
I don't think there is a lot you can really draw for all of that but I will say some of the stats were pretty surprising.

petegz28
07-02-2010, 11:23 PM
Give me a break. These are the same Democrats that thought it was no big deal that Bubba was cheating on sHillary.

Lets look at it the facts as they really are...

Bristol Palin got pregnant and didn't get an abortion. Therefore the Dems chastised her.

petegz28
07-02-2010, 11:25 PM
Red norms, on the other hand, create a quandary. They shun abortion (which is blue America's ultimate weapon against premature parenthood)

Tranlsation: Blues like to use abortion as birth control.

Pitt Gorilla
07-02-2010, 11:30 PM
Give me a break. These are the same Democrats that thought it was no big deal that Bubba was cheating on sHillary.

Lets look at it the facts as they really are...

Bristol Palin got pregnant and didn't get an abortion. Therefore the Dems chastised her.I'm not convinced these are "the same Democrats that thought it was no big deal that Bubba was cheating on sHillary." To which specific Democrats are you referring?

petegz28
07-02-2010, 11:32 PM
I'm not convinced these are "the same Democrats that thought it was no big deal that Bubba was cheating on sHillary." To which specific Democrats are you referring?

No, they were the Democrats of an alternate universe. :eek:

|Zach|
07-02-2010, 11:33 PM
Tranlsation: Blues like to use abortion as birth control.

It takes a lot of ridiculousness to make a bigger reach then the original article in this thread. But there you go...swinging for the fences. Congratulations.

Pitt Gorilla
07-02-2010, 11:34 PM
No, they were the Democrats of an alternate universe. :eek:Are you referring to the entire party? I'm really not sure what you're saying.

petegz28
07-02-2010, 11:37 PM
It takes a lot of ridiculousness to make a bigger reach then the original article in this thread. But there you go...swinging for the fences. Congratulations.

Well why don't you explain to us all what they meant? The Reds shun abortion and therefore that is the reason for their early age of entering parenthood.

So explain to me then what "(which is blue America's ultimate weapon against premature parenthood)" means?

Sure seems to say that the Blues avoid early parenthood by way of using abortion as early-parenting prevention, i.e. birth control.

Discuss Thrower
07-02-2010, 11:37 PM
Admittedly, I've only skimmed the beginning of the article. But I'm going to say with some certainty the reason why NJ has better divorce rates than the rest of the country is due to a correlation with people in the Garden State marrying; a) later in life, b)higher rates of post graduate college degrees, or a mixture of the two, moreso than for the virtue of allowing for same sex marriage (which for the record I support).

petegz28
07-02-2010, 11:37 PM
Are you referring to the entire party? I'm really not sure what you're saying.

I'm speaking in general of course.

petegz28
07-02-2010, 11:43 PM
It takes a lot of ridiculousness to make a bigger reach then the original article in this thread. But there you go...swinging for the fences. Congratulations.

Lets take it even further...

Red norms, on the other hand, create a quandary. They shun abortion (which is blue America's ultimate weapon against premature parenthood) and emphasize abstinence over contraception. But deferring sex in today's cultural environment, with its wide acceptance of premarital sex, is hard. Deferring sex and marriage until you get a college or graduate degree -- until age 23 or 25 or beyond -- is harder still. "Even the most devout overwhelmingly do not abstain until marriage," Cahn and Carbone write.

Again, this entire paragraph states that if only "Reds" didn't shun abortion they wouldn't have young parents. It clearly states kids are going to have sex before they are married. But the "Blues" get an abortion to avoid early parenthood. I. ****ing E., they use abortion as a method of birth control.

|Zach|
07-02-2010, 11:44 PM
Let me help you out. I will use pictures to show you where you took a leap in logic. Make all of this easy.

Well why don't you explain to us all what they meant? The Reds shun abortion and therefore that is the reason for their early age of entering parenthood.

So explain to me then what "(which is blue America's ultimate weapon against premature parenthood)" means?


http://www.merman.us/iphotos/sf_randy3rdleap.jpg


Sure seems to say that the Blues avoid early parenthood by way of using abortion as early-parenting prevention, i.e. birth control.

petegz28
07-02-2010, 11:45 PM
Let me help you out. I will use pictures to show you where you took a leap in logic. Make all of this easy.





In other words you ran your ****ing mouth and now realize you sounded like a dumbass and wish to deflect since you can't formulate an answer to contradict my statement.

|Zach|
07-02-2010, 11:46 PM
Lets take it even further...



Again, this entire paragraph states that if only "Reds" didn't shun abortion they wouldn't have young parents. It clearly states kids are going to have sex before they are married. But the "Blues" get an abortion to avoid early parenthood. I. ****ing E., they use abortion as a method of birth control.

It couldn't be the point that the article was trying to make was that by advocating for abstinence instead of sex education this is what happens. It isn't nearly as fun as saying blue states use abortion as birth control like a loon.

|Zach|
07-02-2010, 11:46 PM
In other words you ran your ****ing mouth and now realize you sounded like a dumbass and wish to deflect since you can't formulate an answer to contradict my statement.

http://www.chiefsplanet.com/BB/showpost.php?p=6856764&postcount=15

petegz28
07-02-2010, 11:47 PM
It couldn't be the point that the article was trying to make was that by advocating for abstinence instead of sex education this is what happens. It isn't nearly as fun as saying blue states use abortion as birth control like a loon.

So abortion is now sex education? Ok.

Your argument might have half a leg to stand on except the OP blows a hole in your argument...read this slowly

They shun abortion (which is blue America's ultimate weapon against premature parenthood)

No matter how much you try to spin it, that amounts to using abortion as birth control.

|Zach|
07-02-2010, 11:47 PM
So abortion is now sex education? Ok.

No. It isn't.

Have you been drinking?

|Zach|
07-02-2010, 11:50 PM
In a situation as complicated as reasons for pregnancy. One group seems to have a lower chance of it in younger ages than another.

Pete says the reason is obviously...and can only be one group uses abortion as birth control.

lol.

petegz28
07-02-2010, 11:51 PM
No. It isn't.

Have you been drinking?

Obviously you have when you try to tell me a statement that says abortion is "blue america's ultimate weapon against premature parenthood" doesn't mean abortion is used as a method of birth control.

Keep spinning. It's fun watching you squirm.

petegz28
07-02-2010, 11:53 PM
In a situation as complicated as reasons for pregnancy. One group seems to have a lower chance of it in younger ages than another.

Pete says the reason is obviously...and can only be one group uses abortion as birth control.

lol.

No I didn't, you no reading waste of space, the OP said it. You blind, dumbass, read it again slowly,....abortion "which is blue america's ultimate weapon against premature parenthood.."

What part of that do you not get? Do you understand what an abortion is? Do you understand that if it is the "ultimate weapon to prevent premature parenthood" it means it is used as a form of birth control?

JFC! Go back to your bong.

petegz28
07-03-2010, 12:05 AM
Gee, Zach, guess you didn't read this part either???

"The consequential sense of failure increases the demands to constrain the popular culture -- and blue family practices such as contraception and abortion.."

Once again, cause I know your hopped up braincells move slow, using abortion as a method to prevent premature parenthood is using abortion as a method of birth control.

mikey23545
07-03-2010, 12:19 AM
Nice correlation. It must mean something.


http://img97.imageshack.us/img97/3636/badcorrelations.jpg (http://img97.imageshack.us/i/badcorrelations.jpg/)

fan4ever
07-03-2010, 12:29 AM
If we're talking about family values, liberal versus conservative, let's do a study of the prison system, who's incarcerated, and see how that correlates.

I know; liberals are all victims of their situations.

Mr. Kotter
07-03-2010, 08:46 AM
Gosh, in states where abortion and premarital sex and shacking up....are not socially ostracized, we don't have as many teen pregnancy/unwanted pregnancies. However, birthrates is hardly the only, or the most important, measure of "family values."

What of the fall-out from single-parent-family demographics, and the legacy of fatherless (or motherless) homes? I bet the "blue" states would prefer to NOT talk about that, though...

Mr. Kotter
07-03-2010, 08:47 AM
Gosh, in states where abortion and premarital sex and shacking up....are not only not socially ostracized--but even celebrated and encouraged, we don't have as many teen pregnancy/unwanted pregnancies. Shocking, I tell you. :rolleyes: However, birthrates is hardly the only, or the most important, measure of "family values."

What of the fall-out from single-parent-family demographics, and the legacy of fatherless (or motherless) homes? I bet the "blue" states would prefer to NOT talk about that, though...

dirk digler
07-03-2010, 08:55 AM
Gee, Zach, guess you didn't read this part either???



Once again, cause I know your hopped up braincells move slow, using abortion as a method to prevent premature parenthood is using abortion as a method of birth control.

In all fairness you took one sentence and tried to say that is what the entire article was about when it clearly talks about using birth control throughout the entire piece.

RJ
07-03-2010, 09:59 AM
Actually, the description of red state family development rings very true for me based on my own life, the lives of my parents and grandparents and the lives of many family members, friends and acquaintances. My family on both sides mostly come from Kentucky, Tennessee and West Virginia. I'm not trying to make a political point, just saying that the article rings true based on my personal experience.

One thing that might be worth pointing out - divorce rates in blue states could possibly appear lower because of more couples who choose not to get married at all. That would be a much more likely arrangement for friends of mine in Maryland than it would be for friends in small town Kentucky, for instance.

The Mad Crapper
07-03-2010, 10:01 AM
http://www.davidstuff.com/historical/polpot.jpg

petegz28
07-03-2010, 11:15 AM
In all fairness you took one sentence and tried to say that is what the entire article was about when it clearly talks about using birth control throughout the entire piece.

So then you are contending that "Reds" don't believe in the pill or using condoms??? Well, I have news for you, they do. Which leaves the determining factor at abortion.

VAChief
07-03-2010, 11:20 AM
So then you are contending that "Reds" don't believe in the pill or using condoms??? Well, I have news for you, they do. Which leaves the determining factor at abortion.

You are also assuming that Reds don't use abortion either. I knew pastor's daughters growing up who chose that route to escape the stigma of an unplanned pregnancy. Exceptions probably, but generalizing doesn't always work.

petegz28
07-03-2010, 11:27 AM
You are also assuming that Reds don't use abortion either. I knew pastor's daughters growing up who chose that route to escape the stigma of an unplanned pregnancy. Exceptions probably, but generalizing doesn't always work.

I am not saying they don't. But I would lay money on it that abortion favors the Blues over the Reds.

Dave Lane
07-03-2010, 11:31 AM
I think "family values" is maybe the stupidest cliche of the right. Well maybe the sancity of marriage is up there too.

RJ
07-03-2010, 11:31 AM
So then you are contending that "Reds" don't believe in the pill or using condoms??? Well, I have news for you, they do. Which leaves the determining factor at abortion.


I think you're wrong about the birth control and right about the abortion.

Some quick googling seems to indicate that blue states have higher abortion rates per 1000 but red states have higher teen pregnancy rates overall, especially when Hispanic teens are removed from the equation.

At a glance, it looks like teenage girls from the southeast states are more likely to get knocked up and less likely to abort the child. Which is what I would have guessed based on my time spent in that part of the country.

dirk digler
07-03-2010, 11:34 AM
So then you are contending that "Reds" don't believe in the pill or using condoms??? Well, I have news for you, they do. Which leaves the determining factor at abortion.

I am sure some do but they also preach abstinence which may leave their kids unprepared for reality.

Dave Lane
07-03-2010, 11:37 AM
Do they have to actually marry their brothers when this happens? Or does the family values something else and arrange something?

I think you're wrong about the birth control and right about the abortion.

Some quick googling seems to indicate that blue states have higher abortion rates per 1000 but red states have higher teen pregnancy rates overall, especially when Hispanic teens are removed from the equation.

At a glance, it looks like teenage girls from the southeast states are more likely to get knocked up and less likely to abort the child. Which is what I would have guessed based on my time spent in that part of the country.

Pioli Zombie
07-03-2010, 11:42 AM
We aren't Red America. We aren't Blue America. We are one America. The United States of America. I want a blow job.

Pioli Zombie
07-03-2010, 11:44 AM
I think "family values" is maybe the stupidest cliche of the right. Well maybe the sancity of marriage is up there too.
Mawwaige That dweam within a dweam.

RJ
07-03-2010, 11:50 AM
Here's a map showing abortion rates by state from 2006. I don't know how to post it.

http://www.statehealthfacts.org/comparemaptable.jsp?cat=10&ind=465

petegz28
07-03-2010, 12:15 PM
I am sure some do but they also preach abstinence which may leave their kids unprepared for reality.

Do what???? Telling your kids not to have sex until they are married is not preparing them for reality???

How do you get that?

So a kid who practices safe sex but still ends up pregnant is more prepared for reality how?

dirk digler
07-03-2010, 12:22 PM
Do what???? Telling your kids not to have sex until they are married is not preparing them for reality???

How do you get that?

So a kid who practices safe sex but still ends up pregnant is more prepared for reality how?

My assumption is if parents are preaching abstinence they are not teaching about birth control. The reality is they are going to have sex so it is best to be prepared.

I think that is what the OP was getting at mostly.

petegz28
07-03-2010, 12:24 PM
My assumption is if parents are preaching abstinence they are not teaching about birth control. The reality is they are going to have sex so it is best to be prepared.

I think that is what the OP was getting at mostly.

I disagree. I understand your point but disagree.

dirk digler
07-03-2010, 12:30 PM
I disagree. I understand your point but disagree.

That's cool. how do you see it?

petegz28
07-03-2010, 12:31 PM
That's cool. how do you see it?

I see it as parents who preach abstinence aslo preach other forms of birth control. It is not a one or the other.

The x factor in all of it comes down to abortion. No matter how you add it up.

vailpass
07-03-2010, 12:38 PM
Nice correlation. It must mean something.


http://img97.imageshack.us/img97/3636/badcorrelations.jpg (http://img97.imageshack.us/i/badcorrelations.jpg/)

:D

RJ
07-03-2010, 01:03 PM
Bored at work, what I have determined....

Non-hispanic white girls in the southeast (red) states have higher pregnancy rates than non-hispanic white girls in northeast (blue) states.

The pregnant, non-hispanic white girls in the blue states have higher ratios of abortions per pregnancy than the pregnant, non-hispanic white girls in the red states.

dirk digler
07-03-2010, 01:04 PM
I see it as parents who preach abstinence aslo preach other forms of birth control. It is not a one or the other.

The x factor in all of it comes down to abortion. No matter how you add it up.

I think abortion plays a part in it but as RJ pointed out Red states have higher pregnancy rates for the most part.

So it could be said that more conservative people focus more on abstinence than birth control hence why they get pregnant and marry more which is what the OP said.

dirk digler
07-03-2010, 01:29 PM
I just want to add personally I don't buy the OP article.

I don't think it comes down to conservative or liberal, black or white, red states vs blue states, IMVHO it comes down to rich vs poor.

If you are in an upper middle class family or richer you probably have a more stable family, better education and are less likely to get pregnant.

Now the marrying young part might come down to conservative or liberal but I believe also that if your family is rich you have a better support system so you don't need to get married vs a poor young couple that will need both incomes.

Just my opinion.

RJ
07-03-2010, 01:35 PM
I just want to add personally I don't buy the OP article.

I don't think it comes down to conservative or liberal, black or white, red states vs blue states, IMVHO it comes down to rich vs poor.

If you are in an upper middle class family or richer you probably have a more stable family, better education and are less likely to get pregnant.

Now the marrying young part might come down to conservative or liberal but I believe also that if your family is rich you have a better support system so you don't need to get married vs a poor young couple that will need both incomes.

Just my opinion.


Money and education play a part but so do tradition and cultural norms. I've lived in big cities in the northeast and small towns and the southeast and they are very different in many ways. Not better or worse, just different.

cdcox
07-03-2010, 02:18 PM
Nice correlation. It must mean something.


http://img97.imageshack.us/img97/3636/badcorrelations.jpg (http://img97.imageshack.us/i/badcorrelations.jpg/)

Just because some correlations don't involve causality doesn't mean that all correlations don't involve causality. This has nothing to do with the OP. My point is that trotting out this graph every time someone mentions a correlation is a straw man.

The Mad Crapper
07-03-2010, 02:39 PM
Mawwaige That dweam within a dweam.

ROFL

irishjayhawk
07-03-2010, 04:15 PM
I think a lot of it rings true in a general sense. I would like to hear their rebuttal to abortion rates in blue states being higher than red, though I think this is only the case because red states don't offer services much, shun those who take them, and try to legislate against it. I'm betting the stats would equal out.

The Mad Crapper
07-03-2010, 04:16 PM
I think a lot of it rings true in a general sense. I would like to hear their rebuttal to abortion rates in blue states being higher than red, though I think this is only the case because red states don't offer services much, shun those who take them, and try to legislate against it. I'm betting the stats would equal out.

Swish, don't worry about it, your boyfriend will never get pregnant.