Single Mothers and Conservatism

 

shutterstock_209614678I would like to pose two questions to my follow Ricochet members: What should be the conservative answer be to unwed single mothers? How should the GOP/Conservatives support existing single mothers (to include widows, separated, divorced, unwed)?

I think we have a tendency to focus on the origins of the issue of single mothers — such as the rise of the welfare state and the sexual revolution — without addressing how we would support those single mothers that need help today. Social Conservatives are pro-life, pro-motherhood, and pro-marriage. However, the Left perpetuates the stereotype that Conservatives are not supportive of single mothers, and it works for them politically. In the 2012 presidential election 75% of single mothers voted for the Democratic ticket.

So what say you, Ricochet? Should we cede that portion of the electorate to the Democrats and to likely dependence on the state? I believe we can do better than that.

Published in Culture, Marriage, Politics
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  1. Ricochet Coolidge
    Ricochet
    @Manny

    Given we live in a western world that has lost all concept of forgoing sex until marriage (and to be up front, I didn’t forgo it either) and I am totally 100% against abortion, we have to (1) promote marriage in every way we can, (2) discourage not working, even if you are single and have children, and (3) support the children financially, and that means that welfare and medical if the mother can’t get medical benefits.  It’s a tough nut to crack because by supporting the children society allows an out for not getting married.  It’s an unfortunate paradox.

    • #61
  2. Ricochet Coolidge
    Ricochet
    @Manny

    KC Mulville

    The dilemma with unwanted pregnancies is the same dilemma as unemployment insurance, welfare, and other social help programs. That is, in the effort to ameliorate the pain of some unwanted event, you can create perverse incentives that wind up encouraging the behavior that leads to it. That dilemma is at the core of many of our social and economic problems. Taxing the rich to extract more money makes them less likely to generate the money to be taxed in the first place. Giving people enough money to live on while unemployed means they have less incentive to be employed. And so on.

    Is there a way we can ameliorate the damage without creating perverse incentives? I doubt it.

    * * *

    I’d say that this is a cultural problem, and the ultimate remedy, therefore, has to be cultural.

    You can look at the culture where young women are having sex that leads to unwanted pregnancies, and focus your efforts on ways to have sex that won’t lead to pregnancy – like birth control, or even abortion. But that entrenches a cultural assumption that having sex, whether you’re prepared for the consequences or not, is just something we have to accept as a given.

    I argue that if you want to throw in the towel, accept, or even encourage people to have sex whether they’re ready or not, then you’ve already accepted the high frequency of unwanted pregnancies.

    Yes, we see it exactly the same.  You said it better!

    • #62
  3. user_130720 Member
    user_130720
    @

    Larry3435:Prevent unintended pregnancies. That means lots and lots of sex education and free birth control. But somehow I don’t expect conservatives to get behind this solution. Go figure.

    You’ve nailed it! Congratulations. Our ever-lengthening “spike” in unwed motherhood is because they don’t know how babies are made and don’t know whether or not the “babymaker” is using a condom. Problem solved!

    • #63
  4. Kay of MT Member
    Kay of MT
    @KayofMT

    I am so rocked with emotion about this subject I can’t even respond coherently. My cases of minor mothers was in the 1960s, and except for one girl, all of them had been seduced by their boyfriends or dates. The youngest was 12 years old, and with her mother sitting with us, I questioned her about how it happened. The child didn’t know, just that “he hurt her down there.” Her mother admitted that she had allowed her daughter to go out with a 21 year-old sailor, “what was wrong with that?”

    For the first and only time in a 25 year career, I screamed at a client. “You stupid, ignorant woman,” as I pointed to her child’s swollen belly, “that’s what’s wrong with that!”

    We couldn’t even file paternity as they didn’t know his full name. I don’t know what happened to the child after she gave up her baby for adoption, as my case was closed. But for 50 years that little girl has been stuck in my mind.

    Another child I took home with me. She was 16, had been seduced at her high school prom. Her parents tossed her out and her high school had expelled her. I gave her full room and board, paid her a weekly salary for caring for my 2 little ones, who adored her. I was able to get her a home tutor from the school, and she was able to graduate with her class. She went on to college and became a CPA.

    Most of those girls didn’t even have anyone to take them to the hospital to give birth, except me. Back in those days we made home calls, and I finally wasn’t emotionally able to continue with the minor mother cases. I wanted to take them all home with me and frequently did.

    BTW, in the 1950-60s, condoms were not available to girls, most of whom didn’t even know they existed. They were hidden behind a counter in a drug store.

    • #64
  5. Ross C Inactive
    Ross C
    @RossC

    Great post and I have a few comments which as I read them back sound harsh:

    1) The conservative pro-life response is that if unwed mothers cannot deal with their children and they have no option of help they should put them up for adoption (harsh I know).  So it is then necessary for us to support institutions that take care of unwanted children in whatever combination of public and private that work.  I think less public or no public is better of course.

    2) Conservatives must be charitable in a private manner.

    3) Politically we should encourage an end to red tape that reduces charitable giving in this area.  Requirements for gay adoptions for example should have religious exemptions.  We should should push for zero sum reductions in welfare in favor of private Charity.  That is increase tax expenditures on deductions to be offset by spending decreases in Welfare.  (not very simple I realize).  This could require some tuning to  make sure the overall benefits to unwed mothers are not reduced.

    4) Republicans should not get dragged into a bidding war for special interest votes.  There is too much of that now and we will always promise less.  So best not to compete head to head.  Politically we should make the argument the BO made about Cuba, i.e. The US has been trying the same thing for 50 years and we are not getting anywhere so it is time to try a different approach.  This is for Kay of MT who is right that all of this sounds inhumane, but it is about teaching people to fish rather than giving them a fish every day.

    5) I like Merina Smith’s comment on holding the father’s accountable to the extent that is possible.  Realizing you can’t get blood from a turnip I realize.

    6) Subsidiarity – If there need to be public accommodations push them down to the state, county, or municipal level and avoid federal programs.

    • #65
  6. Midget Faded Rattlesnake Contributor
    Midget Faded Rattlesnake
    @Midge

    Kay of MT:Another child I took home with me. She was 16, had been seduced at her high school prom. Her parents tossed her out and her high school had expelled her. I gave her full room and board, paid her a weekly salary for caring for my 2 little ones, who adored her. I was able to get her a home tutor from the school, and she was able to graduate with her class. She went on to college and became a CPA.

    So despite becoming an outcast, this girl was able to rebuild her life without killing her baby. Is it wrong of me, therefore, to think that this story, despite its harshness, is really a success story?

    (Maybe even the kind of success story we should strive to emulate?)

    And thank you for your heroism! With this girl and with others.

    • #66
  7. Jojo Inactive
    Jojo
    @TheDowagerJojo

    Kay, that’s an important story, and thank you.

    The other side of that heartache, though, was the positive: All the additional millions of children who grew up with their married parents-  because of the shame associated with out-of-wedlock birth, and divorce.

    • #67
  8. Kay of MT Member
    Kay of MT
    @KayofMT

    Ross C

    6) Subsidiarity – If there need to be public accommodations push them down to the state, county, or municipal level and avoid federal programs.

    This reminds me of a letter received from a Nevada County Welfare Dept. The client was complaining of the benefits not being enough during intake. So they bought her a one way ticket to Sacramento. “California here she comes, because we are oh, so, done!”

    • #68
  9. user_645127 Lincoln
    user_645127
    @jam

    I didn’t read all of the comments but I did read a number of them. It appears that either something is being overlooked or an inaccurate paradigm is being applied.

    First, contraception fails by demographic. Generally, the younger and poorer, the higher the failure rates. Supposing that these people should “know better,” places an expectation on them that isn’t helpful to diagnosing the problem.

    Second, these young women are often the product of an absent father themselves or some other broken family structure. It’s not helpful or accurate to blame them as if they were individual islands of 100% free choice. When this is done, it reflects an incomplete understanding of the dynamic that caused the problem. The language of “victims” isn’t popular among conservatives or libertarians, but I do think it is accurate to describe these young women as victims of a harmful sexual ideology, or, victims of social pressures that were set into motion before they found themselves in the unfortunate situation of being unwed mothers.

    Thus, I see this as an opportunity for us to promote our superior view of the human person. There is no question that our view of the human person is superior to the shallow, animal-type view that the Left offers–a person who is compelled primarily through physical urges. Our view of the human person is beautiful and affirming; the Left’s is shallow and base. Let’s focus on this contrast.

    In the mean time: as the author of the OP says, these women have needs that need to be addressed immediately, such as the need for education, etc.

    • #69
  10. Midget Faded Rattlesnake Contributor
    Midget Faded Rattlesnake
    @Midge

    Jennifer Johnson: First, contraception fails by demographic. Generally, the younger and poorer, the higher the failure rates. Supposing that these people should “know better,” places an expectation on them that isn’t helpful to diagnosing the problem.

    There is an interesting reason for this. And it’s not because poor people are too stupid and uneducated (or, generally speaking, too poor) to use reliable contraception. Instead, using contraception is seen as a sign that the relationship is not a serious, trusting one, while ceasing contraception signals that the relationship has gotten serious. Therefore, poor couples often pledge their mutual love to each other by throwing out the contraception.

    As far as such signals go, it’s not an utterly incomprehensible one. “I’m so serious about you that I’m willing to stake a baby’s life on it” can sound rather convincing. Even if (as too often happens) it later proves itself to be mistaken.

    There’s a fascinating sociological study entitled “Unmarried Couples with Children” out there. It discusses the prevalence of this kind of semi-planned pregnancy (pregnancy that isn’t planned, but can’t really be called unplanned either, since the decision to forgo contraception was made willfully and knowingly), as well as the beliefs that cause poor people to postpone marriage. For example, “we can’t get married until we can afford our own house” is a very common belief about marriage among the lower classes, where marriage isn’t seen as fostering financial success, but instead seen as some sort of prize reserved only for those who already have attained financial success.

    • #70
  11. Kay of MT Member
    Kay of MT
    @KayofMT

    Midget Faded Rattlesnake:

    Kay of MT:Another child I took home with me.

    So despite becoming an outcast, this girl was able to rebuild her life without killing her baby. Is it wrong of me, therefore, to think that this story, despite its harshness, is really a success story?

    (Maybe even the kind of success story we should strive to emulate?)

    And thank you for your heroism! With this girl and with others.

    Definitely a success story. But you see, she had me. A positive influence, who encouraged her to reach beyond the limitations that had been handed to her. I had to fight the LA County school district to get her a home tutor. She also was a straight A student, and a willing worker. And I didn’t take advantage of her. From the time I got home from work, her time was her own as was her weekends. She used the time to study. She made good choices to better her life. She was also such a delightful young lady, and her baby was a love, they became a part of our family. When she left us to go to college, we cried.

    I took in another 16 year-old and spent a great deal of time searching the streets for her at night. She was so out of control I finally turned her over to foster care. One night a police officer asked me what I would do if one of my children acted the way C. did, and I told him I would “slap her into last week and make her live it over again.” However, you can’t do that with another person’s child. And of course I never did it with my own when they became teens.

    • #71
  12. Guruforhire Inactive
    Guruforhire
    @Guruforhire

    • #72
  13. user_1121313 Inactive
    user_1121313
    @AnotherLawyerWaistingTime

    Kay of MT:I am so rocked with emotion about this subject I can’t even respond coherently. My cases of minor mothers was in the 1960s, and except for one girl, all of them had been seduced by their boyfriends or dates. The youngest was 12 years old, and with her mother sitting with us, I questioned her about how it happened. The child didn’t know, just that “he hurt her down there.” Her mother admitted that she had allowed her daughter to go out with a 21 year-old sailor, “what was wrong with that?”

    For the first and only time in a 25 year career, I screamed at a client. “You stupid, ignorant woman,” as I pointed to her child’s swollen belly, “that’s what’s wrong with that!”

    We couldn’t even file paternity as they didn’t know his full name. I don’t know what happened to the child after she gave up her baby for adoption, as my case was closed. But for 50 years that little girl has been stuck in my mind.

    Another child I took home with me. She was 16, had been seduced at her high school prom. Her parents tossed her out and her high school had expelled her. I gave her full room and board, paid her a weekly salary for caring for my 2 little ones, who adored her. I was able to get her a home tutor from the school, and she was able to graduate with her class. She went on to college and became a CPA.

    Most of those girls didn’t even have anyone to take them to the hospital to give birth, except me. Back in those days we made home calls, and I finally wasn’t emotionally able to continue with the minor mother cases. I wanted to take them all home with me and frequently did.

    BTW, in the 1950-60s, condoms were not available to girls, most of whom didn’t even know they existed. They were hidden behind a counter in a drug store.

    Seduced . . . really. The female had no say it the matter. She was so overwhelmed by . . . what exactly that her free will was taken away and she couldn’t say “no”. It is all the guys fault she spread her legs?? Women are just so controlled by their emotions that they cannot make rational decisions? Really. Women are so overwhelmed by manliness that they have no control over themselves thus anything that happens is all the guys fault. God gives women free will except when she wants to sleep with a man then there is no free will? Really.

    It is true that I am my brother’s keeper but I do not see how becoming a slave to some female that cannot keep her legs closed promotes society, family, and charity.

    • #73
  14. Victor Grant 1865 Coolidge
    Victor Grant 1865
    @VictorGrant1865

    I will start my post by quoting Mark Twain, ” There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics.” That said, what is the size of the single-mother constituency we are ceding to the democrats? I found a 2009 census report on single mothers that stated there are about 6.1 million single mothers in the U.S. Of these, 2.8 million are white, 2.2 million are black, and almost 1 million are hispanic. Most of the voting statistics I looked at show about 90 percent of blacks and 66 percent of hispanics regularly vote democrat. Additionally, almost 60 percent of “poor” voters also vote democrat. Finally, the census also shows only 47 percent of eligible “poor” voters even bother to register. So the question is, do conservative candidates really benefit from targeting a demographic that may only result in a quarter of a million votes nationally? I think by promoting the benefits of conservative values instead of developing policies to pick off minor constituencies we will better serve conservative candidates specifically, but also social ills, such as single-motherhood and poverty, in general.

    • #74
  15. Midget Faded Rattlesnake Contributor
    Midget Faded Rattlesnake
    @Midge

    Another Lawyer Waisting Time:

    Kay of MT:I am so rocked with emotion about this subject I can’t even respond coherently. My cases of minor mothers was in the 1960s, and except for one girl, all of them had been seduced by their boyfriends or dates.

    BTW, in the 1950-60s, condoms were not available to girls, most of whom didn’t even know they existed. They were hidden behind a counter in a drug store.

    Seduced . . . really. The female had no say it the matter. She was so overwhelmed by . . . what exactly that her free will was taken away and she couldn’t say “no”. It is all the guys fault she spread her legs?? Women are just so controlled by their emotions that they cannot make rational decisions? Really. Women are so overwhelmed by manliness that they have no control over themselves thus anything that happens is all the guys fault. God gives women free will except when she wants to sleep with a man then there is no free will? Really.

    It is true that I am my brother’s keeper but I do not see how becoming a slave to some female that cannot keep her legs closed promotes society, family, and charity.

    Kay stated that her cases took place in the  60’s. During that time, there may well have been enough ignorance about sex among pubescent girls (especially the “good girls”, oddly enough) that a fair number of them could have been said to be seduced.

    Certainly, the 12-year-old who could say nothing more than “a man had hurt her down there” did not have the knowledge she needed to make an informed, responsible sexual choice.

    I think projecting our current state of affairs (kids get sex ed by the time they’re nine if not sooner) backwards onto Kay’s old cases is rather unfair.

    • #75
  16. Guruforhire Inactive
    Guruforhire
    @Guruforhire

    Another Lawyer Waisting Time:

    Kay of MT:I am so rocked with emotion about this subject I can’t even respond coherently. My cases of minor mothers was in the 1960s, and except for one girl, all of them had been seduced by their boyfriends or dates. The youngest was 12 years old, and with her mother sitting with us, I questioned her about how it happened. The child didn’t know, just that “he hurt her down there.” Her mother admitted that she had allowed her daughter to go out with a 21 year-old sailor, “what was wrong with that?”

    For the first and only time in a 25 year career, I screamed at a client. “You stupid, ignorant woman,” as I pointed to her child’s swollen belly, “that’s what’s wrong with that!”

    We couldn’t even file paternity as they didn’t know his full name. I don’t know what happened to the child after she gave up her baby for adoption, as my case was closed. But for 50 years that little girl has been stuck in my mind.

    Another child I took home with me. She was 16, had been seduced at her high school prom. Her parents tossed her out and her high school had expelled her. I gave her full room and board, paid her a weekly salary for caring for my 2 little ones, who adored her. I was able to get her a home tutor from the school, and she was able to graduate with her class. She went on to college and became a CPA.

    Most of those girls didn’t even have anyone to take them to the hospital to give birth, except me. Back in those days we made home calls, and I finally wasn’t emotionally able to continue with the minor mother cases. I wanted to take them all home with me and frequently did.

    BTW, in the 1950-60s, condoms were not available to girls, most of whom didn’t even know they existed. They were hidden behind a counter in a drug store.

    Seduced . . . really. The female had no say it the matter. She was so overwhelmed by . . . what exactly that her free will was taken away and she couldn’t say “no”. It is all the guys fault she spread her legs?? Women are just so controlled by their emotions that they cannot make rational decisions? Really. Women are so overwhelmed by manliness that they have no control over themselves thus anything that happens is all the guys fault. God gives women free will except when she wants to sleep with a man then there is no free will? Really.

    It is true that I am my brother’s keeper but I do not see how becoming a slave to some female that cannot keep her legs closed promotes society, family, and charity.

    But not showering women with cash, prizes, and a stable of slaves for poor decision making is unfair and downright mean.  You don’t hate women do you?

    Next, you are going to want women to goto jail for murdering people, you utter bastard.

    • #76
  17. user_645127 Lincoln
    user_645127
    @jam

    “The use of contraceptives has made sexual intercourse independent of parenthood, and the marriage of the future will be confined to those who seek parenthood for its own sake rather than as the natural fulfillment of sexual love. But under these circumstances who will trouble to marry? Marriage will lose all attraction for the young and the pleasure-loving and the poor and the ambitious. The energy of youth will be devoted to contraceptive love and only when men and women have become prosperous and middle-aged will they think of seriously settling down to rear a strictly limited family.”

    – British historian Christopher Dawson, 1933

    • #77
  18. user_645127 Lincoln
    user_645127
    @jam

    Another Lawyer Waisting Time:Seduced . . . really. The female had no say it the matter. She was so overwhelmed by . . . what exactly that her free will was taken away and she couldn’t say “no”. It is all the guys fault she spread her legs?? Women are just so controlled by their emotions that they cannot make rational decisions? Really. Women are so overwhelmed by manliness that they have no control over themselves thus anything that happens is all the guys fault. God gives women free will except when she wants to sleep with a man then there is no free will? Really.

    It is true that I am my brother’s keeper but I do not see how becoming a slave to some female that cannot keep her legs closed promotes society, family, and charity.

    This wasn’t very charitable. The females in the examples were 12 and 16.

    • #78
  19. Guruforhire Inactive
    Guruforhire
    @Guruforhire

    Jennifer Johnson:

    Another Lawyer Waisting Time:Seduced . . . really. The female had no say it the matter. She was so overwhelmed by . . . what exactly that her free will was taken away and she couldn’t say “no”. It is all the guys fault she spread her legs?? Women are just so controlled by their emotions that they cannot make rational decisions? Really. Women are so overwhelmed by manliness that they have no control over themselves thus anything that happens is all the guys fault. God gives women free will except when she wants to sleep with a man then there is no free will? Really.

    It is true that I am my brother’s keeper but I do not see how becoming a slave to some female that cannot keep her legs closed promotes society, family, and charity.

    This wasn’t very charitable. The females in the examples were 12 and 16.

    I am sensitive to Midget’s qualification, but you have to understand is that I have known 12-16 year old girls (when I was 12-19) who were downright predatory.  Girls (for at least the past 25 years) know exactly what they are doing.

    • #79
  20. V.S. Blackford Inactive
    V.S. Blackford
    @VSBlackford

    Victor Grant 1865:I will start my post by quoting Mark Twain, ” There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics.” That said, what is the size of the single-mother constituency we are ceding to the democrats? I found a 2009 census report on single mothers that stated there are about 6.1 million single mothers in the U.S. Of these, 2.8 million are white, 2.2 million are black, and almost 1 million are hispanic. Most of the voting statistics I looked at show about 90 percent of blacks and 66 percent of hispanics regularly vote democrat. Additionally, almost 60 percent of “poor” voters also vote democrat. Finally, the census also shows only 47 percent of eligible “poor” voters even bother to register. So the question is, do conservative candidates really benefit from targeting a demographic that may only result in a quarter of a million votes nationally? I think by promoting the benefits of conservative values instead of developing policies to pick off minor constituencies we will better serve conservative candidates specifically, but also social ills, such as single-motherhood and poverty, in general.

    Conservative values need to be translated into conservative policy.  I think the suggestions put forth by many members today would benefit many more people beyond the narrow scope of single mothers.  Conservatives need to be comfortable with taking their message to constituencies that are not their usual supporters.  Even a few votes can make all the difference.

    • #80
  21. user_130720 Member
    user_130720
    @

    Guruforhire:

    Thanks for this: one of the best comments ever because it is one of the most explanatory comments I’ve seen on a Ricochet thread. It is on point and “unpacks” the puzzle pieces allowing them to be taken from their respective overheated political boxes and placed on the table where they can cool down and be studied (dare I say) rationally.

    T

    • #81
  22. Guruforhire Inactive
    Guruforhire
    @Guruforhire

    Derek Simmons:

    Guruforhire:

    Thanks for this: one of the best comments ever because it is one of the most explanatory comments I’ve seen on a Ricochet thread. It is on point and “unpacks” the puzzle pieces allowing them to be taken from their respective overheated political boxes and placed on the table where they can cool down and be studied (dare I say) rationally.

    T

    It blew my mind when I first saw it.

    • #82
  23. Midget Faded Rattlesnake Contributor
    Midget Faded Rattlesnake
    @Midge

    V.S. Blackford:

    I think the suggestions put forth by many members today would benefit many more people beyond the narrow scope of single mothers. Conservatives need to be comfortable with taking their message to constituencies that are not their usual supporters.

    Exactly. The Institute for Justice, while it concerns itself more with legal rights than with legislation, is great at doing this. They run a legal clinic at the University of Chicago that specializes in helping small business owners, many of them poor minorities, navigate the red tape that impedes their economic freedom.

    • #83
  24. user_138400 Member
    user_138400
    @JoAnnRogers

    So I suppose  a return to the concept  sin is out? As in…… sex out of wedlock, resulting in a child deprived of two parents attached by marriage is wrong because of all the harm that ensues.  Once upon a time, a scant 40 years ago, this was something to be ashamed of.

    • #84
  25. Ricochet Member
    Ricochet
    @ArizonaPatriot

    Ross C:

    Politically we should make the argument the BO made about Cuba, i.e. The US has been trying the same thing for 50 years and we are not getting anywhere so it is time to try a different approach.

    I wish that we were “not getting anywhere.”  Stagnation on this issue would be a huge improvement.  Actually, we are getting somewhere — and it’s precisely the place we don’t want to be.  In 2013, the rate of illegitimate births was 29.3% for non-Hispanic whites, 71.5% for non-Hispanic blacks, and 53.2% for Hispanics.  In 2000, these rates were 22.1%, 68.7%, and 42.7%, respectively.  The Moynihan report stated that the rates for whites and blacks were 3.1% and 23.6%, respectively, in 1963.

    You’re certainly right that a different approach is in order.

    • #85
  26. Vice-Potentate Inactive
    Vice-Potentate
    @VicePotentate

    As for real solutions:

    1. School choice subsidized to a competitive level
    2. Encouraging faith based charities to take on the problem through tax incentives
    3. Create an economic climate of prosperity, specifically a reduction in small business regulation.
    4. A reduction in the rate of welfare dependence through stricter policies

    But these things are already staples of GOP platforms, going forward I don’t see much more that can be done through political channels.

    • #86
  27. user_1121313 Inactive
    user_1121313
    @AnotherLawyerWaistingTime

    If my comments seem harsh then we should not project data that is over 40 yrs old on to todays situation. We should not make a decision on how to “help” someone based on stale data.

    As to being uncharitable, charity has nothing to do for being accountable for your actions. You start children young making them accountable, it will carry through the rest of their lives. The girls made poor decisions (for whatever reason) and to blame it on the man is irresponsible.

    I have a saying all my children know well . . . we all have gluteus maximuses and just like excuses they all stink.

    • #87
  28. Mario the Gator Inactive
    Mario the Gator
    @Pelayo

    In general I agree with everyone who feels this is an area where Conservatives will have little success because we do not want to provide a safety net that ends up encouraging more births out of wedlock.

    I think we should place a large burden on the Father of the child.  Note that I agree with those who feel this is not entirely fair (father cannot make decisions concerning the child), but it is more fair to make the Father help pay for the child than it is for the rest of us to pay for the child.

    I also want to echo other comments about increasing the role of churches and charities in helping single mothers.  Before LBJ’s War on Poverty, it was precisely those institutions that took a lead role.  I strongly suspect that is one reason for higher percentages of Americans being church-goers 50 years ago.

    • #88
  29. Midget Faded Rattlesnake Contributor
    Midget Faded Rattlesnake
    @Midge

    Guruforhire:

    I am sensitive to Midget’s qualification, but you have to understand is that I have known 12-16 year old girls (when I was 12-19) who were downright predatory. Girls (for at least the past 25 years) know exactly what they are doing.

    True ’nuff. Some girls at that age are completely innocent of their sexual powers. Others are very much not.

    Personally, I think having some inkling of what sex is from an early age actually makes it easier for innocent girls to maintain their innocence. Learning that babies come from eggs fertilized by sperm (fish and frogs are a great example, because their external fertilization means you can see it happen), that in humans, fertilization is internal, and a big reason why private parts are private, is something that’s useful for a young girl to know well before she reaches fertility.

    I suppose that makes me in favor of early sex-ed in some ways, though not sex-ed as it’s typically (or stereotypically) taught. No, Midge would rather have kindergarteners watch fish porn.

    • #89
  30. Vice-Potentate Inactive
    Vice-Potentate
    @VicePotentate

    Another Lawyer Waisting Time:As to being uncharitable, charity has nothing to do for being accountable for your actions.

    The basic point of charity is not accountability but dealing with reality; specifically, to deal with consequences of poorly thought out actions in the short term. Surely you concede that while long term solutions should be found, noncoercive short term charity is desirable.

    • #90
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