Tag Archives: Social Conservatism

New study: divorcing after kids turn seven causes them to underform at school

Dina sent me news of this interesting study from Medical Daily.

Excerpt:

Kids whose parents divorce after they turn seven are significantly more likely to suffer a drop in performance at school, a UK government sponsored study has revealed.

The latest research sponsored by the UK education department linked exposure to parental divorce or constant arguing among parents after the age of seven to “lower educational attainment” in secondary or high school, according to The Telegraph.

The study conducted by the Childhood Wellbeing Research Center found that a variety of family factors affected children’s education performance and behavior.

Researchers also found that while children who have several brothers and sisters perform worse at school, they are not more likely to be poorly behaved.

The latest research sponsored by the UK education department linked exposure to parental divorce or constant arguing among parents after the age of seven to “lower educational attainment” in secondary or high school, according to The Telegraph.

The study conducted by the Childhood Wellbeing Research Center found that a variety of family factors affected children’s education performance and behavior.

Researchers also found that while children who have several brothers and sisters perform worse at school, they are not more likely to be poorly behaved.

Children who watch a lot of television were also found to have weaker verbal skulls, whereas children who have strict parents who enforce rules at home are more likely to have better verbal skills and have better scores on school tests. However, researchers noted that frequent punishment at home was linked to worse test scores and behavior at school.

Researchers found that parental skills were crucial in determining a child’s school performance and mothers and fathers could actively help to boost their children’s verbal skills by reading with them.

The good news is that children with the risk factors found in the report could benefit from extra help at school to “realize their potential”.

Researchers analyzed up to 40 factors on thousands of children and looked at how traumatic events like divorce or death and the family affected results in tests at the age of 14 and GCSEs (subject tests UK students need take to pass high school) at 16 and children’s behavior and well-being, based on parental questionnaires.

Researchers found that exposure to parental divorce after the age of seven was associated with worse behavior and worse GCSE test results. Based on the findings, researchers suggest that younger children may not be as affected as older kids because they are less able to understand the implications of divorce. Experts noted that the factors which affect test results at the age of seven are also likely to affect achievement later on in the child’s educational career.

“These findings highlight the continuing significance of family separation, conflict and dissolution on the educational attainment and wellbeing outcomes of young adolescents,” researchers wrote in the study, according to Daily Mail.

The study found that parenting skills, poverty and illness or disability had the most impact on a child’s success in school.

Social conservatives and Christians agree that it is important for us to minimize divorce, because of the negative impact that it has on children. We need to think through what policies make it easier and more profitable for people to get divorced, and then oppose those policies. Policies like no-fault divorce. We need to promote policies that discourage divorce, like tax incentives for marriage and mandatory shared-parenting laws. We know what is good. Now we who believe in the good have to advocate for laws and policies that promote the good. Children are depending on us to get informed and persuasive on these issues.

This study was also reported on in the UK Telegraph.

NYC’s largest abortion clinic stops operations due to pro-life protests

Good news in the New York Daily News, although the article is hopelessly biased against pro-lifers.

Excerpt:

A Sunset Park abortion clinic has shut down after Catholic protesters drove away doctors and patients, according to the owner of the clinic.

The Ambulatory Specialty Surgery Center of Brooklyn on 43rd St., closed earlier this month and will reopen in October as a new medical center providing outpatient surgeries, but not abortion.

Catholic leaders claimed the clinic’s closure after 22 years as a victory for their anti-abortion effort. Abortion advocates said they had never heard of a clinic in the city closing under pressure from protesters.

[…]Julie Kirshner, president of the Brooklyn and Queens chapter of the National Organization for Women, said she was shocked abortions were no longer offered at the medical center.

“It’s really a shame. I feel very badly and I’m disappointed about it,” said Kirshner. “This means that women will have to be inconvenienced to get their health care. If [the clinic on 43rd St.] closed down, this could mean future closings and that’s very disappointing.”

Life Site News adds:

This clinic was apparently a very big, deadly fish. According to The Tablet:

“This was the oldest and largest abortion clinic in New York City and for many years, in the United States,” said Msgr. Reilly. “I believe more than a quarter of a million unborn children lost their lives there.”

A quarter of a million dead. Those numbers remind me of the tens of millions killed by atheists like Stalin, Mao and others like them.

Now contrast that peaceful pro-life approach to change with the approach used by pro-abortion advocates:

An elderly pro-life activist was shot multiple times and killed this morning in front of Owosso High School in Michigan while he was peacefully protesting abortion with a sign depicting a baby and the word “Life,” according to local police cited in the Flint Journal newspaper.

Locals say that the victim, James Pouillon of Owosso, was well-known in the area for his pro-life activities.

[…]Reports indicate that a second individual was shot and killed in a different area of the city earlier in the day, and the two shootings are believed to be related, according to Shiawassee County sheriff George Braidwood. According to M-live.com, the second victim has now been identified as Mike Fuoss, 61, the owner of a local gravel pit. Fuoss was found dead in his office.

Police have confirmed that a suspect – a 33-year-old Owosso man – was taken into custody at the suspect’s home shortly after the 7:30 a.m. shooting. After being taken into custody he confessed to the second killing as well.

The pro-abortion side had nothing to say about that violence in the days after the tragedy, too. But are all pro-abortion advocates really so ghoulish?

Remember this case:

A doctor who gave abortions to minorities, immigrants and poor women in a “house of horrors” clinic was charged with eight counts of murder in the deaths of a patient and seven babies who were born alive and then killed with scissors, prosecutors said Wednesday.

Dr. Kermit Gosnell, 69, made millions of dollars over 30 years, performing as many illegal, late-term abortions as he could, prosecutors said. State regulators ignored complaints about him and failed to inspect his clinic since 1993, but no charges were warranted against them given time limits and existing law, District Attorney Seth Williams said. Nine of Gosnell’s employees also were charged.

Gosnell “induced labor, forced the live birth of viable babies in the sixth, seventh, eighth month of pregnancy and then killed those babies by cutting into the back of the neck with scissors and severing their spinal cord,” Williams said.

[…]Bags and bottles holding aborted fetuses “were scattered throughout the building,” Williams said. “There were jars, lining shelves, with severed feet that he kept for no medical purpose.”

[…]Gosnell has been named in at least 46 malpractice suits, including one over the death of a 22-year-old mother who died of sepsis and a perforated uterus in 2000. Many others also involve perforated uteruses. Gosnell sometimes sewed up the injury without telling women their uteruses had been perforated, prosecutors said.

Gosnell charged $325 for first-trimester abortions and $1,600 to $3,000 for abortions up to 30 weeks.

When a person supports the murder of innocent little babies for profit, then anything is possible – even forcing pro-lifers to subsidize the massacre. That’s exactly what the Obama administration is always pushing for. Recall that Obama not only supports the murder of unborn babies, but also of born babies. He voted in favor of infanticide several times.

This is election in November is a chance for pro-lifers to roll back some of the pro-abortion measures introduced by the Obama administration. We all need to do what we can before election day.

If Ron Paul were President, 16 to 28 states would keep abortion legal

Which states would Ron Paul allow to legalize abortion?
Which states would Ron Paul allow to legalize abortion?

From the Weekly Standard. (H/T Triablogue)

Excerpt:

“[Ron Paul] has an outstanding chance of winning in Iowa,” according to Bob Vander Plaats, who served as Mike Huckabee’s 2008 state campaign chairman. “There’s a lot about Ron Paul that people like,” Vander Plaats says, pointing to Paul’s “almost prophetic” vision of our economic problems and his commitment to do away with “politics as usual.”

But Paul could face trouble with values voters in Iowa, where 60 percent of GOP caucusgoers are evangelical Christians. Vander Plaats says his socially conservative umbrella organization, the Family Leader, has ruled out endorsing Paul because “sometimes [Paul’s] libertarian views trump his moral compass.”

“On abortion, [Paul] believes that’s a states’ rights issue, we believe that’s a morality issue,” says Vander Plaats. In a post-Roe v. Wade world, “We don’t believe abortion should be legal in Maine and illegal in Iowa.” (Paul voted for the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act in 2003, but expressed deep reservations about voting for a federal law on abortion.)

“We’re very concerned” about Paul’s position that the government shouldn’t recognize civil marriage, Vander Plaats continues. The group also balks at some of Paul’s foreign policy views. ”Even though we may agree with him that we’re not called to be the policeman of the world, we do believe we’re called to stand shoulder to shoulder with Israel,” says Vander Plaats. “And we do believe [a nuclear-armed] Iran is a definite threat not only to Israel, but to our freedom as well.”

[…]Vander Plaats says he doesn’t think very many Iowa voters are aware that Paul thinks it should be up to states to decide whether or not to protect human life. But now that Paul leading in the Iowa polls, his positions may come under greater scrutiny.

Here’s a 2006 USA Today article listing the states that would make abortion legal under Ron Paul’s plan.

Excerpt:

Twenty-two state legislatures are likely to impose significant new restrictions on abortion. They include nearly every state in the South and a swath of big states across the industrial Rust Belt, from Pennsylvania to Ohio and Michigan. These states have enacted most of the abortion restrictions now allowed.

Sixteen state legislatures are likely to continue current access to abortion. They include every state on the West Coast and almost every state in the Northeast. A half-dozen already have passed laws that specifically protect abortion rights. Most of the states in this group have enacted fewer than half of the abortion restrictions now available to states.

Twelve states fall into a middle ground between those two categories. About half are in the Midwest, the rest scattered from Arizona to Rhode Island.

[…]The 22 states likely to enact new restrictions include 50% of the U.S. population and accounted for 37% of the abortions performed in 2000, the latest year for which complete data were available.

The 16 states likely to protect access to abortion include 35% of the U.S. population and accounted for 48% of the abortions performed.

So Ron Paul, far from being pro-life, would allow abortion on demand in 16 to 28 states, many of them the most populous states in the union – like California and New York. I understand that he calls allowing abortion in 16 to 28 states “pro-life”, but voters have to think and decide – is that really pro-life? Is it really pro-life when the number of abortions per year will drop from 1.1 million to 550,000? Is that pro-life? (Assuming that the people in the pro-life states don’t just cross the border to get an abortion elsewhere – which is false, of course). Paul’s position is that he is personally pro-life, but he thinks that other people should be allowed to decide if an unborn baby can be killed or not, at the state level. Isn’t that pro-choice though?

Similarly, Paul would allow states to redefine marriage to be anything they want it to be, since he thinks that the definition of marriage is an issue that states should decide. That’s his view. Is that pro-marriage? Does that position take seriously the need for children to be raised by a mother and a father?

Rick Santorum wins Missouri by 30, wins Minnesota by 18, wins Colorado by 5

Story here from the liberal Washington Post.

Excerpt:

Rick Santorum had a breakthrough night Tuesday, winning GOP presidential contests in Missouri, Minnesota and Colorado, all of which is expected to breathe life into his struggling campaign and slow Mitt Romney’s march to the Republican presidential nomination.

The Santorum triumphs promise to, at least temporarily, alter the face of the campaign going into the crucial “Super Tuesday” contests, as the caustic tone of the primaries is expected to continue and intensify. Romney and his allies have signaled that they will use their financial advantage to launch stepped-up attacks on Santorum and on former House speaker Newt Gingrich, the other main challenger.

Santorum solidly defeated Romney in Minnesota and Missouri, and he narrowly edged the former Massachusetts governor in Colorado, according to state GOP officials.

The victories mark a sharp turnaround for the former Pennsylvania senator, whose candidacy had been sputtering after he failed to capi­tal­ize on his narrow win in Iowa last month. Santorum’s wins across the Midwest could Tuesday bestow new legitimacy on his insurgent efforts and boost his fundraising in the critical period before next month’s major contests.

Santorum now appears to pose a more serious threat not only to Romney, but also to Gingrich, who had been positioning himself as the logical alternative to Romney.

Santorum staked his own claim on Tuesday.

“Conservatism is alive and well,” he told supporters at his election night party in Missouri. “I don’t stand here and claim to be the conservative alternative to Mitt Romney. I stand here to be the conservative alternative to Barack Obama.”

For Romney, his poor showing Tuesday raised anew the question that has dogged his candidacy all along: Can the relatively moderate, former Massachusetts governor become an acceptable standard-bearer of a party that is increasingly dominated by evangelical conservatives and tea party activists who have long been skeptical of Romney?

The reason why Romney is losing is because more and more people are realizing that his record is basically the same as Barack Obama. He’s got a pro-abortion, pro-gay-marriage, pro-socialized medicine, pro-tax-hike record. And that’s not what Republicans want. Romney is a radical leftist on every issue.

Look at this article from liberal ABC News.

Excerpt:

In 2006, Romney started a program to provide welfare recipients without access to public transportation with free cars. The idea was to provide them with a way to get to work so they could eventually get off welfare.

The cars were donated by charities, while Massachusetts taxpayers funded — as the Boston Herald reported in 2009 — “repairs, registration, insurance, excise tax, the title and AAA membership for one year.”

Romney’s Department of Transitional Assistance started the program, officially called “Transportation Support,” and nicknamed “Welfare Wheels” by the Boston Herald.

[…]The program was discontinued in 2009.

And:

[A]ccording to a 2011 analysis by the Boston Globe, “over the past 20 years, the percentage of inmates paroled while serving a life sentence … peaked in 2004″ — when Romney was governor — “and when all seven members of the state Parole Board had been appointed or reappointed by Republican governors.”

And that, according to the Boston Herald in 2008, “Some 118 killers and rapists were sprung early from prison under former Gov. Mitt Romney’s watch … allowed to walk out the gates by the Department of Correction by claiming so-called ‘good time’ that in some cases substantially reduced their sentences.”

That’s likely more of a concern to Republican primary voters than those ex-cons’ suffrage.

And:

Romney’s Massachusetts health care reform law created an 11-member “Health Care Connector Board” that would ensure affordable pricing for various health insurance plans. Romney appointed actuary Bruce Butler, CEO of Associated Industries of Massachusetts Rick Lord, and economist Jonathan Gruber. Four administration officials from Romney’s cabinet were also appointed to the board, per the law: his Secretary of the Executive Office for Administration and Finance; the Medicaid Director in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts; the Commissioner of Insurance; and the Executive Director of the Group Insurance Commission.

The law also allowed the governor to appoint the executive director of the Connector Authority, and Romney picked senior vice president for policy development at Tufts Associated Health Plan Jon Kingsdale.

Kingsdale wrote a memo to the Connector Authority recommending that for abortions, insurance companies require co-pays between $0 and $100, depending on income level. In September 2006, that was approved by the Connector Authority. Every health care plan offered to low-income Massachusetts residents covers abortion.

Look at the most recent polls before the elections in Colorado, Missouri and Minnesota:

Colorado Romney 37, Santorum 27 Romney +10
Minnesota Santorum 33, Romney 24 Santorum +9
Missouri Santorum 45, Romney 32 Santorum +13

Yet the results are:

  • Missouri: Santorum beats Romney 55-25: +30.
  • Minnesota: Santorum beats Romney 45-17: +28. (Paul got 27)
  • Colorado: Santorum beats Romney 40-35: +5.

See below for more reasons to vote FOR Rick Santorum and AGAINST Mitt Romney.

Rick Santorum is a conservative

Mitt Romney is a liberal

How faith, virtues and marriage are declining among blue collar Americans

Brad Wilcox writes about a new book entitled “Coming Apart” in the Wall Street Journal.

Excerpt:

So much for the idea that the white working class remains the guardian of core American values like religious faith, hard work and marriage. Today the denizens of upscale communities like McLean, Va., New Canaan, Conn., and Palo Alto, Calif., according to Charles Murray in “Coming Apart,” are now much more likely than their fellow citizens to embrace these core American values. In studying, as his subtitle has it, “the state of white America, 1960-2010,” Mr. Murray turns on its head the conservative belief that bicoastal elites are dissolute and ordinary Americans are virtuous.

Focusing on whites to avoid conflating race with class, Mr. Murray contends instead that a large swath of white America—poor and working-class whites, who make up approximately 30% of the white population—is turning away from the core values that have sustained the American experiment. At the same time, the top 20% of the white population has quietly been recovering its cultural moorings after a flirtation with the counterculture in the 1960s and 1970s. Thus, argues Mr. Murray in his elegiac book, the greatest source of inequality in America now is not economic; it is cultural.

He is particularly concerned with the ways in which working-class whites are losing touch with what he calls the four “founding virtues”—industriousness, honesty (including abiding by the law), marriage and religion, all of which have played a vital role in the life of the republic.

Consider what has happened with marriage. The destructive family revolution of the late 1960s and 1970s has gradually eased—at least in the nation’s most privileged precincts. In the past 20 years, divorce rates have come down, marital quality (self-reported happiness in marriage) has risen and nonmarital childbearing (out-of-wedlock births) is a rare occurrence among the white upper class. Marriage is not losing ground in America’s best neighborhoods.

But it’s a very different story in blue-collar America. Since the 1980s, divorce rates have risen, marital quality has fallen and nonmarital childbearing is skyrocketing among the white lower class. Less than 5% of white college-educated women have children outside of marriage, compared with approximately 40% of white women with just a high-school diploma. The bottom line is that a growing marriage divide now runs through the heart of white America.

This whole article is worth reading, because it talks about some of the other areas that are declining in middle class America. I have added the book to my wishlist.

It seems as though Theodore Dalrymple’s description of the British lower classes in his book “Life at the Bottom” has come to America. He argues in that book that the new moral relativism of the elites works well enough for them because they have money, but it is very harmful to the poor, if the poor adopt moral relativism. I always believed that America would be safe from moral relativism. Recently, I was trying to argue with some British Christians about how the secularization of Britain was leading to the decline of marriage and the nuclear family. I point out their 45% out-of-wedlock birth rate, and they pointed out our 40% out-of-wedlock birth rate. We are right behind them, and it really makes me sad. Children need a mother and a father to take care of them.

When arguing with liberals about the importance of marriage, I like to use two good articles from the Heritage Foundation. I argue that when marriage goes, many bad things happen, like child poverty and child abuse. You would think that the government would do something about the decline of marriage, but people on the secular left often don’t like marriage, because there are traditional roles for husbands and wives that clash with their feminism. They don’t like the working father and the mother staying at home – not even if that creates the most stable environment for the children