At long last, I’ve finally gotten around to reading Ann Coulter’s latest tome, Guilty: Liberal “Victims” and Their Assault on America. So far, the book has been outstanding and I would highly recommend it.
As fans of Ann Coulter’s books know, she has made a name for herself by throwing bombs, but she is also one of the best researchers in the business. In her latest book, the statistics she cites on the negative effects of single motherhood on children are so stunning that I thought those stats alone deserved a stand-alone post.
What follows is culled from the chapter in Guilty: Liberal “Victims” and Their Assault on America entitled, “Victim of a crime? Thank a Single Mother.”
Now, it’s worth noting that I don’t list these numbers to put down single mothers or insinuate that they’re bad parents, because I don’t think that’s the case. However, as a society, we need to understand: staying in marriage, even a bad marriage, is better for the children except in the most egregious cases because single parents, even conscientious, well meaning single parents, generally don’t do as good a job raising their children as two parent families. If you don’t buy that right now, I think you will after you take a look at these numbers.
“Of all single mothers in America, only 6.5 percent of them are widows, 37.8 percent are divorced, and 41.3 percent gave birth out of wedlock. The 6.5 percent of single mothers whose husbands have died shouldn’t be called ‘single mothers’ at all. We already have a word for them: ‘widows.’ Their children do just fine compared with the children of married parents.” — P.35
“Here is the lottery ticket that single mothers are handing their innocent children by choosing to raise them without fathers: Controlling for socioeconomic status, race, and place of residence, the strongest predictor of whether a person will end up in prison is that he was raised by a single parent. By 1996, 70 percent of inmates in state juvenile detention centers serving long-term sentences were raised by single mothers. Seventy-two percent of juvenile murderers and 60 percent of rapists come from single-mother homes. Seventy percent of teenage births, dropouts, suicides, runaways, juvenile delinquents, and child murderers involve children raised by single mothers. Girls raised without fathers are more sexually promiscuous and more likely to end up divorced. A 1990 study by the Progressive Policy Institute showed that after controlling for single motherhood, the difference between black and white crime rates disappeared.
Various studies have come up with slightly different numbers, but all the figures are grim. According to the Index of Leading Cultural Indicators, children from single-parent families account for 63 percent of all youth suicides, 70 percent of all teenage pregnancies, 71 percent of all adolescent chemical/substance abuse, 80 percent of all prison inmates, and 90 percent of all homeless and runaway children.
A study cited in the Village Voice produced similar numbers. It found that children brought up in single-mother homes ‘are five times more likely to commit suicide, nine times more likely to drop out of high school, 10 times more likely to abuse chemical substances, 14 times more likely to commit rape (for the boys), 20 times more likely to end up in prison, and 32 times more likely to run away from home.’ Single motherhood is like a farm team for future criminals and social outcasts.
….Many of these studies, for example, are from the 1990s, when the percentage of teenagers raised by single parents was lower than it is today. In 1990, 28 percent of children under eighteen were being raised in one-parent homes (mother or father), and 71 percent were being raised in two-parent homes. By 2005, more than one-third of all babies born in the United States were illegitimate. That’s a lot of social problems coming.
…Imagine an America with 70 percent fewer juvenile delinquents, 70 percent fewer teenage births, 63 to 70 percent fewer teenage suicides, and 70 percent to 90 percent fewer runaways and you will appreciate what the sainted single mothers have accomplished.” — P.37-38
“But Americans used to be able to care about the circumstances of their children’s births: The illegitimacy rate has gone up by more than 300 percent since 1970. Moreover, even assuming that, sometime around the year of 1969, the entire human race lost the ability to defer gratification, there’s still the wholly volitional decision not to give the baby up for adoption.
In 1979, only about 600,000 babies were born out of wedlock and one quarter of them were put up for adoption. By 1991, the number of illegitimate births had doubled to 1,225,000 annually, but only 4 percent were allowed to be adopted — and most of those babies were snapped up by either Angelina Jolie or Mia Farrow. By 2003, 1.5 million illegitimate babies were born every year, but only about 14,000 of them, less than 1 percent, were put for adoption. Not surprisingly, unwed mothers who care enough to give their children up for adoption also come overwhelmingly from responsible backgrounds. They tend to have higher education and income levels and to come from intact upper-middle-class families with highly educated parents.
You will note that we do not read about adopted children filling up the prisons, welfare rolls, and runaway shelters. Adopted children are no worse off — and, indeed, are generally better off — than nonadopted children.” — P.43
“A 2008 study led by Georgia State University economist Benjamin Scafidi found that single mothers — unwed or divorced — cost the US taxpayer $112 billion every year.” — P.51
“According to the US Justice Department crime statistics, domestic abuse is virtually nonexistent for married women living with their husbands. From 1993 to 2005, the number of married women victimized by their husbands ranged from 0.9 to 3.2 per 1000. Domestic violence was about 40 times more likely among divorced or separated women, ranging from 37.7 to 118.5 per 1000. Even never married women were more than twice as likely to be victims of domestic violence as married women.” — P.57-58
“A Cornell study found that unwed mothers are 30 percent less likely to marry than other single women…” — P.70