Eagle Forum Legislative Alerts

Friday, November 23, 2012

The Fertility Gap

While the press talks about the Gender Gap in political voting, I have posted here about the Marriage Gap Possibility Gap. Now NY Magazine writes about the Fertility Gap:
But another, even more powerful feminine factor was at play in this election, as it has been in races past: Almost invisibly over the past decade, family size in America has emerged as our deepest political dividing line.

Stunningly, the postponement of marriage and parenting — the factors that shrink the birth rate — is the very best predictor of a person’s politics in the United States, over even income and education levels, a Belgian demographer named Ron Lesthaeghe has discovered. Larger family size in America correlates to early marriage and childbirth, lower women’s employment, and opposition to gay rights — all social factors that lead voters to see red. The converse, according to futurist Joel Kotkin, marks “the rise of post-familialism,” overturning the notion that a woman's life requires a wedding dress and at least two kids to dutifully rear. David Brooks devoted a column to this report Friday, and his reaction demonstrates the red blood spilling over our shift to a freer attitude toward life and family choices. “People are not better off when they are given maximum personal freedom to do what they want,” Brooks wrote. “They’re better off when they are enshrouded in commitments that transcend personal choice — commitments to family, God, craft and country.”
This makes sense to me. Families with kids are more likely to have a future time orientation, a desire for family autonomy, and a belief in traditional American values. Others are more likely to be narcissists who are willing to be dependent on borrowed government money.

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