Marriage and Restoring the Work Ethic: Solutions to Poverty & Unemployment Dale L. Shumway

       Ah, yes marriage! That crucial ingredient—cornerstone of man and the gods. Will it survive in this goofy time, when everything is right, and a right; and, almost nothing is wrong. The good news is that all we Grandpa’s worship traditional marriage and have wives that feel reasonably serene sitting across the breakfast table from us each morning.
  The bad family news is that some Grandpas have a child or grandchild, over 25, who need to participate in that great event known as a wedding. Possibly we should bring all those lacking a romantic partner to BYU’s Marriott Center, lock them inside, and not let them leave until they are matched or mated.

          Some of the economics of our country, particularly for the single folk, will even make men like Hercules weep. As we begin 2014 the Labor Department reports that a stunning 92 million of our citizens aren’t holding a job—aren’t working.

          Let’s talk about marriage and money. Eric Klinenberg, a sociologist from NYU has written a book featuring research about decreasing marriage rates in our country, named Going Solo. “About 22 per cent of American adults were single in 1950; today in 2012 more than 50 per cent of adults are single.” Wow! That number certainly isn’t true in our community, but it could be accurate nationwide.

Other confound statistics indicate that in families headed by two parents in 2012 the poverty rate was 7.5%,but in families headed by a single mother the rate jumps to 33.9% Female headed families are growing in our country as a Heritage Foundation study found that 28.6% of children  born to white mothers were out of wedlock; for Hispanics, 52.5%, and for African-Americans 73.3%.

Marriage makes a big difference as the poverty rates among white married couples was 3.2%, while among Anglo non-married families the rate was 22%. Among Black married families the poverty rate was 7%, while among Black non-marrieds it was 36%.

How important is a great education in enhancing our grandkids marriage prospects and financial security?  Research by Charles Murray shows that college educated young people marry at an 84 % rate while those who are less educated marry at about 48 per cent. University of Virginia research show that children from intact marriages are far more likely to attend and graduate from college, earn higher wages than those from broken homes.

In 1996 President Bill Clinton and Republican Newt Gingrich worked together  to legislate the need for those receiving Welfare Assistance to seek and begin working again. And Welfare rolls declined by one half within five years. Sadly, the Obama administration has removed most of these go to work requirements.

Today a person may receive Unemployment benefits for 47 months, almost a year. And, the president and congress want to extend these benefits. Amazingly, the Deseret News, in a January 2, 2014 editorial also urged an extension of these benefits. Possibly, they were deceived. How do I dare make such a challenge? Let’s look at what North Carolina has recently done. They dramatically cut the amount of cash jobless folks receive, and they also reduced the number of weeks that their citizens could receive these benefits. What happened? The unemployment rate fell within months. By last November North Carolina’s unemployment was at a five year low.

In summary, we family loving folks should emphasize the joys and financial benefits of family, of  being married, teaching our grandkids to work, and that in our state and nationally, all federal and state handouts should be as temporary as possible.Our citizens also need to re-kindle the old-fashioned Puritan work-ethic that made our country great.

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