In the US, the future of a child now depends increasingly on whether the parents have said “I do” or not. Or, that’s how an article from the NY Times presents the issues. And concerned as I am about what this tells us about the future of our societies, I am also intrigued by this co-opting of marriage.
The article presents research and findings about the success of children from different types of families. It persists in talking about marriage and married couples. And, yet the findings are more about two-parent households. They speak to how much more children have when they live in a household with two incomes and with two parents to share the parenting. The findings are not about marriage.
I think that the British press would be just as concerned about the future of our children. But I don’t think they’d get tied up with marriage – not for this argument, at least, but I might be wrong. Certainly, in a companion piece to this article, Andrew Leigh, an member of the Australian House of Representatives, the lower house in the federal parliament, talks about raising children “with two adults” and concerns about the “decline of partnership”.
I am intrigued that a problem that is of concern to all of us can be presented from such different angles.
The articles can be found:
In the Review section of the Australian Financial Review from Friday 3 August 2012, if you have access to the paid content. The article from the New York Times here and the companion piece by Andrew Leigh here.
The piece by Andrew Leigh is also on his own blog with links to other material. Find that here.
He includes a link to the original NY Times article, which is here.