Alliance Defending Freedom: It’s days away: The Supreme Court’s marriage decision is expected to come down on June 29.
Robert Maranto and Michael Crouch at the Wall Street Journal: “Abuse, behavioral problems and psychological issues of all kinds, such as developmental behavior problems or concentration issues, are less common for children of married couples than for cohabiting or single parents, according to a 2003 Centers for Disease Control study of children’s health. The causal pathways are about as clear as those from smoking to cancer.”
MacLean’s: “As many as one-third of vegetative patients are misdiagnosed, according to a new study in The Lancet. Using brain imaging techniques, researchers found signs of minimal consciousness in 13 of 42 patients who were considered vegetative. ‘The consequences are huge,’ lead author Dr. Steven Laureys, of the Coma Science Group at the Université de Liège, tells Maclean’s. ‘These patients have emotions; they may feel pain; studies have shown they have a better outcome [than vegetative patients]. Distinguishing between unconscious, and a little bit conscious, is very important.’”
Ron Haskins at National Affairs: “America has been undergoing profound changes in family composition over the last four decades. In 1970, according to that year’s decennial census, 83% of women ages 30 to 34 were married. By 2010, that number had fallen to 57%. This drastic decline in marriage rates has coincided with a steep increase in the non-marital birth rate among all demographic groups, from 11% to almost 41% over the same four decades. In 2010, an astounding 72% of births to African-American women were out of wedlock.”
Maggie Gallagher at National Review Online: “‘After Decades of Decline, A Rise in Stay-at-Home Mothers,’ a new study by D’Vera Cohn, Gretchen Livingston and Wendy Wang, reports that the proportion of women staying home full-time rose 6 percentage points, from an historic low of 23 percent in 1999 to 29 percent in 2012.”
Family Studies: “In my first piece on Arielle Kuperberg’s study on cohabitation that got so much media attention, I focused on broad conceptual issues. In this piece, I am going to focus on more technical matters. While I remain impressed with aspects of Kuperberg’s study, I have concerns about some of the conclusions that can be drawn from the work. To recap, she showed that some of the risk of cohabiting is related to the age at which partners move in together, with those beginning to cohabit at a young age (just like those marrying at a young age) being at a higher risk for divorcing the partner with whom they cohabited prior to marriage. That’s an important finding, but I do not believe that it explains everything that is associated with risk in some patterns of relationship development that are associated with cohabitation before marriage.”
W. Bradford Wilcox at The Atlantic: “What gives? What accounts for the paradox that women’s income is rising across the board yet family income is falling for the bottom 40 percent of families? Mainly, to paraphrase Hanna Rosin, the end of marriage and men in working-class and poor communities across the nation, coupled with the fact that maternal labor-force participation has plateaued since the 1990s. That is, a dramatic retreat from marriage, declines in men’s employment and income, and a leveling off of maternal labor-force participation have all combined to limit the income available to lower-income families, and to offset the increases in women’s income documented in this new report.”
Jonathan Coppage at The American Conservative: “Unfortunately (it is truly unfortunate), there is in fact credible evidence that the well-documented ‘Global War on Baby Girls’ includes a small but active front here in the United States. . . . Causal claims are very difficult to make in social science, but these studies, drawing on relatively large samples and a variety of data sources, are very convincing. Contra Culp-Ressler, Pandit, et al., there is significant evidence that sex-selective abortions are taking place in the United States, at the very least in parts of the Asian American community.”
Sasha Volokh at The Volokh Conspiracy: “How much faith should we put in this study? To know this, we have to know how the study addresses the self-selection problem. Programs are voluntary: no one participates unless they want to. And people who participate in a program might be people who have sufficient motivation to want to change — which is probably correlated to some degree with being a “better person”, in the sense of a person who’s less likely to reoffend later.”
Kay Hymowitz at Family Studies: “A new paper by Sheila Kennedy and Steven Ruggles appearing in the most recent issue of the journal Demography not only battles with the numbers, it kicks them and much of the accepted wisdom about divorce rates out of the house. Divorce has not gone down, they argue compellingly: it has risen to record highs.”
National Catholic Register: ["N]ew research reveals a dark side to using birth control, sparking public discussions featuring star athlete Megan Henry and entertainment personality Ricki Lake that center not on the alleged benefits of contraception, but on the harm women can do to themselves by using these products. . . . A December 2013 poll by the Family Research Council and the Alliance Defending Freedom showed 59% of likely voters oppose forcing employers to buy insurance covering contraceptives and abortifacients.”
Family Studies: “At the Institute of Marriage and Family Canada (IMFC), an Ottawa-based social policy think tank, we wanted to explore the relationship between marriage and income. Census data shows that marriage has declined for decades. We wondered if the decline occurred equally across income levels. Our recent report, The Marriage Gap between Rich and Poor Canadians, offers a big-picture examination of marriage and income.”
Associated Press: “For decades, surgeons have traveled to far-off hospitals to remove organs from brain-dead donors and then rushed back to transplant them. Now an experiment in the Midwest suggests there may be a better way: Bring the donors to the doctors instead.”
National Review: “The Manhattan Institute issued a report recently, finding that when charter schools are co-located with traditional public schools, traditional public schools neither suffer nor gain.”
Kay Hymowitz at Family Studies: “Liberals presume structural forces—poverty, a dearth of marriageable men, and limited access to contraception and abortion—explain the rise in unmarried childbearing of the past half-century. These factors matter, but only up to a point. There’s no way to understand what’s happened to the family without looking at cultural changes as well. A growing number of Americans view having a child and getting married as two entirely unrelated life choices. We shouldn’t be surprised to find that people actually act on their beliefs.”
Washington Times: “The number of American babies conceived with the help of medical technology hit another record in 2012, with nearly two out of every 100 babies born in the country begun with the help of in-vitro fertilization and other techniques, according to a new study released Monday.”
Laurie DeRose at Family Studies: “The life course perspective that he takes uncovers more subtle differences than the well-known facts that single mothers face disadvantages and that cohabitation does not carry all the benefits of marriage. For instance, Barban found that early childbearing and early cohabitation are associated with poorer self-reported health, more depression, and more risk behaviors (drinking and smoking), but early marriage is not. Also, short cohabitations followed by marriage do not seem to compromise health, but long-term cohabitations as well as repeated cohabitations do. More generally, lots of family transitions are bad for health, but with an important exception: normative transitions in a traditional sequence enhance health status.”
Anna Sutherland at Family Studies: “As the below chart shows, the prevalence of cohabitation has greatly increased among all age groups since 1987. Approximately two-thirds of marriages were preceded by cohabitation between 2005 and 2009, up from one-third of marriages in the late 1970s. (As that figure implies, most Americans’ first union is cohabitation rather than marriage.)”
Anna Sutherland at Family Studies: “Growing up without a father—whether that’s due to divorce, a nonmarital birth, or a father’s death—is associated with a host of negative effects. But given that children from low-income families, for instance, are more likely to live apart from their father in the first place, it can be hard to tell to what extent an absent father causes the problems that father absence is associated with, and to what extent other factors related to both family structure and child outcomes (like household income) are to blame.”
AP: “Gay and bisexual teen boys use illicit steroids at a rate almost six times higher than do straight kids, a ‘dramatic disparity’ that points up a need to reach out to this group, researchers say.”
AP: “The Guttmacher Institute, which supports legal access to abortion, said in a report being issued Monday that there were about 1.06 million abortions in 2011 – down from about 1.2 million in 2008.”
Mathematica Policy Research: “Compared to the voluminous literature on test scores, research on the impact of charter schools on long-term outcomes is sparse. Using data from Florida and Chicago, we measure the effects of charter high schools on graduation, college enrollment, and college persistence. In Florida we also provide the first evidence on the effects of charter schools on earnings in adulthood. We find evidence suggesting that charter high schools are not only increasing post-secondary educational attainment but also boosting long-run earnings.”
W. Bradford Wilcox at Slate: “Of all the factors most predictive of economic mobility in America, one factor clearly stands out in their study: family structure. By their reckoning, when it comes to mobility, ‘the strongest and most robust predictor is the fraction of children with single parents.’ They find that children raised in communities with high percentages of single mothers are significantly less likely to experience absolute and relative mobility.” The study is here.
Michael New at NRO: “Earlier this month, the Guttmacher Institute released their 2013 state-policy review. The report indicates that pro-lifers continue to make very good legislative progress at the state level. In 2013, 70 state-level pro-life measures were enacted — making 2013 the second most productive year on record. The report specifically cites Texas, North Dakota, North Carolina, and Arkansas as being especially active in passing pro-life laws. Overall, according to Guttmacher, there have been more pro-life laws passed between 2011 and 2013 than in the entire previous decade.”
National Review: “Researchers normally measure parental satisfaction with simple surveys, but a new paper by Robert Shapiro and Kevin Hassett offers a more rigorous test: Are parents willing to pay a premium to live in an area with more school options?”
Pew Forum: “The share of countries with a high or very high level of social hostilities involving religion reached a six-year peak in 2012, according to a new study by the Pew Research Center.”
LifeSiteNews: One out of every four women who seeks an abortion has been a victim of abuse, according to a new meta-analysis. In the study, which was published online yesterday in the peer-reviewed open access journal PLOS Medicine, the researchers found that intimate partner violence (IPV) is associated with higher abortion rates and repeat abortions.
LifeNews: A new study reveals that about 25 percent of women who got an abortion faced some sort of abuse beforehand — whether it be physical, sexual or emotional in nature. The study, a new meta-analysis published in the peer-reviewed medical journal PLOS Medicine, provides more confirmation that abortion is part of the pattern of abuse against women.
National Catholic Register: “A new study of women in India reveals that having used birth-control pills elevates the risk of developing breast cancer nearly tenfold, and having had an abortion increases their risk of breast cancer more than sixfold.”
The study is here.
NBC: A new briefing paper, written by Williams and released Monday by the Council on Contemporary Families, argues that even when single mothers do later marry, those marriages are not necessarily beneficial to the women and their children.
Dan Peterson at Patheos: I remarked the other day that, in the ongoing debate about same-sex “marriage,” I’ve been struck by how rarely — at least in my reading — advocates of SSM mention the rights or interests of children.
The American: The controversy over a recent study on gay parenting illustrates a sociopolitical groupthink operating in the social scientific community. Scientists should go where the science takes them, not where their politics does.
Christian Post: Kids need dads, according to a neurobiological study published this month in the journal Cerebral Cortex. The absence of fathers during childhood may lead to impaired behavioral and social abilities, and brain defects, researchers at the Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre, Montreal, Canada, found.
Reuters: For example, the declaration provides the foundation for much of the agenda of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom, on which we serve. Yet 75 percent of the world’s population now lives in countries in which this freedom is highly restricted, according to a recent Pew study.
LifeSiteNews: A new study shows that growing up without a father not only affects behavior – it transforms children’s brain structure. That’s the verdict reached by the Research Institute of the McGill University Health Center and recently published in the journal Cerebral Cortex. | Francis R. Bambico, Baptiste Lacoste, Patrick R. Hattan, and Gabriella Gobbi, Father Absence in the Monogamous California Mouse Impairs Social Behavior and Modifies Dopamine and Glutamate Synapses in the Medial Prefrontal Cortex
Laurie DeRose at Family Studies: And yet in “Determinants of Long-Term Unions: Who Survives the ‘Seven Year Itch’?” Audrey Light and Yoshiaki Omori make the case that unions entered via cohabitation contribute to women’s chances of experiencing a union that lasts 12 years or more precisely because “the high probability of entering a cohabiting union more than offsets the relatively low probability of maintaining it for the long-term.” In other words, the high volume of cohabitation means that even with a short average duration, there will still be enough outliers that a significant fraction of long-term unions are cohabitations or began with cohabitation.
C-FAM: A human rights defender is accusing abortion activists of intimidating witnesses to cover up lethal side effects and unethical medical trials of a long-lasting contraceptive injected in women in Africa.
The College Fix: “One possible reason for this is the students who are victimizing their peers have learned the language from these anti-bullying campaigns and programs,” Seokjin Jeong, an assistant professor of criminology and criminal justice at UT-Arlington and lead author of the study, said in a campus statement. Jeong did not respond to requests for comment by The College Fix. His research, titled “A Multilevel Examination of Peer Victimization and Bullying Preventions in Schools,” was recently published in The Journal of Criminology.
The hardwired difference between male and female brains could explain why men are ‘better at map reading’
The Independent: A pioneering study has shown for the first time that the brains of men and women are wired up differently which could explain some of the stereotypical differences in male and female behaviour, scientists have said . . . “These maps show us a stark difference – and complementarity – in the architecture of the human brain that helps to provide a potential neural basis as to why men excel at certain tasks, and women at others,” said Ragini Verma, professor of radiology at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia.
LifeNews: Now a powerful new study from China published last week by Yubei Huang and colleagues suggests otherwise. The article, a meta-analysis pooling 36 studies from 14 provinces in China,showed that abortion increased the risk of breast cancer by 44% with one abortion, and 76% and 89% with two and three abortions.
CBS Local: The study, recently published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, first rated each member of the couples by “objective,” independent researchers, and then asked up to eight times over the first four years of marriage to rate their satisfaction.
MLive.com: “Our study extends this current work by noting that LGBT discrimination can also affect how and what people dream for their future,” U-M professor José Bauermeister said in a release. “[Gay men's] dreams about becoming fathers—may fail to be a protective factor towards their psychological health if they live in states where LGBT discriminatory policies are in place.”
TheLeader.info: Infants conceived with techniques used in fertility clinics, are four times more likely to have certain birth defects and malformations than children conceived naturally, according to a study by researchers at the University of Lund ( Sweden).
W. Bradford Wilcox at the Atlantic: Young people from less-privileged homes are more likely to graduate from college and earn more if raised by two married parents.
Ruth Institute: Although it can be tempting to jump to conclusions, more studies with large, randomly-selected samples must be conducted before it will be clear whether there are differences between same-sex and opposite-sex parenting . . . Economist Doug Allen’s new study, published earlier this month, found lower high-school graduation rates among children of same-sex couples than those of opposite-sex couples and even single parents. (A brief and informative summary of the study is available here.)
Nathan Cherry at Engage Family Minute: Now, for starters we have to understand that homosexuals and their advocates, as well as liberal lawmakers and talking heads are telling us that moms and dads don’t matter, all that matters is a “loving family.” The question now becomes, “Does the data support this assertion?”
Jonathan V. Last at Weekly Standard: While everyone else has spent the last few days obsessing about Gravity, the government shutdown, and the real possibility that the NFC East division champ will have six wins, it’s quietly been an interesting week for sociology nerds who think about marriage.
A Married Mom and Dad Really Do Matter: New Evidence from Canada | Mark Regnerus at Public Discourse
Mark Regnerus at Public Discourse: A study published last week in the journal Review of the Economics of the Household—analyzing data from a very large, population-based sample—reveals that the children of gay and lesbian couples are only about 65 percent as likely to have graduated from high school as the children of married, opposite-sex couples. And gender matters, too: girls are more apt to struggle than boys, with daughters of gay parents displaying dramatically low graduation rates.
Maggie Gallagher at National Review: Using Canadian census data, a very large and therefore representative database, Canadian professor Douglas Allen of Simon Frazier University finds that children raised by intact, married biological parents do better than children raised by same-sex couples. From the abstract, yes, published in a peer-reviewed journal . . .
Austin American-Statesman: A University of Texas study indicates that more than 22,200 Texas women would be prevented from obtaining an abortion in the next year if stricter regulations go into effect later this month, a court filing shows.
BBC: Now scientists at the Spanish National Cancer Research Centre in Madrid have achieved the same results inside an animal.
The Daily Progress: Cohabiting mothers are more likely than mothers not living with a partner to be living below the federal poverty line, Rorem said – about 42 percent of cohabiting mothers in Virginia are considered “poor” by federal standards, compared with 37 percent of single mothers not living with a partner.
LifeNews: A study published in the Journal of Pain and Symptom Management – November 2011 titled:Process and Outcomes of Euthanasia Requests Under the Belgian Act on Euthanasia: A Nationwide Survey found that only 5% of requests for euthanasia in Belgium are refused.
This Week: According to a new study, “Intimate Inequalities: Love and Work in a Post-Industrial Landscape,” presented at the American Sociological Association, there’s now a noticeable class divide when it comes to marriage — and money worries are likely to blame.
Bioedge: The Dalgettys are an extreme case, but natural conception after an IVF birth is not uncommon, according to Australian research published in published in the Australian and New Zealand Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology. One in three women who have their first baby through infertility treatment, become pregnant again naturally within two years of their first birth.
LifeNews: The Bangladesh study published in the Journal of Dhaka Medical College on risk factors for breast cancer, led by Dr Suraiya Jabeen, found a statistically significant 20.62-fold increased risk among women with abortion histories.
CNSNews: A study soon to be published by the Harvard Kennedy School of Government’s LGBTQ Policy Journal is recommending “additional changes to military policies in order to allow transgender people to serve openly and with honor.”
Brian Brown at Public Discourse: To defend marriage, we must reframe the narratives that shape our culture and our minds . . . How that happens is the topic of a new publication from the John Jay Institute, entitled You’ve Been Framed: A New Primer for the Marriage Debate. Authored by Nathan Hitchen, the document applies insights from narrative theory and cognitive science to reveal the range of ways in which people are inspired to accept new “common sense.”
LifeNews: A Bangladesh study published in the Journal of Dhaka Medical College on risk factors for breast cancer, led by Dr. Suraiya Jabeen, found a statistically significant 20.62-fold increased risk among women with abortion histories . . . abeen S, et al. Breast cancer and some epidemiological factors: A hospital based study. Journal of Dhaka Medical College 2013;22(1):61-66. Available at:
CNSNews: The final installment of a federal grant worth over $2 million has been awarded by the National Institutes of Health to a researcher studying how cultural stigmas affect the sexual behavior of homosexual men in China.
Australian: Donna Bobbitt-Zeher, a sociologist and co-author of the paper, which was presented at the American Sociological Association’s annual meeting in New York, said: “With siblings, you’re having to manage friendships. You’re having to navigate ups and downs with other people, and get along with someone who is not necessarily like you.”
Pew Charitable Trusts Stateline: Thirteen states created or expanded tuition tax credits, private school scholarships or traditional vouchers in 2013, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. Eight states did so in 2012 and seven states in 2011, according to the group.
Townhall: According to a National Center for Family and Marriage Research (NCFMR) study, the U.S. marriage rate is on the decline. Whereas 92 out of 1,000 single women married in 1920, only 31 out of 1,000 are marrying today. In a 2011 study, the Pew Research Center found that 51 percent of Americans were married . . .
LifeSiteNews: The “U.S. Fertility Forecast” report, released today by Demographic Intelligence of Charlottesville, Virginia, found that women who regularly attend religious services were more likely to have large families than those who did not.
New meta-analysis of post-abortive women and mental illness bolsters case for post-abortion syndrome
LifeSiteNews: A new metastudy performed by researchers at the University of Siena seems to show a clear link between abortion and subsequent mental illnesses like depression, substance abuse, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), leading the study’s authors to call for additional research dedicated to the issue. Dr. Carlo V. Bellini and Guiseppe Buonocore . . .
Maggie Gallagher at NRO: The New York Times is reporting on thisincredibly detailed study looking at variations in what proportion of kids raised in the bottom fifth income-wise rise to the top fifth as adults.
Science Daily: Fewer women are getting married and they’re waiting longer to tie the knot when they do decide to walk down the aisle. That’s according to a new Family Profile from the National Center for Family and Marriage Research (NCFMR) at Bowling Green State University.
C-FAM: The World Health Organization ignored it. Medical journals downplayed it. Now researchers admit – backhandedly – a link between abortion and preterm births. Authors of a new study hypothesize that modernizing abortion methods reduces the risk of premature births. Yet most notably, it admits that the link to abortion existed in the first place.
U.S. News and World Report: Devout, married Catholics have the best sex of any demographic group, the Family Research Council said at an event Wednesday, pointing to a collection of studies from the last several decades.
Pacific Standard: A report out now in the journal Psychology, Crime & Law measured the impact of divorce on male offenders, by looking at their criminal activity both before and after a marital breakdown.
Think Progress: A new study has once again confirmed that same-sex couples are just as effective at raising children as opposite-sex couples. Focusing specifically on children adopted at an early age, the study compared gay and lesbian couples to straight couples who were all becoming parents for the first time. Though there were differences in the children’s psychological adjustment, they were not affected by their family type.