Marriage, we have just learned, is a major cause of the growing great divide among American upper and lower classes.
Last week, in advance of National Marriage Week USA (Feb. 7-14), I took note of fresh news about marriage that should make every American stand up in alert attention.
In mid-January, the Pew Research Center told us 72% of all adults ages 18 and older were married in 1960; but today just 51% are—a record low.
... Research is overwhelming on the fact that this disadvantages children on an enormous scale—think increased teen pregnancies, increased prison populations, and children who grow up with no modeling for how to attain healthy marriage in the next generation.
So what can be done? New York Times columnist David Brooks, who cites “Coming Apart” as probably the most important book of the year, calls for a two-year mandatory national service program to teach responsible behaviors. (Murray cites a loss of the four core American values—marriage, honesty, industrious, and religion—as all contributing to the growing economic woes of the working class.)
Brad Wilcox, head of the National Marriage Project, calls for creators of film and television to promote the values by which the elite live, but because they are stuck in the grips of nonjudgmentalism, do not promote the values of marriage, hard work, obeying the law, and faith as the path to human flourishing.
In these economically challenging times, we must commit ourselves to lowering the high cost of retreat from marriage.
... This is why caring leaders are creating a new national observance designed to strengthen and support marriages, called National Marriage Week USA to be observed from February 7 to 14 each year.
If you are fortunate enough to be in a marriage, I encourage you to take care of it.
Whether you are married or not, Americans should be supportive of promoting marriage prior to childbearing and the strengthening of marriage at all socio-economic levels.
Nothing short of the future of our country, and our way of life, depends on it.