DID ROE v. WADE CAUSE ILLEGITIMACY?
John R. Lott’s Wall Street Journal article, titled “It's Not Enough to Be 'Wanted', imperfectly points out the essential dynamics underlying how Roe v. Wade led to rampant illegitimacy. But, this is only a rest stop half-way to Peoria.
Briefly, Lott explains how Roe may have led to lax attitudes towards premarital sex by women, who upon getting pregnant out of wedlock, had choices to keep or abort the baby.
In Lott's theory, women who once married or put the baby up for adoption now had other options: abortion or single motherhood. Lott's analysis is fatally flawed because he does not incorporate the controlling role of contraceptives in sexual behavior or explain its impact on marriage, abortion, and illegitimacy. Lott weighs the importance of contraceptives with extraordinarily passive abandon:
This is a backwards analysis: Contraceptives are what brought on the “free sex” revolution. Contraceptives disconnected sex from reproduction (and abortion), and made abortion largely unnecessary. The availability of abortion as a “backup” has little impact on women being “less careful” about using contraceptives.
Lott assumes that women “accidentally” get pregnant out of wedlock, and then for moral reasons want to keep the baby or then want an abortion. Lott thinks the polarizing nexus is between abortion and “pro-life” illegitimacy. He is tragically wrong on both counts.
Few women “accidentally” get pregnant out of wedlock. Birth control is more effective than at any time in human civilization. The birth control pill has been widely available since introduction in 1960 – during which time illegitimacy exploded.
The most-effective forms of birth control are invisible to the male, who has no way to know that birth control is actually being used. Women who do not want to get pregnant use birth control. They do not get pregnant. Abortion is rarely an issue in this picture because responsible women use contraceptives to avoid the traps of illegitimacy, single-motherhood, abortion, or marriage to a man they do not really wish to marry.
The Powerful Effect of Welfare and Child-Support Entitlements
Women who want to become single mothers merely say they are using birth control, get pregnant out of wedlock, marry the welfare (now the child-support state), dragging suckered men into peonage as servants and political scapegoats of it all. Abortion is not a major element for these women: they want to get pregnant out of wedlock.
Those who oppose abortion on moral grounds often make the mistake of believing they must endorse the child-support state so women will not “choose” abortion. This caused the “moral majority” to tragically drive the problem of illegitimacy it claims to oppose. Automated child support and welfare entitlements have been hyper-stimulating millions of women to intentionally get pregnant out of wedlock for many years. In parallel, imagine for a moment what would happen if abortion were an entitled activity!
Lott’s analysis on men’s response is particularly slothful. He does not consider why record numbers of women get pregnant out of wedlock in the first place:
Illegitimacy Prior to 1973
If Lott’s analysis is correct, a palpable increase in illegitimacy rates would correlate with the Roe. V. Wade decision. There is no substantive correlation to be found.
Illegitimacy was already rampant in the black community in the 1960’s. Black illegitimacy rates had climbed from 16.8% in 1940 to 23.6% in 1960, with one in four black families headed by a single mother. White illegitimacy went from 2% to 3.07%. The rise of illegitimacy was then attributed to high unemployment rates among black males.
Even back then, Senator Patrick Moynihan attributed the continuing black illegitimacy rate to an already-established pathology of intergenerational illegitimacy and under-parented children. But the Johnson Great Society, glibly marketed as the way "to help the American Negro move beyond opportunity to achievement", instead entitled the pathology leaving even more single-mothers addicted to welfare benefits derived by having more children out of wedlock.
Illegitimacy After 1973
Between 1970 and 1994, overall illegitimacy rates rose from 10.7% to 32.6% of all births roguhly a 10% increase per decade. We see that the trend line of illegitimacy before and after Roe reasonably straight, representing a steady continual increase in illegitimacy. Clearly, where about hals children are now raised by single mothers, we can no longer attribute either illegitimacy or divorce to male unemployment. The primary causal factor today is that non-marital childbearing and childrearing is heavily entitled by the largest line item in the Federal budget.
How Roe Magnifies the War On Fatherhood
America is experiencing record illegitimacy rates – today predominantly driven by women over the age of twenty who are not sexual neophytes and who know how to use (or not use) birth control as the trump in the deadly feminist card game of socio-political power.
We see that America’s modern dark age is, in fact, a result of the war on fatherhood. Authors such as David Kupelian, Reverend Jesse Lee Peterson,  and Dr. Stephen Baskerville  have documented this is breathtaking detail.
The war on fatherhood is powered by the tenet established in Roe holding that reproductive choice and decision-making is the unquestionable sole right of women – the world required to cater to the manifest destiny of the female reproductive tract.
Roe is the basis on which, enhanced by women’s sole right to “choose” birth control and to subsequently marry or not marry; moved procreation from the cooperative realm of responsible marriage into a brave new world of willful welfarism which no one is permitted to question but everyone must pay for. Most politically-inclined men and women fall all over themselves in a race to enhance unrestrained sexual availability of women – and to subsequently force other men into peonage to it -- but at the expense of their own marital and social futures. The blame is improperly placed at the feet of men, who in fact have little sway in the face of entitled feminist reproductive manifest destiny.
Contemporary Political Ramifications
Obama has staked his position on dangerous ground: he would continue mass sacrifices of young black men on the platter of entitled radical feminism -- expanding a $612-billion federal enterprise -- thus keeping the black family weak, broken, and living in urban violence. Barack Obama is one very dangerous Candy Man who intends to sacrifice the men of his own black community for political power. He must be avoided at all costs.
Senator John McCain is no better. Neither is Hillary, Giuliani, or Thompson. In fact, the only presidential candidates in either party who weighed in positively in this critical keystone electoral issue are Governor Mike Huckabee and Dr. Mark Klein.
Few members of Congress have honestly stepped up to the plate. In fact, the vast majority of them are chronic supporters of congressional false-paternalism, and do so against the wishes of thousands of Americans who contact them. America is not stupid: The latest Gallup poll shows Congressional approval at a new historic low of 14%, a full 4% lower than the previous record. This is astonishingly poor for a newly-elected Congress. Congress must start serving America, not the reverse.
Marriage is the most important issue in the 2008 elections. The War on marriage is just as important as the war on terror – because this war has caused more casualties and human suffering of Americans right here on American soil than any other event in American history.
When marriage is important, abortion is not needed. When marriage is important, the child support state will become a bygone relic of the suffocating radical feminist entitlement era. When marriage is important, few women and children will live in poverty, and the working poor have a stronger socioeconomic foundation on which to base advancement.
will reap exactly what we sow (and what we entitle). We must demand
that politicians stop ramming the child-support state down our throats.
We need programs that encourage and reward marital responsibility,
and help spouses work through the common problems and processes of
marriage and aging. The first party or presidential candidate to deliver
on this need will win a landslide victory that makes the Republican
takeover of 1994 look like Sputnik’s first flight.
Lott, John R.; "It's
Not Enough to Be 'Wanted,'" Wall Street Journal, June 19,
© 2007 David Usher - All
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David R. Usher is Legislative Analyst for the American Coalition for Fathers and Children, Missouri Coalition and is a co-founder and past Secretary of the American Coalition for Fathers and Children.
When marriage is important, abortion is not needed. When marriage is important, the child support state will become a bygone relic of the suffocating radical feminist entitlement era. When marriage is important, few women and children will live in poverty...