Falling apart?

Americans increasingly abandoning positive traditional culture

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Jerry Springer, television’s pestiferous purveyor of raunch, recently joked – we think – that he’s the “father of the destruction of Western civilization.”

We don’t know if either part is true: that Western civilization is being destroyed, or that Springer is the cause.

But the trends are troubling.

Institutions that have given form to Western society for centuries – marriage, family, church – have eroded sharply in the past half-century, and have undergone dramatic change in just the past few years. Some of the nation’s most vexing social ills – poverty, crime, educational underachievement and more – often have their roots in the
waning of those institutions.

What we used to call illegitimacy accounts for much of it. And it’s skyrocketing, currently at 41 percent. Someday soon, half of all children may be born out of wedlock. And the marriage rate of 51 percent indicates married people may soon be the new minority.

Says a study by the University of Virginia’s Dr. W. Bradford Wilcox: “Children born to unmarried mothers are significantly more likely than children born to married parents to suffer from poverty, physical and sexual abuse and neglect, psychological problems such as depression, delinquency and criminal activity, and educational failure. ...

“Dr. George Akerlof, a Nobel-prize-winning economist at the University of California-Berkeley, is particularly perceptive in this regard. In two different studies, he argues that the sexual revolution – aided in part by widespread contraception – fueled a dramatic increase in premarital sex, and reduced the normative imperative that men should take responsibility for the children they help bring into the world by marrying; these two developments, in turn, led to dramatic increases in non-marital childbearing. From this research, Dr. Akerlof concludes that the sexual revolution played an important role in the nation’s retreat from marriage over the last four decades, and is indirectly responsible for the social consequences of that retreat. ...

“The bottom line is this: the erosion of the norm of premarital sexual abstinence, both in belief and behavior, appears to have played an important role in the weakening of American family life and, in turn, some of the nation’s most pressing social problems.”

The thing is, rather than confront such problems, our society has celebrated them. Marriage and premarital abstinence have been ridiculed and marginalized, while contraceptives have become a civil right and single motherhood has been beatified.

The Oxygen network recently canceled plans for a reality show called All My Babies’ Mamas – about a man who has 11 children with 10 different women – perhaps only because of a conservative outcry against it.

In last year’s election, a campaign video showed how a fictional, apparently single mother named Julia would have a great life with cradle-to-grave government nurturing.

“It was a strange presentation on the good life – one that is, I would say, foreign to traditional American culture,” says Scott Phelps, executive director of the national Abstinence and Marriage Education Partnership, who spoke in Columbia County last week on behalf of the Augusta Care Pregnancy Center.

In short, traditional American culture doesn’t fare well anymore. And we are headed into largely uncharted waters societally.

Phelps and his organization, which provides marriage and family curricula to parents and schools in all 50 states, believes objective facts are on the side of traditional American beliefs. Social science research, he says, demonstrates that people who are married live longer, are healthier, earn more, and report more happiness and satisfaction with their lives.

And a University of Michigan study, he notes,
indicates 90 percent of youths think a good marriage and family are very important to their
futures.

But that’s hardly what they’re seeing, often at home and certainly not in the media. Not on Jerry Springer, anyway.

One young woman told Phelps a few years ago that she’d never thought of being abstinent before marriage, but that the thought appealed to her.

That, and other healthy behaviors, might appeal to a whole bunch of American kids. But they’ve got to be exposed to it – somewhere.

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KSL
130050
Points
KSL 01/20/13 - 08:36 pm
3
2
Exactly

A lot of people got out of poverty before the safety net existed because they needed to. Now they don't have to. And families don't have to step up and help their family members because the giverment is there to help.

Truth Matters
6875
Points
Truth Matters 01/20/13 - 09:00 pm
3
2
Values

There are threats to all segments of society. Perhaps the greatest threat to those of affluence is the belief that there value system some hom insulates them from those devoid of pro-social values. As long as they believe that it's primarily the poor who break the law and kill others they do so at their own peril. The girl who was given a date rape drug then killed was from the "right" neighborhood. The sad case of the wife murdered in Windmill Plantation by a son-mother team because the mother was having an affair with the husband, was in the "right" neighborhood.

We do a disservice to everyone when we judge an entire group of people by the abhorrent behavior of some in that group.

I don't believe that all people who self identify as a conservative is mean-spirited, nor do I believe those who prefer the label of liberal or progressive is looking for a hand out. To suggest either is the ultimate insult. Does any one truly know someone (you know their full name, where they live, their kids' names, if any, know where they used to work) who quit a job since 2009 because they were expecting the president to give them "stuff?"

Maybe we all need to have more exposure to the life of those different from ourselves so we can discern that which is true and that which is not.

palmetto1008
9782
Points
palmetto1008 01/20/13 - 09:05 pm
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3
thank you, truth matters, for
Unpublished

thank you, truth matters, for having the energy to address those folks who live in such a black and white world.

carcraft
25947
Points
carcraft 01/20/13 - 09:10 pm
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2
Truth, I know no one who has

Truth, I know no one who has quit a job, but I know people who quit looking because of the extended unemployment benefits.

Willow Bailey
20580
Points
Willow Bailey 01/20/13 - 09:16 pm
3
2
I do love those hard working,

I do love those hard working, God-loving, old, white, successful, good father, country serving, tax paying, straight shooting, debt free, silver haired males.

palmetto1008
9782
Points
palmetto1008 01/20/13 - 09:24 pm
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5
and your point is, Willow?
Unpublished

and your point is, Willow? Or are you just feeling the feel tonight??

KSL
130050
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KSL 01/20/13 - 09:54 pm
2
2
truth

Please believe we do differentiate the progressives and liberals from the pawns who think that is there party. Yep, they vote the same, but for not the same reasons. Some are voting for handouts, others for power, and others out of pure ignorance. They are the ones I should feel sorry for, but I don't. They have had the opportunity to learn, but have chosen not to.

myfather15
55706
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myfather15 01/20/13 - 10:20 pm
3
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@Truthmatters

Obviously, it doesn't matter that much to you; at least not more than pushing an agenda by distorting the facts. Please tell me; who has claimed only the poor commit crimes? Please be specific. I'm really looking forward to your answer. The fact is, NO ONE has said that. Anyone with an ounce of common sense knows ALL classes of people commit crimes. So, what exactly is your point?

"Maybe we all need to have more exposure to the life of those different from ourselves so we can discern that which is true and that which is not." No thank you; i've worked very hard in my life to make sure I don't have to live in trailer parks or public housing and I'm proud of it. I could NOT possibly care less how much you attack me for this, I DON'T want to live in the hood. I've worked these areas for 16 years, I know enough about them. Do you? You can say WHATEVER you want too, I don't really care. Just check the stats, the VAST, OVERWHELMING majority of our calls for service are in lower income neighborhoods. Yes, I'm familiar this isn't politically correct but I DON'T CARE!!! It's TRUTH and if TRUTH offends YOU, let it offend!!

myfather15
55706
Points
myfather15 01/20/13 - 10:58 pm
3
1
Bla, Bla, Bla

Prisons are FULL of non-violent offeners; etc, etc, bla, bla, bla. This is pathetic and nothing more than another half-hearted attempt to demean the Country. The fact is; there isn't a SINGLE person sitting in prison for misdemeanor drug possession. You don't go to PRISON for such offenses. I'm beginning to wonder if some people actually know the difference in prison and jail.

If there is a person sitting in prison for DRUG offenses, it's going to be Possession with intent to distribute, manufacturing or trafficking, PERIOD. These people deserve and NEED to be in prison. When you are a drug dealer, you are a violent person by nature. Why? Because it's the nature of the business. The vast majority of the shootings you hear about are related to drugs, rival gangs, etc.

In the "business" of dealing drugs, you MUST be willing to commit violence. Why? Because if you aren't, you will NOT last in the drug business. Your rivals will completely wipe you out and take your business. You MUST possess firearms, because your rivals sure do. You must be willing to use those firearms, because drug dealers are robbed every single day. A person will call them up to "order a shipment" knowing they don't have money to buy it, so they just bring a gun and rob the drug dealer. Then, the drug dealer MUST take revenge because if he doesn't he is seen as weak and again, WILL NOT survive this ruthless business. So these completely worthless, wastes of air, are EXACTLY where they belong. You sell dope on the streets, financially gaining from the demise of other human beings, then you are the lowest form of life!!!

Peoples compassion for drug dealers makes me sick!! Where is the compassion for the three children; at home without anything to eat, living in filth, dirty diapers, because mommy got high on crack and is passed out on the bed, oblivious to anything going on around her. And you think those that SELL HER THAT DOPE are NON-VIOLENT offenders?? They are just as bad as any murderer!! At least MOST murderers make it quick. Drug dealers financially gain from slowing murderering people and torturing children.

I absolutely CAN NOT wait until our Savior returns. There shall be no compassion, real or false, for these evil people. On THAT DAY, they shall pay for EVERY single piece of dope they sold. And those that supported them in their rhetoric, I wouldn't want to be in your shoes either. You want to know EXACTLY what the Bible says will happen do dope dealers; read Revelation 21:8 "But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and SORCERERS, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death."

The word SORCERERS in the Greek, which it is was written, is Pharmakeia. Which is where we get our word Pharmacy. The word actually means "illicit drugs or spell giving potion". What do you think cocaine, meth, heroine, PCP and such are? They are a combination of ingredients to produce a high (i.e spell).

So, when that time comes; these evil people are going EXACTLY where they belong. Thank you Father for your promise. Then and then ONLY will we good people of this world finally live in peace!!

Young Fred
17467
Points
Young Fred 01/20/13 - 10:38 pm
3
0
Well, all is just about

Well, all is just about lost.

Both parties give us something to rally around when in truth, both parties are playing us like so many b!_(&)'s

What made this country strong, is a lost art. Some think it is for the better, but if you confront them, and ask specific questions, they are strangely silent, or they spew forth with what they think are truisms, being nothing more than conditioned responses.

The ability to resist is almost a lost art. Which is exactly as planned.

myfather15
55706
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myfather15 01/20/13 - 10:43 pm
3
1
Some people don't appear to

Some people don't appear to have the internal fortitude to take a little criticism.

I'm not trying to judge anyone, but it appears some people haven't experienced these aspects of living life in America. If they have, I just don't see how they can still retain the hatred they have for America. It appears to be mostly people who living "alternative lifestyles" (I could easily be wrong), because beliefs in traditional family values appears to offend them quite a bit.

Again, they may not like it, but facts are facts. As carcraft stated; There are three things that GREATLY increase your chances of success. Completing an education, getting married before having children and waiting until you're established (in maturity also) a little before having children. Believe it or not, The Bible speaks of ALL these things. WE ALL have done things that don't exactly fit into the mold, for sure. But IF we did them, we would ALL be more successful, period. God gave us a guideline of how to live a more successful and peaceful life. Be responsible, accountable, compassionate, stay away from those who act disorderly. These will all help you in life and that isn't debatable. If WE choose not to follow them, the blame CAN NOT be placed upon Him.

When MILLIONS of people are FLEEING here every year to find a better life, we are doing something right. When people like Piers Morgan, leaves his Country and comes here to further his journalism career, we are doing something right.

When leaders of the world, (Including Communist leaders) come here to receive their healthcare, we are doing something right.

This Country has given more money to foreign Countries in relief of natural disasters than the entire rest of the world COMBINED. When this happens, we are doing something RIGHT!!

When the PEOPLE from this Country, are going on missionary trips all over the world, NOT to force people to worship our God, as other religions would like to do, but to WITNESS about the love of our God. We are doing something right. A guy I grew up with has been to China 3 times and spent over a year each time, just witnessing and helping the people. He has been to numerous Countries in the middle east, at GREAT risk to his personal safety. When people are doing this, we are doing something right.

When we have people on the streets that see a homeless man without shoes and purchase him boots to wear, We are doing something right.

My point is, for every example of greed they can produce, I can produce many more acts of compassion. Maybe they haven't experienced this compassion and love, I don't know. But if they haven't maybe they need to do a self-evaluation, instead of condemning this wonderful Country, maybe they need to embrace it; let go of the hate and join us. They need to get in touch with God, because the TRUTH does set you free and that freedom is an awesome feeling. It will give you peace within yourself, which appears to be something many are lacking.

The Bible is the true Word of God but if YOU considered it nothing more than a guideline of how to live your life; by using it, you would be far more successful. When the sadducees&pharisees asked Christ what the most important of the commandments were; Christ knew they were trying to set him up, because EACH of them are VERY important. But He gave the best answer possible; Love thy God with all thy heart and love thy neighbor as thyself. There is no better answer; Why? Because IF you and EVERYONE followed both these commandments, there wouldn't be a single problem in the world.

Willow Bailey
20580
Points
Willow Bailey 01/20/13 - 10:46 pm
2
1
Responding to the comment

Responding to the comment about the new America, palmetto.

And just so you know, I'm feeling everyday:)

Young Fred
17467
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Young Fred 01/20/13 - 11:03 pm
3
0
No matter how many will deny,

No matter how many will deny, a child without both a mother and father in his/her life, is more likely to fail in just about every category imaginable.

You would think that it's almost child abuse, but for modern , media telling us “it's OK”

OK to do what makes "me" happier, to hell with my kids!

myfather15
55706
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myfather15 01/20/13 - 11:13 pm
3
1
@Youngfred

I couldn't agree with you more. Both parties have failed us miserably. Both are full of corrupt individuals more concerned about reelection than doing good for the people. The republicans have lost their spine and won't stand up to this left wing attack machine!! But they will ALL pay for it, very soon!!

myfather15
55706
Points
myfather15 01/20/13 - 11:26 pm
3
1
What exactly is a victimless

What exactly is a victimless crime? Please READ my post above, about drug dealers and tell me those are victimless crimes. It makes me sick to my stomach to hear people refer to drug dealing as "victimless crimes". HAVE YOU EVER WORKED THE STREETS? I've accompanied DFACS hundreds of times, to a home where children were being removed because of drug abuse. The children screaming for their mommy while being taken away. Mommy so high and worthless that she doesn't even hear them or acknowledge them. No power, water or food in the house. I actually went to a home one time that had 3 children in it; in this home they didn't have running water. They used five gallon buckets for #2 and there were buckets all over the house FULL. I went to another home where children were present; also didn't have running water. The back room of the house was used for the restroom. They would just lean their backs against the wall, doing their business and leaving it lying at the base of the floor and wall. A brown line going down the wall where it fell. ALL of these were drug addicts in these homes. Is this to graphic for you? Will you report me for this? THIS is REALITY folks, unlike reality TV. So, those that would call drug dealing a "victimless crime". I absolutely CAN NOT tell you exactly what I think of your opinion because the AC would remove the comment and I would be banned for LIFE from posting. It would be THAT BAD!!!

KSL
130050
Points
KSL 01/21/13 - 12:36 am
1
1
People today cannot imagine

People today cannot imagine what you must see.

KSL
130050
Points
KSL 01/21/13 - 12:37 am
1
0
I can!

I can!

myfather15
55706
Points
myfather15 01/21/13 - 11:18 pm
0
0
@Truthmatters

Aaaaah yes, I must have forgot. In the society which we live in today, we aren't suppose to be proud of working hard. We aren't suppose to strive to be better our conditions. We are suppose to think "Collective" right? So, if certain people WON'T work their way out of poverty or lower income living, we are SUPPOSED to give them what they need, right? There is a huge difference in those who WON'T work and those who CAN'T. So I'm suppose to work by butt off for those who WON'T? We certainly aren't suppose to be happy nor proud that we don't live in poverty. The problem is, I KNOW the truth. I've LIVED the truth for a very long time. You CAN NOT confuse me. If truth REALLY mattered to you, you would embrace it, not try to confuse people and muddy the water.

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