Stacey Rosencrantz

Recent Articles

The New Crusade for the Old Family

A new wave of family restorationists says that the evidence on families is in and that the remedies are clear. Their case doesn't hold up.

What is the root cause in America of poverty, crime, drug abuse, gang warfare, urban decay, and failing schools? According to op-ed pundits, Sunday talking heads, radio call-in shows, and politicians in both parties, the answer is the growing number of children being raised by single parents, especially by mothers who never married in the first place. Restore family values and the two-parent family, and America's social problems will be substantially solved. By the close of the 1992 presidential campaign, the war over family values seemed to fade. Dan Quayle's attack on Murphy Brown's single motherhood stirred more ridicule on late night talk shows than moral panic. The public clearly preferred Bill Clinton's focus on the economy and his more inclusive version of the family theme: "family values" means "valuing families," no matter what their form -- traditional, extended, two-parent, one-parent. Yet Clinton's victory was quickly followed by a new bipartisan crusade to restore the two...