The Family is a Fiscal Issue

On January 25, 2010, in Jennifer Roback Morse, Ph.D, by Betsy

by Jennifer Roback Morse, Ph.D

In the modern world of consumer choice divorced from any moral grounding, family policy can seem hopelessly divisive. Some argue that “alternative family forms” are simply private lifestyle choices, comparable to our choices of curtains, cuisine or music. The choice to have children inside or outside marriage is just another personal choice for each individual to make privately. But a recent report from the Institute for American Values shows that these seemingly private decisions can have serious, and expensive, costs to the taxpayer. They estimate that The Taxpayer Costs of Divorce and Unwed Childbearing amount to at least $112 billion each and every year, or more than $1 trillion each decade.

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by Jennifer Roback Morse, Ph.D

It takes a family to raise a village. Without the family, the village itself can not function. If the family breaks down, or fails to form in the first place, the “village” can not possibly provide adequate help to repair the damage. The family does something the “village” can not do for itself, namely bring the next generation into being, and socialize them into the kind of people who can participate in a free society. Without the family doing its job, the state will necessarily grow larger, more expensive and more intrusive.

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