Family, recent, Social Science

The New Inequality: The Decline of the Working Class Family

The family has been called “the cornerstone of society” and for good reason. According to studies, children born to married parents are more likely to go to university and less likely to receive government benefits. Children raised in fatherless homes, however, appear more likely to face worse outcomes when it comes to well-being, education and mental health. Married people also appear to be healthier and happier.

According to a report, before the 1970s there were no large class divides in American family life. Most people got married and stayed married and the children were raised in two-parent families. This trend eventually changed, with poorer and less educated people becoming less likely to get married and stay married. The decline of marriage is also correlated with the rise of single-mother households. A similar decline of the working class family appears to exist in the UK, with men from poor backgrounds being significantly more likely to be single in their forties than richer men.

The Problem with Single Men

Marriage is correlated with several positive outcomes for both men and women, but the effects appear to be larger for men. Married men tend to live longer and be healthier than men who never married or were divorced/widowed. There could be a number of reasons for this. For example, perhaps healthy men are just more likely to be married. However, research suggests that this is unlikely:

unhealthy men actually marry earlier, are less likely to divorce, and are more likely to remarry following divorce or bereavement than healthy men.

Another factor is that men suffer from loneliness more than women, as it is harder for them to form friendships and they participate in social activities less often. While married men can be encouraged by their wives to be more social, single men tend to become isolated as they grow older.

Divorce also increases the risk of suicide more in men than in women. This is likely because divorced men tend to have less contact with their children and also because of reasons related to increased isolation. It could also be that men are less likely to seek therapy for their mental problems than women, possibly because of the masculine ideals of self-reliance and resilience. The fact that psychotherapy is a field dominated by women might be another factor that discourages men from seeking help, as some may view it as “female-centric” and therefore unsuited to understanding a male point of view. Things obviously appear even worse when combined with the fact that single men tend to belong to the lower socioeconomic classes. Both a lack of education and a lack of resources might be preventing men from seeking professional help for their needs.

Single men appear to be the largest group of homeless people. There are also at least some studies that show that marriage may decrease criminal behavior, which carries the troubling implication that unmarried men might be more likely to commit crimes. The results are devastating both for men and society as a whole.

Why Did the Working Class Family Decline?

Some people will speculate that working class families are more financially insecure and that’s why they face more hardships when it comes to marriage. Of course, this is likely true to an extent, but it does not explain why working class families used to be more stable before the 1970s.

Since the decline of the working class family appears to have started around the time of the sexual revolution of the 1960s and the change in cultural norms that followed it, it’s possible that these changes affected those from the lower classes differently than those from the middle and upper class. One can speculate that people from less privileged backgrounds have fewer resources to succeed in the world of casual dating. The scholar Amy Wax argues that the moral deregulation of sex and marriage made things more difficult for working class people because they often don’t approach these matters with a long-term perspective the way the way wealthier people do.

Another problem appears to be that working-class men are considered less marriageable, something that is likely a result of the job instability that they face. Indeed the labor participation among men appears to have fallen. Things might even get worse in the future as one British estimate predicted that traditionally “male” jobs are at higher risk of being automated than traditionally “female” jobs. Women are also more likely to go to college than men. In the UK , in particular, white working class men are the group least likely to go to college. This is possibly reducing the men’s chances of getting married as some studies have suggested that women are more likely than men to be sensitive to economic status cues when rating the opposite sex attractiveness.

Women are also less likely to date men who are unemployed. 78 percent of women say they want a spouse with a steady job, while only 46 percent of men say the same. Another study found that rich women tend to prefer men with a similar income to their own, while rich men want good looking women. It’s possible that this trend will change as women become more financially independent. Maybe men suffer because of the traditional stereotype of the “male provider” role and women will become more open to dating less privileged men as they become more financially secure themselves, but so far, the trend of less wealthy men being viewed as less desirable partners persists.

Tucker Carlson and the Response of the Left

The conservative political commentator Tucker Carlson has made several references to the decline of the working class family and working class men in particular. No matter who Tucker Carlson is and how questionable some of his views may be, he appears to be right in this case. It’s also likely that the decline of working class men contributed partially to the recent rise in populism, as both Trump and Brexit were supported in large part by the working class.

The Left often shies away from making a strong case for family values, despite the fact that family stability may be immensely beneficial for the working class and for black Americans who have high rates of single-mother families. It’s not hard to see why, as the progressive Left is anti-traditionalist. It also strongly supported the sexual revolution and the empowerment of women so it’s understandable why some might be disinclined to admit that these changes could have had some negative results for certain groups of people. Some on the far-Left even view the nuclear family as an oppressive structure. That is not to say that the sexual revolution or women’s empowerment have been bad for society overall or that conservatives have a clear solution for many of the issues mentioned above. But the Left is missing a huge opportunity by neglecting the value in marriage.

The new marriage inequality is likely to create greater class inequalities, with wealthy and well-educated people marrying each other and passing on their wealth to their children, while the working class becomes more and more destabilized. Since kids from single-parent households are more likely to have problems in school, it’s easy to conclude that the decline of two-parent households among low-income families will have a negative effect on social mobility. This is a matter that ought to concern everyone who values equal opportunity, fairness, and stability.


Maria Kouloglou is a sociology student interested in women’s and men’s rights. You can follow her on Twitter @MairGr

Photo by Liv Bruce on Unsplash


  1. TJR says

    It is hardly a surprise that low-status men are less likely to find somebody willing to marry them, less healthy, shorter-lived, less happy and more lonely than higher-status people.

    • This seems to imply a commonly glorified view of women, let’s not forget there are plenty of “low-status” women (far more, if we believe in the wage gap) who aren’t all marrying millionaires. Almost none of them are. So what now? In my experience the sexual revolution may have been yet another progressive over-correction for the past, with a concerning number of women turning to stripping and/or extreme promiscuity (like losing count while somewhere in the triple digits of partners, that sort of thing). These are people I know: past flings, long time friends, housemates, etc. I don’t socialize nearly enough to comfortably explain this away, and it’s a pretty big turnoff as a guy who does perfectly well in the dating marketplace and isn’t easily turned off. No self-respecting man (or woman) should settle for a village bicycle, to use an amusingly crude term.

      • Auguria says

        there are plenty of “low-status” women (far more, if we believe in the wage gap) who aren’t all marrying millionaires.

        But they aren’t marrying plumbers either, they might be low-status but wont settle for low-status men, they marry up not even “same-level” and if they can’t have it their way then they remain single since as the article points out the impact of solitude is lesser for women than for men.

        • brucerwilson says

          Actually, they are marrying plumbers. Not only that, they are becoming plumbers themselves because the pay is good and work is honorable. So what is this “high status” vs “low status” argument? Is it “high status” to have a PhD and unable to find a job and “low status” to be a plumber and make over 100K a year?

        • im lost says

          Exactly, women date up, hypergamy & 80/20 rule are common themes quoted by men

        • Jeremiah says

          There may be quite a few college educated women who dont make much money who wouldn’t marry a plumber, but actual low status women will. Plumbers make more money than quite a few people with a degree. Low status women wont marry someone unemployed, but there’s a huge difference between unemployed and plumber.

        • Pollution styrene says

          Generalizing is the leading cause of meaningless conclusions.

      • stfu dude says

        Hahahaha! Bingo! This guy gets it. Once the C0ck carousel stops and they hit the wall, it’s curtains.

    • Lert345 says

      It is rather interesting that men who are considered unmarriagable are still good enough to reproduce with.

      The standard meme that it’s just the men that are unmarriagable is not all true. The women are probably unmarriageable as well. If you drop out of high school, if you’re unsupportive, if you collect kids from different baby daddies, you’re not going to attract suitors from the higher shelves.

      • Auguria says

        The women are probably unmarriageable as well.

        Sure, but how many? as many as there are men? not at all, not enough to be statistically significant it seems. And the state is the baby-daddy who keeps sending checks, why settle for less?

      • @ Lert345
        Darwinism would still favour women with multiple children to a woman who preferred abortion?

        Which is indicative of how fragile the fabric of society has become?

      • Jeremiah says

        You’re right in general, but looks make a big difference. If your hot enough there is always some relatively well off fool who will marry you even if you’re a mess.

    • Denny Sinnoh says

      “All Brontosaurus are thin at one end, much much thicker in the middle, then thin at the other end.”

  2. Craig Hubbard says

    Kouloglou points out that “working class families were more secure before the 70s.” What she leaves unmentioned is that in the developed world, prior to the 70s, working class incomes rose in tandem with increasing productivity. Since the 70s, productivity has continued to rise but working class incomes have been in decline — in sharp contrast to upper class incomes –which have continued to rise This, I would think, is a factor in the decline of the working class family and why factors such as the sexual revolution have left higher income families relatively unaffected.

    • David of Kirkland says

      That effect is due to automation, in which more is produced with fewer humans and thus lower cost. Every law that favors workers over employers simply exacerbate this, but the end results are coming no matter what.

      • TarsTarkas says

        Welfare has also played a large part, especially for the black working class. If Uncle Sam provides an income for single women, what’s the point of getting married, with all the difficulties that can ensue? The Great Society programs and the resultant decline of married life among black Americans has been documented by many, Moynihan among them.

        • Dzoldzaya says

          I haven’t looked too much into the data, but this argument strikes me as very unconvincing. Most European nations have much higher child benefits for single mothers, with much lower rates of divorce. The US prison system, the cocaine epidemic and gang culture seem far more likely culprits.

        • My first thought was welfare as well, single mothers received zero welfare until 1975 in my country, and there were almost zero single mothers, now most working class mothers are single.

        • Jeremiah says

          Most black women wanted to marry their baby daddy, but they just wanted to sleep around. In poor black communities a significant percentage of 18 to 35 year old men are in prison. This throws off the dating ratio so you have women fighting over the same men. Add in the fact that black men are much more likely to date and marry outside their race than black women and you getba scenario where young black men can sleep around without much effort. This greatly decreases their desire for marriage.

    • Donnerhauser says

      The wage-productivity gap is much overstated (and by some estimates possibly non-existent) after controlling for various factors.

    • Max says

      Precisely, Hubbard. The overwhelming majority of failed relationships and marriages cite financial strife as the catalyst for their failure. So it is likely economics and not the rejection of the traditional, nuclear, dynamic.

    • Stephanie says

      Craig, yes. Automation means that increases in productivity are due to owner investment, not to greater employee skill or usefulness. Their jobs are easier and more ends up getting done, but it doesn’t lead to an increase in wages. That being said the time-cost of goods has radically decreased, meaning it takes less work time to achieve the same standard of living, so stagnant wages aren’t a persuasive explanation for the drop in marriage rates.

    • Auguria says

      The article handwaves away a LOT of important matters like the crippling effect of divorce in men both mentally (since 90% they lose) but financially since it turns them into serfs that could end up in a debtor prison even if they have no means to pay at all. A man after divorce has a very hard time starting again, the success stories are few and far between.

      The failures die in silence hanging from the closet of a shabby studio apartment and are only found when a neighbor complaints about the smell. And at that point they are just another number in the inconvenient statistics nobody wants to read anyway.

  3. Andreas K. says

    Having studied similar subjects to this for years now, I can attest that historically, currently, and for the foreseeable future the kind of independence and autonomy we’re raised to pursue is a luxury of the wealthy. For many (perhaps most…?) of us, the most viable, durable, sustainable social and economic unit remains a man-and-wife household that cooperates with their siblings, hosts your elderly parents, invests in children for your own old-age, and prioritizes domestic and family life over the excellent, necessary, but ultimately unreliable wilderness of the outside world. If you enjoy it, good. If you don’t, that unfortunately doesn’t really matter. Because in the matter of food, shelter, and community, it simply remains most expedient way for many of us to go, even with all the very welcome welfare safety nets helping us out.

    • das monde says

      Families with less earning, more stressed husbands are much more unstable. The modern equality in marriage is thus a trap for working families. (Kinda ironic to trust women on inequality.)

  4. Defenstrator says

    “Women are also less likely to date men who are unemployed. 78 percent of women say they want a spouse with a steady job, while only 46 percent of men say the same. Another study found that rich women tend to prefer men with a similar income to their own, while rich men want good looking women. It’s possible that this trend will change as women become more financially independent. Maybe men suffer because of the traditional stereotype of the “male provider” role and women will become more open to dating less privileged men as they become more financially secure themselves, but so far, the trend of less wealthy men being viewed as less desirable partners persists.”

    It’s statements like this that make it clear that the pick up artist community has more actual knowledge and expertise in understanding gender relations than those in academia, which is probably why those in gender studies hate them do much. They worked out some time ago that human beings have behaviour patterns when it comes to dating, and that women are hypergamous, and that a large advantage to successful dating is acting in a manner and giving the signals of being a successful man. Women, in general, simply won’t date those they feel beneath them.

    • David of Kirkland says

      “Beneath them” is interesting because it’s also a physical condition that applies along with economic….most women want to marry someone taller than they are, while most men want women to be smaller, which works out well since humanity shows this to be the norm (men are taller than women on average).

    • Auguria says

      The PUAs are the same kind of garbage since just like academia they choose what to believe and ignore the stuff that doesnt suits them, like the fact that no amount of bullshittery will change your odds if you’re an ugly poor man. Just happens most of the PUA’s customers fall in this category

      • @ Auguria
        Your quite right there are ugly men which are equal to the number of ugly women, I see heaps of ugly, poor women as well? Some men and women today even do things to themselves to make themselves very unattractive, bad hair colour, bizarre piercings, tattoos, bad hygiene and poor dress sense.

      • stfu dude says

        Wrong. I’ve seen ugly dudes on the PUA shows score. If they make the woman think that they have money and status, the women take the bait every time. You can’t deny human biology.

  5. David of Kirkland says

    Inequality is not the same as differences. Inequality is imposed by government or others against your will. Differences are imposed by nature and cultures that accept nature is real.

    • TarsTarkas says

      Are you accusing Mother Nature of being racist? / sarc

  6. It sure took you a whole lot of words to say “men and women are different

  7. Kevin Herman says

    Too much waffling from the author. There is nothing empowering about women thinking they can sleep around indiscriminately with no consequences. Society is reaping the consequences of the libertine sexual practices pushed by the left for decades. Elite liberals all marry while the lower class doesn’t while they preach against traditional family while having all the benefits for themselves. I don’t know how they can live with themselves.

    • @ Kevin
      But the left have covered their tracks, any working class family who does stay together and play by the old rules will send their kids to uni, where the left will indoctrinate them anyway? It’s almost like they had it planned?

    • Gem says

      This is a pattern I have also noticed from this author’s past articles — she compromises with the Left’s position . She usually starts out with a well-reasoned premise, but her conclusions usually tend to play down the Left’s erosion of traditional societal structures. In one of her other articles, she argued that we need feminism to end violence against sexes. Why feminism? Why do we need feminism at all? Similarly, here, she is nodding in agreement to the sexual revolution and female empowerment, as if she’s too gun-shy to say: “No, there was nothing empowering about sexual revolution or female empowerment for that matter. It was all a bad idea, and we’re seeing the consequences now, especially among lower-income individuals.” There is nothing, absolutely nothing, noble about women bed-hopping like football players. Men can get away with it because, biologically speaking, they are designed to leave as many offspring as possible, but women are designed to rear children and seek a mate who will provide financial stability for them. Also, sexual liberation for women tends to have emotional and social ramifications, and that’s something feminists will lie about.

  8. Zachary Snowdon Smith says

    I wish this article had offered a little more analysis. It’s engaging throughout, but it ends just as it seems to be getting underway.

  9. somsai says

    To escape poverty both parents need to work in the US. (median wage-4 person family) The unquantified work that stay at home moms do is inestimable. They literally make a family. I notice in wealthy neighborhoods many young moms don’t work. I think working class moms would also choose not to work if given a choice. Ever notice what happens to a family when the mom passes away young due to disease or accident? Moms are the glue that holds a family together, moms make a family.

    • Stefan Mochnacki says

      @somsai I suggest you read up a biography of Michelle Payne! Highly inspiring story of what can happen when a mother of ten suddenly passes away.

  10. Most of these problems were caused by the feminists who advocated for anti-discrimination laws which prevent employers from hiring the people they want to. Women are now taking out loans they can’t pay back and going into activism. This has really made the world a better place.

  11. Another factor is that men suffer from loneliness more than women, as it is harder for them to form friendships and they participate in social activities less often. While married men can be encouraged by their wives to be more social, single men tend to become isolated as they grow older.

    Let me ask you a question are men allowed to have organizations that address their interests without women being there? Is that even legal in 2019?

    • Peter from Oz says

      Good point, Innovative Financial Concepts.
      It seems that every time anyone expresses any need to preserve past traditions, regressives will insist that such a need is evidence of hating some group or other. No we don’t hate any group, we just love our own group and hate regressives.
      Sinistra delenda est

    • im lost says

      Like Mens Sheds in Australia, Feminists are trying to close down or made in to genderless community sheds

  12. Geary Johansen says

    From the viewpoint of political economics, if Keynesian economics could be described as having a tilt towards labour over time- ending in stagnation in the 70’s, then the ‘laissez faire’ economics that replaced it is the reverse, tilting towards capital. Both systems fundamentally break down over time, as the relationship between capital and labour is a highly efficient coupled system, which increases wealth throughout society. Crucially, this system really breaks down when the financial surpluses generated by capital, start to run out of labour-creating new ventures to invest in, with capital then being redeployed increasingly towards speculative assets, the government bonds necessary to insulate against the social harms caused by a lack of labour opportunities and rent-seeking.

    Although I am a remainer, I do think that there is a strong case now that legal migration from Europe to the UK, is one of the root causes of the knife crime epidemic currently afflicting London and beyond. In any society, what the left fails to recognise is that there will always be a solid rump of at least 30 – 40% of young men who are not suitable for highly cognitive, knowledge-based work, lack the polish and groomed appearance necessary for retail and services and don’t have the highly productive work pace desired by logistics and distribution firms. Traditionally, they would have gravitated towards construction and the trades, but in an economy where companies can simply recruit fully-trained, off-the-shelf employees, with proven employment track records, these young men cannot compete.

    The downstream consequences of unfettered inward migration are, in this light, terrifying. Historically, it may well be possible to plot migration, both legal and illegal, by year and notice the impact it has on crime figures a decade or more beyond its surge. The rise of the gang phenomena in the US, may well have migration as a contributory root cause. And, of course, this problem will only compound and become more critical over time, with the break up of the family in that first generation (caused by women’s unwillingness to stay with deadbeat dads), making things even harder for subsequent generations- as with no positive male role models to act as examples, younger men coming of age are even less likely to articulate themselves onto a life of purpose and meaning, instead gravitating towards crime and violence for status competition.

    • Stefan Mochnacki says

      @Gery Johansen I suggest that you are wrong regarding EU migration to the UK. From what I have seen, Poles emigrating to Britain are well educated and often already married, and they were the largest group of such immigrants. These people do not take part in gangs and the like. In Canada, where I lived, gangs are, on the other hand, largely based in immigrant communities (particularly those from Jamaica and Somalia), with the smaller motorcycle gangs being a particular largely white phenomenon, as in the US. In the US, gangs are a fact of life in the Latino and black communities, and are much more associated with poor education, unemployment and family dysfunction than with immigration.

      • Geary Johansen says


        No sorry, you misunderstand. I mean that when skilled migrants take up construction and trade jobs, it displaces young men from local communities from training as apprentices. This denial of purpose, responsibility and opportunity in turn results in crime. It’s because they if can’t do well in service, retail, distribution or the knowledge economy, these jobs are the only real prospects for their employment.

    • @ Geary
      In my country, At the same time that they introduced Laissez faire they also increased welfare dependancy, whilst creating new (potential groups ) who in turn become welfare dependant. And then introduced mass immigration, who under this new scheme would become welfare dependant.

      By the way it was all began by the EEC, which was the ancestor of the EU.

  13. “No matter who Tucker Carlson is and how questionable some of his views may be, ”

    Care to defend your ad hominem with facts and evidence. What makes a view questionable? Which of his views are questionable and how do they relate to the topic at hand?

    Maybe next time out try to control your biases and be a little more respectful of an audience that may not share your political point of view.

  14. Kencathedrus says

    @cjgeek: I didn’t really get the feeling the author was attacking Tucker Carlson personally, but more addressing any would-be detractors of him.

    • @Kencathedrus

      I’ll grant “ad hominem” may have been more hyperbolic than semantically accurate and thus I likely weakened my argument, but the engendered bias remains.

      “No matter who Tucker Carlson is..” Who is Tucker Carlson that doesn’t matter? The political commentator? The conservative? The Fox News host? The opposing point of view on what?

      ….”and how questionable some of his views may be, ” Which views? Why are they questionable? Because you, the writer, disagree? Because the your tribe disagrees?

      Why is it acceptable opinion to dismiss another’s views “questionable” without providing justification for the statement? It’s a subtle way of “wink wink we with the right POV know he’s a xenophobe and racist and morally wrong.” Which by extension means all those that agree with his pov are the same.

      And that is just another example of how Trump got elected.

  15. E. Olson says

    1899: women without the necessary intelligence and training to work as school teachers, nurses, or secretaries, or enough family wealth to live off, had to marry and/or go into prostitution in order survive. Women of whatever intelligence or training who had sex would get pregnant and need to marry in order to have someone support them and their child(ren). Men were expected to work to support their families, first as boys and then as husbands. Many women died in childbirth, and many men died from industrial accidents and workplace related disease. In other words, life was short, hard, and with few choices for the vast majority of the population, but at least many could look with pride at the better lives and achievements of their offspring.

    2019: women without the necessary intelligence and training to work in any profession they desire can get pregnant and have children and be supported by the state and perhaps get child support from their deadbeat sperm donor (i.e. mating partner). Women with decent intelligence can study anything, but often choose some nonsense degree in Leftist studies, where they are taught men are evil and unneeded, but who secretly desire to find some rich, handsome man to support them and help pay off their school loans as their tire of their careers as baristas and retail clerks. Such women will also vote (which they couldn’t do in 1899) for Leftist candidates who tell them that men are evil and unneeded (even if the candidate identifies as male himself), and that they deserve free medical, school loan forgiveness, free child care, and higher minimum wages, all of which will be paid for by levying high taxes and regulations on mostly men and male led corporations. Except for the elite few, men will increasingly see marriage as a losing proposition, and hard work as a waste of time that could be better spent playing video games and watching Internet porn (at least until sex robots become more affordable). In other words, life is long, easy, and offers lots of choices for the vast majority of the population to waste their lives in unproductive and unsatisfying pursuits.

    • Kencathedrus says

      @E. Olson: Yes, humans need conflict it seems. Convenience isn’t necessarily our friend. A silly example of this is perhaps the game World of Warcraft. When I was younger I used to play it everyday, but then something happened. Many players complained that the game was too difficult and unfair. The devs listened and made everything easy. ‘Blue’ weapons which were pretty rare were becoming more ubiquitous. In-game mounts which initially cost a small fortune in gold became very affordable. Eventually there was no way to distinguish one player from another in terms of game status and achievements. The devs made the game-world even easier. Monsters that originally required a team of players to beat could now be beaten individually.

      In short, there was no way for anyone to differentiate from each other. The players no longer needed each to progress in the game, so there was reason any more to be friendly and polite. Trolling and other obnoxious behaviors became more prevalent. Eventually the game was so dumbed-down and toxic that one day I just quit.

      I feel sometimes feel that our own world is going this way, especially as it’s played out on social media. It seems to have empowered society’s bottom-feeders.

    • das monde says

      So the government, market, technology became social alphas providing everything to women and protecting them, while most real flesh men became lowly, expendable, annoying omegas.

    • Emma says

      We’ve spoken before, Olson, and I completely agree with you, especially about women majoring in nonsense degrees. I have mentioned before how deeply I regret majoring in English. I don’t regret reading the classics, but I also don’t think I learned much in my major, except for how to be an excellent bullshitter. English is, as I said, not what it used to be. The humanities are not what they used to be. I will even add that women without the necessary intelligence are attending college and graduating regardless whether or not they meet the standards.

      Ironically, the people advocating for sexual liberation and female empowerment–the elite–are the ones marrying off. If marriage is such a bad investment, why do the wealthy rear children within the context of a nuclear family? The rest of us, idiots, who listen to them are paying the consequences–an expanded welfare state, rise of single motherhood, decline in marriage, etc.

    • Nathan says

      The modern leftist young woman is a disgusting creature who needs to be ripped off her pedestal

  16. Richard says

    Our Government should do more to promote families because of all these examples. We should also stop the war on men and see all human beings as beautiful individual creatures, highly complex and multifaceted. Strong Families create Strong Societies.

  17. Lightning Rose says

    Nobody’s yet mentioned that before 1980, a working-class man’s salary was usually sufficient to pay the household bills while his wife stayed home and raised the children. It was rare for mothers to work outside the house full-time. His job was usually also far more secure before downsizing, offshoring, and leveraged buyouts eliminated the expectation of lifetime employment.

    Economics are the biggest determinant, but there are also cultural factors. Accessible birth control separated sex from reproduction, therefore also from the need for love and commitment in the form of marriage. Those who still want to start a family the traditional way do so; but the entertainment culture has for 50 years glorified what Erica Jong called the “zipless fuck,” or momentary gratification without strings attached. The idea has been sold to us that this is what we’re “supposed” to want when young, an endless stream of “swipes.” Maybe it’s working out a little less well for men than everyone thought, based on this article; it never DID work for women.

    Glad I’m too old to worry about it . . .

    • Stefan Mochnacki says

      @Lightning Rose Yes, you are right. In the New Zealand of the ’50’s and ’60’s, only a quarter of women worked outside the home, and it was possibly the most economically egalitarian society ever. It was, to quote Austin Mitchell, ” The Half Gallon, Quarter Acre, Pavlova Paradise”, quintessential suburbia, but the down side of it was the incidence of mental illness among all those suburban housewives isolated in their bungalows on their quarter-acre properties.

      As for the sexual revolution, I think Heather MacDonald said it best, noting that the default option for sex had changed from “No” to “Yes”, and that it is much harder to say “no” explicitly, leading to all sorts of misunderstanding, regrets and chaos. The separation of sex from reproduction, as well as the disappearance of the duty to have children since the child mortality rate is now so low, have allowed the totally bizarre developments regarding gender we see today. “Gender fluidity” and all that stuff is impossible when every woman has to have an average of four or more children for a society to just survive. The effect on society of reducing child mortality from the “natural” 50% to almost 0% via the development of modern medicine has been been largely ignored as far as I can see. And now it is politically incorrect to talk about population replacement by birth rather than by immigration.

      • Lucy says

        @Stefan – “duty to have children”? Now that sounds like some sort of totalitarian nightmare and yet it’s usually the conservative types who would insist on such “duties”.

        as for the societal changes, one thing really strikes me when people criticise them – if things were so perfect in the “good ol’ days” then how come they were so susceptible to change? after all, plenty of things survived all sorts of ideologies for centuries (religions, to think of one) so how come this great past everyone is talking about (as I understand it, the West in the 60s) was left behind?

    • Ted says

      I believe you’ve “put your finger directly on the pulse,” Lightning Rose.

  18. “The Left often shies away from making a strong case for family values, despite the fact that family stability may be immensely beneficial for the working class and for black Americans who have high rates of single-mother families. It’s not hard to see why, as the progressive Left is anti-traditionalist.”

    The Left shies away from this because the rates are so high among blacks. The Left’s avoidance of anything that might even appear to be critical of blacks is pathological.

  19. Adam Kedelssen says

    Good article! My increasingly booze-addled working family has been declining for years. The Left avoids these kinds of issues because they perceive them as “inconvenient truths”.

  20. Kelvin Abraham says

    As many people have pointed out here, any criticism of blacks has somehow become ‘verboten” (as they say) in our modern culture.

    In reality, both blacks and whites can be equally guilty of performing transgressive acts under certain circumstances and should be punished with equal severity. as the need arises.

  21. Bill Miller says

    Women marry(ed) to secure the funds to feed their children. As today the state is doing that instead of husbands women do not need to marry anymore. In Britain out-of-wedlock births are now the majority.
    This trend increases as even the gamma-women that in past times would have had to marry gamma men to be able to feed their offspring can now fuck alpha-males to get the children their nature craves and do not need to live with gamma-men as they are financed by all men (alpha to omega) but only alpha males procreate (overstated to make the point clearer).

    • Cal Amberton says

      I became extremely excited by your description of alpha men fucking gamma women, and would like to hear as much as possible about this.
      As it happens I am an alpha man living in a part of the U.S. with a shortage of gamma women and looking to remedy my situation in some way.
      Any advice?.

  22. Class Punk says

    Marriage is not equal to the best possible monogamous relationship, and marriage is a form of excess government interference which is destroying men’s lives through law when differing personalities based on things like attachment styles, trauma, and gender cause relationships to implode, with women using the biological force of female-centricism combined with legal power to destroy men’s lives. Marriage, like other forms of excess government interference, is financially and emotionally parasitic to the human being, and mostly men, as they blindly and without question follow the desires of a woman who is empowered by the womb-protecting instinct of all of society– which causes women to get more empathy and lighter criminal sentencing than men. The terrible and potentially fatal ignorance the average man has that a woman’s brain and perception of reality is the same as his threatens his life even more in legal marriage.

  23. Rick in NY says

    While acknowledging the author is a student, I seriously hope that the realization that marriage and family are stabilizing influences in an increasingly chaotic society does not come as an epiphany to most readers of this publication.

  24. Tom says

    “There are also at least some studies that show that marriage may decrease criminal behavior, which carries the troubling implication that unmarried men might be more likely to commit crimes. The results are devastating both for men and society as a whole.”

    (Emphasis via asterisk mine)

    Give me a MF break. The troubling implication of this fallacious statement is that unmarried men should be viewed with suspicion, as they are merely criminals in waiting, or practice.

  25. Willian Chambers says

    I think we need to stop categorizing working class , a skilled journeymen is a highly paid profession. There is a big difference in a general laborer and a skilled millwright. I’ve seen a number of employment by education statistics the high school graduate and the skilled trades are lumped into the same category. I’m sorry folks a four year apprenticeship is as valuable as an undergrad degree.

    So do the same study and how shocking the results will be , the HGTV generation is happy to marry the highly skilled trade who out earns the degree holders. Try to hire a skilled trade and try to convince yourself that stereotype plumber is a bumbling idiot while he drives off is his 100K truck.

    The fact that the educated class see’s no difference is telling.

  26. Love led us here says

    Wealthy middle class students of every racial background are being led by their deceptive left-wing, ‘we care about the poor’ professors to promote a lifestyle that destroys the family life and wealth those in the lower half of the socio-economic spectrum. “We are the caring ones” they shout. And the wealth of the poorest immediately pours up into the hands of the middle class. The abortion services, the rent money, the child protection services, the owners of private jails, and more – money flows upwards. The middle class students are led like sheep to demand sexual liberation but it is not their children that suffer the negative drug-filled, sexually abused, gang cultures that are a natural outcome of ‘liberation’ for those with lower IQ’s. The Democrat leaders know they get wealthy on the back of political donations that come from the slaughter of the working class babies. And now they wish to push the destroying worldview to a global level. And the media and companies full of middle class, ‘aren’t we caring’ hypocrites support them. How to get through to the middle class kids that sexual liberation in all its forms negatively harms the poorest the most, and the Democrats are purposely pushing this agenda so they get wealthy on the donations that come from the harming of so many different groups of children.

  27. David says

    Modern women have too much choice. The western woman’s lifestyle appears to be that you party and chase after “bad boys” until your 30s then consider a (beta) provider for a family or just get pregnant with someone who is unlikely to stick around. Its all a self-serving way of life with little meaning or responsibility. Traditional conditioning for women was to be a good person, now it is to be self-indulgent and complaining.

  28. Maria makes a good fist of tracing the fate of working class outliers as their social and economic base disintegrates around them. But there is more to it than that.

    The systematic deregulation of the economic and social system, now without economic or moral boundaries and privatized in favour of narcissistic egoism and sectional interests, in the pursuit of ever more indulgent cheap consumer fantasies and goals, that would send working class jobs across undefended national borders to unregulated low wage emerging economies, now leaves them stranded in casualized work and/or welfare, and their social infrastructure in ruins.

    It isn’t just the factories they used to work in have gone. Social deregulation and the privatization of social accountability means the rules based behaviour set on axiomatic moral principles and girded by enforced boundaries disappeared with them.

    The educated middle class jumped on the tertiary services boom and did just fine (at least for a while), while everyone else was being residualized into a bankrupted netherworld at the bottom of the valley of the shadow of marginalization and existential annihilation. And if they needed that final push onto the garbage heap, the fraudulent ‘gigacontrix’ that was the GFC sealed the deal.

    The middle class did not really escape. They just had more fat in the system. By 2008, their rules based world was gone too.

    The captains of world finance, who were supposed to be the system stewards ended up cannibalizing it to make their bonuses and systematically cheating their customers from both the front and the back of their transactions with them; you know, selling them shit they knew was defective, bound to fail and then shorting them out when the inevitable happened.

    Middle class families are also succumbing to the chaos and loss of social boundaries, in a world where all that matters are getting the brand name, substance and sexual pleasure buttons pressed, producing chronically fragile little adolescent princes and princesses who have no existential security, or scruples or guidance as to how to get some.

    The only difference in a lot of cases between black welfare street kids in the ‘hood and their comfortable middle class equivalents is that black kid has to carry a gun and do dangerous deals in alleyways, while the white college kid gets a fat allowance and doesn’t have to on sell to make their cut. And neither of them are going to save either themselves or the system that they are working, or working for.

    The system is corrupted from top to bottom, which is why some of our more fundamentalist types who see the need to get back to some of the basics, are getting more than just a little bit pissed off with the status quo.

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