Action Alert!

The single most disturbing statistic

By Phil Lawler ( bio - articles - email ) | Dec 17, 2015

America faces a danger every bit as serious as terrorism, and it’s not being discussed by presidential candidates. The Pew Research Center points to it, in a new report, “The American Family Today.”

…in 1960, the height of the post-World War II baby boom, there was one dominant family form. At that time 73% of all children were living in a family with two married parents in their first marriage. By 1980, 61% of children were living in this type of family, and today less than half (46%) are.

The evidence of the social sciences is clear, convincing—in fact overwhelming; study after study shows the same thing. Children who grow up with two married parents enjoy a huge advantage over the children of broken homes. Statistically speaking, a child born in the ghetto to parents who are unemployed—but married—has a better chance of success in life than a child born with a silver spoon in his mouth and parents in the divorce courts.

Children raised by single parents are more likely to suffer ill health, more likely to fail in school, more likely to have trouble with the law, more likely to use illegal drugs, more likely to be unemployed, more likely to die young. And to compound the problem, they’re also more likely to divorce, or to have children out of wedlock, so that the problems that afflicted them are passed down to the next generation.

If this trend continues, Islamic extremists don't need to use terrorist tactics. They can just watch American society destroy itself. 

Phil Lawler has been a Catholic journalist for more than 30 years. He has edited several Catholic magazines and written eight books. Founder of Catholic World News, he is the news director and lead analyst at See full bio.

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  • Posted by: rjbennett1294 - Dec. 19, 2015 8:40 AM ET USA

    I think many individuals agree: American society will, unfortunately, eventually destroy itself. Such a thing has happened before in human history, and very often. Human beings will survive, though. The Church will survive. Our belief in God and our faith will survive, and a better society will rise from the ruins. I think many can agree with what St. Augustine wrote in the Enchiridion, Chapter VIII: “For God judged it better to bring good out of evil than not to permit any evil to exist.”

  • Posted by: FredC - Dec. 18, 2015 8:30 PM ET USA

    This is just a typical Old Testament cycle of defection from God, punishment, and perhaps a return to Him. Jesus asked, “When the Son of man comes, will He find faith on the earth?” (Luke 18:8)

  • Posted by: Eve#1 - Dec. 18, 2015 2:42 AM ET USA

    Truth! How sad it is to see this problem in front of our eyes and still think that it's okay to live like this. Let us all pray to God for His help in this difficult times. May He give us wisdom and strength to overcome all difficulties in our families. May we all, first, love God and serve Him; then our neighbor as ourselves so that we can receive the grace needed to defeat Satan once and for all in our lives.