It’s starting to become a joke.
Another blaring headline, this time from Bloomberg, that reads Young Americans Are Killing Marriage heads up an article with “new” research showing how the marriage rates have declined for 25-30-year-olds since 1980, and draws the same predictable conclusion: that the blame rests squarely on these despicable “kiddults” who are failing to grow up.
Every time you see an article like this, there is never any shortage of voices bringing truth and clarity to the issue, usually found in the comments section. There’s usually no way to know for sure the age of those commenting, but they almost all speak the truth – that the rise of feminism and no-fault divorce has killed marriage, while poor economics and worthless education delays it further. It’s no mystery to regular people what has happened in the last 50 years or so.
You would think that the think tanks who come up with these socially conservative studies, like this National Center for Family and Marriage Research or perhaps the National Marriage Project at UVA, would have picked up on this stuff by now and would have pushed it to the forefront, right? Yet, you never seem to see that. Even if they give those ideas a token acknowledgement, the conclusions they draw always seems to whitewash that, and leans right into traditional Protestant/feminist/complementarian male-shaming. The dishonesty of it is troubling enough, but do they think that their strategy of pressuring men to marry with these things is actually going to work? Seriously, is whining about the status quo, and ignoring the reason that are obvious to everyone else, going to produce even one more marriage?
It’s never a good idea to assume that people are in a vacuum, but sometimes their rigid agenda really makes you wonder.