Valuing Families and Our Nation's Future: The Joys and Economic Penalties of Parenting

By Muhammad, Dedrick | The Crisis, Summer 2012 | Go to article overview

Valuing Families and Our Nation's Future: The Joys and Economic Penalties of Parenting


Muhammad, Dedrick, The Crisis


As parents (one of us with a newborn and the other with three children), we have both experienced the wonder and joys of raising children. As economic analysts who focus on racial inequality, we both also see the increasing economic challenges facing families who are rearing the future of our country. Economic insecurity is rapidly becoming the norm for many American households. A trifecta of rapidly increasing costs, near-stagnant wages and the contemporary call to weaken government investments in our nation's families poses a serious challenge to our nation's future as well as threatens to exacerbate the inequalities that divide our nation.

Harvard Law School Professor Elizabeth Warren, in her analysis on the vanishing middle class, highlights how transportation, mortgages, child care and health insurance have all increased at a much faster rate than workers' earnings over the last few decades. American families have been dealing with these increased costs in three primary ways: moving from a single-income to a dual-income household, increasing the use of debt, and saving less. Rising levels of debt and declining savings make for an increasingly unstable American middle class, and Warren notes that even the transition from a single-income to a dualincome household still leaves the average family with less money to save and invest than it had 30 years ago. Asa result, a heavy debt anchor and bankruptcy have become far too common for low-to moderate-income families.

The loss of wealth for most families raising children is increasingly creating a larger wealth divide. Before the Great Recession, a 2007 survey of consumer finance showed a doubling of wealth inequality between couples with children and couples without children. In 1998 the median wealth of couples without children was about $24,000 higher than couples with children. By 2007 this wealth disparity had increased to $50,000, so that couples with children had a third less wealth than their childless counterparts. For women and most minorities, the low wealth tied to child rearing is even more extreme. Single white women raising children have 14 percent of the median wealth (about $8,000) of that of single white men raising children. Single Black and Latino women have a median wealth of zero dollars, and Black and Latino households as a whole have about 5 percent of the wealth of white households.

As the nation rapidly becomes a majority-minority country the interplay between racialized wealth inequality and the growing divide ' between families who are having children (who are also more likely to be minorities) and those who are not are steering the future of the country in an increasingly unstable economic path. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Valuing Families and Our Nation's Future: The Joys and Economic Penalties of Parenting
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.