Friday, May 15, 2009

The Growing Gap in the White Out-of-Wedlock Birthrate

Charles Murray reports on the Enterprise Blog about the large gap in the illegitimate birth rates between the top and bottom classes.

[Mrs. G. doesn't like the term "illegitimate birth" on the grounds that no child is illegitimate. This is true. So I will use the cumbersome "out-of-wedlock" - though it seems like a euphemism piled on a euphemism for bastardy. But that perfectly useful term has been co-opted for other uses. Continue.]

Murray compares the top tenth and bottom tenth (overclass and underclass, in his terms) of white women born at the end of the Baby Boom and the beginning of Gen-X. The top fraction, college graduates with family incomes over $100,000, had an out-of-wedlock birthrate barely over 1%. The bottom fraction, with less than high school education making under $20,000 per year, had nearly half of their kids (44.5%) unmarried. Murray sees this gap as confirmation of the point he and Richard Herrnstein made in The Bell Curve that there is a growing gap in all aspects of life between the top and bottom classes.

And, Murray says, that was then, when the white out-of-wedlock birthrate was only 11%. Murray estimates that the current white underclass has an out-of-wedlock birthrate of perhaps 70%, while the comparable figure for the overclass can't be higher than 5%.

1 comment:

Puma said...

More than anything, the new rise in the OOWB demographic within the middle class, is about Divorce Laws. Middle class men are shunning Marriage because they have too much to lose to the misandrist family law and family courts.

Millionaire men can weather divorce. The Poor have nothing to lose. It's the middle class guys that get the shaft. Hence the absolute collapse in middle class marriage rates (and the parallel explosion in middle class OOW births).

The Rutgers University Marriage Study has been charting the decline in new-marriage rates per annum. Here is their data: