I am the divorced father of two boys. As my mother would say, let me tell you something. Kids are expensive. You may think your Xbox and your HD TV are expensive, that’s peanuts. Kids cost time, money, effort and emotions. They grow up fast (the clothing bill alone…dear god…). And here’s the rub:
“I take care of my kids.” You’re supposed to take care of your kids, you dumb motherfucker! What kind of ignorant shit is that? “I ain’t never been to jail.” Whatcha want, a cookie?! You ain’t supposed to go to jail, you low-expectations-having motherfucker!
— Chris Rock
There is no tangible reward for having kids. I mean, you don’t get sympathy, a card or extra money for kids. Sure, after 18 years, seeing them leave the house but in this economy….
Rich people can afford kids. It used to be that poor families would have many kids because some of them would die. There were celebrations of teenage birthdays because most parents 100-200 years ago expected most of their kids to not make it. Childhood and teenager are inventions of the industrial age.
So some asshat on slate bitches:
You hear about the “haves” versus the “have-nots,” but not so much about the “have-one-or-nones” versus the “have-a-fews.” This, though, is how you might characterize the stark and growing fertility class divide in the United States. Two new studies bring the contrasting reproductive profiles of rich and poor women into sharp relief. One, from the Guttmacher Institute, shows that the rates of unplanned pregnancies and births among poor women now dwarf the fertility rates of wealthier women, and finds that the gap between the two groups has widened significantly over the past five years. The other, by the Center for Work-Life Policy, documents rates of childlessness among corporate professional women that are higher than the childlessness rates of some European countries experiencing fertility crises.
–Knocked Up and Knocked Down, Why America’s widening fertility class divide is a problem. By Sharon Lerner. Slate.com
Lerner goes on to moan about the “mommy track”. Women who take time out for families tend to not advance as fast as women and men who put their careers first. Poor women are hardest hit.
No fucking duh.
Many careers require lots of work. Liberals hate work. Doctors need hours in the OR. Pilots need flight hours in the cockpit. Programmers have to bang out code. Lawyers need to argue cases before a judge (after clerking a lot). Most white collar jobs require putting time in so you can get evaluated. Having kids doesn’t erase these requirements (espically if they are required by law in the case of pilots & doctors). In short, the world doesn’t stop because you have kids. Lerner goes on to cite Europe’s model of childcare as something we should copy.
Lerner…have you seen Europe? They broke. No money. Nice childcare costs $$$$.
In the military, it’s common for soldiers (who do get childcare at a discount) who have kids to be sneered at by their peers for having the gall to go pick up said offspring. While the other soldiers have to keep working. Many a commander has to be reminded that soldiers have to pick their kids up by 4:30-5 pm or that soldier will go to jail (it’s the law!).
Many single soldiers save much $$$ and get promoted faster. Many wait and have kids in when they are older (and have that $$$ to spend). Young soldiers who get married and have kids early in their careers tend to have a lot of problems, mostly with money. They then end up divorced.
Civilians are no different.
When you are in your teens and 20’s you are too stupid and immature for kids. No really. Most 18-27 year-olds don’t even have an identity. Financial responsibility? Ha! Guess who racks up student loan and credit card debt that dooms them later?
By the time the late 20’s and early 30’s roll around identity has formed. Debts can be paid off or are lower. If you were not an idiot, you have money to spend or have a job. Most of the married graduate students I met were either childless or were far enough along that they could start having kids. When the bills for braces and doctor’s visits come, it helps to have a career and not yet another student loan.
Most undergraduate college students with kids either drop out or take years to finish.
Of course kids equal poverty if you are already poor. They cost a lot. If you studied Xbox, cutting classes and Jersey Shore instead of your subjects, kids will not make things better. The jobs go to educated people and those willing to put in the hours.
Research shows that women with unplanned pregnancies are more likely to smoke, drink, and go without prenatal care. –Lerner
And water is wet. These women tend to be the less educated, the less mature. Remember, thanks to the left birth control is readily available. Hey abortion is legal and thanks to Planned Parenthood, paid for by the taxpayer. So why do poor women keep having kids? Guess. There was even a rap video about EBT (until Youtube pulled it).
With men reduced to child support and the idea that Uncle Sam will pay, what incentive do the poor have to plan for children? But wait..more kids but the bennies are fixed. That’s right a fixed income! Even with money for more kids (if your state allows it) most things in life are expensive. Cigs, alcohol and junk food are cheap but very bad for you. Of course college and a career are out of the question. So to the crappy jobs or welfare rolls you go. As so do your children.
Now lets say you get out of college. Male or female, you suddenly hear “your pregnant” from the doctor? Well shithouse mouse. You will have a kid. Do you take time out to raise a family? Do you ask freinds and family to help you? Do you work part time? Does your spouse? Remember, if you get divorced or don’t get married, poverty can happen. Let’s assume you avoid poverty but have to slow down your nice career path for the sake of the child(ren).
Who is that HR manager going to hire? Someone with lots of experience or someone who took “time off”. Yep, childless one with the hours/experience/etc. Remember childcare is a perk. You’re ducking out of work to fetch your souvenir from spring break means your peers are working harder than you. And they get promoted while you wonder why you’re still in the back office.
Childcare costs money and you can’t leave your little darling there forever. Most jobs go past 9 to 5 these days. Wanna get ahead? Work hard and put the hours in. Many careers require you to attend certification classes (daycare not provided). You better work past closing…oh, wait, you have to pick up the child before the daycare calls the police on you.
Europe had a generous welfare state. And then the money ran out. NATO needed smart bombs for Libya and they had to get them from US stocks. The UK almost ran out of cruise missiles. But a pregnant 15 year old ‘model’ living with her mom may get a better house.
More kids mean more work. More work at crap wages. Society and technology moved on, the days of a good “blue collar” job paying good money out of high school are gone. Raising the minimum wage or paid leave won’t fly in this economy. Businesses either don’t hire or they close if wages go up these days. There. Is. No. Money.
The trend is fewer children and longer life. Remember, historically siblings were there to replace the ones that didn’t make it. Or work the farm. Or keep property in the family. That was for male children. Before the 20th century (and in the Middle East today) women had no rights. Male children were prized, daughters were married off (nowadays they are aborted, thanks feminists!).
As health improves, family size goes down. As it should. We have vaccines, medicine. No one dies of the flu or “spirits”. In the west, we shop for baby names before the child is born. In very poor countries (and in decades past), they don’t name kids before a certain age in case they die.
Now we can raise living standards. That helps. Free trade and capitalism is the way to make this happen. Remember socalist Europe is broke and China…just China….
When I first read Lerner’s column, I though it was a another wacky rant on poor people having kids. Meh, could be. Or it could be another cry for more welfare state. More pay for less work. Gee, I want my accountant, lawyer, pilot or doctor to have done the training, hours and work needed so they can do the job right. Kids are no excuse.
It is surprising because the thing to do for the planet was not have kids. Or because many leftist were spoiled, selfish and didn’t want to spend money on kids. The abortion industry wants you to believe that kids are a burden.
It’s refreshing to see a leftie who wants children.
But children are the responsibility of the parents. It takes two parents, or one very involved parent. Not the “watch the kids while I/we go clubbing”, not the welfare parents. Involved parents. It means making sacrifices. It means doing without.
You didn’t get as far as your peers? Too bad. You wine that you didn’t make that sweet promotion because you had kids? STFU. You had kids. The rest of us shouldn’t have to pay for your spawn.
Seeing those smiling faces and hearing the laughter of children is priceless. I don’t need no gov’ment hand out for that.