WASHINGTON (ChurchMilitant.com) - Lawmakers are highlighting the decline of family life in America.
Congress' Joint Economic Committee (JEC) put out a report last month on the decline of two-parent households.
Titled "The Demise of the Happy Two-Parent Home," it says having both parents at home is a major factor in enabling children to flourish and find success later in life.
Fewer and fewer children get to experience the benefits of having both parents at home. The document notes, "Today, around 45% of American children spend some time without a biological parent by late adolescence. That is up from around one-third of children born in the 1960s and one-fifth to one-quarter born in the 1950s."
The JEC's chairman, Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, told The Epoch Times on Monday, "Everything comes back to the family."
The family is the foundation of our society, and if the institution of marriage is suffering, then everything is suffering. Repairing the institution of marriage should be our top priority. I think the first thing the federal government should do is to stop harming the institution of marriage. Marriage was much better in America before the federal government started creating incentives to undermine it. We need to focus on ending those federal disincentives to marriage.
The senator from Utah claimed statistics show policy has put unmarried couples at an advantage over married couples.
"A typical working family of two parents and two kids making $44,000 a year would lose about $8,000 in benefits a year if the parents got married," Sen. Lee said.
Last month's document was a part of the "Social Capital Project" by Republicans on the JEC, a project analyzing the importance of social relationships.
Amid the Wuhan virus pandemic and the Black Lives Matter protests and riots, the JEC report has received little or no attention in the mainstream media.
Since the sexual revolution in the 1960s, the decline in marriage and the rise of premarital cohabitation have caused the number of children born outside wedlock to skyrocket.
"The percent of births to unmarried mothers has jumped from 5% in 1960 to 40% today," the report states.
The congressional document lists a number of ways in which children raised by both parents are statistically more fortunate than children in single-parent households:
Researchers have well established that children raised by married parents do better on a wide array of outcomes. They have stronger relationships with their parents, particularly with their fathers. They are also much less likely to experience physical, emotional or sexual abuse. They have better health, exhibit less aggression, are less likely to engage in delinquent behavior, have greater educational achievement and earn more as adults. They are also far less likely to live in poverty.
The report ties the negative effects of a "broken home" with other hardships, saying, "Single parenthood is experienced by two-thirds of the children of mothers with less than a high school education and by 80% of black children. This inequality in family stability contributes to but also compounds economic inequality."