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What are Children For?

Thanks to Barbara Moore for pointing me to this provocative article on the place of children in the family and society.

What’s truly fascinating – and not just a little troubling – however, is that our society has reached the point where we are using a “balance sheet approach” to assess the value of children (net worth equals assets minus liabilities) and a gain/strain ratio to evaluate the benefits of parenting. We now live in a world where the decision to procreate has become a “lifestyle choice” to be weighed against the benefits of remaining free to devote ourselves and our lives to, well, ourselves. The best educated, most affluent, socially progressive among us have in large part concluded that the age-old impulse to “be fruitful and multiply” can be explained by a combination of evolution and economics, neither of which applies to them.

Worth the trouble if you want or need to gain perspective of the place of children and your relationship with them.

A word of testimony. I always felt children were more important than career advance and that the Lord would look after us. As a result, we had children before I had a college degree and I received my only degree, a BA, when I was 30 years old. Along the way I had regrets. I now have none.

To walk in-step with our college system is harmful for most people who do it. More importantly, to bear children when it is convenient is so illogical and presumptuous as to make me wonder.

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