Walter Hoye

Black American Perspectives (5)

In Abortion on February 26, 2012 at 10:23 pm
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Black American Perspectives (5)

“The condition of society is the report card of the church.”
 — Jackson Senyongas, Uganda Revival ·

Having Children” Outside Of Marriage

Report CardAccording to a New York Times report, “after steadily rising for five (5) decades, the share of children born to unmarried women has crossed a threshold: more than half of births to American women under 30 occur outside of marriage.” 2 What was once associated with poverty, poor women and minorities, having children outside of marriage is the new normal. In 2009, according to Child Trends, a Washington research group that analyzed government data, “87% of teen births occurred outside of marriage, according to preliminary data from the National Center for Health Statistics. In comparison, 62% of births to women aged 20-24 were nonmarital. Overall, 41% of births to women of all ages in 2009 were nonmarital.” 3 Drilling down in the data a bit we discover non-marital rates highest for Black women (72%), followed by Hispanics (53%), Whites (29%) and Asians (17%). 4

Having ChildrenOutside Of Marriage Is The New Normal.

Raising Children” Outside Of Marriage

Report CardWith 41% of all U.S. children are born to unmarried women, more and more children are being raised outside of marriage. According to a study of childbearing among unmarried mothers by the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the non-marital rates increased between 2006 and 2007 for all population groups by 2 to 5 percent all around. However, for Black women the non-marital rate is 72.6 per 1,000 and 108.4 for Hispanic women. 5 According to U.S. Census Bureau data, in 2009 over 23 million children live in single parent homes. 6 Of the 23 million children living in single parent homes, 30% or over 7 million are Black7 Of the 7 million Black children living in single parent homes, 75% or 5.3 million live without fathers and 13% or 977,000 live with neither parent. 8 According to “64”, a 2011 promo for a Short Film entitled “Father’s Day?”, for the 75% of Black children who grow up without fathers, “Father’s day” is just a second Mother’s day. 9 Obviously, raising children outside of marriage negatively impacts our present and our future. This is not just my opinion. According to Fathers Unite, children raised in homes without fathers are more likely to have behavioral disorders, commit suicide, become teenaged mothers, run away, commit rape, drop out of school, end up in prison while a teenager and our daughters, who live in mother only homes, are more likely to divorce. 10

Raising ChildrenOutside Of Marriage Is The New Normal.

Living Together” Outside Of Marriage

Report CardDespite a National Center for Health Statistics report dated February 2010 finding that couples who live together before they get married are less likely to stay married, living together before marriage is on the rise. 11 Pamela J. Smock, a research professor at the Population Studies Center at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor says, “just because some academic studies have shown that living together may increase the chance of divorce somewhat, young adults themselves don’t believe that” and “from the perspective of many young adults, marrying without living together first seems quite foolish.” 12 Kelly A. Musick, a professor of policy analysis and management at Cornell goes as far as saying the studies data suggests “that cohabitation is still a pathway to marriage for many college graduates, while it may be an end in itself for many less educated women.” 13 The study itself admits that “cohabitation is increasingly becoming the first co-residential union formed among young adults” and that “as a result of the growing prevalence of cohabitation, the number of children born to unmarried cohabiting parents has also increased.” 14

Living TogetherOutside Of Marriage Is The New Normal.

Report CardIf I look into this study for the data in my neighborhood my heart breaks for my people as the findings reveal that not only is there a lower percentage of Black women married (26%) than White women (51%), 15 but even among those “cohabitating”, Black couples are less likely to have their first cohabitations transition into marriage within 3 or 5 years than White couples. 16 If I consider Dr. Niolon’s PsychPage 17 and his analysis of cohabitation from an earlier study, the bottom line for Black America is “Black women are more likely to have a cohabitation end, and less likely to marry by age 30, likely to have a shorter marriage if they do marry for both first and second marriage, less likely to formally divorce if they marry then separate, less likely to cohabitate after a divorce, less likely to remarry, and less likely to have a successful second marriage.” 18

Religion” Outside Of Marriage

Report CardRespondents in the National Survey of Family Growth were asked, “Currently, how important is religion in your daily life? Would you say very important, somewhat important, or not important?” 60% of White women for whom religion was “very important” in their daily lives were currently married, compared with 36% of White women for whom religion was “not important.” The same pattern based on the importance of religion in ones daily life was found among cohabiting White men and women, Black men and hispanic men and women. Only Black women failed to follow this pattern. Black women were the lone group where the importance of religion in their daily life had no bearing on marriage or cohabitation. As a Black man I have to ask this question, brothers, what’s going on here?

ReligionOutside Of Marriage Is The New Normal.

Could The “The Condition Of The Church” Today Be The New Normal?

“Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand, stand therefore …” — Ephesians 6:13,14a (KJV)

Report CardIn light of the data surrounding, having children, raising children and living together outside of marriage. In light of the importance of religion and the decision to marry or cohabitate, I wonder how would you grade the Church’s impact on the everyday lives of her young men and women? If you feel the Church has done and is doing all she can to stand, with what she has to work with, including the power of Christ, then you feel the condition of society is not the report card of the Church. However, if you’re like me, you know the Church has not done and is not doing all she can to stand, with what she has to work with, including the power of Christ, you agree with Jackson that the condition of society is the report card of the Church and you can feel these words burning in your heart and ringing loudly in your ears:

“The church must be reminded that it is not the master or the servant of the state, but rather the CONSCIENCE of the state. It must be the GUIDE and the CRITIC of the state, and never its TOOL. If the church does not recapture its prophetic zeal, it will become an irrelevant social club without moral or spiritual authority.” — Dr. Martin L. King, Jr., Strength to Love, 1963.

If you’re like me, you refuse to settle for what’s politically correct, the small print, the status quo, quid pro quo, business as usual or anything less than the perfect will of God for the Body of Christ.

If you’re like me, you refuse to act on the basis of polling results, the power of political equity, proper funding or anything less than the power of Christ living within you.

If you’re like me, you know …

The Condition Of The Church” Today CAIN’T 19 Be The New Normal!


Brothers, we really need to talk.


· “First—Person: Being Salt & Light “, Chris Clark is pastor of East Clairemont Southern Baptist Church in San Diego, April 6th, 2010 ( Thanks Chris for a simply outstanding article for the Baptist Press.
01. Jason DeParle and Sarbrina Tavernise, “For Women Under 30, Most Births Occur Outside Marriage,” Published: February 17, 2012 (
02. “Facts At A Glance — A Fact Sheet Reporting National, State, and City Trends in Teen Childbearing — April 2011, Publication # 2011 — 10 (
03. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “Unmarried Childbearing” (
04. The New Demography of American Motherhood, Released: May 6, 2010 and Revised August 19, 2010 (
05. National Vital Statistics Reports, Volume 58, Number 24, August 9, 2010, page 8 (
06. “Living Arrangements of Children: 2009 Detailed Tables”, U.S. Census Bureau, Released Wednesday, June 29th, 2011 (
07. Ibid.
08. Ibid.
09. Dear Diary Production7’s YoutTube Channel’s, “PSA ’64’ promo for short film ‘Father’s Day?’” (
10. “Fatherless Homes Now Proven Beyond Doubt Harmful To Children”, Fathers Unite (
11. Goodwin PY, Mosher WD, Chandra A. “Marriage and cohabitation in the United States: A statistical portrait based on Cycle 6 (2002) of the National Survey of Family Growth. National Center for Health Statistics. Vital Health Stat 23(28)”, dated February 2010 (
12. Sam Roberts, “Study Finds Cohabiting Doesn’t Make a Union Last”, New York Times, Published: March 2, 2010 (
13. Ibid.
14. Goodwin PY, Mosher WD, Chandra A., op cit.
15. Ibid., Page 14.
16. Ibid.
17. About Dr. Niolon, Richard Anthony, Ph.D. (
18. PsychPage, Perspectives on psychology in daily life (
19. “Cain’t, “A word meaning ‘can’t’, but with a Hoffstromic accent to emphasize the impossibility of your suggestion.” Urban Dictionary (


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