06/08/2009 (9:21 am)
A Pew Hispanic Center survey of children with Hispanic parents in the US reveals that third-generation Hispanic children are not as prosperous as their parents in all areas, displaying lower birth weights, more serious health problems, and a greater propensity toward anti-social and self-destructive behaviors than their parents. The deterioration seems to be tied to the growing number of Hispanic children raised in single-parent homes — a trend they developed since arriving in the US.
From the Washington Times editorial discussing the results:
“The children of Latino immigrants experience better outcomes than do Latino children in the third or higher generations” the study found, the reverse of how the Melting Pot process is supposed to work. Hispanic children of U.S.-born parents have lower birth weights, more health problems during childhood, and higher rates of smoking, alcohol and illegal drug consumption. They also engage in more violent or delinquent behavior as adolescents.
The historical pattern in America has been that succeeding generations of immigrants fare better than their parents; their health, income, and social stability improve as they assimilate into American culture. We Americans are proud of this heritage, and ought to be.
However, the latest wave of immigrants is breaking the mold, and it appears that it’s due to something they acquire after they arrive. The divorce rate of foreign-born Hispanics is lower than that of white non-Hispanics, but that seems to change as they assimilate. Sixty-nine percent of 1st generation Hispanic children live with two parents, and 72% of 2nd generation Hispanic children live with two parents. By the time the families have lived in the US long enough that the 3rd generation is born — Hispanics who were themselves born in the US start to have children — only 52% live with two parents, while 38% live with a single mother. Thus, not only are the 3rd generation Hispanics suffering health and social adjustment effects from broken homes, but they seem to have acquired the habit of divorce from their American neighbors.
Marriage trends among Hispanics have been studied less often than trends among others. High overall marriage rates among Hispanic women (especially in the context of their low socioeconomic status) set them apart from other ethnicities, as does their greater propensity to marry even when marriage markets are tight (i.e., when the number of potential partners is low relative to the number of unmarried women). At the same time, however, trends toward greater social and economic assimilation among Hispanic immigrants have fueled increases in divorce, as many have adopted mainstream American cultural patterns.1
Thanks to the persistent efforts of Progressive entertainers, educators, jurists and politicians, America has developed one of the most sexually permissive cultures in the history of the world; and that permissiveness is now poisoning immigrants who come here searching for a better life. Welcome to the Progressive United States of America. Perhaps we should dismantle the Statue of Liberty and replace her with a very large NC-17 warning label.
(1) Bean, Berg, and Van Hook, “Socioeconomic and Cultural Incorporation and Family Behavior Among Mexican Americans,” Presented: Washington, DC, American Sociological Association Annual Meetings, August 1995.