August 30, 2007

Call Births to Unwed Mothers a Big Problem

71%

That’s the number of U.S. adults who say that the growing number of children in this country born to unmarried mothers is a “big problem,” although there is little agreement on the primary cause of the problem.

More than seven-in-ten adults (71%) say it’s a “big problem” that a growing number of children in this country are born to unmarried mothers while another two-in-ten (19%) call it a “small problem”; but despite the broad public consensus about the problem’s magnitude, there is little agreement about its main cause. Some 15% cited a decay in moral values as the main reason for the increasing prevalence of out-of-wedlock births; 13% cited a breakdown in family structure and discipline; 11% said too much sex, especially among teenagers and young adults; 10% said a lack of information, especially about birth control; 10% cited more permissive cultural norms, such as a decline in the social pressure to marry when a woman becomes pregnant; 5% said it is mainly the result of the growing independence of women; and 5% said it is mainly the result of men not taking enough responsibility for fatherhood. Read More