GAMBIER — American society has changed over the past 50 years, libertarian author Charles Murray told a Kenyon audience Wednesday night, as we have seen the emergence of a new upper class and a new working class, with often divergent values. The result is not a Republican or Democratic, conservative or a liberal issue, but “a threat to the American project that transcends those lines.”
To describe the problem, he focused on non-Latino white males between the ages of 30 and 49, and on what he said the founders considered essential to the success of a limited government: Industriousness, marital morality, honesty and religiosity.
In 1960, he said 94 percent of upper class white males were married, as were 84 percent of the working class. By 2010, he said, 84 percent of the upper class were married, a drop but not a major one, while only 48 percent of working class were married.
He said scholars “left and right” agree that the best outcomes for children are when they are raised by two parents, the next best when raised by divorced parents and the worst by single parents or co-habitants.
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