Constitutional Failure: The Judicial Assault on the Family in America

Visiting America in the 1830’s, the German traveller Francis J. Grund found a land characterized by “early marriage,” “the sanctity of the marriage vow,” “rapid increase of population,” and “domestic happiness.” Indeed, he saw “the domestic virtue of the Americans as the principle source of all their other qualities,” including democratic governance.

Read More

The Real Rights of Children

The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, adopted as an international treaty in 1989, enjoys ratification by most nations on earth; the United States is the one notable exception. As the UNICEF website explains, this Convention “spells out the basic human rights that children everywhere . . . have: the right to […]

Read More

Two Family Policy Essentials

In my time today, I want to focus on two matters regarding family policy. The first is the absolutely critical need to craft an “ideal family” structure as a model or goal in shaping policy. Without such a model, it becomes impossible to build a coherent public policy; the results would actually be social chaos […]

Read More

The New Populism and Family Policy

Historical Reflections From March 29-31, 2019, participants in World Congress of Families XIII gathered in the beautiful medieval city of Verona, Italy, to discuss both the victories of and challenges facing the pro-family movement around the world. The League, one-half of the ruling coalition in the Italian government, participated heavily in the event. The media […]

Read More

Homeschooling is Good for Society

Homeschooling is important to a society for three reasons. First, it helps to create conditions for a real and sustainable democracy. A great error of both modern libertarianism on the political right and contemporary European socialism on the left has been to leave the isolated individual as the only relevant political and economic actor. The […]

Read More

Beyond Capitalism and Socialism

Rebuilding an Economy Focused on Family and Community The Great Recession of 2008-2009 brought to the surface old truths that many chose to forget when times seemed to be good: The business cycle has not been eliminated; finance capitalism is by nature unstable; politically connected corporations commonly escape market discipline; and there is nothing conservative […]

Read More

“One Big Thing”

Catholic Social Teaching and Distributism: Toward a New Economy  by Michael Hickey  Hamilton Books, 2017; 166 pages, $19.99 Of Labour and Liberty: Distributism in Victoria, 1891-1966  by Race Mathews  University of Notre Dame Press, 2018; 422 pages, $50.00 An Economics of Justice & Charity: Catholic Social Teaching, Its Development and Contemporary Relevance  by Thomas Storck  […]

Read More

The Natural Family in Peril

This past summer, I attended my 50th high school class reunion, in my hometown, Des Moines, Iowa. A near-classmate of mine at Theodore Roosevelt High School was Bill Bryson, who went on to become a bestselling author of volumes such as A Walk in the Woods and A Short History of Nearly Everything. Among these […]

Read More

Family and the Founding

The Political Theory of the American Founding Natural Rights, Public Policy, and the Moral Conditions of Freedom Thomas G. West Cambridge University Press, 2017; 428 pages, £26.99 I begin with praise for Professor West’s treatment of family questions in his book, The Political Theory of the American Founding. As he notes, there is a curious […]

Read More

Failure of the Swedish Model of Family Policy

In an iconic article published a decade ago and entitled, “The Motherhood Experiment,” the New York Times Magazine celebrated Sweden for solving the population and family problems of modern European society. It explained: “Curiously, Europe’s lowest birthrates are seen in countries, mostly Catholic, where the old idea that the man is the breadwinner and the […]

Read More