Posts Tagged ‘The Pew Reseach Center’

Tradition; what tradition?

In Uncategorized on May 24, 2010 at 10:00 am

“Despite the statistics, despite the divorce rate, despite what others say about marriage…” and the minister continued, “today is a holiday.” A holiday that family and friends come out to celebrate, but a holiday that despite what the statistics say, “today is a holiday that we all believe in.” These words comprised the minister’s introduction to my closest friend, my sister’s wedding. These words actually comforted me because I was having anxiety about “giving” my friend away–you know the proverbial, “I’m losing a friend,” blah, blah, blah. Yet, as I looked on to the altar, as I panned the audience, we all were smiling, because that day, that beautiful May day was truly a holiday filled with love.

My friend and her now husband (my brother) have begun something special, perhaps on the surface an unlikely pair, but a pair that works. Ok, I will admit it, the odd couple. For all intents and purposes, she’s a nerd, the bookworm who likes to socialize and have fun, of course. He’s into internet games, tattoos, and piercings. She’s a veterinarian; he’s a blue collar man who’s employed at an automotive manufacturing plant. But a pair that works. When they started dating, my friend would say, “I don’t need an academic or someone in the same profession; I need someone who understands, who loves me, and who can make life a little less serious.” She has that in her partnership.

She’s not alone. In January the Pew Research Center released its findings that more men are marrying women with more education and who earn more income. The New York Times’ Sam Roberts reported that “the analysis examines Americans 30 to 44 years old, the first generation in which more women than men have college degrees. Women’s earnings have been increasing faster than men’s since the 1970s.” According to Professor Stephanie Coontz of Evergreen State College and research director of the Council on Contemporary Families, “we’ve known for some time that men need marriage more than women from the standpoint of physical and mental well-being. Now it is becoming increasingly important to their economic well-being as well.”

Furthermore, the Census Bureau also reported in January “that among married couples with children, only the wife worked in 7 percent of the households last year, compared with 5 percent in 2007. The percentage rose to 12 percent from 9 percent for blacks, among whom the education and income gap by gender has typically been even greater.” Moreover, “college-educated wives are less likely to have a husband who is college-educated and in the highest income bracket than they were in 1970, and married women are less likely to have a husband who works.”

As for my friend, she has found someone who understands her, understands the demands of her profession, and who knows what it takes to bring the best out of her. She knows what it takes to bring the best out of her husband, she understands the demands and pressures society places on “the man, the breadwinner.” What matters is that they understand and love each other, agree on a partnership that works well with them; so happen, it flies in the face of tradition. But for some reason, women like my friend are not traditional anyway.


“Some say we have a split personality”

In Uncategorized on November 16, 2009 at 9:54 am

In Houston, TX: It’s called The Gay Takeover. In Maine: Many are in it for the long haul. And the warring of words, opinions, and factions remain as issues with gay rights continue to fill the ballot box, the halls of legislatures, conversations, and even the White House.

In Houston, one of the candidates, city Controller Annise Parker faces a runoff election in December. What’s becoming more of an issue as the runoff approaches is her sexuality. According to the Houston Chronicle “A cluster of socially conservative Houstonians is planning a campaign to discourage voters from choosing City Controller Annise Parker in the December mayoral runoff because she is a lesbian, according to multiple ministers and conservatives involved in the effort.” In Maine, voters recently repealed a measure allowing same-sex marriage.

While many have compared gay rights movement to the civil rights movement for African Americans, many would like to draw the line before the pen starts to mark it. In 2004 Reverend Gregory Daniels, an African American minister made this point very clear when he said “If the KKK opposes gay marriage, I would ride with them.” Click here to complete Village Voice article. In an October 2009 article for AOL Black Voices, Paul Shepard says “actually, some say we have a split personality when it comes to liberalism and gay rights.”

Shepard referenced a Pew Research Center study where 64 percent of African Americans think homosexuality is morally wrong, when compared to whites and Hispanics, only 48 percent and 43 percent, respectively, view it as morally wrong. The split personality, according to Shepard, shows that African Americans are not a “monolith,” yet the Pew findings should not be very surprising to anyone because “for nearly all black people, issues of racial equity are important. In the past, the Democratic Party has championed those issues more effectively than Republicans. But for many black people who were raised in a church-going environment, homosexuality and civil unions are against Biblical teachings. Therefore, it makes sense that a lot of black folks can accept the overall “liberal,” or Democratic, agenda and question or reject a part of it.”

To read the Pew Research Center report, click here.