To Break Cycle Of Child Poverty, Teaching Mom And Dad To Get Along

The family breakdown has only intensified since the controversial Moynihan Report 50 years ago declared out-of-wedlock births to be a main cause of black poverty. Today, for all women without a college degree, more than half of births are outside marriage, and those children are five times more likely to be poor. In fact, single mothers have come to be the modern face of poverty.

“None of my friends are married,” says 26-year-old Brittiny Spears, who lives with her 4-year-old daughter in a cramped public housing project in Mansfield, Ohio. Spears laments that her daughter barely knows her father but says she had good reason to turn down his marriage proposal. For one, she wasn’t “die-hard in love” with him. For another, she says the man had no job or ambition, even after they became parents.

“He just still wanted to go out and party and be a little boy,” she says. “I already had one kid to take care of. I didn’t want to take care of a grown kid, too.”


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