Incarceration and the Family Lives of Black Women

RedTracker| The proportion of US-born black women aged 30-44 who were married plunged from 62% to 33% from 1970 to 2007. Conservatives tend to blame black culture, loose morals and lack of family values, education differentials between black women and men.

The Economist reminds us that incarceration rates among black men are also a huge part of America’s problem. For similar crimes, America’s penalities are much harsher than in other developed countries. One in three black males will be imprisoned during his life.

Some 70% of black babies are born out of wedlock. The collapse of the traditional family has made black Americans far poorer and lonelier than they would otherwise have been. The least-educated black women suffer the most. In 2007 only 11% of US-born black women aged 30-44 without a high school diploma had a working spouse, according to the Pew Research Centre. Their college-educated sisters fare better, but are still affected by the sex imbalance. Because most seek husbands of the same race—96% of married black women are married to black men—they are ultimately fishing in the same pool.  

Read on: Sex and the single black woman at The Economist