Britain, which once (to the scorn of some and admiration of others) espoused Victorian values and thrived as a cohesive, family-centered society under them, has now swung to the other extreme in its approach to family.
A report recently released by the Center for Policy Studies shows Britain leading the way among European countries in divorce. It also leads in the percentage of its children—over 25 percent—who live in single-parent homes, compared to a European average of 14 percent.
The report’s release was timed to coincide with National Marriage Week and aims to draw the government’s attention to the disintegration of marriage and the family in Britain.
The author of the report, Jill Kirby, commented, “Unless we are prepared to recognize that the family is under siege and that marriage is under threat, we can have no hope of reversing the trend and improving the lives of the children who are afflicted” (Daily Telegraph, Feb. 11).
Her efforts are admirable but run contrary to the ideas and actions of the government that the Center for Policy Studies is trying to influence—many members of which have fought ardently against the traditional two-parent family.
Blair’s center-left government scrapped the married-couples’ tax allowance in 2000 and has promoted homosexual men to prominent positions in government. It has also worked vigorously to reduce the age of consent for homosexuals to allow for it to apply to children of 16 or, as the present lobbyists would have it, 14 years.
The statistics on family conditions in Britain are an embarrassment to some in its society. Unfortunately, they are not embarrassing to those leaders who have brought the nation to that state.