Hillary Clinton Is Wrong: It Doesn’t Take A Village To Raise A Child

This is getting to sound like a broken record. Yet another liberal shibboleth is discredited.

It doesn’t take a village to raise a child after all, according to University of Michigan research.

“In the African villages that I study in Mali, children fare as well in nuclear families as they do in extended families,” said U-M researcher Beverly Strassmann, professor of anthropology and faculty associate at the U-M Institute for Social Research (ISR). “There’s a naïve belief that villages raise children communally, when in reality children are raised by their own families and their survival depends critically on the survival of their mothers.” […]

In her study of the Dogon, Strassmann found that children’s risk of death is higher in polygynous than in monogamous families. This reflects the hazard of living with unrelated females whose own children are competing with the children of co-wives for limited resources.

Supporting this finding, Strassmann cites “Hamilton’s Rule,” established by British evolutionary biologist W.D. Hamilton in the 1960s. It is the first formal, mathematical description of kin selection theory, the idea that the degree to which we are willing to invest our resources in another person depends, in part, on the degree of genetic kinship we share with them.

It should also be noted that different human population groups, adapted to their specific environments, practice different reproductive strategies. In Africa, where this study took place, monogamy is less the norm than it is in Europe or Asia, and fathers come and go and have less certainty of paternity. This encourages an r-selection strategy where women pump out lots of kids and hope for the best, as opposed to a k-selected strategy in groups where enforced monogamy is the norm and fathers have more certainty about paternity. In the latter, you can expect to see more fatherly devotion and resource provision to his family, and more ill effects when the father abdicates his duty or the children are bastard spawn raised by single moms. (The author of the study commits a laughable PC error when she says that Bill Clinton is proof that kids of single moms turn out all right. No, that is proof that kids with extraordinary IQs and a particular suite of personality traits can overcome a crappy single mom family environment. Some of these social scientists should refamiliarize themselves with the axiom that exceptions prove the rule.)

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