Millennial Morality

Half of all Americans polled think religion will have a greater influence on American daily life in the year 2025, according to the Princeton Religious Research Center. And for everyone who believes that Americans will be less religious in a quarter century than they are today, there is another who believes they will be more religious. Paradoxically, six in ten Americans expect moral values in society to be worse in the year 2025 than they are today.

Rocky Mountain Baptist, March 1999



Millennium Watch

Twenty-five percent of Americans say they believe the new millennium will herald the Second Coming of Jesus Christ.

Insight, May 17, 1999



Learning to Lie

In a recently completed study at the University of Birmingham in England, psychologists Kristina Cole and Peter Mitchell investigated "the development of certain aspects of deception" among four- and five-year-old children. They discovered "significant associations with family background and deceptive ability." Specifically, they found that "children raised in a one-parent household were significantly more likely to be convincing in their deceptive performance" than were children reared in intact families.

The researchers suggest that since the single parents in this study were "economically disadvantaged" compared to their married peers, they might take "a more laissez fair attitude toward the punishment of deceptive behavior [than married parents], because wile is perceived to be a necessary safeguard when living in a dangerous community."

The researchers also suggest that "a child might learn to conceal disappointment and distress to appease divorcing parents."

The Family in America, February 1999



Jesus: The Person of the Century

Hundreds of thousands of people chose Jesus Christ as the "person of the century" in an online survey conducted by Time magazine. In late February, Jesus was leading the survey with 41 percent of the votes cast. However, the name of Jesus was disqualified as a candidate. A spokesperson for Time said the "person of the century" must have lived part of his life within the century.

Alliance Life, April 28, 1999



"Somebody, somewhere, love me." – Madalyn Murray O'Hair, at least a half-dozen times in her diaries, which were auctioned off January 23, 1999, to satisfy Internal Revenue Service claims against her estate. O'Hair vanished three years ago.

Leadership Journal, Spring 1999



Divorce and Consequences

A study by sociologist Nicholas H. Wolfinger of the University of Utah reveals new evidence of a link between parental divorce, and tobacco and alcohol use. Wolfinger says, for both men and women "parental divorce produces about a one-third increase in the likelihood of [an adult child] becoming a smoker." He also says that parental divorce "greatly increases" the likelihood that sons – but not daughters – will become "problem drinkers." Wolfinger concedes that even parental remarriage has little effect on the smoking and drinking.

The American Journal of Orthopsychiatry reports that "negative short-term effects on academic performance, social adjustment, and emotional well-being have been extensively reported" for children in divorced families. It also says that over the long term, "children from divorced families had higher levels of problem behavior, lower academic performance, and more psychological distress and health problems than did those from intact families." The study adds that distress suffered by the children of divorced parents varies according to age. Infants suffer more than do older children.

The Family in America, June 1999



Theological Madness

Yale-trained professor of religious studies, Carol Christ, calls herself a thea-logian to reflect her fascination with the divine feminine Goddess. Christ currently travels to different cities lecturing on how women are missing from the history of religion. She says that we are taught God is more like a father than a mother, and that's not fair. She claims that belief manifests itself in other aspects of life, causing people to believe that women are creatures in need of protection and tight control. In developing the Goddess movement, Christ and others hope to create a religion whose language is part New Age, part environmentalist, and part poetic.

The Times – Picayune, March 6, 1999



Drive Time

The state of Washington's children study reports that children are far less likely to engage in risky behavior like getting pregnant, dropping out of school or selling drugs if they feel they have the opportunity to share their views with a trusted adult. One way to facilitate this is for the parent to turn off the radio and engage in meaningful conversation on drives to school and sports practice. A study by the Surface Transportation Policy Project reveals that the typical mom spends more than an hour per day chauffeuring kids.

Time, May 31, 1999



Unmarried Mothers

In 1992 there were nearly 4 million mothers between the ages of fifteen and forty-five in the United States who had never been married. That number is almost double what it was ten years earlier. They represent about 12 percent of all mothers. Nationally, one in four never-married women are mothers.

Home Life, July 1999

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