NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. – An income inequality panel at the Conservative Political Action Conference agreed that the 50-year "War on Poverty" has failed to enrich the poor and that family breakdown is contributing to the problem.
"The most important cultural bulwark to getting ahead in America is marriage, which is increasingly an institution just for the well-educated," said Rich Lowry, editor of National Review. Lowry argued in a panel on Thursday that the poverty problem has less to do with income inequality than with income mobility, "the question of whether people on the bottom are getting ahead." He declared that if Mark Zuckerberg lost all his wealth tomorrow, that would help no one.
Lowry summed up the path to prosperity in two words: liberty and responsibility. If someone has the liberty to create value in the economy and the responsibility to live prudently, they will get ahead. "The research shows it's very easy" to escape being poor, he explained. "If you graduate from high school, get a full-time job, and get married before you have kids, your odds of being poor in America are extremely slim." more >>
NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. – A panel at the Conservative Political Action Conference on whether social conservatives and libertarians could cooperate was dominated by the debate over same-sex marriage.
Alexander McCobin, co-founder and president of the Students for Liberty, stressed during Friday's panel the difference between "a political philosophy and a personal lifestyle" and listed various conservatives who may personally oppose same-sex marriage yet accept its legal recognition.
"Just because you believe people ought to act a certain way doesn't mean you want the government to require them to be that," said McCobin. more >>
NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. – A panel on the Common Core educational standards has denounced the standards as being problematic for schools.
Held at the Conservative Political Action Conference on Thursday afternoon, the panel grilled the ideas and content behind Common Core. Lindsey Burke, Will Skillman Fellow in Education at the Heritage Foundation, said that while Common Core has "well-intentioned advocates" who support "national standards" which would "raise the bar" for educational curriculum and be voluntary in nature, conservatives "are realists" when it comes to the promises of a more centralized educational system in the United States.
"After 50 years of failed federal initiatives in education conservatives aren't exactly sold on this notion that this time Washington will get it right," said Burke, who moderated the panel. more >>
I spend a good bit of my time around teenagers. At times it is to deliver a message on good choices at youth groups, and middle or high schools. At other times it has been in my capacity as a youth athletic coach. Sometimes, as it was a few weeks ago, it is just to "hang out" or "chill." From my youthful days I believe the word has now evolved to chillax, chillmatic, chillin, chillaxing, and more from the original "relax".
Have you figured out how to motivate your pre-teen or teenager to live upright consistently? A variety of studies point to the profitable involvement of parents and other ancestral family relations. Those relationships provide great stability in life. Framing the life of your teenager to desire leaving a powerful legacy empowers them to take personal ownership for their actions. It also elevates their level of maturity and personal responsibility. Legacy transfers family values and systems which allow parents and children to live moral and productive lives.
I watched a college basketball game with a few 15-year old boys a couple of weeks ago. We decided to grab a bite after. As our conversation flowed I was struck by their frequent use of the phrase "our generation." It appeared to be a clue of an expression frequently used about them in dialog by authority figures in their lives. To be exact, one such reference was "Adults believe our generation is more about recreational drug use than concrete choices." more >>
"I was horrified," said John Stemberger, chairman of the board of Trail Life USA, a new, rapidly growing scouting organization that doesn't allow openly gay members.
Stemberger was referring to an Associated Press photograph that accompanied an in-depth story about Trail Life. The image showed a group of young boys gathered in a circle with their hands raised at an unusual angle. The AP's original caption on the photo said they were reciting the organization's "creed" during a meeting in North Richland Hills, Texas.
It took the AP several days to acknowledge their error. But by then, the unfortunate comparison to Nazi Germany had spread on the Internet faster than Hitler's invasion of Poland. more >>
The four oldest Duggar girls of the popular TLC reality TV show "19 Kids and Counting" share never-before-told stories about how their family applies biblical principles to guide them through all of life's challenges in their new book, Growing Up Duggar: It's All About Relationships, which is out this week.
In their book, Jana, Jill, Jessa and Jinger share the life lessons they've learned from their parents and mentors in an effort to better the lives of teenagers who are struggling with relationships and social pressures.
Each chapter of their book deals with relationships – parents, siblings, internal struggles, friends, dating, social and cultural pressures; how everyone can impact their communities and country by getting involved in politics; and how having a servant's heart and working in missions can transform people's lives. more >>