11 thoughts on “Are Single People a Threat to Small-Town Values?

  • March 26, 2018 at 9:11 pm

    Disappointing from the Atlantic.

    Reply
  • March 27, 2018 at 9:20 am

    Hi, Bella, I’ve not read the book or the Atlantic article. Just going by your blog here, though, I have a question. Did the author of the Atlantic article give her own explanation for how the delay in marriage age, less marriage, and other related statistics is correlated, over time, with all of these advances in human functioning and well-being? Of course, correlation is not causation, but you would think from her approach that keeping people in their hometowns, marrying their high school sweethearts, etc., would be correlated with the advances in human progress. Does she offer any explanation for her hypothesis just being plain wrong on all possible fronts in which it has been explored?

    Reply
    • March 27, 2018 at 3:34 pm

      I think she thinks that less marriage is a consequence/side effect of all the progress Pinker documents. She starts off by saying that women who want to become scientists (the progress) end up moving for their careers, putting off marriage and motherhood, etc. They moved away, so they don’t get to be there for their frail grandparents back home. Why that means they can’t/won’t care for their disabled child is beyond me.

      Reply
  • March 27, 2018 at 11:06 am

    Single people certainly are a threat to small town values. Single people are expected to pay the lion’s share of taxes, spend their money in small town business community, attend church quietly, never take a leadership position in politics and know their place is in the back of the room or not at all. Small towns are about families, the patriarchy and few communal activities.

    If single people would simply shore up other more important members of a small town community while not having a voice for themselves, then families could be all they can be. Instead, those that wish to be single often leave small towns and join larger communities where they can be respected, involved and fully accepted in society. Small towns are left with expensive school children, fewer transit options, costly infrastructure and a shrinking tax base. So yes, single people, or lack thereof, are a threat to small town values.

    Reply
    • March 27, 2018 at 3:36 pm

      Interesting points, Brasco, which — surprise! — did not appear in Gopnik’s article.

      Reply
  • March 27, 2018 at 12:27 pm

    Wow,if those “small town values” ruled my family and I was married like my siblings, my parents would be in a nursing home. I am the caretaker of my parents as well as being a single mother by choice BECAUSE I’m not married. I’m happy to do it and have friends in the same position who are happy to do it, too. Glad we’re a bit more progressive!

    Reply
    • March 27, 2018 at 3:35 pm

      So true, Li. I was thinking of you when I read that article and wrote my blog post.

      Reply
  • September 18, 2020 at 2:20 pm

    I’ve always hated small town mentality. It’s a weird, regressive place that places emphasis upon early marriage and early child bearing when they’re are people like me who don’t want any children of our own; I’m also happily single by choice and I don’t enjoy the constraints of romantic relationships at this point in my life. Although, I hope to get a husband some day. I grew up in the hellhole of Shelby, NC that is full of stupid anti-environmentalist, conservative, restrictive, boring, stifling, family oriented, “traditional family values” bullcrap that I’ve always hated. I went to Charlotte, NC to obtain my bachelor’s degree and my master’s degree from UNC Charlotte. I’m thankful that I attended a university that promotes my secular and liberal values in a large city full of cultural diversity and lots of different activities to do. Unfortunately, I couldn’t afford to keep living there after graduating with my master’s degree. I’m temporarily stuck in my horrible and boring hometown of Shelby until I get a full-time job and save enough money to move away. I’m trying.

    Reply
  • September 18, 2020 at 2:29 pm

    I’ve always hated small town mentality. It’s a weird, regressive place that places emphasis upon pursuing romantic relationships at an early age like that’s all there is to life; it stigmatizes those who enjoy the single life; it emphasizes so-called family values; in my hometown, that means that people who are baby-crazy and irresponsible tend to have a few kids out of wedlock by four different people, may never get married at all, but yet these are the same fake and hypocritical nominal Christian types who espouse anti-LGBT rights and anti-homosexuality but the hypocrites themselves think it’s ok to sleep around with a bunch of people or commit adultery on their spouse; it’s full of the fake, hypocritical, nominal Christians who think they can live any kind of lifestyle but yet they vote Republican and are traditionalist types about things that shouldn’t matter; the small town mentality encourages early child bearing when they’re are people like me who don’t want any children of our own; I’m also happily single by choice and I don’t enjoy the constraints of romantic relationships at this point in my life. Although, I hope to get a husband some day. I grew up in the hellhole of Shelby, NC that is full of stupid anti-environmentalist, conservative, restrictive, boring, stifling, family oriented, “traditional family values” bullcrap that I’ve always hated. I went to Charlotte, NC to obtain my bachelor’s degree and my master’s degree from UNC Charlotte. I’m thankful that I attended a university that promotes my secular and liberal values in a large city full of cultural diversity and lots of different activities to do. Unfortunately, I couldn’t afford to keep living there after graduating with my master’s degree. I’m temporarily stuck in my horrible and boring hometown of Shelby until I get a full-time job and save enough money to move away. I’m trying.

    Reply
  • September 18, 2020 at 2:32 pm

    I’ve always hated small town mentality. It’s a weird, regressive place that places emphasis upon pursuing romantic relationships at an early age like that’s all there is to life; it stigmatizes those who enjoy the single life; it emphasizes so-called family values; in my hometown, that means that people who are baby-crazy and irresponsible tend to have a few kids out of wedlock by four different people, may never get married at all, but yet these are the same fake and hypocritical nominal Christian types who espouse anti-LGBT rights and anti-homosexuality but the hypocrites themselves think it’s ok to sleep around with a bunch of people or commit adultery on their spouse; it’s full of the fake, hypocritical, nominal Christians who think they can live any kind of lifestyle but yet they vote Republican and are traditionalist types about things that shouldn’t matter; the small town mentality encourages early child bearing when there are people like me who don’t want any children of our own; I’m also happily single by choice and I don’t enjoy the constraints of romantic relationships at this point in my life. Although, I hope to get a husband some day. I grew up in the hellhole of Shelby, NC that is full of stupid anti-environmentalist, conservative, restrictive, boring, stifling, family oriented, “traditional family values” bullcrap that I’ve always hated. I went to Charlotte, NC to obtain my bachelor’s degree and my master’s degree from UNC Charlotte. I’m thankful that I attended a university that promotes my secular and liberal values in a large city full of cultural diversity and lots of different activities to do. Unfortunately, I couldn’t afford to keep living there after graduating with my master’s degree. I’m temporarily stuck in my horrible and boring hometown of Shelby until I get a full-time job and save enough money to move away. I’m trying.

    Reply
 

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