Europarlamentarii par plictisiti si se plang ca n-au de lucru. Cind totusi lucreaza, scriu rapoarte fara putere legislativa si cer Parlamentului European sa le voteze. Deja ne-am obisnuit cu rapoartele lor anti-familie din ultimii ani: Estrella, Lunacek, Tarabella, Panzeri… Luna viitoare urmeaza sa fie votat inca unul, Raportul Noichl, numit dupa autoarea sa, europarlamentara socialista germana Maria Noichl. Subiectul principal al raportului: egalitatea de sanse intre femei si barbati. Un subiect important, fara discutie. Metodele sugerate pentru implementarea acestui deziderat si ideologia care sta in spatele Raportului, insa, sunt problematice.
Printre aceste metode se promoveaza, ca de obicei, drepturile sexuale si reproductive, avortul, drepturile „minoritatilor sexuale” si ideologia de gen. In sensul acesta Raportul este, ca sa ramane in tonul cu care am inceput, plictisitor: terminologia este identica celei din documentele anterioare. O noutate ar fi ca Raportul propune multiplicarea clinicilor de avort in Uniunea Europeana. In alte cuvinte, avortul e propus ca metoda de asigurare a egalitatii de sanse intre barbati si femei.
Raportul Noichl e incompatibil cu valorile crestine si interesele miscarii pro-familie si pro-viata din Romania si Europa. De aceea, asa cum am facut-o de mai multe ori cu alte ocazii, Alianta Familiilor din Romania a inregistrat, luni 25 mai, un Memoriu in Parlamentul European in care explica motivele pentru care se opune Raportului si cere ca el sa fie respins in plen.
Reproducem, pentru dumneavoastra, prima parte a acestui Memoriu. Cei interesati sa il citeasca integral o pot face aici.
May 25, 2015
Re.: The Noichl Report
Draft Report on the EU Strategy for Equality Between Women and Men Post-2015 (2014/2152(INI))
Dear Members of the European Parliament:
Greetings! I am writing on behalf of the Alliance of Romania’s Families, a grassroots movement espousing pro-family and pro-life policies and views with a constituency of hundreds of thousands of Romania’s families. We take this opportunity to provide input on the Draft Report on the EU Strategy for Equality Between Women and Men Post-2015, commonly known as the Noichl Report. We oppose the Report as well as the Motion for a European Parliament Resolution requesting the adoption of the Report. We have carefully reviewed the Report and find it woefully lacking in persuasiveness and objectionable in several respects. We justify our position as follows.
BREAKDOWN OF THE EUROPEAN FAMILY
We express full support for the notion and necessity of improving the lives and influence of women in society and the world generally. We also support the notion that women and men, though biologically different, are entitled to equal dignity from society and should be treated equally in all relevant aspects. Nevertheless, we disagree with some of the methods the Report proposes to attain these objectives. We also object to them because they are upended by an ideology which is inimical to women and girls. This will be explained below. We emphasize from the start, however, that the constituency we represent has a different perspective and would propose that the root cause of the social and demographic problems which confront Europe, and therefore undermine women’s influence in society, is the breakdown of the family. We note with disappointment that along the years the European Parliament has been a main promoter of ideologies and structures which undermine the family, cause its breakdown and, indirectly, condemn women into a life of poverty.
To strengthen the role of women and girls in society we believe it is imperative to strengthen the family and marriage as institutions. We are mindful of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights which states, in Article 16, among others, that „Men and women of full age, without any limitation due to race, nationality or religion, have the right to marry and to found a family. The family is the natural and fundamental group unit of society and is entitled to protection by society and the State.” The Noichl Report nowhere addresses this point. It does not even mention the fundamental institution of „marriage,” except to condemn „forced marriages.” Europe cannot survive the challenges it currently faces, which are numerous and aggravating, without a strong pro-family and pro-marriage culture. Social collapse, poverty and demographic decay are the immediate results of the decline of family and marriage as institutions. Whether it be poverty, demography, equality, human rights, crime, addictions of all kinds — sociologists and policy makers are in agreement that strong families and marriages are strong deterrents and guarantors against these social challenges.
Studies confirming this proposition are legion and are published frequently on both sides of the Atlantic, as well as Australia. Just last fall the American Enterprise Institute and the Institute for Family Studies jointly published a major Report on the impact of marriage decline on poverty. The Report was authored by W. Bradford Wilcox and Robert I. Lerman, prominent American sociologists and scholars, and was published on October 28, 2014. Its title is For richer, for poorer: How family structures economic success in America.
The two main findings of this study are that the decline in marriage is fueling inequality, and that traditional family structures are guarantors of economic success in the United States. Additional relevant findings are:
(1) Thirty-two percent of the growth in family income inequality since 1979 can be linked to the decline in the marriage rate.
(2) Marriage’s economic benefits are numerous.
(3) Being raised by married parents is connected to better economic wellbeing for young adults.
(4) Being married as an adult generates more wealth than being single.
(5) Growing up with both parents increases one’s odds of becoming highly educated, which in turn leads to higher odds of being married as an adult.
(6) The combination of education and marriage results in higher income levels. For instance, middle-aged married men earn about $19.000/year more on average compared to their single peers.
(7) Married women likewise earn more in comparison with non-married women. According to the study, young men and women raised by married parents earn an average of $6.500 more annually, for men, and $4.700 more annually, for women, compared to their peers from single-parent families.
(8) The reason married men have higher average incomes is also attributable to the fact that they are more responsible than unmarried men, and their responsibility translates in being more productive at work. They are responsible toward their wives and children.
(9) The benefits of marriage extend across education levels and racial backgrounds.
(10) Decline in marriage, or, conversely, higher rates of divorce for men, translate in higher unemployment rates among males. They simply stop working because they no longer feel responsible for the welfare of their families.
A 2010 study is also relevant here. An article in Time Magazine from December 7, 2010 titled “Why Married Men Are Less Antisocial” commented on the study and concluded: “A good marriage civilizes men. At least, that’s what it looks like, since fewer married men are antisocial. Married men are more responsible, less aggressive, less likely to do something illegal and more mentally healthy than single ones.” The study itself, published in 2010 in the Archives of General Psychiatry, can be viewed here.
Japan is another classic example where the decline in the family and marriage has drawn the country into perpetual economic morass and decline since the 1990s. Studies which link Japan’s economic woes to the decline of its family structures and marriage are likewise many and frequent. We recommend Nicholas Eberstadt, Japan Shrinks, published in the Spring 2012 edition of The Wilson Quarterly.
The decline of marriage and family experienced by Japan is radical and probably more advanced than in Europe. Sociologists talk about a „flight from marriage” in Japan. Between 1970 and 2009 the number of new marriages in Japan plummeted by nearly a third, while the divorce rate skyrocketed and nearly tripled. By 2005, 30% of all Japanese men who had reached their 30s had not married, as did not 18% of women in the same age bracket. Eberstadt remarks that „traditional Asian values – the ideals of universal marriage and parenthood – are already largely a curiosity of the past in Japan. Their decay has set in motion a variety of powerful trends which virtually ensure that the Japan of 2040 will be a country with far greater numbers of aged isolates, divorced individuals, and adults whose family lines come to an end with them.” A major consequence of the family decline is what Eberstadt calls „a struggle to maintain economic growth.” He adds: „the Japanese economy faces a future in which simply sustaining growth will be an increasing challenge.”
European Union Statistics
Closer to home, the European Union is not faring any better. Recent data put out by Eurostat shows that Europe is collapsing demographically, a collapse that occurred in tandem with the decline of family and marriage. There are an estimated 28 Europeans aged 65 or older for every 100 residents ages 20 to 64, almost twice the world average. By the end of this century it is expected that for every 100 Europeans between the ages of 24 and 64 there will be 56 Europeans over the age of 65. The Eurostat Report released earlier this year is also extremely grim for the demographic future of the continent. Between 1994 and 2013 the number of European children under 15 decreased from 18.5% of the total to just 15.6%. This translates into a total loss of 10 million children. This means that today there are 10 million fewer children in Europe than in 1994. The same Eurostat Report also reflects that the will of Europeans to procreate is nearly extinguished. According to the Report less than one third (30.7%) of all households in the European Union had children in 2013. Couples with children represented one in five (20.5%) EU households.
Consequences and a Time for Renewal
Needless to say, this will impact everyone, not only women and girls. It will strain public spending and will spell the end of the much prized European welfare state. This bleak summation, however, is the direct consequence of the many years of anti-family and anti-marriage ideology the European Union and the European Parliament has promoted. For generations, Europe’s youth have been taught how to engage in „safe” sex but not how to procreate. How to employ their intimate lives for pleasure and sexual gratification, not for the common good. The European Union has devised a sexual ideology and education which decoupled sexuality from procreation. The EU’s slogan has been, for way too long, „sex and abortion are good. Abstinence and procreation are wrong.” The „greening” of Europe is likewise being promoted at the expense of human beings. The EU has chosen a side which is against nature and has dire consequences. Every European knows by now that things have become so alarming in Denmark, for instance, that the state is begging Danish youth to have children. (See Danny Hakim, Sex Education in Europe Turns to Urging More Births, New York Times, April 8, 2015.)
Thus, the EU needs a revival, not rejection, of fundamental and traditional family values and structures. The Noichl Report states, rather irresponsibly, that „gender stereotypes and traditional structures have a negative effect on health.” We wring our hands in disbelief at the irresponsibility of this statement. To the contrary, millions of EU citizens believe that the EU needs a new paradigm where each human being is desired and welcomed into the world as a promoter of development and common welfare. Where human beings are viewed as agents of progress not decline. Where human beings are honored qua human beings and are not viewed as a burden or potential burden or destroyers of the plant and its resources. Development is impossible without human beings.
Human beings need not be portrayed in EU or UN documents, as they often and unfortunately are, as rapacious, senseless, uneducatable beings which destroy the environment and the plant. Furthermore, decline of marriage and family correlates with economic decline. At the opposite end, marriage and family correlate with economic prosperity and development. Demographic decline correlates with economic stagnation and decline, whereas demographic progress correlates with economic development. The European Union is encouraged to adopt pro-family and pro-marriage policies. Europe needs a pro-family and pro-life culture. It needs to work with nature not against it. Please also note that, from our perspective as taxpayers, the European Parliament insults millions of traditional Europeans by promoting the notion that marriage and family as oppressive institutions.