Cathy Young on Female Breadwinners and the Power of the Market


Credit: Wikicommons / US Govt. / CC

Are female breadwinners bad for America? Is caveman punditry bad for Republicans? These are the questions in the wake of a new study on women as family breadwinners and of a controversial Fox Business Network segment in which several male contributors deplored the trend as a sign of society's downfall. Unfortunately, the Fox panel hosted by Lou Dobbs fed straight into left-wing stereotypes of conservatives as chauvinistic males threatened by strong women. In fact, the discussion touched on some valid concerns: to the extent that the rise of female breadwinners is due to the increase in single-mother families, it does reflect worrisome developments. But as Cathy Young explains, other aspects of this trend are far more positive—and they bolster the libertarian/conservative argument that markets, not government, are the best path to female empowerment.