Black Family Structure Collapsed After Integration
From 1890 to 1950, Black women married at higher rates than white women, despite a consistent shortage of Black males due to their higher mortality rate. According to a report released by the Washington D.C.-based think tank Urban Institute, the state of the African-American family is worse today than it was in the 1960s, four years before President Johnson passed the Civil Rights Act.
In 1965, only 8 percent of childbirths in the Black community occurred out of wedlock. In 2010, that figure was 41 percent; and today, out-of-wedlock childbirths in the Black community is at an astonishing 72 percent.
Researchers Heather Ross and Isabel Sawhill argue that marital stability is directly related to the husband’s relative socio-economic standing, and the size of the earnings difference between men and women.
Instead of focusing on maintaining Black male employment to allow them to provide for their families, Johnson passed the Civil Rights Act with full affirmative action for women. The act benefited mostly white women and created a welfare system that encouraged removal of the Black male from the home.
Many Black men were also dislodged from their families and pushed into the rapidly expanding prison industrial complex that developed in the wake of rising unemployment.