Regnerus has the callous disregard for poor single mothers and their children, but doesn’t get policy

Taking questions onstage at the World Congress of Families, Mark Regnerus reportedly was asked whether he would support cutting welfare benefits to single mothers to encourage them to marry. The question is not on the video, but part of his answer is. I transcribe it below, but here’s the tape:

Regnerus said:

… lay of the land in terms of the attempts to stimulate marriage, how difficult that is – your policy, which is sort of associated with the idea of the marriage penalty for people who are on social welfare and not married to the father of their children. It’s possible, right? It’s one of those things where – my skepticism tends to – how do people act in certain situations – what should we expect of people. In that situation, it creates this entity where we have to identify who’s in the household, how often are they in the household, the relationship, etcetera. Your policy is not a bad one in terms of moving people toward marriage – we want to do that. Whether it will work – who knows? And, I’m totally not a policy analyst so I’m going to stop right there.

His trademark verbal incoherence makes this hard to follow, but it appears his only concern with such a policy is the problem of household-member surveillance. His callous disregard for poor single mothers is apparent — he’s not concerned with the principle of coercing people into marriage, or even with violation of rights associated with verifying household comings and goings. He’s just not sure it’s feasible.

The weird thing is he’s got it backwards. If you want to deny benefits to single mothers, why do you care if they have a boyfriend in the house? That’s the problem the government has when it tries to only give benefits to single mothers — when its afraid they’re concealing a man who is supporting them.

The policy of denying benefits to people who are single — but giving benefits to people who are married — is what Brad Wilcox and Marco Rubio are trying to accomplish with their convoluted and badly calibrated child tax credit reform (see this description by Matt Bruenig). Maybe Regnerus wants to do that, but also find a way to punish single mothers who are carrying on outside of marriage, but it’s hard to see how that’s part of the policy.

But then again, I’m not a policy analyst so I’m going to stop right there. If you think I’m not getting it, please enlighten me.

2 thoughts on “Regnerus has the callous disregard for poor single mothers and their children, but doesn’t get policy

  1. I think your article is missing something. You have not told the readers about the organization that Regnerus is presenting at, you have merely provided a link but what if people don’t go follow the link?

    “The World Congress of Families (WCF) is one of the key driving forces behind the U.S. Religious Right’s global export of homophobia and sexism.

    From its headquarters in Rockford, Illinois, WCF pursues an international anti-choice, anti-LGBTQ agenda, seeking to promote conservative ideologies—and codify these in regressive laws and policies—that dictate who has rights as “family,” and who doesn’t. ”
    Quote from the Southern Poverty Law Center who has designated Word Congress of Families (WCG) a certified HATE GROUP. The SPLC is our preeminent organization that tracks Hate Groups and is a partner with the FBI. Yeah in fact the FBI just announced a new initiative with the SPLC to track domestic terrorism groups. it is the SPLC who tracks White Supremacists Groups, the KKK, anti Jewish and anti Muslim groups.

    The SPLC has specific criteria for labeling an organization a Hate Group, it is not merely organizations that oppose others based on their religion, race or sexual orientation. The organizations have to be active prolific liars, that they lead and tell lies about the disfavored minority groups, this is the main criteria I remember but there are others. Being certified as a HATE GROUP by the SPLC is a big deal, it really is.

    This is where Regnerus is presenting, and also Brad Wilcox. Brad Wilcox has been one of WCF’s keynote speakers both in Madrid and last year in Australia. I don’t understand how these two Sociologists remain respected. They get published in mainstream press outlets, how? You keynote for a certified Hate Group and yet you still get published in the Washington Post or New York Times, why? If Brad Wilcox or Mark Regnerus keynoted for a Klu Klux Klan Conference would they still be worthy of gracing the pages of our prominent newspapers? The KKK is a Hate Group just like WCF is a Hate Group.


  2. Last year the 2014 WCF Confrence was to be held in Russi, but with Putin invading Ukraine and all that, WCF took their name off of the confernce, their conference. Although everything remained the same, same speakers, same venue, they just dropped the WCF name. The two main guys at WCF attended, “in their personal capacity.” Please read the resolution passed at the end of the conference (in part)
    –“To uphold the interests of children and to work for the adoption of legislative bans on all types propaganda concerning homosexual relationships in the environment of children and juveniles;
    To initiate and support scientific research to study the conditions and prospects of developing a Natural Family, as well as studying the negative social and psychological effects of raising children in same-gender couples;”

    – See more at:

    I encourage all of your readers to find out more about World Congress of Families. Miranda Blue at Right Wing Watch has done a hellva job researching them. Here is one really good article with plenty of links. WCF is a really bad bad bad organization and yet there presents Regnerus & Wilcox. SMH, SMH
    This isn’t Heritage Foundation, or even the Family Research Council, WCF supports removing basic Constitutional Rights, Freedom of Speech, Freedom of Association, Equal Treatment under the law, from people who are sexual minorities. Their agenda is very wicked, and Dr Cohen you didn’t give any background on this in your article and I think people need to know this.


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