By Shlomo Maital

   New York Times columnist Ross Douthat reports on a new Pew Research Center study of parenting attitudes among Americans. 

     Here are the main results:

  * “…lower-income parents are more worried — sometimes much more worried — about their kids than upper-income parents. …. ask American parents whether they find parenting “rewarding” and “enjoyable,”  … lower-income parents who are more stressed by potential dangers are also more likely to report that they enjoy and appreciate being mothers and fathers all the time, while upper-income parents are more likely to qualify their appreciation. (Notably, there’s a parallel pattern along racial lines, with African American and Hispanic parents reporting more enjoyment than white parents, and substantially more than Asian American parents.)”

   * “ According to Pew, 88 percent of American parents rate financial success and professional happiness as either “extremely” or “very” important for their kids. Only about 20 percent give the same rating to eventual marriage and children.”

  *  “Only 35 percent of respondents say that shared religious beliefs are “extremely” or “very” important —  … only 16 percent say it’s important for their kids to inherit similar political beliefs”.

       Some conclusions.  “Workism” (priority above all to financial and professional success) is alive and well; the higher the income, the higher the degree of workism.  Couples who don’t enjoy kids, or believe they won’t, are unlikely to have more, or any at all;  China’s effort to throw money at couples for more children is futile.   There is something wrong with society when parents cannot enjoy their kids; government-sponsored quality child care would go a long way to help, especially low-income parents who struggle to afford child care.