How “Kid Friendly” is the U.S.?

A leftist group called Population Connection has released a “study” of the world’s nations for the purpose of ranking the degree to which they are “kid friendly.” As usual with such rankings, the main purpose of the exercise is to bash the United States from a left-wing perspective.
Population Connection ranks the U.S. seventh as a “kid friendly” country, behind Belgium, the Netherlands, Australia, France, the United Kingdom and Portugal. The complete data underlying the survey are here.
As always with these left-wing rankings, a brief review of the data is sufficient to demonstrate the tendentiousness of the exercise. With one exception, the U.S. ranks very high in the categories that have something to do with children: infant mortality, literacy, primary school enrollment, percentage of population with adequate sanitation, etc. In the overall category of “Education,” however, the U.S. receives a grade of B-. Why? Solely because of the category “% central government expenditure for education.” But wait! Education in America is financed mostly by state and local governments, whose expenditures aren’t even counted in these totals. Ridiculous.
But not, perhaps, the most ridiculous aspect of the rankings. There is one other area where the U.S.’s rating was dragged down: “projected population change.” America scored a B- here because its population is projected to increase by 44% between 2002 and 2050. In other words, Population Connection thinks it’s un-Kid Friendly to have kids. I’m not making this up.
Actually, it’s even a bit worse than that. A big part of the reason why America’s population is growing is immigration. Why do immigrants come here? Usually, it’s so their children can have a better life. So the fact that people come here to provide opportunity for their children makes the U.S. not as “kid friendly” as Belgium and France.


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