Traditional families tend to produce better students academically; the state has to do something about that injustice

7 Dec

So says the President of France Francois Hollande.  What’s to be done?  Well, applying a justice as fairness doctrine (see my blog post on this), level the playing field by eliminating homework (non-traditional families don’t do that well) and expand school hours (to mitigate against the positive gains gleaned from traditional homes).  You see, it’s pretty simple.  If justice means fairness, as John Rawls has argued, then no child should be disadvantaged because of circumstances beyond their control (being born to non-traditional families).  So, from behind a veil of ignorance where no one knows if they will or will not be born to such a family, we should construct a society where it wouldn’t matter.  That is, we should construct a society where the state, the great leveler, compensates for any of these disadvantages by increasingly replacing them as the premier social institution.  Sometimes that will be done by helping the less advantaged (helping them catch up); other times that will be done by slowing the more advantaged down.  If good parenting is highly beneficial and causing inequality in society, then we’ll just relieve parents of much of that responsibility and shift that burden to the state so that everyone is treated fairly.  Of course, if justice is rightness, then parenting properly belongs only to parents and is something intrinsically unique by design and purpose such that the state can never be the substitute for the family.  A government’s response to inequalities is not, in that framework, dealt with by undermining the family but by adopting public policy which encourages greater traditional family health, autonomy, stability, and formation.

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