Are Children at Risk in Red States?



Cybercast News ServiceA new book Homeland Insecurity… American Children at Risk says yes.

I think not. Red States are better than Blue States. Permit me one anecdotal statistic. Your Business Blogger packed up kith and kin and moved from the blue, communist “Free State” of Maryland and headed south, back to our beloved “Old Dominion.” (Home of the University of Virginia and George Mason.)

My car insurance instantly dropped 30%. My personal property insurance dropped.

So I asked USAA Insurance why the huge savings by my merely moving a few dozen miles.

Short answer: Lower risk.

Seems that Maryland is full of terrible drivers and home invaders, criminals and crappy schools. Insurance companies assess rates accordingly.

A citizen is more apt to be a victim of a car wreck or have his home burned down and personal property stolen living in Maryland. My former county in Maryland had horrific public tax-supported education, forcing the Penta-Posse into private alternatives.

A citizen is safer in Virginia. The (apolitical) (profit-motivated) insurance market proves it.

And coincidentally, Virginia is aggressive with criminals. The Commonwealth of Virginia is prompt in emptying death row with Dead Men Walking. Maryland is more “compassionate” with crooks walking…or running for office. Murderers get a pass in Maryland. Murders are executed in Virginia.

So I moved to Virginia. Safer.


Tom McMahon And I’m not the only one. Tom McMahon originally pointed us to the United Van Lines Migration Study showing what states people move out of and into,

Maryland … continued its 15-year outbound tradition… the United Van Lines study, through the years, has been shown to accurately reflect the general migration patterns in various regions of the country… real estate firms, financial institutions, and other observers of relocation trends regularly use the United data in their business planning and analysis activities.

The only thing United Van Lines gets wrong are the colors. “Inbound” states should be red; “outbound” blue.

Which, as Alert Readers have noted, align with blue state/red state political leanings.

Business and citizens understand the market and benefits and safety of red states.

But not liberal elites. Like Michael Petit.

Monisha Bansal, a Staff Writer writes in Children More at Risk in Red States, Book Claims,

( – A family group voiced deep skepticism Thursday about a new book charging that children in Republican-leaning states are at greater risk than their peers elsewhere because of conservative policies.

[The book] says the risks include “inadequate pre-natal care, lack of health care insurance coverage, early death, child abuse, hunger and teen incarceration.”

It was released Thursday by the child advocacy group, Every Child Matters Education Fund, whose president, Michael Petit, authored the book.

“Thanks in large part to the erosion of real federal spending on children and families, mostly engineered by conservatives, the child poverty rate is rising again even as the stock market has climbed,” Petit wrote in the book.

“Further, more people are uninsured, real wages are declining, prisons are overflowing, and millions of children live in distressed families facing their struggles alone, thanks in large measure to conservative policy,” he said.

Petit based his “red state” versus “blue state” distinctions on the 2004 presidential elections.

Based on that measure, he said, nine of the top 10 states with “the best outcomes for children today” are the Democratic voting blue states of Wisconsin, New Jersey, Washington, Minnesota, Nebraska, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Vermont and New Hampshire, with Iowa being the sole red (or Republican voting) state in the group.

Reasoned, seasoned voices challenge the claim. My favorite political scientist is quoted,

Charmaine Yoest, vice president of communications for the Family Research Council, said she was “really skeptical” of Petit’s findings….

“They don’t appear to have taken into consideration a variety of variables,” she said. “You have to be pretty careful about positing causality, and I’m not certain that they have done that.

“They have a very simplistic and disingenuous analysis,” Yoest said.

“It is very clear that they are looking for more government programs that involve more government spending and higher taxes,” she said.

“Any time you hear advocates on the left talking about children you can be certain that they aren’t going to pay attention to the effect of family structure on the well-being of children,” Yoest said.

“This project appears to be no different,” Yoest argued. “There’s somehow this mythical idea that spending equals well-being for children when in fact the research data is incontrovertible.

“The overwhelming evidence has proven that the two-parent family – a mom and a dad, committed for life and caring for kids – provides the best outcomes for children,” Yoest said.

Charmaine, as usual, gets it right.


Thank you (foot)notes:

My endorsement of USAA insurance is unpaid.

Full Disclosure: Your Business Blogger served Jim Gilmore, former governor of Virginia. Whenever the courts sentenced death in a capital punishment case, Gilmore always, “Declined to intervene.” Virginia has good courts, too.


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3 Responses

  1. Jack says:

    Well, notwithstanding your tenure in the Gilmore administration it must also be said that VA has one of the best child welfare systems in the country! To extend the Red/Blue contrast even further, when Clinton ran for President AK had arguably the WORST child welfare systems. I’m quite sure that the Dem’s cannot produce a single visionary human services agency anywhere.

    Having grown up in Alexandria and moving to MD to go to high school I can attest to Va’s generally much more favorable everything.

    Best to all!


  2. Caryn says:

    Um, M, are you sure you don’t mean AR? AK is Alaska, BTW, and never had a thing to do with Clinton or his epigone, Gore.