It’s Wrong to Target Unwed Mothers

by Evette Dionne

It’s Wrong to Target Unwed MothersNew York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg has transformed from an elected official into Superman. He limited commercial sale of soda and now he’s attempting to prevent out-of-wedlock pregnancies. Bloomberg enlisted the state’s Human Resources Administration to plaster advertisements in bus shelters and subway stations. The provocative ads, which feature distressed children speaking about their plight to their parent, are raising alarm among feminists and family advocates.

We know the statistics. More than 54,000 children were born out-of-wedlock in New York City in 2010 and this number continues to increase.

We also realize children raised in single-parents are considered “disadvantaged” based on studies and statistics. Bloomberg even refused to participate in a similar campaign two years ago, based on the racial implications of launching such a campaign.

He should’ve followed his first mind. Targeting single mothers without considering external factors such as what constitutes wedlock, the non-traditional families excluded from this definition, and the concept of villages raising children instead of two parents is both problematic and a method of shaming. Single mothers face enough societal stigmas about their parenting abilities without the government intervening.

The advertisements aren’t the worst of it though. Miriam Perez, a writer at RH Reality Check followed the instructions listed at the bottom of the advertisement. She texted “NOTNOW” to 877877 and was prompted to select a character (Louis or Anaya). It was downhill from there. The text messages sent unrealistic scenarios, designed to purport the unsuspected consequences of unwed pregnancies. All Bloomberg and his troop have accomplished is forcing heteronormative family values on women without offering solutions for preventing unexpected pregnancies.

Shame is not a prevention tactic. Education is. Economic mobility is. Community resources, like Planned Parenthood, are helpful in educating future mothers and fathers about the potential consequences of teenage pregnancy. Instead of shaming women, Bloomberg should offer jobs and community programs instead of backward advertisements.

 

Teen Pregnancy + Unwed Mothers

  • Rue

    First i agree it’s waaaay out of line. BUT these women need to understand that it ain’t easy being green, and be made to be conscious of their decisions. Not in a shaming kind of way, but still…

    Second Bloomberg apparently dislikes the “racial implications” of this but enthusiastically enforces Stop and Frisk. Ah irony, though art a bitch!

  • JJ

    This goes hand in hand with the city’s campaign against obesity. Instead of having a well-rounded and reasonable approach to the issue, they’re just centering a campaign around shame. As the child of a single mother, I’m really not a fan of this nonsense.

  • OWLMAN5678

    I support the late great God-Father of Soul James Brown my Gulah brother views.
    “He said take kids and raise them up” That true in my Gulah Family too!
    From the single the Big Payback.

  • leelah

    I have a problem with using children for these ads. They could use pictures of adults and get the discussion started. I don’t want black children to become the poster child for everything wrong and disgraceful in this country while white children continue to represent everything good and wholesome in America for companies like Gap and Gerber.–I noticed this phenomenon. Every now and then I see a cute black child on an advertisement when I take a closer look its usually for a non-profit, specifically an organization for foster kids, the county health department, and a local food bank.–What I’m trying to say is in today’s society there are so many stereotypes attach to the black body and I don’t want to see that happening with black kids that are only 2 or 3.

  • Dee

    What about the Fathers? Where there’s an unwed Mother there’s an unwed Father. Can’t have one without the other.

  • E.M.S.

    Saying they need to be made conscious of their decisions sounds very condescending. In itself, there is nothing wrong with being a single parent. They are so many factors that go into how someone ends up a single parent you can’t just say they all made bad decisions to get there.

    Why is it a problem for someone to raise a kid alone if they can do it? Who is anyone to tell them they can’t or shouldn’t?

  • leelah

    lets be real…now that we are putting very grown up words in the mouth of babes, I guess the next logical line in that quote would be, “…mommy you should’ve never had me because my mere existence is just a lonely attempt to keep that no good n******* around, curse the day I was born. Where’s my binkie?”

  • Ms. Write

    Yes! I agree! You would think only women of color have babies out of wedlock. SMH

  • K

    ummmm ok i agree with the message but that poster is just dead a$$ wrong!!!! im sorry the 1st thing i thought about seeing “honestly mom chances are he wont stay” is soooo the kid is talking about her own father??? which is just a part of the horrible methods nowadays of bad mouthing the father to the kid..really who thought this was a good idea? id honestly be ok if lets say it was a talking condom that was like “hey im your friend use me because remember honestly girl, chances are he wont stay” hell the talking condom can be in a commercial with Bill Withers “Use Me” chorus playing…ok im sorry I’m spewing at the mouth these were honestly all my first thoughts im sorry using the kid just no no and no

  • E.M.S.

    It’s wrong to target unwed single parents at all. Mother or father. Not everyone goes for the traditional family with marriage included, and many circumstances lead to becoming a single parent. It’s an entirely unfair judgement.

    If a parent is doing their best to raise their child on their own and is doing a good job, nothing else should matter. That’s just society/politics sticking its nose into private matters with no perspective whatsoever.

  • Owlman5678

    I concur!

  • Ms. Write

    There are so many things wrong with this….how does one even begin?! One would have to make two huge sweeping generalizations to think this ad campaign would be effective…

    1) All single mothers want to be married
    2) Without a husband a woman is incapable of raising a child.

    And overall, the tone is just too condescending! I understand that young people need to be made aware of the consequences of their actions, but surely there has to be a better way.

    These are big WHAT IFs but I am just going to go out on a limb:

    1) What if this campaign money could be used to promote safer sex initiatives?
    2) What if programs could be implemented to raise the self-esteem of young women (whom these ads are obviously geared to) so they don’t have to have sex before they are ready?

    Also where are the ads encouraging young men to make responsible decisions as well? After all, it takes TWO to make a baby.

    Seems like just another form of slut shaming to me….

  • Ms. Write

    I’m also guessing if baby is already here, as pictured above it’s a little late to have that convo anyway! #FAIL

  • http://redboneafropuff.com Mariam

    I don’t live in NYC, so I have to ask: are all the ads targeting unwed parents, or are there some targeting teens? If only unwed parents, I agree with Ms. Dionne. If the latter–and the ad in the photo says “TEEN PARENTS”–I think the campaign deserves a closer look. I’ve met exactly one teen couple who thought they would wed after their baby was born, so while I don’t think, “This won’t make him marry you” is a good strategy, it’s not the same as shaming adult, single mothers.

  • Kemba1248

    While I don’t like Bloomberg, I think that someone needs to speak out about the impact of unwed parent on the child. I think the conversation shouldn’t be accusatory but focus on finding solutions and promoting the importance of marriage and healthy homes.

    Frankly, I’m now down with carriage before marriage and hope that women, especially black women re-think putting themselves in such situations instead of trying to keep a man or fill a void in their lives.

  • SayWhat

    I would be fine with it if they didn’t use kids to help deliver the message. I believe they are targeting the moms because while it takes two to make a baby, it only takes one (the woman) to decide whether or not to keep the baby. But if these posters are not followed up with sex education, counseling and welfare reform (you should not get extra money for having another child while you are already on welfare), then the message will be lost on those who need it the most.

  • http://twitter.com/theTsaritsa Alexandra the Tsaritsa

    That’s exactly what I took from it: the ad is targeting teenagers.

  • http://gravatar.com/nolakiss16 binks

    Bingo, I was thinking along those lines before I even read the article. Furthermore, this logic could apply to all mothers truthfully, I mean how many people know someone whose parents ARE married (and never got a divorce) but the father still left. I do think out of wedlock births discussions need to be had openingly but the way the discussion is presented rubs people the wrong way and comes off as one sided out of the gate so an honest debate can never be had with tatics like this.

  • http://www.myblackfriendsays.com myblackfriendsays

    7 out of 10 of black births are births out of wedlock. I know that might seem like “airing dirty laundry,” but we need to keep it real. Regardless of what other races are doing, 7 out of 10 is not something I think we should be satisfied with.

    Yes, there are exceptions to every rule, but study after study has shown that children of single parents are at a disadvantage. I don’t understand why there is such resistance on this site against promoting the idea that children benefit from having two capable, loving parents in the home.

  • http://gravatar.com/seritatheresa seritatheresa

    I played the game. It addresses you as teen and tells you a number to call to get contraceptives.

  • Liz

    I love yawl, but… come on!

    You guys pander for page hits with dishonest journalism sometimes. The focus of this ad campaign, and rightfully so, was teenage pregnancy. And while I’m sure teenage motherhood is tantamount to being an unwed mother, you all know what you were doing with that title. Your first mention of “teenage pregnancy” was in the last line… and yes, I see it’s under the header “Teen Pregnancy”, but I didn’t realize that was the focus of the ad campaign til I did more research.

    On face value, you know this type of post will attract the crazies, get 100+ comments, which I’m sure adds to your bottom line… but seriously? Seriously?!!

    Everyone: read this http://colorlines.com/archives/2013/03/new_york_city_tries_to_shame_its_teens_into_not_having_babies.html

    and tell me if you feel the same way.

    Clutch, if you don’t publish my comment… you can remove me from your list of loyal supporters. If this was an honest mistake, my apologies… but someone needs to be more dutiful in their research…

  • http://gravatar.com/seritatheresa seritatheresa

    I think the attempt (however misguided) is at promoting safe sex.

  • mikey kun

    yep

  • http://gravatar.com/seritatheresa seritatheresa

    If education and gainful employment discourage teen and unwed pregnancy I would think that a concerted effort to reach target populations and help them achieve these things would be more successful than any media blitz.

  • More please

    “Shame is not a prevention tactic. Education is.”

    But isn’t that what this campaign is doing though? Educating young potential mothers? I think it’s needed and we should have more outright conversations about this issue instead of acting like nothing is wrong. Kids need two responsible parents in their lives, there are so many stats and case studies that show this to be true.

  • http://gravatar.com/seritatheresa seritatheresa

    Why don’t these well wishers address mass incarceration fueled by the drug war if they want to strengthen the black family.

  • Evette Dionne

    Hi Mariam. Thanks for reading. I’m especially angered at how the traditional discourse about teenage motherhood is framed.

    My mother and father had my brother when my mom was 16. They were married when she was 19 and I was born when my mom was 20. 24 years later, my parents are still happily married, I’m a college graduate and we’re upper middle-class. My family is not the exception. We’re just shunted in favor of keeping pace with this traditional concept of teenage motherhood leading to dire circumstances.

  • Emme

    That’s an awesome story, and I know another person or two who have similar stories. But I do believe yours and their stories are by far the exception rather than the rule for teen parents.

  • Pseudonym

    When I saw a post on this campaign on Gawker (or Jezebel, can’t remember which), the accompanying photo showed two ads: one with a black baby and one with a white baby. Then I see this one on Clutch that shows just the ad from the black baby. Seems people are framing the campaign racially based on their own perceptions, sources, or target audiences.

  • Pseudonym

    You have to recognize that you are the exception and not the rule. We wouldn’t have to campaign against teenage pregnancy if even half of teenage mothers were happily married (or happily not in poverty with no help from the father) 25 years later. But more often, this is NOT the case.

  • yeahright2011

    Telling a teen/woman the downside of having a kid alone isn’t shaming just because a single mother is in earshot.

  • Are we really having a discussion of whether teenage pregnancy is a problem or not?

  • Evette Dionne

    @Pseudonym – I disagree. I know several women who birthed children as teenagers and are college graduates, professionals and excellent mothers. A fellow Clutch writer, Stacia L. Brown, has launched an entire organization (Beyond Baby Mamas) dedicated to addressing the issues facing single mothers and building a community to find solutions.

    Teenage pregnancy is not the singular issue. Access to resources, quality education, and a village to assist in raising is also important. My mother and father were able to lean on others when they were struggling in the beginning. There were schools for mothers with children, cheap daycares, and more. A lot of teenage mothers don’t have that now. Shouldn’t that be the focus instead of shaming teenage mothers about their decisions?

  • Evette Dionne

    One last comment: I’m also opposed to forcing heteronormative expectations on women. The “out-of-wedlock” statistics don’t consider lesbian and trans* women, women that marry after their children are born, or women that choose to raise their children with their father. It is a blanket statistic we’re ingesting without considering what factors into the creation of the stat.

    I’m all for healthy families, no matter how they appear. I’m fortunate to have amazing parents, but all two-parent households aren’t harmonious while some one-parent households are full of love. It’s about the family itself, not the structure.

  • Mama Mia

    If you happen to find yourself as a DIVORCED wife or a widow, that’s a different story. This is most likely geared to women who just make foolish decisions regarding their reproductive system.

  • Evette Dionne

    Hi Liz. Thanks for reading and commenting. I don’t practice dishonest journalism and I didn’t write this story to generate page views. I penned this because I’m an advocate for healthy families, no matter the structure.

    These advertisements reflect the notion that teenage mothers will be unwed because their children are born out-of-wedlock. “Dad, you’re going to be paying for me for 20 years.” “Daddy is going to leave us.” The children featured are in distress because apparently, unwed parents, even teens, cause unhappy homes. That’s the reason I used that specific terminology.

    These advertisements shame teenage mothers, who eventually become adult, unwed mothers (according to these advertisements) with children that have no fathers.

  • Kacey

    I usually don’t agree with Bloomberg, but I appreciate his efforts here and applaud him for having the courage to confront this issue in a very public, in-your-face way!

  • Michirenee

    Do you think all these black men going to prison for drugs have been framed? Why don’t they get real jobs instead of illegal stuff that they know they’ll go to jail over? Also, why don’t black people believe in birth control and family planning? It would certainly help strengthen the black family if they did.

  • Mama Mia

    There we go with the blame game….Men aren’t the ones who decide whether or not they want a child to grow inside of them for 9 months. If you really cared for the child’s future, or even yourself, you would be on birth control. It is your body, not the man’s. You determine what goes on with it.

  • Whatever

    @ myblackfriendsays

    How many of the 7 out of 10 children’s parents eventually get married? I know people who had a child while they were engaged or shortly after having their child, got married. That’s what it is wrong with just generalizing. Also, to me, out of wedlock statistics and children of divorce statistics should go hand in hand. I know/knew a lot of people that were damaged by their parents nasty divorces during JHS, HS and even college… downward spirals, failing grades, anger management issues etc

    This country is in a constant battle with itself. On one hand we promote shows during prime time like “modern family” and “the new normal” then on the other, we shame people for not following traditional family values. Which one is it?

    Also, the teen pregnancy ads seem to promote abortion. They should be geared towards parents having discussions about safe sex and birth control… not pregnant teens. At that point it’s a moral issue.

  • http://confessionsofacurvygirl.wordpress.com confessionsofacurvygirl

    Guys don’t decide if the girl keeps the baby. But they do decide they are gonna have sex and not use a condom.

  • Dee

    For the record,I don’t have children.

  • seritatheresa gmail

    Read the literature. Black people believe in birth control. When you punish black men more harshly than white men for drug possession, particularly marijuana you end up with the statistics we have today. This is an idea based campaign. Addressing the inequities of an unjust war on drugs is a pragmatic one.

  • E.M.S.

    I meant this for adult single parents, not teen ones just to clarify. I still think you people have no right to judge someone for being a single parent.

    It was not my intention to defend teen pregnancy, I think that’s very foolish, but for adult women, I don’t see the big deal. I really don’t. Just because their life does not fit your definition of what is sensible does not mean they should be looked down upon.

  • Anthony

    Although I have a problem with Bloomberg’s Nanny State tendencies, I can’t see where he isn’t telling the truth in these ads. For those who complain about negatively judging single parents, Bloomberg clearly is not targeting women with careers who decide to have a child. He is aiming at young girls and women who have children without the planning or funds to make that decision viable without the assistance of the state.

  • Chocolate_cyn

    First of all can we please stop acting like it takes ONLY two people to raise kids??? Can we stop shaming folks for getting horny and then having a child when most places don’t want to teach folks how to responsibly handle their biological urges and feelings?? Just stop the charade already. Your niece/nephew has an out of wedlock baby HELP it is your family!! Your neighbor across the street HELP it is your community. Lets try a education and it takes a village campaign cause slut shaming hasn’t worked since only God knows when

  • Marisa

    I keep saying the black community haven’t truly recover from the Reagan/Bush years of the 80′s talk about disaster. Yes black people have always had a rough ride since day one but, the epidemic level of us violently turning on each other didn’t begin to occur until those guns and drugs were dropped in the black communities. John Kerry and Maxine Waters did the hearings that exposed the CIA involvement in that so there are plenty who don’t have clean hands here.
    Now we as a community have got to face that we have been bringing kids into the world instable environments and literally throwing them to the wolves. Their being raised to have no value of their own lives so there for the don’t have value of anybody elses life.

  • Mama Mia

    @confessions

    Whether he decides to use one or not, it is still your responsibility to take care of YOUR body. If you don’t want a child and are not ready for one, why not be on some form of birth control?

    @Dee

    I wasn’t speaking to you per se, just in relative terms. Sorry bout that.

  • http://gravatar.com/keimia Kam

    Ugh, this ad was targeting teenagers and it’s the type of thing I learned at my all-girls, Catholic high school. I’m grateful my teacher Mrs. P was blunt and real with us about having a baby as a teenager. That and having us calculate the cost of a baby (so expensive!) and witnessing a birth.

  • Marisa

    Funny that they have created these ads because were are the Pro-Life people now when these kids get here and raised in unhealthy environments. The Pro-Life bunch just adore the embryos in female wombs don’t they, shout about abortion is murder, stem cell research that could cure diseases are bad. Then when these embryos become actually human beings that need food, education and shelter don’t same Pro-Life crew peace out faster than Usain Bolt and Forrest Gump combined. All of sudden its well they shouldn’t have these kids if they cant afford them blah blah blah.

    Their right wing politicians and Lobbyist do all they can to cut funding to aid the poor irony all over the place. My second issue is society today has a a*s backwards idea of family. Commitment apparently to one person is just the hardest thing to do that plenty almost go into convulsions, the same doesn’t seem to apply to the creation of a human being though. These aren’t the latest designer bag, pair of Jordans than who people have children with and how many they have them with. Once the kids get here the family dynamic is all over the place, even amongst the famous look at these athletes and entertainers. The New York Jets two years ago had to float $500,000 loan to their defensive back Antonio Cromartie to keep him out of jail during the off season for back child support. He at that time was 25 8 kids with 6 women in multiple states, he has since married and is up to about 10 kids now with 2 with his wife. Bottom line condoms are cheap heck in many parts even free, not enough folks partake in using them.

  • Pseudonym

    ED: That fantasy you’re trying to sell me: I’m not buying it.

  • Hugs and Kisses

    Maybe my reading skills are above average but I see TEEN PARENT written in every single one of these ads, or are we pretending not to see that?

  • http://www.lillian-mae.com Lillian Mae

    RE: It is your body, not the man’s. You determine what goes on with it.

    Exactly! I say this all the time! I’m responsible for my body and what happens with it!

    @confessions–If you allow a man to choose to NOT wear a condom and enter your temple, again, that’s on you! We can’t blame men for not wearing condoms when/if we don’t make them. In fact, I wouldn’t sleep with a man I had to beg to wear a condom.

  • Liz

    Evette… with all due respect, I’m not going to play pretend, and neither should you. We both know “out-of-wedlock”/”single parents” and “teenage pregnancy” have entirely different connotations. Before Clutch added the rest of the ads (possibly in response to my comment, or others), reading this post… it was easy to believe the target of these ads were adult, single women who made the choice to become parents… and that is just not the case. Your teenage mother—> unwed mother chain is attenuated at best. With the exception of the “if you finish high school, get a job, and get married” ad, please show me where (else) there is any mention of marriage?

    I get it… “teenage mother” is subsumed into the category of “unwed mothers” because usually they are… but this ad campaign was ALL about teens having babies.

  • Treece

    Yes it does “take a village” and all that, but that is no excuse for being irresponsible and having a kid when you can’t even gracery shop for your damn self (which suprisingly, many teens can’t). If you don’t have the $$ to take care of a child independently then put on your “big girl panties” you just took off for your little high school boyfriend, and ask mom/dad/grandma/whomever to get you some birth control. A patch or Depo if you can’t remember to take a pill. I agree with the campaign whole-heartedly. It’s just getting ridiculous and too many adults are making foolish excuses for this crap. Either practice abstinence or stop being so careless and get on birth control. Its not that difficult and certainly much easier than taking care of a baby at 16.

  • Treece

    typo ….meant “grocery”.

  • Trisha

    Shame is (no longer) a prevention tactic. I think different methods of shaming will continue to be applied due to the many disadvantages of children born out-of-wedlock. By education, community resources, and in my case – applying real talk not making grave improvements, administrators and people in general are seeking different methods to make an impact.

    I commend the proactive solutions that many are making, but the method of shaming will not work b/c of the mentality that is already in existence. These provocative ads are sending the end results of the consequences of out-of-wedlock births without addressing the root of the problem. 54,000 children born OOW and is increasing—I’m sure nationwide- is an internal problem. To curb this problem, it goes back to old values and ‘embedded’ shame—not induced shame.

    Somewhere over the years the decision to have kids OOW became acceptable and to “continue” to have as many as one wishes. The shame was already present to even think about having a child before marriage. With the mentality changing to “it’s ok”, it becomes part of some teenagers’ lifestyle especially when it’s generational. Education does reach some, but not most. Even with the supplying of educational babies in some area HS, there is still a high rate of teenage pregnancy. While we have this problem, all we can do is to continue to provide early sex education to boys/girls and lead by examples. We can lead by examples by having “strong” two-parent families (showing ,not saying marriage is great), showing there is more to life than birthing kids, and that there is a science to making life work which includes order (education, marriage, then kids).

    I think Kids pattern their life by what is seen, not from what is taught. And as an end result, it is difficult to break the mentality of accepting OOW births or shaming them NOT to do it once it is seen. This advertisement was backward, but I do understand its intent. It won’t provide solutions when birthing kids OOW is already an accepted reality.

  • GeekMommaRants

    Can we be real? Probably not! The President was re-elected by single women not families. Can we be this real? This is a fact. Teen pregnancy needs to stop. These teenagers need to prepare for adulthood.

  • Fantastico

    It truly pisses me off to see little black kids used in anti abortion ads with the text “The womb is the most dangerous place for me.”

    I’ve seen these in Texas. I pray it’s the only State, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s spread like bird flu.

  • Fantastico

    Dead.

  • Fantastico

    These are big WHAT IFs but I am just going to go out on a limb:

    1) What if this campaign money could be used to promote safer sex initiatives?
    2) What if programs could be implemented to raise the self-esteem of young women (whom these ads are obviously geared to) so they don’t have to have sex before they are ready?

    Also where are the ads encouraging young men to make responsible decisions as well? After all, it takes TWO to make a baby.

    This is it! Placing the onus mostly on girls does not work! Focus on prevention and educate boys and girls about sexual responsibility.

  • Rue

    The if they can part is especially important. most poor women can’t.and because you can do something doesn’t make it a great idea.

  • Rue

    Big ol’ case of exception. My mom had me at 19,and we’re still struggling. Not with necessities but we’re certainly not doing very well. And we are doing much better than most in my neck of the woods.

  • Kam

    The village is telling people to be careful having teenage pregnancies, the village is telling people to focus on their education, the village is telling people to practice safe sex, the village is telling parents to be involved in their children’s lives. If you want the village’s help then follow the village’s advice!

    You can’t say “It takes a village” and then don’t want to listen to what the village is saying.

  • http://www.facebook.com/christelyn Christelyn Russell-Karazin

    You know what? I say good for Mayor Bloomberg. Black people (in general) can not STAND for ANYONE to tell them their poop stinks. But an 80% OOW rate is some stinky ish, and the rank is permeating outside of the community, and others are taking notice. I mentioned this two years ago when I launched No Wedding No Womb. People are tired of the shenanigans. Stop being defensive–folks know in their hearts this situation has been terrible for our community.

  • lex

    dont worry i see it as well, it is in a bright pink highlight

  • http://tontonmichel.tumblr.com/ Tonton Michel

    I must be missing something, this campaign looks like it is targeting potential unwed mothers not the ones who are already on the scene. The mayor finally gets one right.

  • http://www.facebook.com/christelyn Christelyn Russell-Karazin

    AMENT!!

  • E.M.S.

    Again, making an assumption about what I said. I did not say poor women, you did.

    Here’s the truth of it though. Just because we don’t think something is a good idea does not mean we have the right to tell someone they cannot do it. If that’s what someone chooses, they deal with the consequences. I am not saying it’s right, but that’s how it is. And of course now I’m sure this comment will get low ratings too :l

    Been completely misunderstood with both of my comments. I think some are pretty quick to rate before reading through it but okay whatever. Won’t continue to try to clarify anything else I’ve said after this.

  • Elyse

    I agree with the idea of preventing teen pregnancy, I just believe it could have been done in a better way. Don’t shame, just educate.

    “Shame is not a prevention tactic. Education is. Economic mobility is. Community resources, like Planned Parenthood, are helpful in educating future mothers and fathers about the potential consequences of teenage pregnancy. Instead of shaming women, Bloomberg should offer jobs and community programs instead of backward advertisements.”

  • http://www.beautifullychallenged.biz Carmen B

    I agree! Education is proactive. Kids knowing the important information is effective. Shaming just upsets people, and doesn’t prevent anything. Shame makes people stop listening.

  • Kelly

    As the teen mother of Evette Dionne and her older brother both whom where born in Queens NY I find this form of advertisement very degrading and unecessary. To fight teen pregnancy starts with true dedication to education. Shaming tactics didnt work in the 50′s or 60′s and its not going to work now.

  • Loreena

    No Wedding No Womb!

  • http://Clutch SL

    Yea – they want to be free to have their children but then expect the mayor to offer jobs and assistance – how ass backwards can you fuckin be to advocate that shit. Please get real. Shame the bitches until they STOP being breeding factories and expect the rest of us to validate and support their stupid ass choices.

  • http://Clutch SL

    Well – the babies are brown – targeting the two groups with the highest number of children born oow – blacks and Latinos. It wasn’t an accident and can’t say I disagree with a targeted message. The message needs to be delivered and maybe this will help do just that for at least some girl who hasn’t been told that she need not become a statistic.

  • http://Clutch SL

    How is it bad mouthing the father – the kid is not saying my dad is no good – the kid is saying hey he may not love you enough to make a commitment to you – that has nothing to do with his commitment to the kid.

  • Constant Truth

    I totally agree with you, E.M.S. because your comments are my life story. A week before my 25th birthday, I had my first and only child. I graduated high school with honors (and still a virgin). I graduated college (lost my virginity to a guy but dated him and was faithful to him all throughout college and a year after). I traveled a little bit. I gained work experience in my field. I met a man that I fell head over heels in love with, had his child, and without going into the sordid details, I CHOSE to become a single parent. He had a volatile temper and was abusive. I wanted my child to have a fair shot in the world.

    With that being said, having 2 parents isn’t always the ideal situation. I’d rather raise her as a single parent (as I’ve been doing for 5 years now) with the utmost of love and making sure she has everything she needs (which she does) than raise her with her father. I think she would be a completely different kid if she had his temperament defining her environment.

    We live in 2013. “Out-of-wedlock” is such an outdated term. We live in a highly sexualized world. We as parents need to control what our kids are exposed to as much as possible. We can’t protect them from everything but we need to do the best we can because we can’t control what the media tries to shove down our children’s’ throats.

    Would it be easier to raise a child in a 2-parent household? I’m sure it would be. Two incomes, more assistance, blah blah blah. Not always ideal. Hell, I know of married people with children where the wife stays at home all day with the children and wishes her husband would be more involved. People need to stop being so judgmental thinking they know what is RIGHT. Unless you’ve been in a single parent’s shoes, you have no right to talk about something you know nothing about.

  • Lola

    LMBO!!! Way to go Bloomberg… I total agree!

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  • Ms. Vee

    Amen!

  • http://twitter.com/DelectConnect Delect Connect (@DelectConnect)

    I don’t have a problem with the ads. Unfortunately, a lot of these kids don’t get the message at home. Oftentimes, these boys and girls reside in communities where teen and unplanned out-of-wedlock pregnancy is the norm. However, I doubt these ads will keep many teens from having sex. So this initiative would be much more effective if the text sent info on how to obtain free birth control.

  • http://twitter.com/DelectConnect Delect Connect (@DelectConnect)

    And another thing…the headline is misleading. The ads aren’t targeting unwed mothers. They’re aimed at the teens who are not parents…yet, in an effort to keep them from going there too soon. So nobody’s throwing rocks at unwed moms.

  • http://twitter.com/DelectConnect Delect Connect (@DelectConnect)

    PREACH!

  • Chasten

    I totally agree with this article. It’s not only that young people need to be educated but most often its their environment.
    We have many adults who are parents but who are not active participants in what’s the best welfare for their children. These same parents most often have no value system of their own, seek out pleasures of their own, worry only about themselves, their own problems and leave their teenage children without a parent.
    In return,these teenage children find themselves seeking for love and affection in all the wrong places. Idleness, and lack of opportunities leads the way though the beauty and the lure of sex which finds its way crept into the minds of children seeking love instead of guidance of knowing their true value and worth.
    Where there is no parent to parent, the cycle of teen parenting, bad parenting and poverty repeats itself over and over again until someone is bold enough to stand up and say enough is enough! Sa.De.J. quote copyright.

  • dbsm

    myblackfriend says:

    “7 out of 10 of black births are births out of wedlock. I know that might seem like “airing dirty laundry,” but we need to keep it real. Regardless of what other races are doing, 7 out of 10 is not something I think we should be satisfied with.

    Yes, there are exceptions to every rule, but study after study has shown that children of single parents are at a disadvantage. I don’t understand why there is such resistance on this site against promoting the idea that children benefit from having two capable, loving parents in the home.

    __

    you focus on the out of wedlock then the assumption is that if it occur in wedlock, then that is the cure. but

    what about post wedlock? wedlock in poverty? dysfunctional wedlock?

    just get them married and poof?

    there are too many varieties of single parent/motherhood. the key disadvantage is poverty. there are some really f*ed up married parents contributing to stats that aren’t being counted.

    that stats have been clear that money and mental well-being are the top factors of success. and if you look at it that way, then black births should be expected to bottom out because collectively, blacks are at the bottom on psychological and wealth factors. wedlock is a symptom and a values judgement for people who seek to look with only that lens

  • dbsm

    So poor people shouldn’t have children? What should be the allowable income level..per child? I’m just asking. Maybe I can agree…

    All types of people go into family court: married and never-married.

  • dbsm

    “Placing the onus mostly on girls does not work! Focus on prevention and educate boys and girls about sexual responsibility.”

    Tell boys that there is no requirement that they ejaculate in or near a fertile vagina, less they intend on procreating. This is what I have been saying for years.

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  • http://tontonmichel.tumblr.com/ Tonton Michel

    I take it back have all the out of wedlock kids you want.

  • eshowoman

    The teen pregnancy rate among New York City’s public high school students dropped 27% over a decade. How about doing more of what helped that decrease? It takes two to make an out of wedlock child, where are the signs for the teenage boys?

  • http://www.boutiquevibe.net Christi

    I agree with the ads. Teen pregnancy and women having children by every boyfriend they had is a bit ridiculous. I have heard some comments about education being the key, but so far education hasn’t worked. A person has to be open to change before a change can take place. We need to stop tip toeing around the topic and tell it like it is. I applaud the ads.

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