Family Crisis
Final Exam


The ten questions with an ** are required answers and must be answered in half a page for a grade of C - more depth for a chance at a better grade.   Students are then to choose 5 additional questions of their own choosing to answer.  For two of your choices - feel free to make up your own essays question if you like. Each answer is worth 10 points.

On the Economy and Family Crises
**1. Explain the U.S. system of public assistance and entitlements, Taking note of Robin William's definition of the Economy, particularly this one:
"Because of specialization of production, a highly developed monetary and credit system, and other factors, the various segments of the economy are closely interdependent; and changes in any one major portion of the system have complex repercussions elsewhere".
2. Rephrase and explain the statement that "Property rights are in a state of rapid change; and the facts are radically different from those envisaged in popular ideologies and in certain important legal fictions."
** 3. According to the short articles by William P. O'Hare and Paula Mergenhagen for American Demographics, Who are the poor in America and what do they do with their money? Document any departures you make from their assertions.
**4. Summarize the effects of poverty on children according to "Poor Children in U.S. Increase to Six Million, Columbia University Record -- February 3, 1995 -- Vol. 20, No. 15" in your readings. Tie these findings back to our theories.
5. Summarize Witt's article on Family Violence (see the last paragraph of the article). Take issue with the idea that family violence serves functions for our society and is a way to diffuse alienation away from the appropriate source.

On Religion and Family Crises
**1. What is the official government position on religion in the schools, according to the first few pages of the notes?  Contrast this idea of limited religious power and the durrent climate in our society.
2. There is the real world in which we all live, and there is the ideal world we all would like to live in. Religion can help us close this gap - and it can also serve to widen it. How can religion do this?
** 3. Summarize Why Religion Matters: The Impact of Religious Practice on Social Stability" by Patrick F. Fagan and William H.G. FitzGerald (the Heritage Foundation Backgrounder No. 1064 - January 25, 1996)

On Education and Family Crises
1. Today, everything in a child's future hinges on education, which hinges on support from the family, which hinges on parent's education, which hinged on support from their respective families. What is there in the culture that can interrupt this seemingly natural flow of events? What is there that can hinder educational attainment?
**2. What is the relationship between family variables and educational performance, according to the Rand Corporation's study?
3. How does the changing family indicate a boost for student test scores between 1970-1990 according to the Rand Corp Study?
4. Project Director David W. Grissmer observes "These findings are like a caution light at an intersection, warning us to go slow in dismissing the large investments in public education, social programs, and equal opportunity policies over the past twenty years as a waste of resources and a failure of social policy." What findings was he talking about specifically?
** 5. Explain the Functions of Secondary Education, according to the notes? Be critical and include your own views of the validity or appropriateness of those functions.
***6. Here is your opportunity to predict the future of America - a world in which virtually every college graduate has a debt after college of over $30,000 and little hope of employment that will allow them to comfortably pay the debt off before they are retirement age.  Given that scenario, include your predictions about this populations ability to save for retirement, or for their own children's educations.

On Government and Family Crises
** 1. After reading the section of notes on Government and Family Crises, what is, in your opinion, the role of government in reducing crime, supporting the poor, and maintaining an adequate standard of living for all Americans. Keep in mind the interdependence of all parts of our social system.
2. Why should the government/police concentrate their efforts on adolescent boys? Cite the comparative data for this group and older males.
3. Drug related crimes are rampant in our society. What can parents do to insure drug free kids, according to the notes?

Families in the 21st Century
1. Summarize Feminist thoughts on the family.
**5 points 2. What is the difference between the Real and the Ideal according to the notes?