April 2003: 


ALLAN CARLSON GIVES NEW LECTURE SERIES IN WASHINGTON, DC.  As part of a broad cooperation with The Family Research Council (FRC), Center President Allan Carlson is presenting a series of lectures on "Family Policy for the 21st Century" in the nation's capital. These talks aim at guiding Federal policy formation toward the family in the decades ahead.  Lectures delivered so far to audiences of policy analysts, legislators, White House aides, pro-family activists, and students include:

•"Rebinding the Generations: A New Vision of the Multigenerational Family" (21 November 2003); and

•"Reinventing the Schoolroom: Education as Homecoming" (13 February 2003).

These lectures are also "webcast" live at www.frc.org. Scheduled talks for the next several months (all at 11:00 a.m. Eastern Time) are:

•(March 27) "'Bailey Park' or 'Greater Pottersville'?: The Natural Family in the 21st Century American Suburb";

•(April 24) "The Fertility Gap: American Population Policy for a Depopulating World"; and 

•(June 12) "Two Becoming One Flesh: Recasting Marriage Policy for the 21st Century."

HOWARD CENTER RECOMMENDED FOR "SPECIAL CONSULTATIVE STATUS" AT THE UNITED NATIONS.  In a victory for pro-family witness at the international level, the United Nations Committee on Non-Governmental Organizations voted this January 24 to recommend that "Special Consultative Status be granted to The Howard Center for Family, Religion & Society."  This is still subject to approval by the UN's Economic and Social Council, meeting in late April.  Such status would grant The Howard Center an official voice in UN deliberations regarding family life and population questions. 

BUSH TAX PLAN FOLLOWS CENTER RECOMMENDATIONS.  The Tax Cut plan proposed by the George W. Bush administration this January included two ideas initiated and promoted by The Howard Center.  The proposed repair to "the marriage penalty" follows principles urged by the Center (and, at one time, opposed by the White House), an influence noted by The Wall Street Journal's Amity Schlaes in her book The Greedy Hand.  And the proposed immediate increase in the Child Care Tax Credit to $1,000 fulfills a policy recommendation that Allan Carlson has urged for many years.

NEW "FAMILY & SOCIETY DATABASE" UP AND RUNNING.  The Howard Center, cooperating with The Heritage Foundation of Washington, DC, has helped initiate a new database containing 1400 empirical findings drawn from 850 journal articles published during the past 15 years.  The core of this powerful new research tool is the Center's John L. Swan Library of Family and Culture. It is available, without charge, through the Howard Center's website at www.profam.org

CHARMAINE YOEST NAMED AS 2003 KOHLER FELLOW. A Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Politics, University of Virginia, will serve as the Center's Kohler Fellow for 2003. Charmaine Crouse Yoest will focus on writing articles derived from her doctoral dissertation, and starting its transition into a book. Entitled Empowering Shakespeare's Sister: The Politics of Parental Leave, the work examines paid parental leave policies. Mrs. Yoest argues "that advocacy of paid parental leave policies as a policy device for advancing gender-neutral parenting and 'leveling the playing field' for women professionally, is both ill-conceived and ineffective."

ALLAN CARLSON RECOMMENDS FAMILY POLICY INITIATIVES TO SWEDISH PARLIAMENT.  Speaking to Swedish parliamentarians at the Riksdag in Stockholm this February 19, Center President Allan Carlson urged the adoption of pro-family tax and social policies.  The Parliament's Caucus for The Family and Human Values sponsored the presentation.  Carlson told the M.P.'s that modern social science "actually shows the power, value, and necessity of traditional family arrangements" in a society.  He continued: "If your goals are to encourage human health, happiness, and success, renew the population through children, and give children the best possible start in life, the Swedish government should: encourage the marriage of young men and women and the maintenance of married-couple homes; discourage divorce and the unstable status of cohabitation; and welcome the presence of traditionally religious people."

JOHN HOWARD INITIATES NEW BOOK.  Senior Fellow John Howard has begun work on a book to show Christianity's predominant influence in the shaping of American institutions, norms, and customs, from the nation's founding until the 1960's.  He notes, for example, this report from Yale University Professor William Lyon Phelp's on the publication of a Revised Version of the Bible in 1881: "[ I]ts appearance had been looked for with feverish excitement.  The bookshops could not begin to satisfy the demand.  Thousands of copies were pushed about the streets of New York, sold directly from wheelbarrows."  Dr. Howard expects the project to take several years. 

CENTER BOARD MEMBER AUTHORS BOOK ON HIS FAMILY.  Norman McClelland, a longtime member of The Howard Center Board of Directors and Chairman of the Arizona-based Shamrock Foods, has authored the book, The Parkers of Ballykeel.  It tells the story of his mother's family, who migrated to America--and indeed around the globe--from the Drumlins of County Down, Ulster.  Mr. McClelland writes: "What gives added value to this story of the Parker Family is, of course, that it is a microcosm of a much larger story--that of a people known as the Scotch-Irish...A strong sense of community…characterized these people and a seemingly innate knowledge that the family unit was the foundation upon which the community is built."

JEAN HEISE MARKS ROE v. WADE 30TH ANNIVERSARY In a series of events, Center Special Events Coordinator Jean Heise reported on the consequences of thirty years of legalized abortion-on-demand in America.  In her keynote speech to 300 persons at the Portage County (Wisconsin) Right-to-Life Rally, Mrs. Heise stressed Hope and Opportunity for the Future:  "There is a shift in attitudes toward abortion.  More folks than ever are uncomfortable with the high numbers and feel there should be at least some restrictions."  The Howard Center also co-sponsored the annual Life Breakfast in Rockford on January 17.  With "born-alive abortion" whistle blower Jill Stanek, RN, as speaker and Allan Carlson as M.C., the event drew a record 425 persons.


•December 26:  Allan Carlson appeared on the MSNBC show, "Buchanan and Press."  He discussed the causes and consequences of depopulation trends in Europe and America.

•November 18:  Center Kohler Fellow Brian Robertson and Allan Carlson were guests on "Extension 720," hosted by Dr. Milt Rosenberg on WGN-AM, Chicago.  For two hours, they discussed the troubled status of the family in America.

•January 14:  Allan Carlson discussed the unintended anti-family effects of the Federal student loan program on KFAR-AM, of Fairbanks, Alaska, with syndication nationwide.

•September 9:  The subject of "pro family tax reform" drew Allan Carlson's attention on the weekly radio broadcast of the North Carolina's Family Policy Association.

•August 30:  Allan Carlson made the case for pro-family tax reform on the CRP Radio Network.

JOHN HOWARD LECTURES AT PRINCETON.  On October 10, John Howard returned to his alma mater to speak at a symposium for the University's James Madison Program.  In his talk, "The Family: America's Hope," before an audience of faculty and graduate students,  Dr. Howard noted "that from the arrival of the earliest settlers on through the first century and a half of this country's existence, America was a western extension of Christendom... a society in which the generally accepted standards of human behavior were derived from the Bible."  The talk appeared in The Family in America (November) as well as in The St. Croix Review and The Executive Speaker. 


•"The American Way": Family and Community in the Shaping of the American Identity (from ISI Books), examines how the images of "home" and "family" served as the source of positive American self-understanding during the 20th Century (September);

•The Family in America: Its Search for Social Harmony in the Industrial Age (from Transaction Books, at Rutgers University), looks at past strategies for preserving family autonomy in the modern urban-industrial era (October); and

•The Family, the Person, and Society [in Russian], features 24 essays published by the Sociology Department, Moscow Lomonosov State University (Summer).

"STUDENT LOAN" ARTICLE STIRS NATIONAL DEBATE. In an essay appearing December 16 in, Allan Carlson showed how mounting federal student loan debt was leading to serious delays in marriage and childbearing among young adults. Dr. Carlson called the existing program a perverse "form of contraception" and urged that "for every new child born to indebted married parents, the federal government should pay off one-fourth of their outstanding student loan debt, up to $5,000 each for mother and father. Over the next few days The Chronicle of Higher Education carried a summary of the piece, Vice President Dick Cheney's office distributed the essay to the White House Domestic Policy Staff as a "Must Read" item; and the National Center for Policy Analysis dispatched the idea worldwide.  Dr. Carlson is now preparing a longer version for publication by The Family Research Council.


•Religion & Society Report editor Harold O.J. Brown gave lectures on "Faith and Economics" at the Reformed Theological Seminary, Aix-en-Provence, France.

•2003 marks the Third Year of The World Congress of Families Update, edited by Karl John Shields which is received each week by 11,000 subscribers.

•The Community Leadership Program of The Sutherland Institute, Salt Lake City, Utah, featured two lectures by Allan Carlson on September 19:  "The Family is the Fundamental Unit of Society" and "Reflections on Robert Nisbet's Quest for Community."

•The publication, The Executive Speaker, features John Howard's lecture on the meaning of "9/11" in its October issue; eight of his speeches are found at the website, www.executive-speaker.com

•Allan Carlson spoke on "Working With Boys: How to Reach and Target Males with Character Education," for the "Futures for Kids" conference, held August 8 by The Illinois Department of Human Services, Chicago.

•Harold O.J. Brown taught a course on The Heritage of the Reformation held last August in Wittenberg, Germany.

•"The New Agrarians and the Popular Education Culture" was the lecture by Allan Carlson for  the Annual Foundations Seminar, held November 8 by The Education Department of Washburn University, Topeka, KS.

•The new journal, Family Policy Review, features two essays by Allan Carlson in its inaugural February 2003 issue:  "Taxing the Family: An American Version of Paradise Lost"; and "Solving the Elder-Care Dilemma."  Dr. Carlson also serves on the Editorial Committee of the Review.

•In November, Harold O.J. Brown attended a new session of Evangelicals and Catholics Together in New York.

•Allan Carlson's long esay, "The Peculiar Legacy of German-Americans," appears in the January-February 2003 issue of Society, America's pre-eminent social science journal.

•The September/October 2002 issue of HomeSchooling Today carries John Howard's article, "What Is Important in Our Post-September 11 World? "

•The Chesterton Review for Autumn, 2002, includes Allan Carlson's essay, "Agrarian Fairy Tales."

•The journal Marriage and Families, published by The School of Family Life, Brigham Young University, features Allan Carlson's "What Children Really Need: Another Way to Look at Children's Rights" in its September issue.

•The Howard Center held a special Roundtable session at The University Club of Rockford on February 26, discussing the nature and significance of "Post-Feminism."

•During 2002, Research Associate Karl John Shields and other staff answered over 150 research requests with data, reports, and copies of articles.

•Allan Carlson spoke on November 7 to parents, faculty, and students at Cair Paravel School of Topeka, Kansas, on "The Family as the Fundamental Unit of Society: What This Means for an Independent School."

•Bryce Christensen, Karl Shields, and Allan Carlson are new Associate Editors of The Family & Society Database.

•In February, Harold O.J. Brown led a seminar on his book, The Sensate Culture, for Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Wake Forest, North Carolina.

•Jean Heise has led adult study classes on life and family issues at four Rockford area churches and Hallstrom Homeschool Workshops.

•Allan Carlson has joined the Board of Advisors for a video series on marriage and family issues being developed by Free Teens USA, with Howard Center Board member Paul Vitz as co-director of the project.

•Jean Heise spoke to the Young Mother's Group of Holy Family Catholic Church, Rockford, on "Reflections of an Empty Nester, Lessons from Home!"

•On February 13, Allan Carlson spoke to faculty and students of The John Paul II Institute for Marriage and Family, Washington, DC, on "The Family and the Person in American Liberal Institutions."

•Maggie Gallagher's syndicated newspaper column for the week of December 14 quotes Allan Carlson's explanation for the Baby Boom of the 1950's; The Washington Post of October 15 reports on his new association with The Family Research Council.


About The Howard Center for Family, Religion and Society

The Howard Center for Family, Religion and Society is an independent, non-profit research and education center that strives to be the leading source of fresh ideas and new strategies for affirmation and defense of the natural family, both nationally and globally.  The Howard Center is also the founder and organizer of the World Congress of Families project which unites people of goodwill who recognize that the family is the fundamental unit of society and coordinates the efforts of pro-family groups from more the 60 countries worldwide.

In terms of function, The Howard Center:

  • Shapes new ideas about the nature and status of the family and faith

  • Makes fresh scientific research on the family accessible and useful to family scholars

  • Creates effective national and international networks of family advocates

  • Magnifies ideas and influence through all forms of media

  • Provides expert opinions to public policy makers

Specific programs include:

  • Publishing three monthly periodicals (Family in America, New Research, and The Religion and Society Report)

  • Publishing weekly The Family Update, Online! a free email newsletter

  • Serving as administrator and co-convener of the World Congress of Families (WCF# 1 in Prague, 1997, WCF# 2 in Geneva, 1999, WCF# 3, March 29-31, 2004 in Mexico City, and WCF# 4 scheduled for 11-13 May 2007 in Warsaw, Poland)

  • Building the Swan Library of Family and Culture

  • Maintaining three active websites The Howard Center (www.profam.org), The World Congress of Families (www.worldcongress.org), and The Family Manifesto (www.familymanifesto.net).

  • Convening periodic lectures and special conferences

  • Sponsoring “The Kohler Fellows Program”, in support of young scholars

Please visit www.profam.org, www.worldcongress.org, or www.familymanifesto.net for the latest news and info.


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