Here’s a letter to the Boston Globe:
Joanna Weiss asserts that the lack of government-mandated paid maternity leave in the United States is “a sign of how little our society values childrearing” (“Family values? ” August 15).
I have a different take: the lack of government mandated paid maternity leave in the United States is a sign of how much – at least relative to many other countries – our society values freedom of contract and the voluntary choices of adults over the paternalistic commands of the state.
Donald J. Boudreaux
My wise friend Barry Conner has a different, and better, perspective on Joanna Weiss’s claim. Barry says that “the lack of government-mandated paid maternity leave in the United States is a sign of how greatly our society values childrearing, so much it is largely willing to shoulder the responsibility without the nanny state.”
UPDATE: says David Boaz