Sam has taken to running around yelling "Shame! Shame!" at Gavin whenever he doesn't like what Gavin is doing.
I've been off my soap box for a while. Apologies to those that just want to see cute pics of the boys, but this one's been brewing in my mind for a while, and I just needed to get it off my chest.
For those of you not familiar with the book Freakonomics, the whole point of the book is examining correlation vs causation. So basically just because two variables move in the same direction together, does not necessarily mean that one causes the other. It's actually a really fascinating book.
I got to this section, taken directly from the text, and can be found here
A child who had low birth weight tends to do poorly in school. It may be that being born prematurely is simply hurtful to a child's overall well-being.
So that would be the usual assumption, that being a preemie causes injury to the brain via over/under oxygenation, brain bleeds, and sensory experiences that they are not yet able to process. That would be my assumption.
It may also be that low birthweight is a strong forecaster of poor parenting, since a mother who smokes or drinks or otherwise mistreats her baby in utero isn't likely to turn things around just because the baby is born. A low-birthweight child, in turn, is more likely to be a poor child - and, therefore, more likely to attend Head Start, the federal preschool program. But, according to the ECLS data, Head Start does nothing for a child's future test scores. Despite a deep reservoir of appreciation for Head Start, we must acknowledge that it has repeatedly been proven ineffectual in the long term. Here's a likely reason: instead of spending the day with his own undereducated, over-worked mother, the typical Head Start child spends the day with someone else's undereducated, overworked mother.
What did you read in that paragraph? I read that low brith weight/prematurity is caused by the mother, and mothers of preemies tend to be under-educated, over-worked, and low income.
Really Mr. Levitt?? Your entire book is based on peeling back the layers and differentiating causation from correlation. Had you done your research you would have found a large percentage of premature births are not a result of mothers engaging in high risk activities.
According to this article, about 40% of U.S. women that deliver prematurely have contributing risk factors - and that 40% includes ALL risk factors, not just those that mean you abuse your body or don't seek out proper prenatal care.
There is NO way low birth weight should be absolutely attributed to poor parenting. Just ask my huge network of preemie moms that would give anything. ANYTHING. to have a healthy, full term baby. Or watch those shows where the teen gives birth in the bathroom at prom having no prenatal care and the baby turns out fine. Much to the dismay of those of us on the other end of the spectrum, women that could give a s*** about their pregnancy have healthy full term babies.
Low birth weight is NOT caused only by poor parenting, and the authors should be ashamed for making such a statement in a book that is dedicated to finding true cause and effect relationships. Is poor parenting a risk factor for premature/low birth weight babies? Definitely.
But there is an overwhelming amount of the preemie population that was born to loving, awesome parents that did everything they could, and continue to do everything they can for the well being of their kids.
For this book to perpetuate that preemies are born only of a mother's inability or lack of desire to properly care for herself while pregnant - well, I'm at a loss of words to respond to that, so I will say it in Sam's words "Shame! Shame!"
That is all.