While recently watching a sappy Hallmark Movie Channel Christmas movie (don’t judge me), a character in the movie, while trying to comfort a single mom whose child was obviously traumatized by the lack of a father figure said, essentially, “I don’t think a child cares if it’s a mom or a dad, they just want to be loved by someone.”

It’s a common refrain by our cultural elitists. Moms, dads, and family structure are irrelevant (even patriarchic and dangerous). It’s all about love.

But, if that belief were subject to social science’s version of PolitiFact, it would get a “liar, liar pants on fire” rating.

Here’s an article from UVa. Sociologist Brad Wilcox who talks about several new reports or studies, sourced everywhere from MIT to Princeton to Brookings Institute, that once again show kids fair better when they have a mom and a dad. For example, states with the highest poverty rates also tend to have low marriage rates, while states with low poverty rates tend to have more marriage.  Yes, there are other factors, but it’s undeniable that marriage is key.

Now, this is nothing new; it simply affirms decades of social science. Sadly, too many Americans have bought the lie that mom and dad don’t really matter, and because of that it’s our kids who suffer.