Why Are Americans Having Fewer Babies?

It’s an enigma that’s vexed demographers for 40 years. The answer turns out not to be natural disasters or pandemics, or even economics, but something deeper: a decline in religion.

Adriana Torres with her baby daughter Leah, who is being released from NYU Winthrop Hospital in Mineola, New York on May 27, 2020. Leah was born prematurely while Adriana was in a medically-induced coma due to COVID-19. Alejandra Villa Loarca/Newsday RM via Getty Images.

Adriana Torres with her baby daughter Leah, who is being released from NYU Winthrop Hospital in Mineola, New York on May 27, 2020. Leah was born prematurely while Adriana was in a medically-induced coma due to COVID-19. Alejandra Villa Loarca/Newsday RM via Getty Images.

Observation
July 28 2020
About the author

Jonathan V. Last is executive editor of The Bulwark.


At 5:16 on the evening of November 9, 1965, the lights went out in New York City.

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More about: American Religion, Children, Demographics, Politics & Current Affairs