More American babies were born in 2006 than in any year since 1961, which sounds like good news except for for this spin by unnamed "experts":

Experts believe there is a mix of reasons: a decline in contraceptive use, a drop in access to abortion, poor education and poverty.

Or, gosh, maybe Americans believe in our culture and our country and have hope for the future of our civilization? (Things which can't be said in many parts of the world.)

There are cultural reasons as well. Hispanics as a group have higher fertility rates — about 40 percent higher than the U.S. overall. And experts say Americans, especially those in middle America, view children more favorably than people in many other Westernized countries.

"Americans like children. We are the only people who respond to prosperity by saying, `Let's have another kid,'" said Nan Marie Astone, associate professor of population, family and reproductive health at Johns Hopkins University.

Whew, for a moment I was afraid that Americans are reproducing faster than any other Western nation just because we're the poorest, dumbest, most oppressed people in the world.

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