Wikipedia defines Family Values thus:So, what are family values in laymen's terms rather than in Wiki-speak, politicians' or self-satisfied comfortably off Americans' terms? I doubt there could be any cover-all definition, other than a useless blanket textbook requirement: that family members should love and support one another. That's nice. Do they? Sometimes. Sometimes not. Sometimes members of families hate one another, or certain family members hate/despise one another, or envy each other or undermine each other.
Family values are political and social beliefs that regard the nuclear family as the essential unit of society. Familialism is the ideology that promotes the family and its values as an institution.
Although the phrase family values is vague and has shifting meanings, it is most often associated[by whom?] with social and religious conservatives. In the late 20th and early 21st centuries, the term has been frequently used in political debates claiming that the world has seen a decline in family values since the end of the Second World War.
Families are composed of a set of individuals with shared genes, who could possibly blend well, but also have a good chance of inheriting natures which contrast and clash, have vastly different personal opinions on what elements are of prime value in life.
In the best scenario family members do love one another in spite of personal differences of opinion. That's a good "family value", but not universal by any means. If and when it does occur, do those family members practice the same tolerance outside, in the wider world? That is the key question, in my view.
Just this week, coincidentally, I've been reading about a couple of current movies highlighting familial awkwardness or outright dysfunctionality: "Nebraska" and "August, Osage County". These movies seem to be portraying a mirror image of some of those beloved sugary American TV series of the past based around "the family": The Waltons, Little House on the Prairie etc.
Times change, do "values" fade or evolve?
Human values, encompassing the entire human family, are what are sorely needed now, not a set of values narrowly focused on isolated, and rather self-centered, "family" values.
As to the family, I have never understood how that fits in with the other ideals--or indeed, why it should be an ideal at all. A group of closely related persons living under one roof; it is a convenience, often a necessity, sometimes a pleasure, sometimes the reverse; but who first exalted it as admirable, an almost religious ideal?
The World My Wilderness