The birthrate in the United States hit record lows again last year, according to numbers out this week from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Provisional data from the CDC found there were 2 percent fewer births in 2018 than in 2017, with an overall birthrate for women ages 15 to 44 at 59 births per 1,000 women, an all-time low. While some demographers claim women are just postponing childbearing, others argue women are forgoing it entirely. As a result, the United States could see stalled economic growth, labor shortages, underfunded government programs like Social Security, and an aging population with fewer people to care for the elderly. —K.C.
Former major league baseball pitcher and World Series MVP John Wetteland will plead not guilty to charges of continuous sex abuse of a child, his attorney said this week. Wetteland, who was charged in January of abusing a child for two years starting in 2004 when the victim was 4 years old, attended an arraignment hearing in Denton County, Texas, on Monday. “He is innocent and is looking forward to his day in court,” attorney Derek Adame said on Monday, adding that the accusations completely shocked his client. Wetteland is scheduled to return to court in July.
Wetteland, a professed Christian, retired from baseball after the 2000 season. He coached baseball and taught Bible studies at Liberty Christian School in Argyle, Texas, from 2007 to 2008 but is no longer associated with the school. —K.C.