Thursday, August 21, 2003


A reader has been inspired to deeper thoughts by the current controversy over homosexual “marriage”. He writes:

“I have been thinking about this contract marriage argument. My guess is that any move towards it would be opposed mainly by Christian churches and the feminists. Both groups would be keen to impose their viewpoint on everyone. The Christians I can have some sympathy with, but I think that C.S. Lewis's argument is the answer to their objections. Also I'd wager that privately negotiated marriage contracts may indeed be tougher than our current system of legal roulette.

The feminists probably would be happy to weaken the traditional institution, based on their misguided view that marriage is inherently anti-woman. My guess is that they would then seek to interfere in privately negotiated marriage contracts too, just as they have with state sanctioned marriage, perhaps under the banner of 'consumer protection'.

Wendy McElroy argues that liberal and feminist intervention has undermined traditional marriage, leading to a "marriage strike" by men. The unintended consequences of these apparently well meaning changes have landed heavily on women and, even more so on children. In fact the growing trend to single parent families is probably the major cause of poverty in western capitalist societies. William F Buckley says: "..We know that the composite impact of single-parent homes on children is huge. The poverty rate in single-parent homes is 400 percent of that for two-parent homes. Among long-term prison inmates, 70 percent grew up without a father in residence. There are comparable figures for illiteracy and drug use." Buckley, writes from the perspective of a conservative defender of traditional marriage.

Another concern: Martin Daly and Margot Wilson, are evolutionary psychologists. Their work has highlighted the risks to children of being raised by people other than their biological parents. This 'socio-biological' issue lies at the heart of many media grabbing stories of institutional child abuse, the "stolen generation" etc. In their "THE EVOLUTIONARY PSYCHOLOGY OF HOMICIDE" (PDF), they report: "...studies in Canada, Britain and the United States indicate that (for step children) their risk of being fatally abused is on the order of 50 to 100 times higher than risk at the hands of a genetic parent. Having a stepparent has turned out to be the single most powerful predictor of severe child maltreatment yet discovered."

There are certainly more important issues at stake here than whether or not homosexuals can get State-recognized weddings.”


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