Marriage is Good for Us
December 4, 2012
The left-wing, so called "Progressives", proclaim that the traditional family -- married man & woman and children -- is no longer necessary. Ironically, the poor, whom the Left pretend to champion, are most vulnerable to the breakdown of this model, and suffer the most.
"Sociological, psychological and medical research indicates that married couples tend to do better in every important measure of physical, social and psychological well-being, compared to the unmarried. "
(Edited by henrymakow.com)
Traditional marriage is critical to society's well-being.
1.MARRIAGE BREAKDOWN AND POVERTY
Marriage breakdown is the greatest cause of poverty in Canada. According to Statistics Canada, the quickest way for children to live in poverty is for their parents to be separated, divorced, or never married.
This is because one-parent families have the lowest average total income.
For example, in 2008, female, one- parent families had an average annual income of only $42,300. This meant that, in 2008, 36% of children under 18 years of age, (about 218,000 children) lived in low-income families headed by a woman. In contrast, in 2008, two-parent families had an average annual income of $100,200.
According to the US Brookings Institution, if individuals do just three things:
1) finish high school;
2) work full time; and
3) marry before they have children - their chances of being poor drop from 15% to 2%.
Research by the UK Centre for Social Justice indicates that if a child is born into poverty today, that child is more likely to remain in poverty than at any time since the late 1960s.
The Centre identified five key paths to poverty. The first is family breakdown. The others were: serious personal debt, drug and alcohol addiction, failed education, unemployment and dependency.
WELL-TO-DO VIEW MARRIAGE DIFFERENTLY
There appears to be a growing gap between educated, married, employed and well-off couples and those who are less educated, in marginal or no employment and without a steady life partner.
This was outlined in an article in the Journal of Public Policy,"The Family in America" (Spring 2012).
According to Dr. Bryce J. Christensen, the Editor of the Journal, there is a retreat in the US (and Canada) from wedlock by the nation's poor and working class citizens.
This has resulted in couples who have neither money nor education, having trouble keeping their marriages together.
This differs markedly from privileged, educated couples who generally regard unwed parenthood, desertion and divorce as socially unacceptable.
As a result, their marriages are more stable. The brunt of family breakdown occurs in the poorer working classes who have lower standards on marriage, single parenthood, and living common-law. These attitudes all contribute to their poverty.
MARRIAGE LEADS TO LOWER MORTALITY
Sociological, psychological and medical research indicates that married couples tend to do better in every important measure of physical, social and psychological well-being, compared to the unmarried.
Significantly, this health and mortality gap has remained constant over the past two decades. The reason can be attributed to the protective quality of marriage, which influences and directs the behaviour of the partners.
Essentially, this involves couples individually monitoring unhealthy lifestyles, such as smoking, physical inactivity, harmful eating habits and reminding each other of regular medical needs, such as medical check-ups and medication, etc.
Family members encourage other members to change their harmful behaviours. Unfortunately, those who merely cohabit together are less likely to be concerned with their partner's habits and behaviour.
There are a number of specific policy recommendations that would support marriage:
1. Although schools seem to relish teaching sex education to the students, they rarely, if ever, provide education on the importance of marriage and good parenting. Pre-marriage education should be included in all school programs.
2. Many people later regret their divorce and wish that something more could have been done to save their marriage. (Second marriages have an even higher attrition rate).
It is essential to provide counselling services to couples who wish to pursue reconciliation in their marriage. REAL Women of Canada has long advocated tax-deductible counselling for troubled marriages.
If such assistance is tax-deductible, it becomes financially more manageable for couples, and also becomes more "respectable" since it is a recognized tax deduction. In the case of low-income couples, such counselling should be subsidized.