""Good marriages are made, not born, and they are most likely to be made in a society that understands and values marriage as a shared aspiration and key social institution, not just a private affair of the heart" -- From The Marriage Movement: A Statement of Principles (New York: Institute for American Values, Religion, Culture and Family Project, and Coalition for Marriage, Family and Couples Education, 2001)
A nation can be considered as an aggregate of families. But what kind of nation is it that has a divorce rate of over 50% and vast numbers of children growing up without stable families? Is it any wonder that a nation with one of the world's highest divorce rates is in decline?
Divorce spreads throughout society, similar to the way that a cancer spreads through a body. An extensive study by Rose McDermott, James H. Fowler, and Nicholas A. Christakis called "Breaking Up Is Hard to Do, Unless Everyone Else Is Doing it Too: Social Network Effects on Divorce in a Longitudinal Sample Followed for 32 Years,” found that friends and relatives of divorced people were significantly more likely to divorce than the general populations.
In other words, a person filing for divorce is not an isolated act nor because their spouse necessarily did anything wrong, but because friends, lawyers, popular culture, and many other influences told him or her that adultery and/or divorce are acceptable behaviors. Our society encourages divorce and selfishness and the destruction of family.
Divorce should not be considered as just another lifestyle choice, any more than rape and murder and drug-dealing are lifestyle choices. The causes of divorce should be addressed by our laws and courts, and people responsible for causing unnecessary divorce should be sanctioned in some way.
In this section, I want to look in more detail at some of the social injustices which contribute to our high divorce rate and what we as individuals can do to fight the injustice. The fight against divorce needs to take a larger view of society as a whole, not just the personal details of one or two people.Topics: