Marriage Is Worth Protecting Because When A Nation Moves Away From Marriage They Go Broke

By: Tia Johnson 0 Comments   6/22/2012

When my husband and I traveled to Europe for our honeymoon, I asked a young German woman, "On which finger does a woman wear her wedding ring?" I knew that in some countries, the right hand was dressed with this symbol instead of the left. Her answer surprised me. She said she didn't know.

She went on to explain that German women weren't necessarily seeking marriage or desiring to have children. She was among them-- marriage was not a priority for her, and apparently she hadn't taken notice, even as a young girl, which finger wears this precious symbol.

This disillusionment of marriage is an epidemic that has not just hit Germany-- it's spread across Europe, particularly in Britain.

An article by Chuck Colson written in 2008 details that in 2006, the number of weddings in Britain was 237 thousand. That seems like a lot, but it's actually the fewest nuptials spoken since 1895 when Britain's population was half that of this decade's population.

According to this article, the marriage rate for British men and women averages close to 21 per 1,000!

How did this happen?

Well, one culprit blamed for this dilemma is knocking at our door in the United States. That is that in Britain, the government has looked at all living arrangements as equal (a.k.a. "civil unions"). An official wedding was no longer necessary to get a "family" tax break.

Colson's article quoted the late Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan: "In Britain’s case, this politically correct politics 'for a decade maintained that all kinds of families are equally valuable.' Government officials 'have campaigned for all references to marriage to be removed from state documents'; and a plan for helping British children 'does not even mention marriage once.'"

Researcher Patricia Morgan details this further in the article: "According to Morgan, the government has encouraged the creation of marriage substitutes, what she calls 'Marriage Lite.' The best-known of these legally recognized cohabitations is 'civil unions.' What started out as an accommodation for same-sex couples has become an alternative to marriage for millions of heterosexual Europeans."

This all seems like a precursor to Britain's current dilemma. But it also seems like a foreshadowing of United States culture. Discussion over marriage and the wording of civil unions may very well precede the same pattern that Britain has fallen to. Will we take notice and change course?

If not, we may face the same grim prospects that Britain has faced- not just for their families, but for their safety and their economy.

The disintegration of marriage results in unstable families. Simply put, Colson pointed out that unstable families are linked arm-in-arm with a higher rate of crime.

"The link between marriage and children’s well-being is not a subject for debate—it is documented," he wrote.

Britain's cultural attitude toward marriage also means a lower birth rate-- a resulting epidemic from the disintegration of marriage which will hurt their economy down the road.

According to the BBC, in less than 10 years the number of elderly in Britain age 65 and older is expected to exceed those coming up (under age 16). That may mean fewer tax payers coming in than going out.

The United States is not there yet-- but they'd better take notice. Rewording marriage, leaving it up to interpretation, and no longer treating it as something to be cherished has been disastrous in other cultures, and it will be no less disastrous in ours.

My daughter knows which hand wears our wedding ring in this country. She's four years old, and often drapes a lace curtain over her head, asking who will "pretend" to marry her. She's already taken notice of my ring and plays with it periodically while we sit together.  

Marriage to her is cherished, and she looks forward to the day when she can marry someone like her dadda. May we treat marriage like the treasure God created it to be. It may be a diamond-in-the-rough, but I'd rather it be worked on to sparkle as it should than buried in the dark.

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