I have long believed (and social statistics bear me out) that no-fault divorce is a greater threat to social cohesion than gay marriage. In most cases, when parents with children divorce, there are real victims of their choice. Not so when two people of the same gender marry.
Now, it turns out that Hillary and Julie Goodridge, the named plaintiffs in the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court ruling 2004 mandating that the Bay State recognize same-sex marriages, are suing for divorce. If they really value marriage, they should reconsider their choice, bearing in mind the welfare of their daughter.
As should any heterosexual parents with children who seek divorce as a means to deal with the difficulties of their relationship. If heterosexual parents weren’t seeking divorce, this might be a commentary on the fragility of same-sex relationships.
That’s why James Richardson is right that social conservatives shouldn’t crow as has Kris Mineau, president of the Massachusetts Family Institute.Â Instead of showing that the Goodridges’ divorce is a setback for gay marriage, Richardson contends it helps make the case for expanding the defintion of that ancient institution:
Given the staggering heterosexual divorce rate and contemporary American’s pathetic social construct of life partnerships, gay divorce, if anything, legitimizes gay marriage as normal. Like it or not, divorce is as American as apple pie and baseball. Why? Americans cherish their freedoms, including the freedom to marry and the freedom to divorce without intrusive speculation.
We need repair that “pathetic social social construct of life partnerships.” If we were to enter into a serious debate on gay marriage, as some have, we could do just that. Such a debate would allow us to better understand why marriage is a good thing, an institution to be embraced, and divorce not so good, something to be avoided.
NOTE: Bumped this post.