Children, Marriage, and the Effect on Society

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Marriage is one of those truths that are important for the foundation of any healthy society. There are two ways to approach it. One is from a utilitarian standpoint: Why is marriage a good thing for our society? The other standpoint: Why is it an intrinsic good? To answer these questions, let me first address the culture in which we live and why marriage is an institution that is countercultural. In its essence, marriage is a selfless act. It is the act of giving oneself to somebody else and becoming one. Of course, it is impossible for two people to unite and remain separate. And since the essence of marriage is selflessness in a self-centered society, it faces opposition from today's popular culture. All facets of our popular culture, from the entertainment industry to our universities, focus on ‘ME.’ Marriage promotes the common good by building families and raising children. Those of you who have children know that every day that goes by is about selfless acts in nurturing children. But society is failing to affirm the vital institution of marriage on any level: legal or societal, and for this reason, marriage is under assault, with high rates of divorce and out-of-wedlock births pummeling the traditional family (laboroflove). Given the high stakes for society, it is important for public leaders to understand why marriage is important and to communicate that to the American public. But many politicians still do not understand what makes marriage worth defending. But looking at marriage in general, from the utilitarian perspective, there is no question that marriage is good for society: Children, women, and men all benefit enormously. Specifically, this study will show how children are affected by unwed or single parent ho...

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