Tuesday, 7 March 2017

Letter From the UK (About the Extinction Of Marriage)

A Fight for Equality? 

No, it's a plot to wipe out marriage

Peter Hitchens
The Daily Mail

The campaign to get rid of marriage has not gone away. Civil partnerships for heterosexuals were not thrown out by the Appeal Court last week, only put off till later. They will come.

In fact, after 20 years of New Labour government (some of it nominally Tory) we can now look back and survey the smoking ruins of marriage. It’s not that the New Labour radicals and their Tory imitators wrecked marriage on their own. It’s just that they have more or less finished it off.  The very words ‘husband’ and ‘wife’ have been erased from official forms and even from normal conversation. We all have partners now, whether we want to or not.

Divorce figures have fallen only because so many couples don’t get married in the first place. The marriage statistics show that more and more people simply aren’t bothering to make any sort of legal commitment at all before setting up home and starting a family.

As Lady Justice Hale, now tipped to be boss of the Supreme Court, said in 1982: ‘Family law now makes no attempt to buttress the stability of marriage or any other union,’ adding ‘the piecemeal erosion of the distinction between marriage and non-marital cohabitation may be expected to continue.’ And how.

Marriage has a strange, unique status in the courts. If you break a contract with your building society or a car leasing company, the law will come down against you.  If you break the marriage contract, the law will take your side and will eventually throw the other party out of the marital home if she or he insists on sticking to the original deal. Odd, eh? It’s amazing how many men, the usual victims of this strange arrangement, still get married at all.

I’d guess that marriage figures are artificially swollen each year by an unknown but large number of fake weddings, aimed at getting round immigration laws. Who can say? By their nature, such things aren’t always easy to detect.

But the liberal-thinking classes have for decades loathed and sought to undermine marriage. They hate it as a conservative, religious tradition which accepts that men and women are different, which is intensely private and gets in the way of the enlightened, paternal state they love so much.

The Left’s new allies, globalist commerce, also hate marriage (especially the sort where the mother stays at home) because it stops them from employing women as cheap, pliant labour and turning them into incessant consumers. This is a long campaign.

The radical Professor Edmund Leach, awarded the influential Reith lectures by the ‘impartial’ BBC, sneered back in 1967 that ‘the family, with its narrow privacy and tawdry secrets, is the source of all our discontents’.  He spoke of ‘parents and children huddled together in their loneliness’ and suggested children grow up in larger, more relaxed domestic groups, ‘something like an Israeli kibbutz, perhaps, or a Chinese commune’. Yes, he really said that.

Political radicals sympathised with this view, but in frontline politics they tended to get married. You’ll have to guess why, but I draw your attention to the marriage of Ed Miliband to the mother of his children, Justine, in May 2011, soon after he rather unexpectedly became leader of the Labour Party.  Compare and contrast them with New Labour’s true genius and mastermind, Alastair Campbell, and the mother of his children, Fiona Millar, the great apostle of comprehensive schools.

At the 2001 memorial service for Tony Benn’s wife Caroline, Fiona expressed delight at the singing of the Communist anthem, The Internationale, saying: ‘Great to hear language we aren’t allowed to use any longer.’

These two lifelong radicals have never married.

Nor, of course, have many similar sorts in the media and other areas of life where there is no pressure from spin doctors to do so. You must have noticed this.  It is a deliberate revolution, not an accident of nature.

I doubt most people ever even realised it was going on, but will we be better off when it is – as it soon will be – triumphant?

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