Continuing in the series of masks and the movie, THEY LIVE, I turn to the latest of labels: MARRY, REPRODUCE, DIVORCE AND CUSTODY. Unlike the previous postings, this one is personal, painful, though I must say is equally if not more important in the times we live, now and our future.
Where the family goes so goes society.
When first researching the history of marriage (in the U.S.) and the more recent divorce reform(s) that went into effect across our land around 1969, I began to accept that the legality of divorce became a boom. Yes, divorce became big business in that divorce reform brought about a growth in divorce whereby for every attorney in California around ’70 there were 20 by the next decade! Yes, California was the genesis of divorce reforms passed under then Governor Ronald Reagan.
But besides the business of divorce is also the certainty that divorce reforms represent the single largest threat to marriage, so says the president of the counseling organization Marriage Builders some years ago. Indeed, the subsidizing of divorce—or easing of the guidelines and justification (cause)—render marriage defenseless in our civil courts. Never forget that anything the government subsidizes, it grows, as so too divorce that skyrocketed in the in last half of the last decade, and meanwhile, marriage per capita in the U.S. continues at gradual decent with less than 20 percent of Millennials married.
But marriage is losing ground, not strictly due to divorce reform but primarily because of it.
The state licenses marriage for a modest fee, and thus is the primary governance of this institution, marriage; yet, it also conducts divorce which is often initiated by one of the two married without any powers given to the other, the defendant. And while divorce seems more involved and expensive then a marriage license, it nevertheless continues to not only diminish marriage but to also dismember families, awarding children to one while reducing the other to that of a “non-custodial”.
The non-custodial, or the one who loses custody of his children, is often if not always imputed with the liability, namely “Child Support”, for his children—legally but unjustifiably removed from his care.
But it gets worse, sometimes much worse. Who wouldn’t wonder what the state is doing other than reducing one parent, often the father, to bluntly a financier—the father be damned.
Under Title IV-D of the IRS Tax Code, the state that collects Child Support is subsidized (e.g. Alabama receives $2 for every $1 collected, and thus is using this program to generate state revenue). In short, Child Support or Title IV-D is an incentive for states to separate the children from one parent, often the father. Yes, the state has an incentive to separate children from one parent per Title IV-D.
Divorce involving dependent children is doubly costly; first, in devaluing marriage and second in devaluing parenthood. But more, and as the system is designed, it systematically contributes to single-parent homes and fatherlessness. What is worse, the subsidizing of divorce and support of Title IV-D is contributing to the destruction of our society, dismantling the family first with the father and then by systematically devaluing marriage as an institution. Does marriage have a chance against such systems?
Divorce destroys society by undermining the viability and value of marriage and family. Any loss of strength of society is then, as though a physics’ axiom, transferred to political power.
So much more has been written and read on the subject but, in summary, let me end by saying that the state’s authority over family is a marriage made in Hell.