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Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Marriage Today in The US

For John, BLUFDecisions have consequences.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Looking back in time, here is a post from last week by Renee Aste (Cappadocia in Lowell) on marriage and the value of having two parents in the home.

This is not to say that the Massachusetts Supreme Judical Court was wrong in Goodridge v Department of Public Health (although I think it is weak in the sociology and weak in the author not being willing to follow it to its logical conclusion).  What it is saying, in my humble opinion, is that we have thrown the baby out with the bathwater—and maybe that baby is literally.  We still have the fact that the number one indicator of success in these United States is if your natural parents are still married.

The question is, where do we go from here and how do we get there?

Regards  —  Cliff


Renee said...

Do you think anyone will click through and see how liberal media once supported and understood marriage?

Renee said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Renee said...

The reason Goodridge was logical, was that heterosexuals can legally lie about who is the parent with sperm/egg donation with anyout challenge.

Marriage legally assumes paternity, but we have a legal process if a man questions it. The process of donating (selling, because they are compensated) sperm/egg to third parties to create babies as an end product has been legal in Massachusetts well before Goodridge.

Kids are not stupid, but they don't have the financial and political leverage that adults have.


"As a donor-conceived individual, I have experienced disenfranchised grief over my conception for years, and on many dierent occasions. e most upsetting of those occasions revolved around the death of my mother’s best friend—a man I will call “Tom”—a father of two who died of terminal cancer when his children were still very young. His death was life changing for my mother, and I remember her weeping, and lamenting, “ose poor children—they won’t get to have their father.” e community deeply mourned his death. e family hung a portrait of him above their dining room table to help them remember him. I brought up the disparity in how the loss of my father was treated in comparison to Tom. When I told my mother, “You act like my father doesn’t even matter,” she responded, “He doesn’t matter.” Children whose biological parents die are given the tools, time, and permission to grieve. Children whose biological parents are missing via gamete donation are given none of these things, and in fact we are expected to be grateful for our situation— grateful to be alive at all."

Neal said...

Reproduction, whether by "normal" coitus or via the turkey baster full of a cloud of sperm long departed from their owner, is none-the-less a momentary event in time. It is, practically speaking, totally devoid of "human" characteristic....rather.....a sperm finding the egg. The egg as it develops in utero doesn't really know or care from whence it came...or where the sperm came from either.

Once the fetus is delivered and becomes a child.....parenting begins and lasts, arguably, for a lifetime. It is PARENTING that determines what and who we are....genetics aside. In fact, unless the child is told that he or she is a turkey-baster baby, there would be no reason to know.

AND...I have great difficulty in the chattering intelligentsia who pontificate about the requirement for TWO parents, a man and a woman, ad nauseum. Dr. Ben Carson is the product of a home in which only his mother presided. He is a monumental are many less prominent. On the other hand, a good percentage of the social garbage that has plagued us for the last decade or so with their self absorbed homicide and mayhem come from two parents...often fairly well to do.

It isn't what you are given that is important. What is important is what you do with what you got. But somehow today, being deprived in some way has become an important badge of honor.

C R Krieger said...

While I acknowledge the Ben Carson example, and Bill Clinton, as Damon Runyon notes (paraphrasing Ecclesiastes 9:11), "The race is not always to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, but that's the way to bet."

And so it is the stats say two parents make a difference for the average child.

Regards  —  Clff

Neal said...

I think that those "stats" can lead one to wrong conclusions. What do the stats actually portray? I would suggest that the traditional family unit in America is based on a traditional view of marriage as well as a solid foundation in morality and responsibility. I would suggest that were someone to conduct a more comprehensive survey of children and parenting today, they would likely find that the view that two parents produces better children is on the wane...because our moral values have changed...among many other things that have been traditional in America.

Two parent families (a man and a woman) may be on the wane from a child rearing point of view, but they do still provide the best chance.

My only point is this......parenting...not parents....makes the difference.

Renee said...

I know quite a few kids who do well if not better then my own kids. But my kids aren't searching on Facebook for their dad, either.

The fact the one's parents abandons them can consume them. The President wrote a whole book on his absentee father.

Parenting is easy. You just have to be there emotionally for them. But you have to be there.

Renee said...

Neal.... Look we have two classe of children. One with dads in the home and ones who do not.

Craig H said...

I'm saddened most by the coincidence that those who believe most strongly in the benefits of close and better parenting (e.g. through advocacy of two-natural-parent families) are the ones most bitterly in opposition to the circumstances of those most vulnerable (i.e. those many of us not blessed with two-natural-parent families). Children in this country remain orphans and un-adopted while those with enormous hearts, both single and in non-traditional family units (e.g. gay couples) are somehow become targets as if they themselves wouldn't prefer to be part of a two-natural-parent family if it were only that simple.

We need to stop inventing antagonism, and rededicating our efforts to love all children and all the families in which it is their luck, both good and bad, to find themselves. If a gay couple wants to extend their love and their family to care for a child, we all need to remain respectful that they are not taking that child away from a two-natural-parent family--they are taking that child from circumstances that are far less positive, and, in many cases, far more dire.

For my part, I can only see the face of an abandoned, abused and/or forgotten child when I see the crestfallen face of a non-traditional parent who has found themselves somehow become the object of attack from someone who believes AS THEY DO that all children should be given the most love and best family that it is possible to give them.

Sometimes it is not possible for life to be perfect. In fact, we should all be more respectful that life is, by its very existence, anything but. When loving people want to do the best for the next generation that will pick of the broken pieces of the society that we leave them, I think we need to do more to broaden the coalition, and not fragment it further.

C R Krieger said...

I don't disagree with Craig.  I just think that there are underpinning lessons to be learned that can help all of us do better.  In the mean time, the statistics point to certain arrangements as doing better than others.  There are exceptions, as Neal points out.  Yes, at this point I would vote for Dr Ben Carson for President.  And millions voted for Bill Clinton.  Signs of success.

I think the definition of "marriage" is pretty set for the next few decades and we need to learn to work within it.   My preference, stated from the time I ran for office, is everyone gets a comprehensive "civil union" and those who want a blessed union, a "marriage", have to then go find a man (or woman) of the cloth.

But, back to the children, one senses that the current laws and agencies are not helping parents as much as is needed.

Regards  —  Cliff

Neal said...

This is a discussion without end. Obama's lamentations about his father have been discussed to the point of absurdity and in my opinion are hardly instructive.

We have more than two classes each with its own set of "impacts" or effects, many of which are yet to be fully appreciated. Nobody has a definitive idea of the impact of same sex parenting on children, lots of smug pronouncements, but not much provable research data. Same with working parents. These are modern phenomena the effects of which have yet to be fully appreciated.

I would strongly suggest that simply being there emotionally is not enough. There is the whole range of other ways parents affect their offspring, discipline, morals, citizenship, responsibility, etc. As my father once told me after I whined about our family not being like Fred McMurray's......"I am not here to be your friend or your sympathizer. I am here to be your parent." I thought he was mean and uncaring....until many years later. Turns out...he was right.

Neal said...

I don't disagree with Craig either, nor Cliff's most recent post. That we have orphans and orphanages at all speaks to a profound failure of human love...and loving parent is far better than none...and in far too many cases...two hetero parents are worse than two homo parents. When I speak of is without a role label. Parenting begins first with love, and then a sincere and abiding desire to enable the focus of that love to be somehow better, more successful at whatever they choose to be or become. I don't know that being straight, gay, or ambidextrous has much to do with that in any superior way. I certainly don't believe that natural vs turkey baster parents can be neatly divided into good versus either love your child with all your heart and soul....or you don't. It's when you don't that the damage gets done.

We need to stop being like Sneetches in this world. Shame on us for tolerating it at all.

Renee said...

Sperm/egg donors and surrogates don't love their children, and your are correct that is where the damage starts.

Out of my three plus years at DCF, I had a handlenof gay relatives take gaurdianship, but only one same-sex couple and they obliged with the child needing a male-mentor.

Sorry to burst stereotype, but a good number of foster families are the traditional types.

Renee said...

NPR covers the strained Foster Care system.

Alex Morales, the CEO of the Children’s Bureau of Southern California, says the U.S. needs to focus on how it’s going to prevent this problem in the first place. “How do you reduce the situation so that you don’t have 140,000 reports going on in a year?” Morales says. “You try to start very early with families … prevention is ultimately the direction we need to invest in.” While prevention may be the key, Morales says there’s still a crisis going on with Los Angeles Foster Care. There just aren’t enough homes to take in kids, and that ongoing crisis in Los Angeles is one that reflects a national problem.



Renee said...

"in far too many cases...two hetero parents are worse than two homo parents. "

Really, show me that data?

All the gay people I grew up with had a mom and dad, and they turned out fine.

Should we stop funding

I can support same-sex relationships, but not at the expense of hetero-bashing.

Even if we didn't have a crisis in our foster care, I would still support same-sex relationships.

I want to prevent child abuse, not wait for it to happen.

Obligations arise from heterosexual behavior, that's all... That's not disparaging gay people. But every conversation about children, turns into a conversation about homosexuality.

Renee said...

Neal said...
Reproduction, whether by "normal" coitus or via the turkey baster full of a cloud of sperm long departed from their owner, is none-the-less a momentary event in time.

And in 2008, Candidate Obama said fatherhood doesn't end at conception.