Printer Friendly
The Free Library
22,728,043 articles and books


Marriage - both in modern and traditional forms - seems to be on everyone's mind. How our society considers matrimony MATRIMONY. See Marriage. , though, shows why this honorable institution has reached its current state of decay State of Decay is a serial in the British science fiction television series Doctor Who, which was first broadcast in four weekly parts from November 22 to 13 December, 1980. The serial was the second of three loosely connected serials known as the E-Space Trilogy. .

First, we glimpsed the marriage of the future on Feb. 15, when 23 million TV viewers tuned in to see ``Who Wants to Marry a Millionaire Marry A Millionaire is a South Korean teledrama produced and broadcasted by SBS from late 2005 – early 2006. It is also entitled “To Marry A Millionaire” or “Millionaire is My Lover. ?'' Viewers watched 50 women parade in ``beachwear'' and answer insipid questions, hoping to become the wife of Mr. Right Mr. Right
n. Slang
The man who would make an ideal mate: "self-help guides for women in search of Mr. Right" Los Angeles Times. 
 - namely, Rick Rockwell of San Diego San Diego (săn dēā`gō), city (1990 pop. 1,110,549), seat of San Diego co., S Calif., on San Diego Bay; inc. 1850. San Diego includes the unincorporated communities of La Jolla and Spring Valley. Coronado is across the bay. , a man none of them had ever laid eyes on before.

For his wife, the millionaire chose Darva Conger Darva Conger (born September 21, 1966) is a former emergency room nurse who was selected as the winner on the 2000 reality television show Who Wants to Marry a Multi-Millionaire?. , a nurse from Thousand Oaks Thousand Oaks, residential city (1990 pop. 104,352), Ventura co., S Calif., in a farm area; inc. 1964. Avocados, citrus, vegetables, strawberries, and nursery products are grown. . This ignoble union died a quick death as Conger recently filed for an annulment annulment

Legal invalidation of a marriage. It announces the invalidity of a marriage that was void from its inception. It is to be distinguished from dissolution or divorce. To justify annulment, the marriage contract must have a defect (e.g.
, mercifully sparing us the inevitable news accounts of their daily dalliances.


Conversely, Proposition 22 fared better, recently scoring a solid electoral victory. In a sane age, of course, Prop. 22's assertion - that marriage should be defined as between one man and one women - wouldn't be subject to debate, much less to a vote of the people. But ours is not a sane age, and thus today's men and women are driven to extraordinary lengths to defend the ordinary truths of their fathers.

Yet arguments made by supporters in defense of Proposition 22 carry with them the seed of future problems.

Debate about the initiative largely centered on marriage's nominal, i.e., cash, value - leading to complaints about how unfair it seems that some can receive it and others can't.

Prop. 22's defenders bent over backward explaining that people's hard- earned ``domestic partnership rights'' weren't threatened by the measure. But by taking this approach, marriage's defenders missed a golden opportunity to clarify what the institution is all about in the first place.

Hard to imagine now, but limiting marriage to a man and a woman wasn't always a controversial matter. Virtually every society has some form of marriage as we know it, and the institution has proved itself as a means of preserving social stability and providing for the need of women and children.

In Western civilization Noun 1. Western civilization - the modern culture of western Europe and North America; "when Ghandi was asked what he thought of Western civilization he said he thought it would be a good idea"
Western culture
, holy matrimony was raised to a sacrament, bestowing both privileges and - often conveniently forgotten - duties on each partner. These obligations included a lifelong commitment, sexual fidelity to one's spouse, providing for the upbringing of the children borne to the marriage and sharing property ownership.

Most societies recognized both matrimony's cultural benefits and the burdens assumed by the married couple on behalf of society, primarily in the proper raising of future generations. Thus, certain privileges and benefits were afforded those who shouldered the duties and responsibilities coming with marriage.

These included marriage tax breaks, inheritance rights and family insurance coverage. It was generally acknowledged that families raising honest, well-educated children were not only doing the Lord's work, but everyone else's too. And raising such children, heaven knows, ain't cheap.

This is a vital distinction for proper understanding of today's ``marriage'' controversy. First came society's recognition of marriage's cultural value and its duties and burdens. The privileges and benefits afforded husband and wife followed. To hear some tell it, you'd think marriage was created solely as a means to bestow certain ``rights'' on heterosexual couples and deny them to homosexuals.

This is a fundamental misunderstanding of the nature of marriage. Marriage perquisites Fringe benefits or other incidental profits or benefits accompanying an office or position.

The abbreviation perks is used in reference to extraordinary benefits afforded to business executives, such as country club memberships or the free use of automobiles.
 are provided to ease the burdens of raising a family, the primary reason for marriage; a societal quid pro quo [Latin, What for what or Something for something.] The mutual consideration that passes between two parties to a contractual agreement, thereby rendering the agreement valid and binding.  for producing and molding the next generation.

But with ``domestic partnerships'' - including heterosexual ones - children are only incidental to the relationship, and no long-term commitment exists to share in the offspring's upbringing. Consequently, there is no ``give'' to society, only ``take.''

Therefore, persons in domestic partnerships have no claim or ``right'' to any special benefits - including family health insurance, inheritance rights, or tax breaks - beyond those of any citizen. None.

Perhaps by avoiding the hard truth about marriage - that it's a lifelong commitment whose primary purpose is the raising of children -Prop. 22's defenders merely conformed to the ways of the world to achieve success.

But the same can be said for the disgraceful ``Millionaire'' TV show. So long as society shrinks from defending our cultural institutions according to according to
1. As stated or indicated by; on the authority of: according to historians.

2. In keeping with: according to instructions.

 their natural purpose, we'll continue to be bombarded with assaults on our traditional life, until one day we'll find there's nothing left of civilization worth preserving.
COPYRIGHT 2000 Daily News
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2000, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

 Reader Opinion




Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Publication:Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)
Date:Mar 19, 2000

Related Articles
Defending the Family: A Sourcebook.
What is Cardinal Ambrozic's position on same-sex benefits?
ACTIVISTS UPSET BY KNIGHT BILL\Proposal bars recognition of homosexual marriages.
Marriage: institution or relationship?

Terms of use | Copyright © 2014 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters