Tuesday, August 08, 2017

Yet Another Lament That Men Don't Want to Marry

Quite often, Townhall.com has some great content spanning "conservative" viewpoints from center-right to libertarian to whatever. Recently, they ran another column lamenting that men don't want to emasculate themselves by marrying. That's not how they put it, but that's basically what it amounts to. This time Jerry Newcombe wrote the piece:

I attended an unusual wedding this past weekend.
You attended a party. What you usually don't see are the pointless and not-so-pointless arguments and all of the bad things that result from a man and woman living together in a Mexican standoff with the state.
Ben Steverman notes in the Drudge-linked article: “The U.S. marriage rate—the number of new marriages per 1,000 people—has been falling for decades….And research firm IbisWorld predicts the marriage rate will keep falling over the next five years.”
Although I wish this was mostly from men refusing to sacrifice themselves on the altar of ungrateful narcissistic gynocentrism, most of it is likely a mere delay. People are getting married later because... they can and they should (if they're going to marry at all). People who are busy trying to get a college degree and/or trying to establish themselves in a career aren't in a good place to be a good spouse.
He adds, “It’s unclear whether the decline of the American wedding is a permanent trend. American millennials lag previous generations on many metrics of adulthood…Maybe most of them will eventually get around to weddings of their own—but then, it’s possible that many never will, and that they’ll bring the U.S. marriage rate closer to Europe’s.”
Metrics of adulthood... so the Pope isn't an adult? People should establish themselves as independent adults. They don't have to marry to do that.
It would be disastrous for this country if we went the route of Europe in being a post-marriage society. The old cliché is still true: As the family goes, so goes society.
Even if I agree, I can't encourage men to enter into such a raw deal. Want more men to marry? Work to stop punishing husbands in law, courts, and culture. Raise women who will be the kind of women who will attract and keep a husband.
What’s happened to marriage in America?
We took away incentives for men to marry, and added risks and obligations to husbands. Men have been slow to catch on, but more and more are.
Hollywood has turned monogamy into monotony.
It wasn't Hollywood that did that. Women who are trying to get a man to sign on the dotted line are often quite different sexually than a woman who has a man trapped.
The irony is that surveys show that those who are married tend to enjoy everything on a much more fulfilling basis. And that includes intimacy.
The surveys are flawed. If a survey doesn't distinguish intentionally unmarried men from the rest of unmarried people, and compare them against married men, it is worthless survey. It's also worthless if there wasn't at least some confidence in being anonymous.

Let's deal with a couple of facts. When you combine:
...marriages that divorce
...marriages that don't legally divorce but more or less end before death with emotional, physical and/or legal separation
...marriages that end with suicide or murder-suicide
...marriages that have significant periods of misery related to or based on these two people being legally/socially tied together and/or living together

Then MOST marriages are not happy, lasting marriages. MOST. Does it make sense to you rearrange your entire life and to wager half of your wealth on something that is more likely to fail than succeed?
“Living in sin” (as cohabiting used to be called) has lost its stigma—but most such couples don’t seem to realize that, statistically, living in sin prepares you for divorce more than it does for a happy marriage.
Yes, but why is that? I used to blindly buy into the idea that they had doomed their marriage by shacking up, and I maintain that shacking up is a a terrible idea (almost as bad as legally marrying). But the reality of the situation isn't so simple. Among the reasons is that some people who shack up should never have married in the first place, but they do because they're already living together. They marry because they think it will fix things, because we keep saying that marriage is some sort of magic tonic, or the woman is told that if the relationship doesn't end in marriage, she's been "used" or "wasted her time" even though she was getting something out of the relationship the entire time. It is also likely that the kind of people who shack up are more willing to leave a bad marriage than spend the rest of their lives being miserable in it. There are other reasons, but the one that fits with what this guy and others like him are saying is that, in some cases, people establish patterns in shacking up as unmarried individuals that carry over into the marriage, where they are supposed to be united, to the detriment of the marriage.
Although millions profess Christian belief, too many compartmentalize their lives and fail to live by Christian standards, i.e., no sex outside of traditional marriage.
I really have to wonder where exactly this comes from. What, precisely, does he mean by sex? Words or phrases translated "sexual immorality" in our English Bibles are not clear enough, obviously, because some people say it includes making kissing off-limits. Intercourse was more of a problem before there was contraception and before there were DNA tests. The Old Testament seems to be focused on intercourse. I know what churches have taught, but how much of it is explicitly taught in the Bible? I'm not arguing that PIV is the only thing the Bible teaches against or that everything else is OK. Clearly, giving each other orgasms causes people (especially women) to bond, and that is problematic if you shouldn't be with the person to whom you're bonding. But I really don't think the Bible is as clear as so many of my fellow religious conservatives would think.
Government tax policies, especially in the example of welfare, have subsidized single parenthood, thus, breaking the back of the urban family.
Yeah, that should be stopped.
Instead of actually helping the poor, welfare has ensured their long-lasting misery—because the family is the key to upward mobility.
Not for men. Really. In today's employment market, men need to be able to work long and odd hours, extra days, move, jump from one employer to the next, go on business trips, and network in mixed company unencumbered by a wife and kids who require stability and limiting interaction with women who are now ubiquitous in every strata of the workplace. A man who doesn't have a wife and kids to support can save, insure, and invest in a way that will increase his wealth far more than his married-with-kids counterpart.
Traditional marriage is good for individuals all the way around. Numerous studies show it’s good for your spiritual health, your mental health, your physical health, and your fiscal health.
Again, those studies are flawed. Personally, I attended and focused effectively in church services and Bible studies far more often as an unmarried, child-free man. I did personal Bible study far more, too. Now, I'm busy being a butler, medical advocate, and prison warden.
Many today think marriage is unnecessary.
It is. Someone can have a fulfilling and full life a productive, independent adult. Most of us aren't living on isolated farms anymore.
They think marriage is misery, and singleness is bliss.
It certainly can be. In singleness, someone has far more control over their life.
Perhaps one of the biggest myths of all about marriage is that feelings are all that matter.
Of course feelings aren't all that matter. Freedom matters. Finances matter. Peace of mind matters. Self-determination matters.  And that's why most men shouldn't marry.

He then retreads the flawed correlations between marriage and positive indicators, implying that it is the duty of individuals to sacrifice themselves so society will be better off. Sorry, but the social climate has changed. Men do not have the same power and influence as husbands and fathers as they used to.
The couple wed in the cow patch said a mixture of traditional vows along with some interesting twists...
And how many of the people attending had always made vows to love, honor, and cherish until death, but haven't???

Let women and bicycle-less fish enjoy themselves. Don't marry them, guys. Take care of yourself, become independent and secure, and find worthy causes for your time and money. Don't tie yourself to an irrational creature with the imposition of the state into your relationship.

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