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The causes and consequences of divorce: Church versus state (4)

In her article The Family In Europe Today (February 2), Christine Galea makes a num-ber of assertions, many of which are dubious and unsubstantiated.

The first is the rather generic reference to the “decrease in the ability to reflect”.

Considering that the number of people who complete at least compulsory schooling has risen consistently with, in many European countries, over 75 per cent who continue to post-secondary and tertiary education, either our educational institutions are failing miserably or else Ms Galea does not in fact believe that a good education enables individuals to think critically and reflectively about their lived experiences.

There are any number of reasons why divorce is more likely in today’s world. These include, among others, more women aspiring to egalitarian relationships and careers as well as their ability to walk away from failed marriages and live their own lives or start up new relationships; a more diverse society with individuals understanding that there exist various family forms and a myriad ways of constructing relationships; a far longer life expectancy, which means the likelihood of relationships breaking down increases; and a loosening of the stranglehold Churches often held over societies and a weakening of the religious mores that often went unquestioned and uncontested.

Ms Galea posits the evolution of same-sex unions as a problem without stating in what manner marriage equality interferes in the marital bond of heterosexual couples. Is she implying that a heterosexual married couple in Spain, Portugal, Iceland, Belgium or Holland would consider their marital relationship of less worth, or love their spouse less, because a same-sex couple next door could now get married? What a cop out!

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