The Politics of Marriage: Just Say No?

A new book suggests working-class women should just say no to marriage.

In late April, an article in Slate took a look at an upcoming book, Marriage Markets: How Inequality Is Remaking the American Family, authored by two professors of law. The book lays out an argument for social, economic and legal changes that make marriage less attractive to women.

The Slate article quotes statistics from the book to highlight the high unemployment rate of younger men who possess only a high school degree. Also noted is the potential lack of value offered by these young men to women raising their children. Some key points of the article include:

  • Changes in family courts could fuel a desire for working women to steer clear of marriage.
  • Most states have adopted shared physical custody as a standard parenting arrangement, giving substantial visitation and custody to fathers.
  • Alimony reform continues to diminish financial support.
  • Women who bear the children of unemployed, seemingly uncommitted men are better off staying unmarried and out of the court system.

A blog in the New York Times discusses the employment drift described in the Slate article, but also focuses on the need for deeper opportunity for men, women and children as the face of the traditional family in the United States continues to change.

For those who counsel women to exclude the father of their children, research tells us such children are more likely to fail in school and in their own lifetime relationships. Fathers play an important role that cannot be filled by a mother.

As a divorce attorney, I aggressively support the rights of men, women and their children. When you have questions about custody, contact my firm, Bryan L. Salamone and Associates, P.C.

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