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My Plan To Save America – Part 1

Okay, so here we go.  I thought, and thought, and ruminated sommore.  And after while, I just plain ol’ procrastinated.  And in the end I just decided to go with it.  For our own good, we all need to submit to arranged marriages.

Now I know you think I’m crazy.  But I’m dead serious, and here’s why…

 

It Ain’t Working Y’all

Look – you’ve heard it all before.  The odds of divorce in the first 10 years of marriage are north of 50 percent.  Think about that.  Would you willingly invest a hundred bucks into any investment that risky?  We both know the answer to that one.

Yet too many people voluntarily enter into poorly planned unions with ill-suited mates.  In fact, lemme ask you a question: how many couples, out of all of the couples you’ve known in your adult life, have been married for at least 10 years?  Off the top of my head, I can only name 3 such couples total.  Now, how many people have you known over the years that have been divorced at least once?  Kinda frightening, isn’t it?

And try this one on for size; I bet you could name one specific person with a drug problem and another that has been divorced for every couple you could name that’s been married for 10 years.  How crazy is that?

And we’re talking about a society that has the freedom to choose its own mates.  So naturally, the question must be asked…are we acting in our own best interest by choosing for ourselves?

Let’s Begin With Where We Are

The 50 percent thing is chiseled into our consciousness.  But what is interesting to note is how that number breaks down:

  • In the USA, there is a divorce approximately every 36 seconds
  • The time period of a typical marriage that ends in divorce is eight years
  • 41 percent of first marriages end in divorce
  • 60 percent of second marriages end in divorce.
  • 73 percent of third marriages end in divorce.
  • And this one’s heartbreaking: Half of all American children will witness the breakup of a parent’s marriage. Of these children, close to half will also see the breakup of a parent’s second marriage

You get the idea (and I would like to thank the good folks of Mckinley Irvin for their breakdown of the US Census data – you can view their complete breakdowns for yourself here).  These divorce statistics clearly suggest to me that our current model has failed.  In light of this, it’s important that we look in the mirror and see what’s there and not what we want to see.

As any reasonable person can plainly see, these numbers have structurally changed the American family permanently.  And that is worrisome.  Which leads me to wonder if that tv show really is onto something.

Two Main Gripes

For me, it all boils down to my two primary beefs; 1) All of the emphasis is on getting married seems to be more important than staying married, and 2) I am not convinced that we, as a people, are any good at picking our mates.

As far as the getting hitched thing goes, I have no issue with weddings.  I really don’t.  What I do have an issue with is the cottage industry that surrounds nuptials these days.  The magazines, the dress and tuxedo thing, the niche catering, the reality shows, etc.  Somewhere along the line, a couple’s union turned into an arms race!  How in the hell did that happen?

Again, on its own, I have no problem with it.  But doesn’t it seem like more effort goes into the ceremony than the actual relationship most times?

And we haven’t even considered whether the mates are ideal for one another.  But that’s a whole ‘nother ball of wax.

 

Does The Dating Game Model Work?

I will never forget this memory.  Back when I was a young pup, I visited a childhood friend in his college apartment during spring break.  We ended up going to separate high schools, but kept in touch.  Naturally upon visiting him, I was eager to swap freshman year war stories him.  Let’s call him Sam.

Sam was a good guy.  Huge sports nut (even more than me), so I figured we’d go back-n-forth about our schools.  Turns out the guy was depressed because he hadn’t experienced much success with the college dating scene.  And it really tore him up, unleashing raw, humiliating inadequacy issues.

I thought he just needed to get over it (and get him some), but Sam dropped some wisdom on me that I’ll never forget.

See, Sam equated dating to a competitive hunt.  The strongest males in the pride would take what they wanted, while the less able ones (like him) would just starve.  The cruelty of it all was that everyone had to eat.  But naturally, some members of the pride would go wanting.  And that’s unfair to half of the group.


That was dating to him.  To me it was striking, because I believed in the hunting model and never questioned it.  Until that night.  Now I truly understand the wisdom of Sam’s words.

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Not everyone is confident and outgoing.  Not everyone has the movie star good looks, or the chiseled physique of a strong safety.  Not every guy has a baritone voice.  And there are plenty of gals that don’t have bedroom eyes.  But everyone deserves a shot at having a family.  We all should have an equal chance at that kind of happiness.  I believe that enduring marriages would strengthen our communities.  Heck, there’s nothing like family.

 

And that’s my argument against the find-your-partner-out-there-somehow method of dating.  It doesn’t work, too many people get left out in the cold, and people tend to choose poorly anyhow.  The high divorce rate is evidence of that.

In part 2 of this post, the case will be made for arranging marriages for everyone that wants a family.  Stay tuned for that one coming soon.  And wait till you’ve read both before getting your pitchfork!

 

So what do you think?  Don’t be shy, tell me!

1 comment

  1. Patricia

    I think an easier and more palatable solution would be to have a minimum age of thirty. The divorce rates go way down after that.

    After all, from watching my whole one and a half episodes of married at first site, arranged marriages don’t seem to love with a lot of the other expectations in our culture.

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