Do you want to save yourself from being beaten by your boyfriend? Do you want to increase your chances of being beaten by your girlfriend? Just get married! At least, that’s what I learned today from the Town Hall article, The Ring Makes All the Difference by one Mike Adams.
I know I’m just a radical feminist who wants to destroy the idea of marriage and family (because God definitely thinks it is important you register your commitment with the state, y’all!), so my opinion probably doesn’t matter…but what a bunch of idiotic bullshit. Adams doesn’t really making any of his own points (outside of labeling feminists as life destroyers), but highlights some of his favorite facts from a book called (wait for it!) The Ring Makes All the Difference: The Hidden Consequences of Cohabitation and the Strong Benefits of Marriage.
Obviously, there is a lot of wrong going on here, but I’d like to start with the very last paragraph: “God is the author of the rules of the game of life. He is also the creator of science. When properly applied, His methods always reveal the truth.” I don’t really know what that has to do with anything, other than maybe saying if bitches get beat by their live in man sinner sluts, it’s because they didn’t listen to God’s rules of the game of life. But maybe we should talk about these rules for the game of life (henceforth abbreviated as GRGOL, because typing it out one more time might make me throw up. How does this guy have a regular column somewhere and I don’t?).
The Bible is full of contradictory information when it comes to marriage. In the book of GRGOL, Paul tells us in Corinthians to not bother getting married, and to only get married if we can’t stop ourselves from having sex (which we also shouldn’t do). On the other hand, plenty of people had multiple wives and that was considered awesome. Something GRGOL doesn’t address? What marriage actually is. Nowhere in the Bible does it say that marriage is a trip to the county courthouse, sharing your bank accounts, and dragging down your SO’s chances for credit approval with your shitty score and student debt.
But let’s say that the American idea of marriage is what GRGOL had in mind. What other evidence do we have to support the idea that marriage is the best?
– In marriages, male-female ratios of violence are roughly equal – with women and men just as likely to initiate violence against their spouses. However, in cohabiting relationships, men are far more likely to initiate violence.
Is your man beating you? Get engaged, it’ll end as soon as you’re legal! Though…maybe that’s not really what’s going on. Turns out, married immigrant women are about 10% more likely to report being abused than unmarried immigrant women living with a partner. Also turns out, women who are married generally don’t like to report their husband as an abuser. But hey. You want to pretend that marriage stop violence, let’s take a look at the DOJ’s Intimate Partner Violence study:
Looks like the safest thing you can do is get married and not have kids, since bearing kids is obviously what makes women become victims of violence.
– Married people typically earn more and save more than their unmarried counterparts – whether cohabiting or single.
– The poverty rate for children living in married households is 6%. It is 31% for children living with a cohabiting father and mother.
Lots of studies have been done to figure out why unmarried people make more than married people. Some theorize that those who are married are looked at by their employer as more responsible, and given raises or promotions that are influenced by that (think: you’re a prick boss that only believes in your version of GRGOL. John is married with kids, Greg lives with his whore girlfriend in sin. Who do you layoff first?). Another idea is that just like more attractive people are better off in the work place, they are also more likely to find a partner. Or, if you come from money and are set up to be in a higher income bracket yourself, your family might be more traditional. Or…tax deductions (because if getting married to end abuse isn’t enough, tax deductions should be). But in the vein of the second point up there, if you’re in a lower income bracket…it often makes sense to not get married as your combined income may cause you to lose benefits. That doesn’t mean that you’re poor because you’re unmarried; it means you’re unmarried because you’re poor. I’m presumably in the minority of people who are looking to permanently cohabit without getting married, but this guy is pretending there is some magic going on. Living together in sin? $12k a year for you! Signed that legal document? Bam!! $65k!
– A married man will spend about eight more hours a week doing household chores than his shacking-up peer.
Assuming that is even true outside of the one study he referenced/that I could find, you’d think it’d be true all of the time. Because marriage = man cleaning, nothing else should matter. Except this study, covering 5 European countries, which found “that cohabiting couples have a more egalitarian division of labour but that there are important country differences.” Maybe there are other things at play here than marriage?
I hate to write about a guy writing about a book I haven’t read, but over and over it’s clearly the same mistakes: thinking marriage is the problem solver. Do you want the real solution to save family life? Find your person, move in together, get married if you want. Make sure they’re the right person, that you’re compatible in your goals and way of life (kids, no kids, city, country, whatever). Enjoy your time together, work hard to make it work, don’t cheat, don’t hit each other, and don’t give a shit who has what jewel on what finger.