Marriage

GOP Candidates Answer: Does Marital Fidelity Matter?

http://youtu.be/imsHVJbkAU4

The question of moral character and how it plays into public life has tended to be fairly low level conversation in our country. It’s subjects of discussion are usually those who we aren’t planning on voting for.

This is why it’s hard to trust what most commentators, religious leaders or politicians are saying right now. Things said in this moment might have more to do with which party or candidate they are planning on voting for than serious thinking about moral character and public life.

From Patriarchy to Partnership

I FEEL BLESSED to have grown up in the South, raised in the Southern Baptist tradition. When marriage was discussed at my church, I was taught there was a “holy chain of command.” Authority flowed from God to husband, husband to wife, and wife to kids. In the best of cases, that “authority” came with loving care, protection, and guidance. But it was authority nonetheless.

My own family mirrored this paradigm. My dad was king of the house, allowing us to watch only one show on TV: Father Knows Best. My mom, who called Dad “Popsie,” was expected to conform to Dad’s rules. (Not once did I hear her call him by his first name.) Far from being unusual, my mother emerged from generations of women who “obeyed their husbands.” This male dominator/female subordinator model of traditional heterosexual marriage often resulted in women losing their voice in both family and society.

In the ’70s, Gloria Steinem pronounced that marriage was a dangerous place for women. This made sense to many at the time. How could women celebrate their equality linked arm-in-arm with husbands who “knew best”? As a result, many women left home to develop their sense of agency in the world. And many left their marriages altogether.

But in the last several decades, a different concept of marriage emerged—an equality-based partnership model. Within this new paradigm, women (and men) have the opportunity to flourish. In fact, once two people learn to live in conscious partnership, the process can help women called to marriage develop their most resonant voice and deepest wisdom. As a result, a group of us are calling for the women’s movement to add the support of healthy marriages to its socio-political agenda.

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The Afternoon News: Thursday Nov. 10, 2011

The Afternoon News
The Afternoon News

Reawakening the Radical Imagination. Proposed Keystone XL pipeline route may be reassessed. OpEd: The answer is: Spend less. Cornel West keeps the faith for Occupy Wall Street. Most Americans support raising the minimum wage. Smithsonian museum on Jefferson's Bible. Poll suggests evangelicals favor redistribution of wealth. Defining poverty in a land of plenty. Is American becoming a nation of poor children? Are older Americans better off? Immigration in the South. Are unions and young people a winning combination for 2012? Unemployment claims drop for the second straight week. And Christian leaders talk about marriage and sex.

Seventy-two Days Does Not a Marriage Make

It lasted 72 days. And now, Kim Kardashian and Kris Humphries are calling it quits. The two were first spotted together one year before when Kim attended one of Kris' basketball games. After a 2 million dollar engagement ring, a 10 million dollar wedding, and a 4-hour TV special about the wedding, the two were married.

Kim has assured her fans that it was not an "easy decision." It is unclear as to what she means by "easy," considering that many people spend more time considering their next purchase at Ikea than Kim and Kris spent married. The very public and very short wedding is more unfortunate evidence of the state of marriage in our society.

Some Christians blame the high rate of failed heterosexual marriages on the segment of our population who fight on behalf of more couples having the right to get married. Equal access to the rights and responsibilities of marriage are faulted for the failure of marriages for so many others. Increasingly, those messages are falling flat. After 10 of millions of dollars and countless volunteer hours spent in the passage of Proposition 8, it failed to save another California marriage.

News: Quick Links 2

Occupy Wall Street's struggle for nonviolence. What do marriage and family have to do with economic growth? Map: Protesters' long-term plans for occupying Zuccotti Park. Herman Cain to meet with Arizona sheriff Joe Arpaio over immigration. While corporate profits are at 60-year high, main street businesses continue to struggle.

Cold, Broken or Grumbled, Every Hallelujah Counts

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As I lay on the kitchen floor -- my body rocking with sobs, my mouth telling my husband, "I hate my life" -- it never occurred to me to pick up the phone and call a friend.

To tell someone about the life I was living, in which over the last few years rug after rug kept getting pulled out from under me -- my parents divorced, my husband's business tanked, our debt rose, health issues loomed, and our marriage sagged under the weight of it all -- was not something I was wired to do.

In fact, I was mortified when my husband rounded the bend and saw me there, sprawled out on the tile, weeping. Crying and hurting is something I do best alone.

Neocolonialism and Cowboys & Aliens

1100801-cowboysandaliensAmericans have a hard time knowing how to respond to the sins of our colonial past. Except for a few extremists, most people know on a gut level that the extermination of the Native Americans was a bad thing. Not that most would ever verbalize it, or offer reparations, or ask for forgiveness, or admit to current neocolonial actions, or give up stereotyped assumptions -- they just know it was wrong and don't know how to respond. The Western American way doesn't allow the past to be mourned or apologies to be made. Instead we make alien invasion movies.

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