I have always tried to argue that there is a very serious civil outcome to redefining marriage, and it has nothing to do with religious liberty or the idea of “sacramental marriage.”
Since marriage is society’s primary way of acknowledging and understanding parenthood, redefining marriage redefines parenthood. Here in California, the affects of “SSM” and redefining parenthood are rapidly making their way through the legislature. Last year, Gov. Brown signed a bill allowing three or more legal parents for children, which was inspired by a “SSM” custody dispute.
Now we have this: AB 1951. This bill will change birth certificates to allow for a gender neutral option for parents. Gay couples will be able to list both of themselves on the child’s birth certificate. California recently did away with the terms “husband” and “wife,” because of “SSM,” and the lead legislator for that measure said that those terms were outdated and biased. I suppose we can infer the same thing for “mother” and “father.” Read more…
I decided to rearrange some furniture the other day, and did so without my husband, hoping to surprise him. Things went well until I realized I would indeed have to give him a heads up. This was our instant message exchange:
me: I may or may not have taken a door off its hinges and then gotten a desk stuck in a doorway. I’ll let you decide when you get home.
him: ?? seriously? better not be the front door. Read more…
My four-year-old saw a bird through the window screen. Somehow this elicited from her a very loud, very off-key rendition of the chorus from Frozen’s “Let it go.”
“The bird is not flying away,” she pauses to tell me.
“Maybe it likes your singing,” I suggest.
“Maybe it likes ‘Let it go,’” she tells me.
“That could be,” I say, and she keeps singing for all she’s worth. Finally, Read more…
When one of the children loses a tooth, it is a very big deal. Not because they think, “Yea, I’m becoming a big girl!” or even “Cha-ching! Come on, Tooth Fairy!” But because it means a whole lot less whining going on around here.
Initially the loose tooth is an exciting topic of conversation, meriting daily, if not more frequent, updates as in, “My tooth is a little wiggly!… I can move it back and forth!… Now I can move it left to right! See!” (open mouth shoved in face.) “Now I can touch the bottom of it with my tongue!…It’s hanging by a thread!”
You would think by the time we’ve reached that last level of development we’re sitting pretty, but no, that stage lasts about a week. These children will keep that tooth in there as though their lives depend on it. Why? Clearly they aren’t motivated by greed. They don’t worry they’ll have nothing to talk about once the tooth is gone. They’re not even concerned about diminished chewing quality when one tooth down. Nope. It’s the simple fear of pain.
Here’s where I go from being World’s Greatest Mom to, uh, something a little closer to the opposite extreme. Let me explain. Read more…
One man plus one woman = two legally recognized parents for children.
I believe that the divide between conservatives on the marriage issue runs deeper than marriage. Over on Ricochet, on Peter Robinson’s marriage thread, several times I asked a question that went something like this:
Does society have a duty to place a nature-based limitation on the number of legally recognized parents for children?
There is a specific reason I asked this question. When it comes to legally recognized parents for children, there is a divide between the socially conservative view and the libertarian view. In fact, I don’t believe there is a principled difference between the libertarian view and the extreme Left on this particular point. By “extreme Left” I am referring specifically to Melissa Harris Perry’s remarks that she made in about March or April of 2013: Read more…
The girls are arguing over who gets to sit where in the bathtub. My oldest announced, “I always sit there for certain reasons that are needed in life!”
I couldn’t help but laugh, and she looked at me like, “What did I say?”
I would have asked her to elaborate, but I had to quickly run off and type this in. And to tell my husband, so we could enjoy the chuckle together.
Read more funny parenting moments here.
Note: since “equality” is paramount for “marriage equality” supporters, next time you are discussing the marriage issue with them, point out their unequal arguments and also how “marriage equality” is contributing to children’s inequality. See what their response is.
“Marriage equality” relies on unequal arguments. When it comes to “rights,” “marriage equality” supporters make arguments based on gay rights, but they refuse to accept arguments based on children’s rights. When it comes to “outcomes,” they refuse to argue about the outcomes of gay sexual activity, but will argue about the various studies regarding children’s outcomes under various family structures. Not only do they argue unequally, “marriage equality” is contributing to children being treated unequally under the law. Read more…
Over at The Public Discourse, Professor Emeritus Jameson W. Doig of Princeton began a dialogue with Professor Robert George also of Princeton on the proper definition of marriage today. Professor Doig’s point appears to be that Professor George has not been consistent in his views. My point is not to defend Professor George: he is a big boy and can take care of himself.
My point is that Professor Doig’s entire article avoids some important questions. How will redefining marriage redefine parenthood? Are we happy with that redefinition? And do we really want to change the relationship between the State and the citizen in the way that this redefinition really entails?
The problem begins with Professor Doig’s very first paragraph.
I want to begin with two Vermonters, Ann and Ellen, who have been together as a couple for more than thirty years. They have three children—Bert, who has graduated from college and is now married (to Maria) and working in a small business in Vermont, and Alison and Beth, who are in high school, both doing well in their academic work and excelling in soccer. One of the three is adopted, and Ann is the birth-mother of the other two.
Ripped out of the picture, by design.
Do you see who is missing from this equation? Without knowing anything else about this family, we know that the father of Ann’s biological children has been safely and legally escorted off the stage. The children will never have the opportunity to have a relationship with their father.
Most children have a legally recognized right to know and be cared for by both of their Read more…
Life, not just summer, is complicated for children of divorce.
Children of divorce are twice as likely to have a stroke.
Children of divorce feel anxious and afraid.
Children of divorce don’t perform as well in terms of education and health.
Children of divorce are reliant on psychiatric help.
Keep those tweets coming! #childrenofdivorce #childofdivorce
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We had two cubic yards of dirt delivered and dumped next to our driveway. I immediately got to work with a shovel and wheelbarrow, transporting the dirt all the way around to the side of the house where I needed it. It was a hot day and tiring work. My seven and five-year-old daughters were skipping along at my heels, to and fro. Finally I stopped, wiped my brow and said, “This is hard work. I could use some cold water.” My daughters immediately looked at each other with an expression of sudden inspiration. “We should help Dad!” one declared to the other, who answered with a nod. As I began to smile with satisfaction at my thoughtful, charitable little girls, my face suddenly fell as, instead of running inside for a glass of cool liquid refreshment, they each grabbed fistfuls of dirt and began carrying them around the house.
-Paul, father of 3
Read more funny parenting stories here.