A respected Supreme Court judge has stated that in the UK, "blended" families, made up of step parents and step children, have now replaced traditional nuclear families. The speech, entitled, ‘Marriage is made for Man, not Man for Marriage',was made in Northern Ireland by Lord Wilson, who spent many years sitting in family courts.
The introduction of same sex marriage prompted Lord Wilson to review the history of marriage, divorce and the impact that both have had on society.
Whilst attitudes have changed towards practices such as polygamy, marriage between relatives and same sex marriage, divorce has also changed the face of society. The vows taken in marriage, to love and cherish ‘till death do us part', no longer have the impact they did before divorce was legal. Hence, ‘forever', no longer means forever, with 42% of marriages ending in divorce.
In addition to discussing the normality of blended families, Lord Wilson went on to say that it was "better to have four eyes, four ears, four hugging arms, four tender lips and two separate stress levels to the daily care of a child", regardless of the couple's marital status.
He also questioned if the ‘stamp' of marriage actually led to increased stability, although the current government says that marriage does in fact offer this additional stability.
Lord Wilson commented that same sex marriage dignified same sex love, and that the argument that marriage is only between a man and a woman, was not a sound enough reason to not allow it. The institution of marriage has not been destroyed by same sex marriage, only strengthened, in his view.
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