Friday, May 7, 2010

Why weddings matter

Last week at this time my family and friends were preparing for the wedding of my son to his fiance and former girlfriend. This event has been long anticipated, and even though they were living together we all knew that the marriage was a big deal.
By coincidence on the morning of the marriage, Margaret Wente (one of my "go-to" columnists) in the Globe and Mail published "Why weddings matter more than ever". I tried reading it to my family at the breakfast table and the emotions were very strong in the context of the day.
After the wedding I read comments about this column in the paper and online. I felt that many people missed one of Ms. Wente's most important points, so I wrote my own letter to the editor. Now that the kids are off on a honeymoon, the relatives have returned safely home, and the dust is settling in my house, I thought I would share with you what I wrote to the Globe and Mail:
Margaret Wente’s column (Why weddings matter… May 1st) was published on the same day my son was married, so it had a special impact in my household that morning.
 Ms. Wente mentioned that wedding rates are in decline and that “No government, no matter how well-heeled or well-intentioned, can offer an effective substitute for the devotion and parental investment of two nurturing adults.” 
I absolutely agree and I believe that our governments in the last 60 years have usurped the position and responsibility of family, church and community. Who needs these institutions when strangers are coerced by government through a myriad of welfare programs, into providing for all our needs from cradle to grave?
It is no coincidence that rates of marriage have declined, and that rates of divorce and single parent families have increased in that span of 60 years.
My son’s wedding was wonderful!
The Globe editor did not publish this letter, frustrating yes, but that is one reason I blog.


  1. If all you go by is the blogosphere, those who hold to a "worldview ... free of supernatural and mystical elements" would seem to lopsidedly oppose your opinion. I suspect, though, that there's a silent majority of us out there who agree.

  2. You're probably right, but they are not my age ;-). Don't get me wrong - I don't believe that marriage is "the holy state of matrimony". I do believe that family is the core of a responsible citizenry. I do believe that when a family cares for their own voluntarily, everyone in society benefits. I also believe that when families are unable to care for their own community/church/synagogue/mosque whatever - religious or not, will take up the slack voluntarily. People are "good" when given the chance to be - no coercion required.
    My family and I (very young) came to Canada after WW II with nothing, thanks to community and family we contributed to help build this society. It works.


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