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Wife Auctions? Why Marriage Has Never Had Any "Sanctity"

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xchrom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-06-11 06:56 AM
Original message
Wife Auctions? Why Marriage Has Never Had Any "Sanctity"
http://www.alternet.org/sex/152969/wife_auctions_why_ma... /

November 4, 2011 |

Kim Kardashian threw a lavish multi million dollar wedding, only to divorce two months later. The gossip has prompted a wave of tweets along the lines of... tell me again why the sanctity of marriage is threatened by gays? But I ask, has marriage ever had sanctity?

Whether you grew up getting your ideas about marriage from your family or pop culture, there is a lot of social significance in what marriage means and, historically, a lot to unravel.



It seems hard to argue that there is any sanctity to the institution of marriage. Sure, humans have long been marrying, and according to EJ Graff, scholar and author of the book What is Marriage For, there are five static reasons: 1. property, 2. kin 3. money 4. order 5. heart. Yet, the types of marriages we see vary greatly, from polygamy to the wife-auctions of the 17th century, to the monogamy of today. Which type of marriage again is the one with sanctity?



Stephanie Coontz, author of Marriage a History, also points out the New Testament was somewhat suspicious of marriage. It was considered holier to leave your family and spread the word of God apparently being single was a more sanctified state than marriage.
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Bluenorthwest Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-06-11 07:23 AM
Response to Original message
1. The whole 'sanctity' line of blather stems from those who want
to use religious terminologies to enhance their own agendas without bothering to practice the religion itself. What they do is pretend that their faith teaches nothing that THEY must follow, just a few words against gay people, uphold that and you are golden. This is convenient due to the NT's long winded set of rules for subservience from women, as well as the pro slavery materials. So you wind up with puffing political figures shouting along with McClurkin about 'sanctity' to distract from the fact that they reject the bulk of their own Scriptures and pretend they are not there at all.
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xchrom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-06-11 07:25 AM
Response to Reply #1
2. well said. nt
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juangama Donating Member (2 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-06-11 07:26 AM
Response to Original message
3. It's all about loyaly
Either you understand the concept of loyalty or you do not. Societal definitions aside, it usually works out better for people to pick those that they can be loyal to - in every sense - than to aimlessly wander around on their own. When you find someone who deserves your loyalty you'd best stick with them. It will benefit you in the long run.

juan
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bemildred Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-06-11 08:47 AM
Response to Reply #3
4. And once trust is gone, it is gone for good, so think hard before you do things. nt
Edited on Sun Nov-06-11 08:47 AM by bemildred
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dotymed Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-06-11 09:45 AM
Response to Reply #3
6. Loyalty and respect, I think.
I have had two failed marriages. I only "count" one, the second was an attempt not to lose my son. What a terrible reason to marry. I spent 10 years with a person who was abusive and was my biggest enemy, that is even worse for your child than not being able to be a daily part of their life. I am now 50 with health problems (that are not easily apparent. I would love to find a woman that I could share the rest of my life with. In our society, if you don't have money and great future prospects, your partnership choices are limited, a lot.

It used to be (not so long ago) that a marriage usually lasted for life. Maybe that was because women weren't "self-empowered," I really do not know. I don't care what a person's sexual preferences are, if they can find their "soul-mate," a partner that puts their vows of permanency (not convenience) and truly loves their mate, then THAT, IMO, is a marriage. I think you must treat a relationship with the knowledge that (like our politicians) actions speak louder than words. Don't ask me, I have never succeeded in this endeavor.
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Lydia Leftcoast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-06-11 01:02 PM
Response to Reply #6
10. A lot of it was that women had no economic alternatives
My maternal grandmother wanted to leave my grandfather, who was emotionally abusive to her. Her plan was to take her only child (my mother) and live with her parents while she went to hairdressing school.

Her parents refused, telling her that she had promised "till death do us part."

So she stayed in a bad marriage for nearly 40 years.

However, I did get to know my grandfather, who was fascinating and wonderful to us grandchildren in a way that he never was to either my grandmother or my mother.
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dotymed Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-06-11 01:27 PM
Response to Reply #10
11. You are probably right..
I wonder if the "until death do us part" line of the ceremony is extinct. There seems to be no incentive to say with your partner through good and bad anymore.

I've seen it many times, if the earning capacity of one spouse is compromised, the marriage often fails.
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hobbit709 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-06-11 08:53 AM
Response to Original message
5. The last clown that tried to give me that "sanctity' crap
was a failed Pentecostal minister who'd been married and divorced THREE times.
He shut up when I called him on it.
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Igel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-06-11 10:01 AM
Response to Original message
7. Eh.
I keep hearing about the "sanctity of human life," too.

But the same NYT that carried this article had a nice graphic on major reductions in human life over the ages, from millions killed by Mao and Stalin, the millions in WWII, and various famines and social disruptions. This doesn't include small-scale but thorough genocides in tribal societies that lacked documentation and therefore, to historians, never happened (since, after, history requires documentation--otherwise it's 'pre-history' and presumably the domain of pre-historians.)

"Sanctity" is a word used by people to validate their own beliefs and try to foist them on others in terms that are embarrassing or uncomfortable to deny, little more. Whether it be marriage, life, or human rights, economic rights, or "social" justice.
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bemildred Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-06-11 10:13 AM
Response to Reply #7
8. +1.
Appeal to Authority: (argumentum ad verecundiam) Appeals to authority are always deductively fallacious; even a legitimate authority speaking on his area of expertise may affirm a falsehood. However, if not using a deductive argument, a logical fallacy is only asserted when the source is not a legitimate expert on the topic at hand, or their conclusion(s) are in direct opposition to other expert consensus.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_fallacies
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customerserviceguy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-06-11 12:26 PM
Response to Original message
9. The sanctity of a marriage
is created by the two people who are in it. Whatever others do or don't do with their marriages, does not invalidate the honor, fidelity, respect and dignity that two people give to each other in their own marriage.

And that applies across racial and gender lines, I'm quick to point out to those opposed to equal marriage. Letting Steve and Bob marry is not going to do anything to damage the marriage between John and Mary, that's up to them to keep sacred.
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Sherman A1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-06-11 01:56 PM
Response to Reply #9
12. +1, Agreed & Well Said!
You hit the nail on the head. :toast:
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dipsydoodle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-06-11 02:10 PM
Response to Original message
13. I've never noticed that category
on ebay. :)

:hi:
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yellowcanine Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-07-11 09:31 AM
Response to Original message
14. It isn't the sanctity of marriage concept that is the problem. It is the people who use the concept
as a weapon to oppress women and those who are different.

As for the NT, the words of Jesus about divorce were aimed at protecting women from husbands who would divorce women for self-serving reasons. In the context of the 1st century this was a liberating first step for women that said they were more than chattel. While it certainly did not establish them as equals, it began the process of recognition of women as individuals with the rights of individuals. I would also argue that it was Paul who was "suspicious" of marriage, not Jesus.
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