Jennifer Roback Morse evaluates the economics of no-fault divorce

Her post is here on the Ruth Institute blog.

Dr. J talks about the famous actor Alec Baldwin, and his experiences with the family court system in Los Angeles. She then transitions into some commentary on the work of Dr. Stephen Baskerville.


Baldwin does not discuss the ease of divorce ushered by the no-fault divorce revolution. Like most Americans, Baldwin has probably made peace with no-fault divorce, believing easy divorce to be an enhancement of individual liberty. But Baldwin’s story of his life after Basinger decided she had no use for him illustrates that the opposite is more true. Easy divorce opens the door for an unprecedented amount of government intrusion into ordinary people’s lives.

…enforcing the divorce means an unprecedented blurring of the boundaries between public and private life. People under the jurisdiction of family courts can have virtually all of their private lives subject to its scrutiny. If the courts are influenced by feminist ideology, that ideology can extend its reach into every bedroom and kitchen in America. Baldwin ran the gauntlet of divorce industry professionals who have been deeply influenced by the feminist presumptions that the man is always at fault and the woman is always a victim. Thus, the social experiment of no-fault divorce, which most Americans thought was supposed to increase personal liberty, has had the consequence of empowering the state.

And then things get really interesting:

Some might think the legacy of no-fault divorce is an example of the law of unintended consequences in operation. That assumes its architects did not intend for unilateral divorce to result in the expansion of the state. But Baskerville makes the case in this book—as well as his 2008 monograph, “The Dangerous Rise of Sexual Politics,” in THE FAMILY IN AMERICA—that at least some of the advocates of changes in family law certainly have intended to expand the power of the state over the private lives of law-abiding citizens.

Who are these people? They are the Marxists, who call themselves advocates of women: the feminists. Unbeknownst to the general public, the Marxists have had marriage in their cross-hairs from the very beginning.

[…] The goal is to return women into “social production” outside the home, where they can be completely independent of the oppression of men. This of course, requires the collective rearing of children. It also requires the obliteration of the distinction between the private sphere of the home and the public reach of the law.

Click here to read the rest. You know you want to!

It is especially important for unmarried women to understand how no-fault divorce laws and activist family courts dissuade men from marrying. My concern today is that the feminist ideology has become so entrenched that young women will drag themselves through the muck of the sexual revolution without even reflecting on how a string of drunken hook-ups destroys their innocence, vulnerability and capacity to trust and love.

This is not just bad for men, who will increasingly face financial ruin, and loss of access to their own children. No-fault divorce opens the door to totalitarian control of men, women and children by the state. Women who wish to marry and have children will find it increasingly difficult to find men willing to take the risk of marrying and raising children. Women need to consider the incentives created by a Marxist-feminist state.

I recommend to every man considering marriage to spend at least one day listening to family court trials. Then ask yourself. Is it worth it? Marriage may have made sense before feminism, but it makes no sense now. Why take the risk of being financially destroyed, separated from your own children, and possibly imprisoned? Wait until women turn away from feminism and clean up their mess. The risks are too great.

9 thoughts on “Jennifer Roback Morse evaluates the economics of no-fault divorce”

  1. Query: If every man considering marriage spent at least one day in family court and concluded that marriage no longer makes sense, wouldn’t we be willingly tossing out God’s plans? Or, to put it another way, are we to operate based on the risks or on God’s Word?


    1. Only if you disregard 1 Cor 7.

      Anyway, I am not saying that individual women are not suitable for marriage. The problem I am talking about is that women who might like to get married and have children are undermining a man’s willingness to engage in those behaviors by not crusading against feminism, and feminist projects like no-fault divorce. Liberal churches are not likely to come down on the right side of the issues that matter, and conservative churches have not figured out how to apply the Bible to the issues of the day. So long as this goes on, it doesn’t really matter if you meet an unmarried Michele Bachmann clone. The laws of the land were made by secular-left feminists, and a man would have to be a fool to expose himself to their ire. Until then, chastity is the best course of action, and the Bible says so (I think) in 1 Cor 7. Don’t forget what Jesus says in Matthew 19:10-12. Jesus himself did not marry.


      1. What Jesus meant was that celibacy is only for those to whom God has given it. Not because you are scared of some big government and feminists. Jesus is God and it’s absolutely ridiculous to say that He Himself did not marry! Besides aren’t we all His bride anyway? And I find it absolutely pointless that you would disregard the existence of all the good women because the the majority voted Left. I mean you marry a woman not the government. What could the government possibly do when the woman you marry stands by you? Isn’t that actually an insult all the great marriages of Christian men. If every single Christian man thinks the way you think, you’ll only succeed in creating a very Liberal world ’cause there won’t be anymore Christian families anymore to show resistance to the evil the Left preaches. I am sorry this kind of chastity where all men decide against marriage would only hurt Christ more than serving Him.


      2. I think most sensible theologians would agree that Paul was simply acknowledging that marriage can be a hindrance, particularly in situations where Christians are experiencing famine or persecution. The Corinthians were probably experiencing the former at the time of writing; the epistle makes it clear that an important variable in Paul’s analysis involves the Corinthians’ “present distress.” Meanwhile, Paul basically commanded marriage for individuals with strong sex drives — which would seem to include most normal individuals.

        So yeah, I’m not sure how much support this passage really gives your position, Wintery. You could argue that the corrupt American institution of marriage is comparable to the “present distress,” and that’s how I interpreted your comment. But that still only gets you so far, unless you really feel like marriage just isn’t necessary for you.

        Imo, better support for your position would be the various proverbs that compare a nagging wife to a dripping faucet or to cancer of the bones.

        The current marriage laws really remind me of slavery, which destroyed many black families prior to the civil war. The institutional corruption of marriage was a key problem pointed out in Uncle Tom’s Cabin.


        1. If I met a woman who understood all of these things and wrote about them, I would probably just swallow caution and marry. But she would have to be aware of William Lane Craig, Jennifer Roback Morse and Michele Bachmann stuff at least to a pretty decent level. Then I would just marry her and the heck with worrying.


  2. There is nothing funnier than running into a divorced woman professional who is paying child support to her lay-about ex-husband. Talk about a woman who believes that the social contract has been repealed….

    I’m a divorced father with full custody of my three daughters. I’ve had 50% custody since they were 2, 3 and 7, which amazed my lawyer, to my surprise and consternation. Apparently, that was entirely uncommon. So my experience is that the system isn’t uniformly stacked against men, albeit in my case, the evidence in favor of at least 50% custody was overwhelming and I went in one time before to get full custody before I finally got full custody. It might have been the case that it would have gone easier for a woman in my situation.

    For me, the really chilling thing is the fact that the courts do get control over your life and your children can be run off to a therapeutic regime. My biggest fear is that my kids will be ordered into some kind of therapy counselling situation, at which point they will be pumped full of the psycho-babble that it so prevalent.


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