Friday, May 4, 2012

Lucia Civil Unions almost as durable as Marriage? [UPDATE]

Isn't it interesting that a higher rate of relationship breakdown for civil unions is reported in the positive?
Civil unions have proved to be almost as durable as traditional marriages in the first seven years since the legal status was introduced.

Statistics New Zealand figures provided to the Herald show that 4.4 per cent of civil unions registered in New Zealand from 2005 to the end of 2009 were dissolved by the end of last year, compared with 3.8 per cent of marriages in the same period.

The actual numbers - 82 civil unions dissolved out of 1876 - were so small that Statistics NZ demographer Anne Howard said any differences with the rate of marriage breakdown were unreliable.

That's from Civil union splits match divorce rate in  the NZ Herald

Another article in the same paper, Same sex marriage can last, talks about the difficulties that same sex couples have with recognition of their union.

Grey Lynn couple Diana Rands and Anna Birkenhead are pleased to find that same-sex civil unions can last - but they also feel there is a social expectation that they will break up.

"When heterosexual people meet each other and get married, everyone is, 'Yay, well done!"' says Ms Rands, 50, who has been in a civil union with Ms Birkenhead, 41, for two years.

"If that was a same-sex couple, it's, 'Oh, it's not going to last.' There is this underlying misinformation that gay relationships don't last, so it's really nice that they actually do."

Two years is not very long.

In terms of heterosexual couples, very few are still together by the time their oldest child is 15 if they never marry. Considering that a civil union is not a marriage, the real test will be that 15 year mark in comparison with traditional marriage, not 2 or 7 years.

Society supports heterosexual couples, she says, but gay couples are often shunned. She has heard of children who are banned from visiting friends as soon as the child's mother hears the friend's mother is a lesbian.

Society needs to support heterosexual couples, a traditional marriage has been shown to be the most protective of mothers and children and is greatest determinant of success in life for children (see Married parents' children do better than peers Australian Institute of Family Studies report says).

Also, parents are very protective. I don't let my youngest boy visit a particular friend's house because his parents do Yoga and other New Age things there, but the friend is welcome to visit our home.  Thankfully, anti-discrimination laws don't force parents to send their children off to various homes even if they disagree with what is going on there.  Yet.

I then noticed that yesterday the NZ Herald published Kiwi marriage and divorce numbers dropping.

New Zealanders are getting married at their lowest rate in more than a decade, new figures show.

Statistics New Zealand said New Zealand residents entered into 20,231 marriages in 2011.

That was the lowest number since 2001, when 19,972 weddings were celebrated, it said.

It marks a continuing decline in marriage numbers, with 21,500 weddings taking place in 2009 and 20,900 in 2010.

Divorces also dropped slightly from 8,874 in 2010 to 8,551 last year.

Ok, the figures show that the marriages last year were slightly higher than the lowest number of marriages in 2001, but lower than 2009 and 2010. One could almost say that the numbers of marriages were slightly increasing, even though there was a drop from the peak in 2009, there is still an increase from the low of 2001. But no, it seems it's better to put out the idea that marriages continue to decline and then today that civil unions are almost as durable as marriages.  You'd almost think that the NZ Herald has an agenda here.

UPDATE 2:35pm: I see Whale Oil has now written about one of the articles I've quoted. He says:

Nice article in the Herald about civil unions and the way it is viewed as a second class marriage…not quite there. It continues to amaze me that we allow first cousins to marry but not two gay people. It is a shame they can’t marry. They’d prefer Nikki Kaye to do something more meaningful than promote a big gay expensive mardi gras[.]

Yet again, two gay people can marry, they just have to follow the physical rules for marriage (ie Man + Woman = Marriage). Anything else, no matter what we call it, is just a relationship contract.

2 comment(s):

JJ said...

I find it ironic that in a weekend where they are talking about how important a free press is they disprove it by telling lies like they always do. In our society the media is just a pernicious an influence as the government, servants of antichrist one and all.

Lucia Maria said...

Hi JJ,

This isn't overt lying, it's just the difference between a glass half full or half empty. However you say it changes the perception.

But the media is a problem in that they've become authoritative; while as in the past before newspapers people would decide on how important or relevant the news was by getting the opinions of 20 or more people and then giving each opinion a weighting and then making up their own mind as to what it meant. (Hilaire Belloc wrote about this in one of his books early last century).

I agree that they are servants of the anti-Christ, in general.

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