By Alan W. Cohen
In my 25 years as a family law attorney, I witnessed an increasing parade of lost souls seeking happiness, never realizing, as Aristotle tells us, that happiness takes a lifetime to achieve. The Declaration of Independence guarantees the right to pursue happiness. It does not guarantee it. As I explain in my book, America Solved, published in 2015, marriage is a learned skill, cultivated over generations, a skill that has been lost to the false promises of government that made them believe that it was the solution that all their ills, and that they would find solace in a compassionate court system that would bring them comfort and joy.
As I explain in my new book, Private Vows , the court system was never intended to fix anything. It was intended to deter people, mostly men, from failing to meet their legal obligations, knowing that society was well suited to deter women from doing so. It is, and has been for almost two generations, ill-fitted and ill-suited for the times, becoming divorce factories, churning out sausage that, as H.L. Mencken said of legislation, no one of weak stomach should see be made. Family courts have become, as one lawyer-advertiser accurately describes, little fiefdoms, with judges, under the guise of judicial discretion, applying laws arbitrarily and punishing people capriciously, not to achieve some greater public policy of right and wrong, but to fit their personal whims, much to the distress of those litigants that find themselves in the cross hairs.
In a recent article from P.J.Media, provides some hope. It turns out that millennials are fed up with the status of the family unit as it has become today, and yearn for the stability of the past, the Leave it to Beaver world of stay-at-home moms and worker dads. While they agree that women should have a choice to enter the workforce, millennials crave the world where their children come home to a loving parent, not wailing away in some day care. As I explain in America Solved, young men and women today are completely confused as to what they were supposed to do. Mind you, the post-war generation is a singular time in history. At our founding we were an agrarian society, where husbands and wives worked side by side, and their children were charged with helping out in any way they could. In the Gilded Age, women took on roles in sweat shops alongside their children to supplement the family income. They knew that for their marriage to work, they must be all in.
As I explain in Private Vows, the Founders never intended for government to have a role in family matters. As the Supreme Court said in 2015, marriage began in America as a purely private affair, and then morphed into what we have today. The Founders intended for people to have the freedom to make their own life decisions without government interference that is both unconstitutional and unconscionable. Thus, those millennials that seek to restore the sanctity of what they see as traditional marriage, they must seek the wisdom of the Founders, and join to rid themselves of the tyranny of government interference in their inalienable right to the Pursuit of Happiness.
As I explain in America Solved, government does not solve the problem; government is the problem. As I explain in Private Vows, everything the courts have said for the past 150 years about marital duties and rights is a blatant misinterpretation of what we call the common law. Nothing in the Constitution gives the state, and especially the federal government, the authority to force their views upon us when it comes to the family. Marriage under English law was a contract, and contracts are about voluntary action, and that is what our Founders prescribed.
Alan W. Cohen is a graduate of the University of Missouri-Columbia School of Journalism and the Washington University (St. Louis) School of Law. His books are available on Amazon.