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View Diary: The missing feminist perspective from "traditional marriage" debate (70 comments)

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  •  Great diary (15+ / 0-)

    If marriage wasn't going to evolve and had not evolved in very recent history, some of us would have never been able to willfully enter into the contract.  Why be chattel when there is also the option to not be chattel?

    •  And you can't beat me with a stick (12+ / 0-)

      The same circumference as your thumb either.  The acknowledgement of abuse and finding it in some respects a crime in the marriage relationship is fairly new, as well as enforced legal remedies.

      If marriage evolves much more, they'll never get those sticks back and take these women in hand :).  They are losing their country.

      •  The Rule of Thumb (0+ / 0-)

        Although frequently alluded to, there has never been a "Rule of Thumb" in either British or American law allowing a husband to beat his wife with a stick or similar instrument of a specified thickness. This misconception most likely arose as a result of Del Martin's metaphorical use of the term.

        •  I am going to assume that you aren't female (0+ / 0-)

          In 1972 my mom and many of my friends mothers understood that pancake makeup was especially good at covering bruises and black eyes.  And nobody fought for you, it was accepted that if you got a little mouthy over things you didn't like stuff was going to happen to you.  My great grandmother never learned officially to drive because her husband forbid it.  She was a pro at getting the car reparked in exactly the same way he had left it though.  The men in my family back then, not considered bad men at all, all much loved by the community  These were all their shots to make though, and they all quit it when it was no longer socially acceptable to act that way.

          •  I'm not sure I understand. (0+ / 0-)

            My statement was purely in regard to the fact that there is no evidence in English or American law of an "Rule of Thumb". I fail to see how my gender is relevant to this point, and although I am sorry to hear of the circumstances under which your mother and your friends' mothers suffered, I again fail to see how this is relevant to the point at hand.

            •  It is a fact that many in our culture (0+ / 0-)

              Believe that rule of thumb meant exactly what I posted.  That speaks to attitudes and socially held accepted beliefs.   I spoke of laws pertaining to how it is supposedly illegal to beat me now, but that is still a little iffy out there in different areas of the country.  The Republicans thought it made perfect sense to not renew the Violence Against Women Act.  I understand that you fail to see how any of this would affect the plight of women in our nation and our culture.  I have understood that very well from an early age.

              •  I appreciate your response... (0+ / 0-)

                ...But I am afraid to say that I still fail to see how it relates to my point that no "Rule of Thumb" exists in English or American law. Do you contest this? If not, are we not in agreement on the matter?

                Putting this aside; I'm not sure if I would consider the prevalence of belief in the existence of a "Rule of Thumb" to be indicative of greater social belief in the appropriateness of spousal abuse.

                (Please bear in mind that I say this not because I disagree that certain beliefs can mirror larger social trends, or because I mean to minimize spousal abuse. Rather, I think this particular example may not qualify given that the misconception appears to have originated with a prominent Feminist and in turn, was promoted by a government report on spousal abuse.)

                I may be mistaken, but I am also of the understanding that it has never been legal, under British or American law, to inflict violence upon one's spouse. Prior to the seventeen century, I believe there were allowances for a husband to punish his wife; but these specifically excluded physical violence.

                I will end by stressing that my prior noted lack of understanding was in regard to the relation between my prior point and your response; and not the greater subject of gender inequality and its many related matters.

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