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You don't want to do it like that, you want to do it like this.

22 Feb 2007 - JG

David “Dave” Cameron (the most socially responsible man in the UK) has just dipped his hand back in to his policy lucky dip tombola and come out with a real cracker. Today he is expected to outline (does he ever do more than outline?) policy designed to ‘encourage’ more couples to get married and stay together. This will include premarital counselling and relationship classes.

Premarital counselling?! Relationship classes?! If anyone is reading this and going ‘I fancy a bit of that’, I strongly suggest you don’t get married. If your relationship needs premarital counselling, then why are you thinking of getting married? Not exactly the most romantic way to prepare for your honeymoon. The reason for this policy ‘outline’ is spelled out by Iain Duncan Smith – chair of the Tory social justice policy commission. His report concludes “it is the child who grows up in a broken home with an absent father involved in crime who is most likely to commit crime themselves”. That is very different to saying it is the child who is brought up by a single mother or father is most likely to commit crime. I’m not surprised that a father who is a criminal will have an increased likelihood of having offspring who will commit crime.

The situation isn’t all that bad either. Part of the reason the figures have dropped is because ‘sham’ marriages have been cracked down on. Another reason is that people are waiting until they’re older to get married. And who is to tell them otherwise? If anything, it seems to make more sense to wait a few years to be sure you are ready to settle down.

Why do we need a government to provide these classes, telling us how to raise our children and getting along together? Stop wasting money when the issues lie elsewhere. It is not the role of government to tell us how to live our everyday life. If a couple wants to resolve a marital problem, then I am all for that – but not on taxpayers’ money and not in the nannying environment of Cameroonie Britain. This is a classic example of Cameron taking an issue that is designed to expose the emotions of the electorate and make him look like a compassionate caring Tory, but actually his proposal just sounds like it should make sense. It is not based on any facts or science at all. Presuming 'Marriage figures are falling and crime is rising, therefore we need to tell people how to get married' carries no logic at all. The reason crime is rising is not anything to do with the vast majority of people waiting to get married, but it is to do with nannying state we live in – the more we are told what to do, the less responsibility we have for ourselves and our lives. That is where the root of the problems lie.

Topics: Society
Organisations: UK Conservatives

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