NOM BLOG

Anderson: Can the President Have a Marriage Agenda Without Talking About What Marriage Is?

 

Ryan Anderson, co-author of What is Marriage?, in the Public Discourse today asks "How successful can a 'new conversation on marriage' marriage be when its leaders can't even say what marriage is?"

The President’s Marriage Agenda for the Forgotten Sixty Percent,” despite the impression its title might give, was released Sunday not by the Obama administration but by the Institute for American Values and the National Marriage Project at the University of Virginia. It is a timely, compelling, and important report, but it falls short in a basic way: it never once even attempts to say what marriage is. But you cannot advance a marriage agenda without knowing what marriage is and why it matters for public policy, as my co-authors and I argue in our new book, What Is Marriage?

The leadership of the Institute for American Values, after embracing the redefinition of marriage in a high-profile change of heart earlier this year, hopes this report launches “a new conversation on marriage.” The authors urge political leaders to encourage “community-based and focused public service announcements that convey the truth about marriage, stability and child wellbeing to the next generation of parents.”

Well, what is the truth about marriage?