Brandon McGinley, Field Director for the Pennsylvania Family Institute, writes in the Pennsylvania Patriot-News:
Single parenthood is on the rise. Fatherlessness, in particular, abounds. Out-of-wedlock childbearing occurs at levels that previous generations of reformers, such as Democratic Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan, would find incomprehensible. Divorce rates have declined from a recent peak, but are still at unprecedented levels.
Who is most harmed by these realities? Common sense and social science agree: It’s the children. Children who grow up without the particular gifts and influences only a father can provide; children to whom mom and dad never truly commit because mom and dad have never truly committed to one another; children who feel like pawns in a legal chess match—these are the victims of the social pathologies that ail our families.
And yet on July 9, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Pennsylvania filed suit to eliminate the legal framework that teaches that moms and dads joined by a public commitment are the best way to bring children into our society. The suit aims to end Pennsylvania’s definition of marriage as between one man and one woman.
In removing sexual complementarity from the legal definition of marriage we remove from our society the final institutional suggestion that it is best to conceive, to bear, and to raise children within a permanent bond between biological mother and father.
The law is a teacher, and the law will teach that neither moms nor dads are essential to raising children, and therefore that neither moms nor dads have any special duties to children. The law will teach that marriage is about the desires of adults, not the good of children.