Tuesday, March 13, 2007


Helen M. Alvare, Associate Professor at the Columbus School of Law at The Catholic University of America in Washington, DC, outlines the three periods of American Law as it relates to marriage: 1. The Colonial period through the late 1950s, 2. The 1960s to the late 1980s, 3. The late 1980s to the present, and explains the parameters of each period. Her words were delivered at the Catholic Daughters of the Americas lecture on campus. She closed with this:

"But at the same time the empirical literature is showing a robust consensus in favor of the Catholic view of marriage," Alvare said, showing that couples and children are happier and healthier in traditional marriages.

She urged her audience to continue raising the church's vision of marriage in public debates and legislative forums. "Attack the notion that laws on the family can be separated from morality, attack the notion that children do not need special protections," she said.

Alvare warned that promoters of traditional marriage will be criticized as racist, homophobic, sexist, anti-poor, as "religious zealots wishing to impose their will on others" or as "all of the above."

"But we (Catholics) understand marriage and the family to be as central as they are," she said, adding that the church has "never wavered in this even when society discounted it."

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