Statistics on divorce before the no-fault revolution
From The Divorce Racket by Stanley Rosenblatt, Esquire
(Part of the
Divorce Reform Page)
In 1969, Miami lawyer Stanley Rosenblatt's The Divorce Racket called
for a "revolution" that would eliminate fault grounds of divorce
and give everyone a right to unilateral divorce after a cooling-off period
of 60 days or so. Rosenblatt cited several statistics that are useful in
today's no-fault debate, in which we are arguing about the effects of restricting
no-fault without really having any comparable real-world examples of the
more restrictive systems that are being proposed. (In subjecting ourselves
to the experiment of universal, unilateral no-fault divorce, we neglected
to leave a "control group" unrevolutionized.) Some of Rosenblatt's
statistics about a time just before no-fault was introduced:
- One-fourth of marriages ended in divorce (p. 9).
- Of these divorces, 85% to 90% were not contested! (p. 11).
- "Extremely few lawyers" specialized in divorce. (p. 128)
- The average man [spent] more time deciding upon a car purchase than
in choosing a lifelong spouse, and the average woman often [knew] more about
her hairdresser than about her intended." (p. 151).
- Most common grounds of divorce (pp. 8-9):
1. Cruelty 40%
2. Desertion 33%
5. Felony conviction
Rosenblatt thought his reforms would greatly reduce the role of lawyers
and judges and drastically reduce employment opportunities for them, because
the only issues left would be custody, property and support, simple issues
which lawyers and judges had no particular expertise in. He also thought
his proposal would be an "emancipation proclamation" for men,
who were economically oppressed and "victimized" by "the
little woman." He did not provide footnotes.
--John Crouch. Copyright John Crouch 1997. May be reproduced with this notice.
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