Thursday, 17 June 2010

The Greatest Heroism, The Most Conspicuous Courage

Much hilarity in the usual places that Malta is convulsed over whether or not to introduce divorce, and that concerns are being expressed across the political spectrum about British-style social breakdown if such a change were to occur.

No one seems to have noticed that Britain is now onto her fourth successive Prime Minister who at least talks much the same talk, even if none of them has yet walked the walk, with the Major Government making it legally easier to be divorced than to be releases from a car hire contract. (Before that, of course, we had the Prime Minister who broke Britain more than any other single individual.)

The Maltese were once so loyal to Britain that their country, where the present Queen spent her honeymoon, was seriously considered for incorporation into the United Kingdom. The bonds of affection remain strong. By her witness on this issue, Malta now has the opportunity to earn her George Cross all over again.

It is high time to entitle each divorcing spouse to one per cent of the other's estate for each year of marriage, up to fifty per cent, and to disentitle the petitioning spouse unless fault be proved.

It is high time to entitle any marrying couple to register their marriage as bound by the law prior to 1969 as regards grounds and procedures for divorce, and to enable any religious organisation to specify that any marriage which it conducts shall be so bound, requiring it to counsel couples accordingly.

And it is high time to legislate that the Church of England be such a body unless the General Synod specifically resolve the contrary by a two-thirds majority in all three Houses, and to do something similar for the Methodist and United Reformed Churches, which also exist pursuant to Acts of Parliament, as well as by amendment to the legislation relating to the restoration of the Catholic hierarchy.

That would be a start, anyway.

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