SitNews - Stories in the News - Ketchikan, Alaska


The real problem with families
By Anita Hales


November 01, 2006

The governor has put the state in a position where we are required to pay benefits for same sex couples even though they cannot marry by Alaska law.

Why not pay benefits to EVERY couple living together? Why not pay veterinary benefits to the dog you love?
Because it costs money.

Our property taxes are going to be raised by 2 mils in the near future in order to pay for PERS and TERS. How much is this action by the governor going to cost?

But there is a real cost to society that goes continually ignored. That problem is the cavalier attitude towards marriage in general. I was told recently that more than 50% of Alaska households do not marry. Couples simply live together.

It makes it easy to split if you decide something better comes along.

Our laws and policies do not provide incentive for families to stay together.

Welfare recipients lose money if they marry. Federal taxes punish married couples. There are countless programs for single parents. Money is available for college to single parents.

We are constantly encouraged to not marry in order to qualify for the government money.

The cost of living has increased as more women enter the workforce. It may be that as household income has increased with women working outside the home it has made in nearly impossible for couples to make it on a single income.

Traditional families are looked on as old fashioned and couples are encouraged to live together before trying marriage to "see if it works out".

The huge alcohol and drug problem nationwide is taking its toll as well inviting financial problems and abuse into homes.

Where is the governor helping these problems? Where are our legislators on these issues?

The traditional home has survived for centuries. Are we going to kill it now with the help of government and Hollywood?

Children without a doubt do better in a home with a mother and father. Each gender supplies its inherent strengths and helps.

Same sex couples are not a mother and father. They are people living together in a household. There may be children present. If they are the children of one of those individuals, they should qualify for benefits.

But let's not weigh down the system and increase the cost of government with another entitlement.

Every benefit or program costs money. If you want your government to provide services, it needs money to operate. Social programs, while nice, eat money from government at a huge rate and they never get smaller. I realize benefits are not, per se, a social program, but there is a cost to government and to property owners.
This is probably full of holes due to the limits of this forum.

But I feel that the family and marriage are in danger of being irreparably damaged. We can't just keep re-defining until it disappears.

Anita Hales
Ketchikan, AK

About: "40+ years Alaskan and planning to stay one. Mother of 5. Grandmother of 5."



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Ketchikan, Alaska