The Cohabitation Blues
THIS PAST fall, the American Law Institute, an influential organization of lawyers, judges, and legal academics, published a huge, decade-in-the-making tome titled Principles of the Law of Family Disso- lution.’ The report’s heft reflects its aspiration, which is to bring up to date an entire body of law that has changed little since Richard Nixon was in the White House. Among its many recommendations is a propos- al that family-court judges and state legislatures treat the break-up of live-in partners much as they would that of a married couple, including, where appropriate, the division of property and the payment of alimo- ny. As Grace Ganz Blumberg, one of the report’s authors told USA Today, “If it looks like a marriage, it should be treated like one.” Perhaps the most remarkable thing about this proposal was the great national yawn that greeted it.
About the Author
Kay S. Hymowitz, a contributing editor of City Journal, writes frequently for COMMENTARY on social and cultural issues.