The Instigator
Mariamahmed
Con (against)
The Contender
APBUNDY
Pro (for)

Arranged Marriages Should Be Considered Illegal

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/18/2017 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 7 months ago Status: Debating Period
Viewed: 209 times Debate No: 105924
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (2)
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Mariamahmed

Con

I am on the side of having arranged marriages as legal.
Firstly, an arranged marriage is not a punishment or oppressive idea but rather a way of life. An arranged marriage is not forced upon any of the parties but chosen by them. Not everyone wants to fall in love.
Secondly, arranged marriages are deemed to be more successful. This was noticed in a study where the love DECREASED in love marriages but INCREASED in arranged marriages. (Source 1).

SOURCE 1:
file:///Users/Aftab/Desktop/Screen%20Shot%202017-12-17%20at%208.16.59%20PM.png
APBUNDY

Pro

I am for the side arranged marriages ought to be illegal.

What is an arranged marriage? Arranged marriage is a type of marital union where the bride and groom are selected by their families.

Arranged marriage is not an issue of non-western or western ideals, but of what it means to be human, of the ability to have free will.

Nearly all arranged marriages are forced marriages. Coercion is defined as the practice of persuading someone to do something by using force or threats. In law, coercion is codified as a duress crime. Such actions are used as leverage, to force the victim to act in a way contrary to their own interests. Coercion may involve the actual infliction of physical pain/injury or psychological harm in order to enhance the credibility of a threat [1].
How are arranged marriages coercive?

In non forced marriage, the marriage of two people marrying because they love each other, "the persons have the freedom to select their life partner and this decision is not influenced by any other person. However this is not the case in here arranged marriages. It has also been seen that arranged marriages are the root cause behind several social ills like dowry (property or money brought by a bride to her husband on their marriage}, cast system (a class structure that is determined by birth) and other social prejudices that are taken to extreme levels in case of arranged marriages" [2]. "It has also been seen that in many cases the parents can also make selfish choices. Therefore while the parents claim to make the best decisions for their children, there are many instances in which they are putting into their own selfish desires first" [3]. The consequences of not abiding to the archaic tradition set forth is being thrown out of the family, and even in the case of wanting to be divorced from their partner, being a disgrace to the family, and a myriad of other unfortunate social punishments. To go against theirs parents wishes would be a complete and utter disgrace to not only the family, but the country and culture.

We can clearly see the coercion.

"I remember when my father said to me: "I am your father, it is my duty to get you married." I knew instantly that he was wrong. He had no right to impose his choice on me. This confusion between parental responsibilities and parental will is at the core of this practice" All my relatives gathered for a family meeting in an attempt to persuade me to agree to my father's demand. They told me: "Your father has given his word to this family. It would bring dishonour and shame on him if you do not comply."" [4].

"Sandhya:
My dad, every Sunday, he would send in and screen these ads, and whichever he thought could be the potential matches, he would mark them and tell me, "Whoever you are interested in just send them an email." I remember being a little girl and like, "No, I'm not going to go through that. I am definitely not going to go through that," but then you do it because you have to. You know you can't reason with your parents [5]."

Again, lets go over the definition: In law, coercion is codified as a duress crime. Such actions are used as leverage, to force the victim to act in a way contrary to their own interests. Coercion may involve the actual infliction of physical pain/injury or psychological harm in order to enhance the credibility of a threat [1].

"The United Nations views forced marriage as a form of human rights abuse, since it violates the principle of the freedom and autonomy of individuals. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights states that a woman's right to choose a spouse and enter freely into marriage is central to her life and dignity, and equality as a human being.[5] The Roman Catholic Church deems forced marriage grounds for granting an annulment " for a marriage to be valid both parties must give their consent freely. Supplementary Convention on the Abolition of Slavery also prohibits marriage without right to refuse of herself out of her parents', family's and other persons' will[6] and requires the minimum age for marriage to prevent this [6]."

"Forcing someone to marry against their will is now a criminal offence. New legislation introduced today (16 June) by the government is designed to help people in England and Wales. It also applies to UK nationals overseas who are at risk of becoming the victim of a forced marriage. Maximum penalty of seven years [7]."

Aside from love, aside from tradition, free will (in practical terms) is what makes us human, what separates us from primitive times and animals. Coercion is not only against the law, but it also completely veils any ability to make a choice. We"re talking about marriage, one of the most, if not the most sacred thing which cultures value, and to uplift the sanctity of marriage, not love, but simply marriage on the grounds where one party has no real, or fair, choice in the matter, a decision forcefully made for them regardless of what they think, is not only against any sort of just human rights code, but against what it means to be human. Thus arranged marriage is not only an oppressive idea (unlike what Con says without having said why), but should be deemed illegal in every country as it is already in most advanced societies.

Lets take a look at a few more facts.

In the Western world, it"s easy to leave a bad marriage. However in arranged marriages the commitment has to be without question. They must get married knowing they can"t leave. With the coercion and social consequences looming over one at all time upon even thinking about leaving, having to stay whatever ones circumstances (abusive, violent, unfaithful, etc), it has been studied that "it is therefore likely that there is more domestic violence within arranged marriages [8]."

The coercive conditions of arranged marriages are similar in all native countries where practiced, but lets imagine " reluctantly-- non native instances.

"Arranged marriages are often different when practiced in the home countries of many immigrant families in Europe, where women often have networks of friends and relatives to rely on. The danger with allowing arranged marriages to happen in EU countries are that the women at the centre are often far more vulnerable, away from their own family, unfamiliar with the local language and fully reliant on their husband"s family. This makes it easier for domestic abuses to go undetected which is simply compounding problems of under reporting [9]".

As we can see, arranged marriages, aside from its stripping of free will and coercive foundations which in of itself is gravely inhumane and against any sort of human rights, also is loaded with an enormous amount of criminal connotations. Lets take a look at some more disgusting and illegal scenarios that can emerge from arranged marriages.

"Some think forced marriage is a rare practice; but the government estimates up to 8,000 cases a year in the UK. Some assume forced marriage affects only adults; but figures show that more than half are under 16 and some are as young as eight [9]." Also the of the victims of arranged marriage talk of "wedlock being used as a weapon and the horrors to which this can lead, such as rape, abuse and unwanted pregnancy [10]."

As a society, a civilization that values free choice, that values human dignity, that values progression, in which the law is implemented to protect people, we can see that arranged marriages, which is founded on coercive and manipulative grounds which takes away all choice, all autonomy, all dignity, in the very true sense of the saying until death do us part, and all the awful and illegal connotations that go along with arranged marriages, it is therefore why arranged marriages should be illegal.

Lets conclude with the origins of arranged marriages.

"From around 500 BC, the Vedic Hindu culture gave rise to what we have come to known as Hinduism. The Manu Smriti, a religious discourse that outlined the do"s and don"ts for regarding duties, rights, laws, code of conduct, and virtues to be practiced by people practicing family life, if they want to lead a life of sanctified dharma. These rules were seeped in patriarchal tones and advocated stripping women of their basic independence, from a belief that independent women spread promiscuity [11]." "As position of women in the society degraded, the concept of marriage and her role in it also changed. Previous custom of asking for her consent was abolished and rituals like dowry, child marriages, exchange marriage and other derogatory customs began to rise. Arranged marriages became the most prevalent way of marriage in the country and among Hindus especially [12]".

Blatant primitive customs of oppressing women carried forth into the modern day isn"t the best starting point to be on for Con.

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org...
[2] https://en.wikipedia.org...
[3] http://www.mbaofficial.com...
[4] https://www.theguardian.com...
[5] http://www.cosmopolitan.com...
[6] https://en.wikipedia.org...
[7] https://www.gov.uk...
[8] http://womennewsnetwork.net...
[9] https://www.gov.uk...
[10] . https://www.theguardian.com...
[11] http://www.culturalindia.net...
[12] https://www.theguardian.com...
Debate Round No. 1
Mariamahmed

Con

You argued that an arranged marriage is against free will and that nearly all arranged marriages are forced marriages. There is a difference between arranged marriages and forced marriages. I am only concerned in arranged marriages.
"Forced marriage is a marriage in which one or more of the parties is married without his or her consent or against his or her will. A forced marriage differs from an arranged marriage, in which both parties consent to the assistance of their parents or a third party (such as a matchmaker) in choosing a spouse."
https://en.wikipedia.org...

In an arranged marriage, one is given some choices and preferences. Not everyone wants to marry for love. It is not about the freedom of choosing a life partner but also the freedom of having someone choose for you. It is something like a gift from the parents to the kids instead of something you get yourself. In addition, dowry is nothing but a guarantee. In the case of a divorce, there will be prosperity and security for the bride. A cast system is something determined by birth but arranged marriages are rarely set from birth. In addition a cast system is relating to a social class or title of an individual and it wouldn't matter the credentials, intelligence or knowledge of one. In an arranged marriage your education, traits, and your hard work is used as something to find a spouse. The selfishness of parents is also unrelated as parents would not benefit much from the arrangement. Once the child is married and starting a new life, the parents are not in the picture. There would be no benefit for them besides seeing their children happy. In a situation where there are severe consequences for not abiding to an arranged marriage it is also because of the parents involvement. For example if everyone in your family was a Jew and you decided to be Christian, there is going to be shame towards the parents. There would be people telling your parents they didn't teach you correctly or didn't raise you correctly. The child would be getting the least pain. In your first example it is as follows:

"I remember when my father said to me: "I am your father, it is my duty to get you married." I knew instantly that he was wrong. He had no right to impose his choice on me. This confusion between parental responsibilities and parental will is at the core of this practice" All my relatives gathered for a family meeting in an attempt to persuade me to agree to my father's demand. They told me: "Your father has given his word to this family. It would bring dishonour and shame on him if you do not comply."" [4].

The showing of the relatives is another example of how the relatives were angered at the father. They thought the father did not teach them about tradition. Tradition is something passed on for generations and it can be broken but through hardship. Just because there is anger toward the child for causing grief to the parents does not mean a law should completely cut off any arranged marriages.

In the report from Sandhya, it is completely possible to reason with your parents. They are human after all. If there is something to talk about, talk about it. Tell them why you should not have an arranged marriage. If they decide not to listen, its as you said, its their free will to let them go. Sandhya can have a love marriage, just not one her parents would want. It is Sandyahs free will to leave her family and have a love marriage and it is Sandhya's family's free will to leave Sandhya. There are many minors who can go to orphanages. It may not be ideal, but Sandhya has a choice. The only thing she can't choose is what family she is born into but she can choose to leave it.

As for the UN views, it is taking about forced marriage not arranged marriage. The Roman Catholic Church may think something but not everyone is Roman Catholic.

Arranged Marriage is not an oppressive idea because nothing is being forced upon you. The bride and groom sign a document saying that they want to marry each other! They sign it with their own hand. There are people there in front of whom they can object and go to court but they sign it. If it is from pressure from their parents, like I said they can choose to leave.

In arranged marriages, there are also divorces. Of course you can leave.

"Some think forced marriage is a rare practice; but the government estimates up to 8,000 cases a year in the UK. Some assume forced marriage affects only adults; but figures show that more than half are under 16 and some are as young as eight [9]."
This is forced marriage not arranged marriage.

Also the of the victims of arranged marriage talk of "wedlock being used as a weapon and the horrors to which this can lead, such as rape, abuse and unwanted pregnancy [10]."

Rap in Sweden is 250% more than that of Pakistan. Sweden has more love marriages and Pakistan has more arranged marriages and there are so many more cases.

http://co-creatingournewearth.blogspot.com...

Your main argument was that arranged marriage is against free will but 75% of your citations were on forced marriage so I think you were confusing those two which are very different. Now here's why arranged marriages should continue to be legal.

1. It is a choice.
Contradictory to what you believe, the bride/groom choose to be married. As I said they sign a paper with their own hands.
2. Love Marriages don't last
Would you rather have a marriage that you like a guy, get married but divorce a year later or go through hardship at first and eventually love the guy and live a long, prosperous life.

"Being in love is not a good reason to get married. It's about the long haul." Arranged marriage is based on the concept that love is a fleeting emotional response, so it deliberately brings a whole range of factors into the equation."
"Low divorce rates in countries with arranged marriages points to the success of the arranged marriage. High divorce rates in countries with love marriages indicate that perhaps this form of marriage does not work."
http://iml.jou.ufl.edu...

3. It is an American Legal Right
We can marry whom we want, how we want, where we want and when we want. Some prefer to get married the traditional way and for some the traditional way is love marriages.

All in all,
Reduction of incompatibilities- same religion, caste, dietary preference, linguistic group, socioeconomic background, etc.
Following one's heart is often wiser than following one's head- love can just be an infatuation.
Lower divorce rates.
Low expectations- neither spouse knows exactly what to expect, so they are often pleasantly surprised by how good their marriage is
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Debate Round No. 2
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Debate Round No. 3
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by Soulman4764 7 months ago
Soulman4764
I feel arranged marriages should not exist, because of one key problem, if the people do not know each other, the people could end up arguing without end, unless both people have come to understand each other well, and love each other, then arranged marriages are fine, but when its forced on them without any knowledge, as pointed out by coercing the person, it could cause confrontations.
Posted by philochristos 7 months ago
philochristos
I've always liked the phrase, "A marriage has been arranged." Some day I plan to arrange one for myself.
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