It is interesting for me to observe the reactions AFA of Indiana generates with this weekly email, media interviews, articles and other aspects of our work. The anger we cause and yes, the “intolerance” against us really is very different from my own soft-spoken, introverted personality. I’ve jokingly told my wife many times, to never Google my name, she might wonder what kind of evil ax murderer she married fourteen years ago.
Yesterday, our office manager handed me one of our July donor letters that a donor had taken and written a profanity-laced rant over due to the religious nature of my letter. It gets pretty rough sometimes when even those on our side snipe at us.
By the way, if there is anything I am growing more committed to, it is that I need to remember that politics falls far below our nation’s spiritual condition. I am convicted that it is wrong for me, in my position at AFA-IN, to “hide my light under a basket” by only addressing the political or sociological research aspects of the issues of the day. I am more often now recalling Thomas Jefferson’s words, which we have not yet removed from his Washington, DC, monument, stating, “I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just, that His justice cannot sleep forever.” This being the case, I must point people to Him when I can, if I truly love my country.
Not all the opposition and anger we cause, even among our allies once in a while, is a bad thing. Sometimes, it is a reflection that we hit the mark when we know that what we said was true, consistent with our values, and done so in a responsible way. Such is the case of last week’s email.
We really stirred things up within the Indiana Chamber of Commerce, and the State House with our reporting of the business advocate’s consideration of weighing in against the Marriage Protection Amendment in the 2013 or 2014 legislature. While their answer was not definitive, and still terse, the Chamber repeatedly told me that they are “neutral on the issue” of homosexual marriage.
It is still worth contacting the State Chamber in regard to this issue, as you can be assured that a few outspoken liberal business leaders will continue to push the myth that being pro-homosexual is good business.
In regard to this weird notion that being pro-homosexual or pro same-sex marriage is good for business there is even more data out there. Last week, I listed numerous studies showing that the best states for job growth are those with (or cities in) Marriage Protection Amendments.
Dr. Bradford Wilcox of the National Marriage Project has found another benefit that traditional marriage has for the business community. He reports:
“Married men work about 160 hours more compared to their similarly credentialed peers after they transition into marriage in that first year of married life. Men who get married and stay married tend to be better workers. They work harder, they work longer hours, they think more strategically, and as a consequence, they tend to earn more money."
Dr. Jennifer Morse of the Ruth Institute agrees, adding, “The family is absolutely necessary for the market to function. The substitutes to the family are expensive and ineffective, and taxpayers end up paying the price.”
The Heritage Foundation has also found that married men earn, on average, $8,000 more per year than their unmarried counterparts who are living with women, and that the yearly household income for married couples is $12,500 higher than for couples simply living together. Additionally, married couples are a whopping 700 percent more likely to own a home than are unmarried couples, and are also more likely to own stock and bonds. Married couples are also significantly more likely to have savings accounts and much less likely to default on home loans.
( Incidentally, there is an interesting report listing 162 research based benefits of marriage to society, businesses, men, women, children, schools, etc. listed here.)
The Chamber of Commerce, in spite of their anger with us for calling out their appearance of promoting same-sex marriage (via a talkative employee and a Chamber document called Indiana Vision 2025), has scores of reasons to support traditional marriage. They should consider the economic benefits of married men and women rather than shooting at this messenger. The mayor of Indianapolis also has plenty of similar reasons to veto Prop # 213 which sets up taxpayer funded marital benefits for domestic partners of city employees.
In short, there is a mountain of data proving that strong marriages are essential to a strong vibrant economy. Where marriage is devalued and in decline, businesses, schools and the economy suffer which are the very things the State Chamber of Commerce works daily to improve.