Broken Promises Mean the Death of Trust

Apr 17, 2019 by

by Peter Hitchens:

‘Divorce is not permission to separate. If people really want to separate, they can separate. They don’t need to divorce to do that. Divorce is permission to remarry. I don’t know what your view is on oaths and promises, whether you think people should keep them or not. But if you give someone permission to remarry when their living spouse is still on this earth, then what you are saying is this: that though you have made a pledge to remain married for life to one person, you can abandon that pledge and make the same promise to somebody else, who knows you have lied to your previous spouse. Now it seems to me that certainly no church and no rational legal system can encourage people in promise-breaking on that level.

Or you could say, which is pretty much what our society has said, that in the modern world our promises are now worthless; that what we say, we don’t mean.  We can’t be relied upon to follow through what we promise. We are therefore a society which cannot actually rely on trust. That’s another route to take.

But of course if you examine this society, and any really civilized society, with any care then you will realise that it is upon trust that people will keep their words and keep their obligations.

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