The figures from the Office for National Statistics show that 12.2 of every 1,000 married people in England and Wales were divorced last year, a fall of seven per cent on the 2005 rate of 13.1. It was the lowest divorce rate since 1984.
The lowest divorce rate since 1984, wow, that's really something. But wait a minute! 2005... why does that ring a bell? I've got it: during the last few days of that year same-sex couples got the right to get Civilly Partnershipped. Those who've paid close attention to my rantings will know that, in principle, I'm not in favour of this kind of gay marriage, because it allows a distinction - it's not a "real" marriage, it's a gay marriage - to be made and I want there to be one kind of marriage for both gay and straight couples. However I acknowledge that it's a step in the right direction and most couples around the world don't even have that.
Of course it was to be expected the christians didn't agree:
"If you transport something unique, like marriage, into a different context, there's always a cost. And the cost here is in terms of reduction of marriage and the undermining of it," Don Horrocks of the Evangelical Alliance said.
So... in the year 2006, whilst "real" marriages should have taken a pounding from the horrors of homosexuality, the rate of divorce dropped by 7 percent! Did anyone get Mr. Horrocks on the phone to ask for an explanation yet? What has happened to the sanctity of marriage, or rather: what hasn't happened to it?
As my friend observed, the gays "Could Try Harder".
* Scotland has a separate legal system from England and Wales; due to a change in the divorce laws which made it easier for couples to get divorced the rate shot up there, partly because many couples who were already waiting to finalise their divorce jumped at the opportunity.