In the state where I was married (and divorced) before, in any marriage lasting 10 years or longer, spouses are automatically granted half of their former spouses retirement, no questions asked. Therefore, even though the ex was college educated and quite capable of getting and maintaining his own job with a retirement plan, but chose not to, he is entitled to half of my retirement.
For the same reason that I disagree with “no tolerance” policies in public education, as well as all-or-nothing inclusion policies, I find this law completely without merit.
I understand the reasoning behind its inception: it was designed to protect housewives of yesteryear who were often left with no way to support themselves financially after a divorce, having given up any career options they may have had to stay home and raise the children or what have you. I applaud the thought behind it, and I’m sure it did a lot to even out the playing field in years past.
But now that it benefits someone like the ex, who chose a seasonal, menial job over a salaried position using his degree in graphic design, and chose to take unemployment all winter rather than find a different type of job for those months, who chose to use that time at home smoking pot and doing very little of anything else that might contribute to the running of the household, now this law has jumped the shark. It has ceased protecting the people it was designed to help, and instead is benefiting those who clearly do not deserve the benefit.
One of the newspapers posted a story about dads fighting back in the court system in regards to custody and child support, and me with my big mouth decided to comment in the comments on the facebook link that it would be great if they could also review that archaic law that decides that 10 years of marriage means you deserve half of someone’s retirement, and guess what? Yup. Just about every misogynist on the internet responded back to me. That we women wanted equality, and now we have it so just suck it up and “pay up Buttercup.”
Never once did I bash men in my comment. I asked for a review of the arbitrary law, and declared that I would like a more thoughtful approach to the division of assets. But in response, several men decided that I was the source of their misfortune in life, and that I should pay for the wrongdoings of every woman who had ever wronged them. Nevermind that a review like the kind for which I advocate could and obviously would benefit at least some men, including these men who have been so wronged by some apparently evil women. Nope, that didn’t matter. All that mattered is that I was a woman, women have asked for equality, and now that “we have it” I should shut up.
We still have a long way to go, ladies, if men are against any of our ideas, even if it would benefit them, just because a woman has voiced them. A long way to go…