The Sexual Revolution Explained
Judge Richard Posner, considered by some the smartest man in America, takes on the subject of the Sexual Revolution
. Discussing contraception, abortion, and the elimination of of syphilis as a deadly disease, Posner writes:The consequence of all these things has been to reduce the marriage rate and delay the average age of marriage, and also to reduce the cost of divorce to women (and to men, by reducing the benefits of marriage to men who want to have children and stay-at-home wives). With less and later marriage and more divorce, women spend less of their sexually active years married and so their demand for nonmarital sex—sex made in any event less risky by improved contraception and the availability of abortion—soars.
The increased demand for divorce was a factor in the successful movement for easy divorce, and easy divorce makes it impossible to channel sex into marriage. In communities (and there are still some) in which premarital sex is strongly disapproved, young people marry to have sex, but marriages so motivated are likely to end in divorce, producing more unmarried people and so more demand for nonmarital sex.
An interesting post from a brilliant man. Of course, you know how that goes; brilliance is no guarantee he's right. But his explanations dovetail nicely with some of my own (less rigorous) theories.