A New Era of Civility?/Martin Rosenfeld

Posted on October 19, 2012


Peggy Noonan wrote about the post-debate era in the Wall Street Journal. Politicians, she feels, can win the debate and lose the post-debate. This is how she explains the recent Romney surge.

What interests me is the following snippet:

“The president was trying to look strong and commanding, to take control. Did he look strong, or did he look like a hack, like a tough Chicago pol who isn’t quite big enough to be where he is?

We may look back on 2012 as the point at which old school officially ended, and some new school began. Maybe the public isn’t so impressed by old school. Maybe this is how people like their politics now.”

All good things, and some not so-good, must come to an end. How will we remember the era of contested and confrontational divorce processes? Has its end come? Will mediation and other amicable options become more in vogue as we assess the damage that has been caused to American families by the “old school” divorce system. I am hopeful. Mediators need to be so. But do we truly have an alternative. If we care about children of divorce, family dysfunction, mental health issues, etc. we must, perforce, find more palliative ways of pursuing our divorces in America. Perhaps the time to put the old system in mothballs has arrived. If it has, it has not come a moment too soon.