‘Getting what one wants in life is what matters.’ Discuss.

YES: The ultimate goal in life is to achieve happiness and fulfillment and getting what one wants is what matters, provided these ends are morally justifiable and practically feasible.   

  1. The companionship and emotional fulfillment associated with traditional marriage are increasingly forgone in our society in favor of practices, such as cohabitation and serial monogamy. which provide these outcomes without their accompanying social responsibilities.
  2. The social and cultural obligations associated with traditional marriage, such as raising children and families, are increasingly perceived as onerous by a more individualistic generation. Thus, while people may marry, the influence of marriage on such social decisions has waned, making such aspects of traditional marriage increasingly less relevant to our society today.
  3. Traditional marriage which was the basis of economic sustainability for individuals has lost its appeal amongst many in our society as economic sustainability and livelihoods are more easily achieved today without the need for marriage.
  4. Our society defines traditional marriage as a union between heterosexual adults. This definition effectively excludes individuals with same-sex orientations and relationships from exercising their right to marriage, making arrangements such as long-term cohabitation the default alternatives and traditional marriage a neglected or unexercised option.

NO: The desired outcomes from traditional marriage for both individuals and society remain appealing and differentiate from alternative practices or less conventional approaches. Despite the potentially erosive effects of various societal trends, the inherent worth of marriage as both an institution and way of life encourage many to support it and keep it relevant to our society.

  1. Many individuals continue to value traditional marriage as the formal validation of the companionship and emotional fulfillment found in relationships. Accordingly, they place emphasis and direct appropriate resources towards forging traditional marriages, ensuring that it remains relevant to society as a whole. 
  2. Many people remain committed to the social and cultural norms of their communities which emphasize traditional marriage, ensuring that it remains influential in determining relationships and the setting up of families.
  3. Economic circumstances and conditions in our society such as the high cost of living and job uncertainties make marriage compelling as a form of economic partnership and risk-pooling amongst many.
  4. While society defines traditional marriage as a union between heterosexual adults, individuals with same-sex orientations and relationships have campaigned extensively to have this right extended to them by the law, affirming the emotional and psychological influence that traditional marriage has on them. The desire to exercise such relationships within marriage have also led many such individuals to conduct marriages and civic unions overseas, further emphasizing the extent to which traditional marriage is sought after by them even if it is not presently a legally exercised option within our society.