Historically, adultery has been subject to severe sanctions, including the death penalty, and has been grounds for divorce under fault-based divorce laws. However, in many countries including the United States, many of these laws have been removed from the books or are not enforced. Interestingly enough, I discovered today through inadvertence, that South Korea still maintains and enforces an anti-adultery law, with those convicted facing prison sentences of up to two years.
Despite decades of Western influence, this 50 year old law continues to be up-held by the South Korean Constitutional Court under the grounds of necessity. However, the number of adultery cases filed declined to 8,720 in 2005 from 12,762 in 2000, according to prosecutors' records. Not to mention, more than 80 percent of adultery cases filed from 2000-2005 were dropped without resulting in any formal charges because of the complaint being withdrawn or lack of evidence, according to prosecutors.
"Evidence" means actual proof of adultery as in photographs of sexual intercourse. It does not include photographs of other activities being construed to mean an adulterous relationship. (Click here for additional ramblings on this topic.)
Question for the day...
If adultery laws were enforced would adultery be considered less socially acceptable and thereby decrease the divorce rate? (Comments encouraged.)