Have you ever seen a dog race up to the boundary of a yard, and abruptly stop? It looks very odd, until you realize that the dog is wearing a fancy collar. You surmise that there is an invisible electric “fence” embedded in the yard. The dog has been shocked so often that it stops itself before it actually touches the invisible fence line.
This image flashed in my mind as I was reading “Home Economics: The Consequences of Changing Family Structure,” by Nick Schulz. Mr. Schulz does a fine job laying out the harmful effects of the deconstruction of the family, both to individuals and to the larger project of the free society. This nice little book lays out the economic consequences of family breakdown. But he studiously avoids anything that might have even the remotest chance of getting him tagged with the label of “moralizing.” Or perhaps I should say, anything that would “zap” him with such a label.
He throw out the obligatory protective covering right at the beginning of this small paperback by promising to refrain from “passing judgment about divorce or out-of-wedlock births.” I think this is rather an odd position to take while describing such socially destructive trends. But that is where we are as a culture, due to the systematic strategy of the Life Style Left of zapping anyone who dares to challenge their Orthodoxy. You know the Orthodoxy, don’t you?
- The kids will be fine as long as their parents are happy. Read more…
Recently I had an exchange on Facebook about redefining marriage to include gay couples. I mentioned something about conservative gays against gay marriage, and a friend replied to me, saying:
“I for one have never heard of a conservative gay … so that’s a new one on me.”
I wasn’t surprised when he said it, because I didn’t know that conservative gays existed either until the past couple years. Like him, I thought all gays were liberals.
But conservative gays do exist. There are gays who do not agree with the gay marriage issue.
I keep wondering why liberal gays get all the media attention. Why are liberal gays the only gays you see on TV with signs and banners? Why are they the ones who get interviews and publicity, and not the others? Isn’t the marriage issue a gay issue? Read more…
I’ve got a secret to tell you. It’s about Proposition 8 – the ballot initiative that defined marriage as only between a man and a woman in California, November 2008. I call it “my little prop 8 secret” because I have only told three people, until now.
My secret is this: I did’t vote on that measure. I voted that day; I voted on all the other issues and candidates. But for Prop 8 I did not cast a vote one way or the other.
I knew that I didn’t have enough information to vote in either direction. The “equality” arguments were starting to be persuasive, yet in many ways I am and always have been rather traditional. I knew what the Bible had to say about marriage, but I was starting to wonder what the harm would really be if gays could marry. I was sincerely worried about voting wrongly then regretting it later. And by “wrongly” I mean voting for something harmful regardless of whether it won or not. I take voting that seriously and I worry that someday I will have to give an accounting of the votes I have cast. Intuiting that this was a critical issue and that I lacked information, I refrained. Read more…
Last week on Public Discourse, Prof Justin Dyer offers a review of Jeffry Bell’s Why America Needs Social Conservatism. He states:
“What divides social conservatives from social liberals,” Bell claims, “is this: Most—not all—social conservatives believe the words in that sentence [from the Declaration] are literally true. Most—not all—opponents of social conservatism do not believe those words are literally true.” In Bell’s account, the key words in question are “truths,” “self-evident,” “Creator,” and “unalienable.” Whether or not you take these concepts seriously, Bell suggests, is a likely indicator of where you fall on the polarizing social issues of our day. “Most social conservatives,” he maintains, “believe, with the Declaration, that our rights would not exist if not for the theistic God who gave them.” “Most social liberals,” however, “believe that equality and human rights are the product of human enlightenment—of progressive self-illumination.”
I agree, as far as it goes. But I would just add that there are two kinds of libertarians. Some libertarians base their minimum government views on natural law. These people can easily make common cause with social conservatives, and may indeed best be described as social conservatives rather than libertarians. The other kind of libertarian takes a position of complete skepticism with respect to morality on pretty much anything except liberty. These guys (and it is almost always guys) are more like nihilists than conservatives. Read more…
This doesn’t surprise me:
BOSTON (Reuters) – Men who pay for sex are more likely than men who do not pay for sex to commit a variety of offenses including violent crimes against women, according to research conducted in the Boston area. Read more…
In my previous post, rebutting the Libertarian Party of MN’s position on same sex marriage, I mention that I have written about why the government can’t really get out of the marriage business. It is interesting to me how common this argument has become. I think lots of people just wish this whole topic would go away, and they hope that privatizing marriage will somehow make that possible. Rather than restating all my arguments, I’m going to repost and relink to some of my articles. Suffice to say, that I don’t think the argument for privatizing marriage works.
Here is one called, Privatizing Marriage is Not the Answer to the Same Sex Marriage Debate. Comment away!
The Libertarian Party of Minnesota has taken a position on the proposal to place a marriage amendment on the ballot for the voters of Minnesota. I am taking the time to rebut this paragraph because this kind of argument has become all too common, even among those who have every desire and intention to expand the scope of government. You might think this would give Libertarians pause, but, that is another story.
Here is what the LPMN has to say:
The proposed Gay Marriage Ban would expand government control and restrict the freedom of consenting adults to live their own lives as they choose. Libertarians believe that marriage is a private matter between individuals. We believe that marriage is a fundamental human right, and that all personal relationships, including marriage, should be at the sole discretion and agreement of the individuals involved, as well as any family, friends, or religious institutions they may choose to involve. Government has no business restricting or interfering with marriage. This ban would create a caste system by dividing society into two classes: those who are permitted to marry, and those who are not.
Let’s start at the beginning:
The proposed Gay Marriage Ban would expand government control and restrict the freedom of consenting adults to live their own lives as they choose. Actually, affirming that marriage is the union of a man and a woman does not affect anyone’s ability to “live as they choose.” It affects people’s qualifications for the rights and responsibilities associated with a social and public institution. Same sex couples can live together, invest and spend money together, probably share parenting, and of course, do anything they want in their bedrooms.
Libertarians believe that marriage is a private matter between individuals. This statement has multiple meanings, and so is nearly Read more…