Yesterday’s post prompted some very thoughtful discussion. We appreciate your comments whether you agree with our point or not.
We hope that you will not get distracted, as in times past, by our examples. Of course gay marriage is an issue that affects the family, but it is by no means the only or even the biggest issue–it’s part of a larger cultural problem afflicting marriage. The larger cultural problem surrounding marriage is that marriage and family is no longer a big deal. And we don’t mean this in the Anchorman sense.
Marriage and families are started on a whim. We keep referring to Wilson because he’s awesome, and his point about the diminution of the family bears repeating–especially for those of you who haven’t done your homework. Speaking of marriage, Wilson wrote
we have learned how it (marriage) can be undercut by people who think that their lives will be fuller, their opportunities greater, and their burdens fewer if they are allowed to treat sex as recreation, children as toys, and income as an obligation of government rather than a result of work.
We probably should have had said that “relationships and children” are had on a whim. Meaning, people get together, live together, whatever and have unwanted children with little or no thought to the consequences.
We can think of few more selfish acts.
Then, they either get married or put the child up for adoption or abort the baby, etc., etc.–nearly all of these, certainly the most common, are complete abrogations of their filial responsibilities.
As “rights” have increased in this country, so too have the methods for escaping what should be the responsibilities that automatically accompany them. It’s easy to point to women and the right to choose, but where are the prospective fathers? Don’t they care at all for their children? Historically, men have always been able to avoid their paternal responsibility because they can just up and leave. Rarely could a woman could do the same with her pregnancy. Abortion, in some women’s minds, has leveled the playing field–as though sex and children were some sort of tit-for-tat game.
Spikers is right in the sense that it would probably take a Constitutional Amendment to legally protect marriage in this country. As difficult as that may be, it doesn’t mean that it’s not a battle worth fighting.
An equally difficult battle, but one which we can fight every day, is the larger cultural battle that buruboi referred to in their comments:
we, those who believe that functioning families are integral to society, should pursue cultural standards that protect the traditional and intrinsic values of marriage. That means cultivating sensible cultural norms that motivate people to realize the right, responsibility, privilege, commitment, and even sanctity of marriage and family (i.e. the Mormon community). This can be effectively accomplished, I think, without instituting legal parameters defining what constitutes marriage.
We would expand the thrust of their comments to include not just marriage, but also the family. Regrettably, there are cultural assaults on more than just marriage and motherhood and fatherhood. In Wilson’s articles, the impact of culture on the family is a constant theme. We agree with him and buruboi in believing that there needs to be a cultural sea change with respect to marriage and the family.
For this reason, we oppose abortion and pop cultural attacks on the family and gay marriage and all that stuff because it all affects the family. And for us, the family isn’t just this nebulous thing that needs saving just because of political-religious mores. For us, it makes good policy sense. As we mentioned in yesterday’s post, strengthen the family and you strengthen America. Want to combat crime or illiteracy or, pretty much anything? Do whatever you can to encourage the necessary policy and legal and cultural changes to help America’s families.
*UPDATE 3 April 12:20am MST: Obama’s Abortion Extremism, by Michael Gerson
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