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Are you a Victim of the Sexual Revolution?
This page helps complete Step 1:
We honestly Face and Embrace the Impact of the Sexual Revolution on our lives.
If you are not familiar with the “7 Steps to Sexual Peace,” go here.
We have identified twelve categories of people who have been harmed by the Sexual Revolution. This questionnaire explores Gay Lifestyle Refugees. Use this check list to see if you are a Victim of the Sexual Revolution.
Our goal here is not merely to identify Victims. The goal is to help the Victims become Survivors, and the Survivors to become Activists for positive change.
Courage International - a ministry to men and women who experience same-sex attractions and those who love them.
Help 4 Families - help for the gender-confused and their families
If you are a Gay Lifestyle Refugee, you may benefit from these resources created or compiled by the Ruth Institute.
Posted on: Thursday, December 06, 2018
For more information, contact: email@example.com.
Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse, Founder and President of the Ruth Institute, said her organization was delighted to join such colleagues as the American College of Pediatricians, Alliance Defending Freedom, the American Association of Pro-Life Obstetricians and Gynecologists, and Liberty Counsel in applauding the decision of the Trump Administration to uphold the scientific definition of sex in federal law.
In an extraordinary move, the Obama Administration had urged federal agencies to expand the Title IX definition of sex to include so-called “gender identity” – treating those who identify with the opposite sex as if they were members of the opposite sex.
The letter released today supports the Trump Administration’s decision “to uphold the original scientific meaning and legal intent of the term ‘sex’ in federal law.”
Signers of the December 6th letter to the Departments of Justice, Education and Health and Human Services, noted:
Besides the organizations mentioned above, the letter was also endorsed by the Christian Medical and Dental Association, the National Task Force for Therapy Equality and the Freedom Defense Fund.
Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse is the author of the recently published book, The Sexual State: How Elite Ideologies Are Destroying Lives, which includes a discussion of transgenderism in the chapter "The Gender Revolution."
Posted on: Monday, October 22, 2018
by Jennifer Roback Morse
This article was first posted at Crisis Magazine on September 11, 2018.
Miami police arrested two priests for “lewd and lascivious behavior.” One of them was also charged with “indecent exposure.” The two priests were in a parked car in a public place, performing a “sex act.” As the policeman noted, “there were no tints on the windows.” Let’s talk about these two men, and what this incident means for our (non-stop) public conversation about sex.
First off, let me state for the record: I will never say “all gay men are….” I once wrote an article called “Fifty Shades of Gay.” I’m not about to draw rash conclusions about “gay men” from the behavior of a few.
However, this incident certainly casts doubt on what I will call the Grand Gay Narrative. The Gay Marketing Men and their allies who promote the Sexual Revolution have gone to a lot of trouble to create the following impressions in the public mind:
The incident of two priests having oral sex in public undermines the plausibility of the Grand Gay Narrative. Let us consider these points one by one:
The most logical conclusion is that these two men are not in command of themselves. They are either grossly immature or they have some kind of obsessive-compulsive “issues,” as the euphemism goes. In other words, this is not normal behavior—at all.
One might reply that these two men are not typical of gay men, and that their behavior is not an intrinsic part of being gay. OK. Let’s say these two guys are not necessarily typical. They are atypical, out-of-control whack jobs.
In fact, I will go one step further: I won’t refer to them as “gay” at all. If you notice, I have not yet referred to them as “gay.” I plan not to do so. Perhaps you did not know that distinguished psychologist and expert on gender, Dr. Lisa Diamond, has stated: “There is currently no scientific or popular consensus on the exact constellation of experiences that definitively ‘qualify’ a person as lesbian, gay or bisexual, rather than curious, confused or maladjusted.”
Instead of the scientifically ambiguous and contested term “gay,” let me use a more precise term. The community of public health and medical researchers generally use the term, “men who have sex with men,” or MSM. Is the behavior of 39-year-old Fr. Diego Berrio and 30-year-old Fr. Edwin Giraldo Cortez in any way typical of other men who have sex with men? Looking at the Centers for Disease Control’s reports on rates of sexually transmitted diseases gives us some insight into this question.
Syphilis: the CDC reports that “MSM continued to account for the majority of Primary & Secondary syphilis cases in 2016 (Figures 35 and 36). Of 27,814 reported P&S syphilis cases in 2016, 16,155 (58.1 percent) were among MSM, including 14,553 (52.3 percent) cases among men who had sex with men only and 1,602 (5.8 percent) cases among men who had sex with both men and women (Figure 36).”
HIV: This CDC report states:
Sexually transmitted diseases are the result of a combination of having sex with multiple partners, and not using condoms consistently. Some might argue that lots of people have the urge to have multiple sex partners. In that sense, we could say they are all “born that way.” But we expect people to control that urge. And most people successfully do.
What can we conclude from the much higher rates of STDs among men who have sex with men compared with everyone else? We can, I think, reasonably conclude that MSM are less likely to be in command of themselves than others, more likely to have multiple partners, and less likely to take steps that reduce risk.
These two particular men are certainly not in command of themselves. Do you really want Fr. Diego Berrio or Fr. Edwin Giraldo Cortez running the youth group at your parish, or deciding whether your marriage is null? Is there really a safe or appropriate placement for someone who can’t control himself?
Whatever your answer to those questions might be, I think we can agree on one thing: this incident seriously tarnishes the carefully crafted image created
by the Gay Marketing Men.
Posted on: Tuesday, October 09, 2018
By Tyler O'Neil
This article was first published October 4, 2018, at PJMedia.com.
In 21st century America, sex is all around us: on television, in movies, in classrooms, in politics, and even in churches. Sex permeates our desires, our expectations for relationships, even our identity. The Sexual Revolution goes far beyond the LGBT movement, and it has fundamentally reshaped American society. But few Americans actually grasp exactly where this revolution came from. An explosive new book reveals that government and wealthy donors, rather than impersonal historical forces or newly liberated women, propelled the Sexual Revolution.
"The State bears the greatest responsibility for the toxic sexual culture in which we live," Jennifer Roback Morse, founder of the Ruth Institute (RI), writes in "The Sexual State: How Elite Ideologues Are Destroying Lives And Why the Church Was Right All Along." She presented five other explanations for the Sexual Revolution, and found each one wanting.
Many have suggested that the Sexual Revolution came about through the inevitable and impersonal "march of history." This view does not work "because it robs us and our forbears of human agency." Even the over-hyped birth control pill "is just an inert piece of technology" that people could decide to use or not use, or use in different ways.
Morse also rebuts the feminist narrative, which suggests that "these changes have been one long string of victories for the benefit and advancement of women." Ironically, the very success of women's liberation "undermines the claim that women have been completely powerless and dominated by the patriarchy throughout all of recorded history." Furthermore, the author argues that "the pro-life movement is dominated by women," suggesting that not all women want more of the Sexual Revolution.
Perhaps the most common explanation for the Sexual Revolution is the "liberationist narrative," which posits that everyone is more free thanks to new sexual norms. This view also cannot explain how age-old oppression was immediately dissolved in one generation, Morse argues.
Furthermore, many people "have become less free, in fact actually oppressed, by the very forces that are supposedly liberating us. The breaking of family bonds has increased the size and scope of the State, including the intrusion of the State into the everyday lives of ordinary people." She mentions college sex tribunals, family courts — which even rule on which schools and churches children can attend — and higher taxes to pay for social workers who manage tough divorces and family breakdown.
Morse also rejects the "over-population narrative," which suggests that "too many people create ecological disaster and economic backwardness," so the State needs to control population through birth control and abortion. Interestingly, advocates of this narrative "haven't been able to adapt the narrative to the changing circumstances of population decline, which the Over-Population Narrative itself helped bring about."
Finally, the author turns to a "steal capitalist narrative," explaining the Sexual Revolution by pointing to the many people who benefit financially from family breakdown. Abortionists, pharmaceutical companies, the fertility industry, pornographers, divorce professionals, family court judges and lawyers, medical professionals who specialize in sexually transmitted diseases, and social workers all perversely benefit from family breakdown, contraception, and abortion.
Even higher education and employers benefit from women choosing to get married later, to go to school and to work, rather than raising a family. Morse claims that employers benefit from easy divorce as well, as women are less able to rely on their husbands to financially support them. She suggests that these factors cement the Sexual Revolution, but they do not explain it.
The author boils the Sexual Revolution down to three basic "ideologies:" the Contraceptive Ideology separates sex from childbearing; the Divorce Ideology separates sex and childbearing from marriage; and the Gender Ideology eliminates the distinctions between men and women that individuals do not explicitly embrace.
"The Sexual Revolution needs the State for one major reason: the premises of the Sexual Revolution are false," Morse declares. "Sex does make babies. Children do need their parents, and therefore marriage is the proper and just context for both sex and childbearing. Men and women are different." The Sexual Revolution requires "reconstructing society" around a rejection of these basic truths, so it involves a great deal of propaganda.
"If you can make people believe Bruce Jenner, the 1976 male Olympic decathlon winner, is a woman, you can make them believe 2 + 2 = 5. If you can make people afraid to say, 'Bruce Jenner is a man,' you can make them afraid to say anything," Morse quips. "The Sexual Revolution is a totalitarian ideology with a blind commitment to the implementation of its tenets, regardless of the human costs."
The book begins with a list of victims of the Sexual Revolution, a topic for a future article. Those victims include children of divorce, spouses who did not want to get divorced, women who waited too long to have children, young women who wanted to abstain from sex, and more. Suffice it to say, the Sexual Revolution has harmed many people.
Morse narrates how the state unleashed the Sexual Revolution, beginning with the Supreme Court contraception case Griswold v. Connecticut (1965). The Contraceptive Ideology predated this decision and played a large role in pushing the Court to change the law on contraception.
The author cites liberal attorney Leo Pfeffer and conservative historian Allan Carlson, who agreed that governments will consider contraception necessary once they have established welfare states — in order to prevent the subsidized poor from having children. Tragically, the U.S. government pushed contraception before Griswold, pushing contraception in post-World War II Japan and other foreign countries considered to be U.S. interests.
In the 1960s and 1970s, USAID started pushing contraception and abortion, thinking these "family planning" efforts would help other countries defeat poverty. These policies were also wrapped up with the ugly eugenics movement in America.
In order to downplay the ugly history of eugenics, contraception activists turned to the work of Alfred Kinsey, an academic who claimed that "up to" 67 to 98 percent of American men ha had premarital sex and that 69 percent of American males had at least one experience with a prostitute. His claims were shot down by other researchers, who exposed his shoddy methods. But the Rockefeller Foundation funded his research and sent his crackpot theories mainstream.
Planned Parenthood and its allies enjoyed connections to elites, and helped push the Court in the direction of legalizing contraception for anyone across the country.
Similarly, elite institutions and big donors pushed no-fault divorce, Morse argues. After Ronald Reagan signed the first no-fault divorce law in 1968, the American Law Institute (ALI), founded with support from the Carnegie Foundation, crafted model legislation to insert the state in between husbands and wives — and favor the spouse who wanted a divorce.
The ALI pushed for decriminalizing private sexual acts between consenting adults, a key plank that struck down states' ability to regulate obscene materials and contraception.
By 1974, all but five states had adopted a form of no-fault divorce.
Morse argues that no-fault divorce positions the power of the state on the side of whichever spouse least wants the marriage to continue. This damages spouses who are committed to the marriage, but it also damages children who do not grow up with both of their parents. It also empowers the government, which now mediates between divorced mothers and fathers.
The author argues that the claim "the kids will be all right" is propaganda. She cites the work of Judith Wallerstein, who found that divorce has a long-term impact on children — damaging their prospects for romantic relationships in adulthood. Similarly, the worries about husbands abusing wives are overblown, as studies have shown that women and children are more likely to be abused in cohabiting relationships than in marriage.
Finally, Morse argues that the government and elites pushed the "Gender Ideology" — long before transgender identity went mainstream — in order to encourage women to be "ideal workers:" "a person who never takes time off, is never sick, whose mental and psychological focus is entirely on the job."
"We've built a society around the premise that our educated women must be permitted to time their 1.6 pregnancies right down to the minute when it's most convenient. But convenient for whom? All too often, it means the convenience of the employers, or the interests of the career path, or of those who hold the student debt which the young woman or young couple must pay down," Morse claims.
The author does not lament the fact that women have entered the "managerial class," highly paid professions which do not involve manual labor. She herself is a member of this class. Rather, she suggests that the pressures of work and the benefits of this class enable people to overlook the obvious differences between men and women.
"People who do manual labor aren't deluded for a moment that men and women are interchangeable," Morse quips. For this reason, men are vastly over-represented in the dangerous professions.
Women's involvement in the workforce need not be connected to the Sexual Revolution's Gender Ideology, the author argues. "I claim the right to participate in the labor market as women, not as men in skirts." She suggests that "educated women would be better off if they accepted that their fertility peaks during their twenties and planned their lives around this fact."
Morse lays out a basic life plan: Women should go to college for a liberal education, not a vocational one. They should et married and have kids early, using their higher educations to be involved in educating their kids. "Let your husbands support you. Trust them. Be grateful for them," and when the children are older, go back for an advanced degree and work.
Tragically, activists are pushing on all these issues and more. Morse discusses same-sex marriage in a chapter on the Gender Ideology. She recalls the battle over California's Proposition 8.
"The 'Yes on 8' campaign was arguably the largest grassroots campaign in history," she writes, noting that California's secretary of state website crashed because there were over 5,000 pages of contributors to the campaign. Yet modern "progressives" "took Proposition 8 to court on flimsy pretexts and rich people's money."
After Proposition 8 passed and the people had amended their constitution, California's attorney general refused to defend it. The people's will failed thanks to an effective pocket veto. in the case Hollingsworth v. Perry (2013), the Supreme Court ruled that proponents of ballot initiatives like Proposition 8 could not defend such laws in court, enabling Gov. Jerry Brown (D-Calif.) to resume same-sex marriage in the state. Now-Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) performed the first same-sex marriage after this ruling.
As with Proposition 8, wealthy liberals continue to push Sexual Revolution issues, particularly abortion and contraception. George Soros and Warren Buffett continue to fund abortion groups, and they use their money to "shape political institutions so they can use the government to recreate the world in their own image and likeness," Morse alleges.
Importantly, the book notes that contraception carries health risks for women, and some studies have shown that hormonal contraception is as likely to cause cancer as smoking. "Smoking has been all but banned, tobacco companies have been sued, and smokers have been socially shunned," Morse writes. "By contrast, the government actively promotes the use of hormonal contraception while the media plays down the risks."
Abortion, often considered an alternative should contraception fail, also carries tremendous health risks to the mother, which medical associations keep secret for political reasons, the author argues. She also notes that wealthy donors funded abortion activists who convinced the Supreme Court to strike down Texas regulations treating abortion clinics like any other medical facility.
"When the people of Texas, acting through their duly elected state legislators, enacted health and safety legislation for abortion clinics, the elites of society knocked it down," Morse declares.
"The Sexual State" makes a compelling case that state power and wealthy elites pushed the Sexual Revolution, and people should fight back. While Morse does address LGBT issues, her book mostly focuses on the negative impacts the Sexual Revolution has had on family life, harming faithful spouses, children of divorce, and many others.
Morse, a Roman Catholic, presents a very Catholic view of these issues and champions the Catholic Church's approach. Her book was ill-fated to release shortly after the sexual abuse scandal broke, but her points still stand.
The book may be too polemical, but it raises important questions about the hidden harms of the Sexual Revolution and who benefits from this humongous social change.
"The Sexual State" is an important book for libertarians to wrestle with, as it presents a compelling case that big government benefits from the Sexual Revolution, and that marriage and family would help weaken the power of the state.
Posted on: Monday, September 24, 2018
by Jennifer Roback Morse
This article was first published August 28, 2018, at Crisis Magazine.
The clergy sex abuse and cover-up stories have created a linguistic challenge for faithful Catholics. Over 80 percent of these clergy abuse cases involve predatory sexual activity between adult men and younger men in less powerful positions. Some Catholic commentators refer to these cases as “gay” to distinguish them from “pedophilia.” Their intention is sound: the “pedophilia” label has frequently been a way to deflect attention away from abusive homosexual conduct. I, however, maintain that we should avoid the word “gay,” and even the word “homosexual.” Former Apostolic Nuncio Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò’s bombshell revelations about sexual abuse and the network of cover-ups raises the stakes. We really must get the terminology right.
[Photo: Pope Francis with Cardinal McCarrick, Vatican Media]
Daniel Mattson wrote an important book, “Why I Don’t Call Myself Gay.” He outlines the philosophical, theological, and pastoral problems with the “gay” label. I add to Mattson’ arguments an additional consideration. “Gay” is a losing term for us.
At this moment in history, the word “gay” is loaded with positive associations. The word “gay” means young, fashionable, intelligent, and witty. “Gay” might also mean a weak, victimized, innocent waif, so psychologically vulnerable he might commit suicide. This perception is so prevalent that health care professionals are not supposed to even mention the health risks of “gay sex.”
Speaking of “gay sex,” what exactly do gay men do together? The images we have been presented suggest that all they do is hold hands, cuddle, and kiss. We never imagine “gay sex” to include rectal bleeding or intense pain or rectal incontinence or adult diapers.
In this respect, the “gay” image resembles the other sanitized images created around the Sexual Revolution. No-fault divorce involves two sensible mature people mutually deciding to “move on.” Children of divorce always “get over it.” No woman ever regrets her abortion. And so on.
All these claims are false.
When today’s mainstream journalists hear the word “gay,” they might picture a confused but basically innocent teenager. They might picture this teenager being bullied by classmates or scolded by adults. These benign associations with the word “gay” have been carefully crafted over decades. In fact, this is one place where the word “gay” properly applies. We can accurately describe the people who created these images, as the Gay Marketing Men.
I believe this explains the reluctance of many in the media to address the clergy sex abuse story as forcefully as a story about men preying on women victims. The terms “predator” or “domination” or “exploitation” do not register in connection with “gay.” In the average journalist’s minds, these words are associated with “toxic masculinity” or “conservative Christian.”
Catholic friends, we are not going to be able to dislodge these slanted images, no matter how loudly we yell about it. The protective moat around “gay” is too wide and deep. The Gay Marketing Men have spent millions of dollars and countless hours fashioning this picture and securing it firmly in the public mind.
Some Catholic commentators use the word “homosexual” in an effort to sidestep the term “gay.” I don’t think this strategy avoids the problem. Historically, the term “homosexual” was invented in the nineteenth century to “medicalize” what had previously been considered a moral or behavioral issue. Medicalizing behavior doesn’t help our cause. Besides, the word “homosexual” without qualifiers doesn’t buy us much help from the general public. It just makes us look out of date, like people who still use the word “Negro.”
Does that mean we throw up our hands and give up? Certainly not. I propose a different approach that gives us a better chance of success.
Instead of the word “gay,” use the most descriptively accurate phrase possible in the context of what you are trying to say. Instead of “gay sex scandal,” try this: “male on male sexual predation.” Sometimes, the most appropriate strategy is to use a long, clunky, but highly descriptive phrase like, “a powerful man with deep-seated attractions to males used his position of power to exploit younger men under his authority.” No one could conceivably confuse this word-picture with the teenaged boy who may have feelings he doesn’t understand.
In some cases, “pederasty” could be a good term to use. The Gay Marketing Men have not sanitized this term, and “pederasty” is distinct from pedophilia. (A “pederast” is a man who wants and has sex with adolescent boys. I had to look it up.)
The term “same-sex attraction” proposed by members of Courage, is a particular instance of the general policy I am suggesting. Dan Mattson and David Prosen and others argue that the gay identity is an inaccurate, self-limiting description. These men reject the term “gay” to eliminate a ton of philosophical and theological baggage.
The current torrent of embarrassing sex scandals is actually providential for the long-run health of the Body of Christ. We have the chance to offer authentic Catholic witness of authentic Catholic teaching to a desperate world. To succeed, though, we must be careful with our language. We can’t say or imply, “All gay men are predators,” because it isn’t true. At the same time, we cannot let anyone else say or imply, “All gay men are innocent lambs,” because that is not true either. And we will need at least some help from journalists who don’t necessarily share all of our views.
We can restate Archbishop Viganò’s explosive revelations without ever using the words “gay” or even “homosexual.”
“Men who do not agree with the teachings of the Catholic Church, nevertheless swore allegiance to the Church, and accepted positions of power, authority, wealth, and influence. They used those positions to indulge themselves sexually, to favor their friends, and to advance their careers. Among their preferred forms of sexual indulgence were the abuse of little boys, the seduction of teenaged-boys and the harassment of young adult male subordinates.”
No one will ever mistake this description for an appealing kid on a TV sitcom. No one would dream of saying these perpetrators were “born that way.”
When we use the word “gay,” we are doing battle on the field chosen by our opponents. By contrast, when we use other terms, we give our listeners a chance to think about what we are saying, without all the noise associated with the terms “gay” or “homosexual.”
“Gay” is a political word, a marketing word, a propaganda word. We don’t need to use it. So let’s quit using it.
Posted on: Monday, August 20, 2018
by Claire Chretien
This article was first posted August 8, 2018, at Life Site News.
According to Pope Francis-appointed Cardinal Blase Cupich of Chicago, homosexuality in the clergy isn’t the main issue in the sex abuse crisis, and saying so is a “diversion” away from the real issue, clericalism.
“In the weeks since allegations were made against Archbishop McCarrick, some commentators and clergy have suggested that allowing gay men to be priests has created a culture ripe for the kind of abuse Archbishop McCarrick is alleged to have committed,” the Jesuit publication reported. “But Cardinal Cupich said he ‘would be very careful’ in accepting that conclusion, noting that similar claims made during the height of the child sexual abuse crisis in the 2000s were refuted by an independent 2011 report compiled by the John Jay College of Criminal Justice.”
Cupich also praised the Dallas Charter, the U.S. bishops’ document on dealing with sex abuser priests, as having been effective at removing now ex-Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, even though it specifically avoids addressing consequences for predatory bishops. He made a number of other comments about the need for “a review to confirm if policies that already were in place were not followed” and how “shocked” he was to learn about McCarrick’s pederasty.
“Cardinal Cupich sounds more like a bureaucrat than a pastor,” Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse, Founder and President of the Ruth Institute and the author of the forthcoming book The Sexual State, told LifeSiteNews. “I am particularly concerned that he is recycling the old canard from the 2002 go-round of clerical sex abuse: ‘this has nothing to do with homosexuality.’”
“Both the 2004 and the 2011 John Jay Reports concluded that 80% of the cases of sexual abuse of minors were of adolescent boys,” she pointed out. “That has something to do with homosexual activity. The current crisis is about seminarians being sexually harassed by their superiors. That has something to do with homosexual activity.”
Austin Ruse, President of the Center for Family and Human Rights, echoed Morse’s sentiments.
"Cardinal Cupich continues the false narrative that the sex abuse scandals in 2002 had nothing to do with homosexuality when in fact, more than 80% of the cases were adult men assaulting teen boys,” the international pro-life and pro-family activist said. “Then and now this scandal has everything to do with homosexuality. We simply will not allow them to get away with this narrative, particularly since McCarrick's sexual predation was on adult men.”
George Neumayr, author of The Political Pope: How Pope Francis Is Delighting the Liberal Left and Abandoning Conservatives and a book about former President Obama’s attacks on religious freedom, had strong words for Cupich and Washington’s Cardinal Donald Wuerl, the latter of whom recently said the U.S. bishops should investigate themselves.
“These charlatans don’t need a new bureaucratic panel; they need an exorcist,” he wrote on Facebook.
Father Thomas Berg, a professor of moral theology at St. Joseph’s Seminary, tweeted that Cupich’s “immediate defensiveness about homosexuality in the priesthood...typifies what is so wrong in episcopal culture.”
Fr. Thomas Berg@frtberg
The immediate defensiveness about homosexuality in the priesthood; improved H.R. policies can fix this; “someone dropped the ball”
#McCarrick case: #rubbish @CardinalBCupich typifies what is so wrong in episcopal culture.
Dr. Janet Smith, a moral theologian at Sacred Heart Major Seminary in Detroit, said, “I believe that [Cardinal] Cupich is correct that clericalism is a great problem in the Church perhaps as seriously for how priests and seminarians are treated by their fellow priests as laity are treated by priests. Too many priests are petty tyrants who will not share power and who wield their power to their own advantage rather than to serve others.”
“So yes, clericalism does need to be addressed and one hopes that when the problem of homosexual networks in diocese[s] and orders is eliminated, other problems in the priesthood can be addressed,” she told LifeSiteNews. “What those who are involved in homosexual networks are guilty of is not just ‘sexual misbehavior’ or ‘sexual misconduct’; it sometimes involves assault and misuse of power and just plain old mortal sin.”
Another thing Cupich said to America was that he thinks the Church needs new structures to report what the magazine described as “sexual misconduct not involving children.” America wrote:
“If there was a misstep in this, so that people did not have the means by which they could put forward a complaint with objectivity and security, [knowing] that it would be acted on, then we need to put [that] in place,” Cardinal Cupich said.
But, he said, there is no need to “invent any new machinery” in order to adopt policies for reporting such allegations.
“An H.R. department would know how to help us do that, and we should learn from those best practices,” the cardinal said.
“We have heard so many stories of priests brave enough to report immoral sexual advances and forced sexual contact that have been ignored by bishops or which have been used against the priests who report, to very much want to have an investigation into dioceses to find out whether bishops have [dealt] well or poorly with reports of priests, heterosexual and homosexual, who have behaved immorally and been reported,” Smith continued. “This is a deep ugly problem that simply good ‘HR’ offices are not capable of addressing.”
Michael Hichborn, President of the Lepanto Institute, said Cupich’s interview “shows that he is either completely out of touch with reality or he is a liar.”
“His praise [for] the Dallas Charter for the protection of children as ‘effective in removing the former Cardinal’ is a sick joke!” Hichborn told LifeSiteNews. “That charter was not only drafted by McCarrick, but it specifically omitted bishops from actionable culpability. How could it have played a role in McCarrick's removal when all of the bishops who would have known about what McCarrick was doing were complicit in covering it all up?”
Hichborn, too, noted it is bizarre that Cupich would say the John Jay reports – which showed that most priestly sex abuse cases involved post-pubescent males – proved homosexuality in the clergy is not a major issue.
“It simply isn't possible that the main driving force behind the scandal isn't homosexual priests when the vast majority of the victims are males,” he said. “And since he read the report, Cardinal Cupich knows this.”
“Given the revelations surrounding Archbishop McCarrick, it's clear that there has got to be a complete and thorough removal of ALL homosexual clergymen from the Church,” said Hichborn. “All of them! And it won't happen unless the laity not only demand it, but withhold their financial contributions to the bishops until we are sure that every single homosexual priest is removed.”
“The lay faithful are not going to be diverted by attempts to change the subject. Clergy living active homosexual lives are causing a lot of problems in the Church,” Dr. Morse told LifeSiteNews. “They are hurting their victims.They are also hurting the good, holy and innocent priests who are all under suspicion.”
“If the bishops won't face these problems, the laity will have to find new and imaginative ways of applying pressure,” she warned. On her blog, she crunched numbers from the John Jay reports to demonstrate how they do, in fact, show homosexuality is a big issue in clerical sex abuse cases – and that the reports are “no comfort at all in today’s context,” given they do not address harassment seminarians face from superiors and the problem of adult-on-adult sexual predation.
Ruse called for scrutiny of those in the Church who support parishes that defy Catholic teaching on sexual morality.
“Our investigations should include all those who support and promote so-called gay affirming parishes and even those who deny the homosexual angle,” he said.
Dr. Smith said a purge of sexually corrupt priests will leave the Church with a “small priesthood” but one that is more pure.
“Bishops must go through their memories and files to dig out what accusations there have been of sexually sinful behavior by priests but especially by priests involved in networks that harm other individuals,” Dr. Smith suggested. “If the bishop doesn't have ‘proof’ of the alleged immoral behavior [he needs] to use what moral means there are to obtain [it].”
“And then they should ask unrepentant priests to seek laicization. We will have a small priesthood and likely fewer parishes...but we need a [clergy] that
strives at all times for holiness and who can truly manifest their stature of being ‘in persona Christi’ in more than a window dressing way,” said
Posted on: Saturday, August 11, 2018
Fr. Paul Sullins, Ph.D., Research Associate of the Ruth Institute, Answers Questions on The Clerical Sex Abuse Scandal
Is the current Catholic sex abuse scandal related to homosexuality?
Yes. The current scandal includes mostly revelations about male on male sexual abuse of seminarians, where the victims are adults. These kinds of cases were not even considered in the responses to the 2002 scandal, which was about the criminal abuse of minors.
Was the 2002 scandal also related to homosexuality?
The US Conference of Catholic Bishops commissioned two reports, one in 2004 and in 2011, by the John Jay College of Criminal Justice to study the reported cases of clerical sex abuse from 1950 through 2002 and 2010 respectively. Both reports found that over 80% of the victims were neither girls, nor pre-pubescent children (true pedophilia), but pre-teen and teenage boys. These results clearly indicate that the problem was male on male predation by priests against under-aged boys.
Is there a “homosexual subculture” which exists within certain Catholic institutions?
Yes. In a 2002 survey of a national sample of 1,852 Catholic priests by the Los Angeles Times, 44% responded "yes" when asked if there was a "homosexual subculture in your diocese or religious institute". To the question, “In the seminary you attended, was there a homosexual subculture at the time?” 53% of recently-ordained priests responded “Yes” (reported in Hoge and Wenger, Evolving Visions of the Priesthood, p. 102. Their own concurrent survey yielded 55% “Yes” to the identical question.)
Books by former seminary rector Donald Cozzens and psychologist Richard Sipe have described how such subcultures encourage and cover up sexual misconduct. Predatory priests and superiors can abuse the confessional by grooming victims who confess sexual temptations. Grossly immature priests are clueless about the extent of the harm they are causing. Cozzens, who writes from firsthand experience, relates that sexually active homosocial groups were at times so dominant that heterosexual men felt that they did not fit in, and left the seminary.
How has this “subculture” contributed to patterns of abuse within the Church?
Sipe chronicles, from mental health records and public court documents, a culture of denial and cover-up by confessors, spiritual directors, faculty, and senior clerics. Sipes wrote presciently in 2011 about what he called the “Cardinal McCarrick Syndrome.” Powerful clerics, including bishops, escaped exposure and penalty even though everyone knew about their predatory behavior and abuse of power. The sense of entitlement shown by senior clerics to seminarians eerily parallels the situation of Hollywood executives to young actresses and actors.
Pictured: Father McCarrick and James in the 1970s. From the New York Times article.
Do these findings suggest that the time has come for the Church to relax its teaching on homosexual activity?
Actually, the exact opposite is true. These findings do not contradict Catholic teaching. The Church holds that homosexual acts are “intrinsically disordered”, which means they are inherently incapable of fulfilling the purpose of human sex relations, like blindness is inherently incapable of fulfilling the purpose of sight. Further, homosexual acts actively interfere with godliness and human well-being. Though individuals can achieve Christian maturity through chastity, self-denial, and self-control, a homosexual inclination is not a recommendation for Church leadership. In fact, since 2005 Catholic norms have formally prohibited any known homosexual man from being ordained. Honestly, applying these norms consistently would have avoided a tremendous number of problems.
Isn’t it rank hypocrisy on the part of the Catholic Church, which seems to be dominated by homosexually active men, to continue to condemn homosexual practice?
Someone once said, “Hypocrisy is the tribute vice pays to virtue.” The failure to live up to the teachings does not prove anything one way or the other about the value of those teachings.
Is allowing priests to marry a potential solution to this problem?
Celibacy is not a scapegoat, and married priests are not a panacea. In my research on married priests, I found that married priests are statistically no less likely to engage in minor sex abuse as are celibate priests. At this point, we need to focus on removing abusers and enablers from positions of power. We can talk about other issues such as the discipline of celibacy once we’ve solved this problem.
The Ruth Institute believes the facts show that:
About Fr. Sullins-- The Rev. D. Paul Sullins, Ph.D., is a Senior Research Associate of the Ruth Institute. He recently retired as Professor of Sociology at the Catholic University of America, Washington DC. Dr. Sullins is a leader in the field of research on same-sex parenting and its implications for child development. He has written four books, including Keeping the Vow: The Untold Story of Married Catholic Priests, and over 100 journal articles, research reports, and essays on issues of family, faith, and culture.
He was ordained by Cardinal McCarrick in 2002, during the height of the sex abuse crisis of that year. Fr. Sullins feels a profound sense of personal disappointment and betrayal, along with a desire to see holiness and trust restored in our hierarchy.
For interviews with Fr. Sullins, or Jennifer Roback Morse, Ph.D. Founder and President of the Ruth Institute, please email Elizabeth Johnson at media (at) ruthinstitute dot org.
Posted on: Saturday, August 04, 2018
(August 4, 2018) Dr J is one of the speakers at the Midwest Catholic Family Conference in Wichita, Kansas. This is the first of two talks she's giving at the annual gathering; this one is entitled, "A Parent's Guide to Dealing with Same-Sex Attraction." Some of this content is not suitable for young children.
PowerPoint slides from this presentation are also available.
Posted on: Thursday, August 02, 2018
People are outraged about the revelations of Cardinal McCarrick’s lifetime of sexual abuse of minors and seminarians and are proposing ideas for reform. For now, we're focusing on the most important thing: the suffering of a little boy.
James was 11 when Fr. McCarrick began abusing him. James asked for help, but no one believed him. He began acting out, got into drinking, drugs, and trouble with the law. People were even less inclined to believe him against the word of a priest. All this compounded the trauma.
After Cardinal McCarrick’s other crimes were exposed, James told his story to the New York Times and to journalist Rod Dreher.
This message is for James, wherever he may be. We want to tell him that people care about what happened to him. The people who covered for Fr. McCarrick or looked the other way, were wrong. When someone tells us about abusive situations, we pledge to listen, take them seriously, and do what’s needed to help.
Your signature will show James, and other victims of sexual abuse, that you care.
Pictured is Fr. McCarrick with James in the 1970s. This photo was published in the New York Times.
James' interview with Rod Dreher is here:
Posted on: Tuesday, July 10, 2018
by Doug Mainwaring
This article was first published June 22, 2018, at Life Site News.
'Gay Straight Catholic Alliance' members hold signs suggesting God supports homosexuality.
ROME, Italy, June 22, 2018 (LifeSiteNews) – For the first time in history, Vatican officials have seemingly embraced the notion that some people are born gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender via the inclusion of the term “LGBT” in the preparatory document for the Holy See’s upcoming Youth Synod.
Pro-LGBT Catholic organizations have cheered this as an important milestone. Fr. James Martin, SJ, the priest who stands at the forefront of promoting the normalization of homosexuality and transgenderism within the Church, accurately observed that for orthodox Catholics “It will be harder to object now,” to the infiltration of gay ideology.
Rome’s inclusion of the term was met with immediate, forceful pushback.
“This is a big problem. We do not use the political language of the gay rights and associated movement when analyzing the nature of man and the nature of sin,” said Fr. Gerald Murray, speaking on EWTN’s The World Over. “The Catholic Church does not accept that there is a category of human beings created by God meant to commit homosexual activity.”
“We don’t believe that bisexual people exist in the sense of saying ‘God made certain people who he wants to have sex with both men and women,’” Fr. Murray continued. “We do not believe in transgenderism. The Catholic Church does not teach that God made some people women but gave them a male body, and therefore they have to discover that they’re women by overcoming their male bodies. We don’t believe in any of that.”
LGBT “is a political propaganda term,” he added. “Using that in this document signals an agreement that all of those categories exist as natural and God-given categories of people. Big mistake.”
Cardinal Lorenzo Baldisseri, Secretary General of the Synod of Bishops, explained in a press conference that the acronym LGBT had been taken from the pre-synodal document compiled by young people at their meeting with the Pope and Synod organizers on March 19-24. Synod organizers were “very diligent in taking into account the work done by the bishops’ conferences, but especially the results of this meeting with youth, of which they were the protagonists.”
The veracity of his statement has been vociferously challenged.
“Just for the record, the document from the Synod did not use the ‘LBGT’ acronym,” noted Jennifer Roback Morse, PhD., founder and president The Ruth Institute, which strives to help “survivors” of the worldwide sexual revolution.
“So, no Cardinal Baldisseri, no fair blaming the young people,” Morse told LifeSiteNews. “The ‘LGBT’ acronym is in the working document because some adult put it there for reasons of their own. If the Cardinal and others mean to say that they think adopting a ‘gay’ identity is a good and helpful step for a young person to take, let them say so plainly.”
Faith and Reason Institute president Robert Royal agreed that “LGBT” did not appear in the source materials submitted to the Vatican but that it was later added to the working document, the Instrumentum Laboris, by someone working at the Vatican.
“Just as with the Synod on the Family, a lot of us looked at the preparatory documents for that as well and there’s this sort of B- sociology that goes on,” Royal said, “where you start with the terminology and the understanding that’s out there in culture, and of course it’s very difficult when you start on the other guy’s field to score on Catholicism. You know, you’re playing their game. It’s an away game that you’re playing.”
“So I detect the same sort of thing going on here,” continued Royal. “Perhaps people mean well by including this (LGBT). This is something that has to be confronted … But to start using the language of the culture does not bode well for what the consequences will be.”
“If the Vatican document is using the ugly acronym LGBT for ‘people with same-sex attractions,’ unintentionally, that would be unintelligent, foolish and irresponsible,” said Dr. Gerard van den Aardweg in a statement to LifeSiteNews. “Considering the apparent attempts within the Church to sell the falsehoods of the gay ideology, however, it may well be that this is an intentional move. In that case, it is sneaky and immoral.”
Van den Aardweg is a Dutch psychologist and psychoanalyst who has been sounding the alarm about the normalization of homosexuality for much of his distinguished 50-year career.
In both cases, the document silently but efficiently deceives ignorant and naïve young people, actually suggesting (1) that people “just are” homosexual, lesbian, bisexual, or transsexual by nature, as natural variants of sexuality, and (2) that they must be “accepted” as such, in the sense given to this word in secular society.
Whether or not intentionally, the adoption of the gay propaganda term LGBT reinforces the already existing, alarmingly growing acceptance of the gay ideology by the younger Catholic generation. Exceptions excepted, they have not been educated more than superficially in the basic Catholic doctrinal and moral truths, so are very vulnerable to the seductions of nice-sounding ideologies. The heavier the irresponsibility within the Vatican.
Youngsters with same-sex problems are given the green light to give themselves over to the self-degrading gay lifestyle, which is the way to their emotional and moral undoing; and youngsters without these problems are taught to see sexual morality as relative. Your feelings may decide what is right and wrong. Gay normalization inevitably hollows out the sexual morality of the vast heterosexual majority.
Dr. van den Aardweg added:
I want to point to another implication of this naively-foolish or malicious use of the gay LGBT word. 40% of men with homosexual desires are more or less directed to adolescents, have “pederast” tendencies. In the media, they are called “pedophiles” when it is about molestation of juveniles. And the homosexual pedophiles who are attracted to pre-pubertal boys, perhaps 5% of same-sex attracted men, may occasionally contact adolescent boys as well. So, if “the Vatican” is out to normalize LGBT, it also normalizes pederasts and pedophiles, namely, a large portion of same-sex people that is now hided away in the letters G and B. If the Vatican wants to use the gay letters, let it then add two P’s: the P of Pederasts, and the P of Pedophiles. Let it be LGBTPP.
“Have the leaders of the Roman Catholic Church given in to the reductionist zeitgeist of our age, i.e., that human beings are nothing more than the sum of our sexual preferences?” asked Thomas Berryman in a statement to LifeSiteNews.
“The Church has always refrained from using such language, seeing the human person, as (Courage Apostolate founder) Father John Harvey put it, as ‘a creature made in the likeness and image of God, with intelligence and free will, destined for eternal life, and when baptized, a brother or sister of Christ,’” said Berryman. “Using the term LGBT represents another step, intentional or otherwise, in the ongoing, rapidly-accelerating process of normalizing that which is not normal, i.e., homosexuality, bisexuality, and transgenderism.”
I do not know whether this devolution comes from accepting a degraded view of the human condition or a craven desire to win the approval of the world. Personally, I do not see myself as an adjective. I am not gay. I am a child of God who suffers from same-sex attraction. I view it as a cross to bear, an exercise in "redemptive suffering," linking myself to the slightest hint of the suffering our Lord experienced.
The Instrumentum laboris for the upcoming Youth Synod, like the working documents for the two meetings of the Synods on the Family, is an example of the leaders of the Church enabling the mores of the sexual revolution. To say that I am disappointed is a massive understatement. It's hard enough standing up for the Church's teachings against the world. It is even harder standing up for the Church's teachings against some of the Church's most prominent leaders.
“‘LGBT youth’ is a label within a label,” observed Paul Darrow, one of three chaste same-sex-attracted Catholics featured in the movie, Desire of the Everlasting Hills, produced by the Courage Apostolate. “Such labels are like a photographer’s air brush. In the wrong hands, they can retouch away the beautiful essence of the creator's original image.”
“When we embrace labels that describe our sexual interests, we allow our true identity to be distorted,” continued Darrow. “The Catholic Church teaches us that man's identity is found in Christ and not in our worldly desires. Memorializing the ‘LGBT youth’ label in a Vatican document seems dangerously counterproductive. It makes atheists and gay activists giddy with delight, undermines the teachings of the Church and discourages those of us who strive to move beyond our homosexual identity to a more complete one in Christ.”
“Listening respectfully to others does not mean we suspend our own judgment and substitute theirs,” Roback Morse said. “The Catholic Church has always insisted that every single person, regardless of their sexual inclinations or behavior, finds their ultimate identity as a beloved son or daughter of God, redeemed by Jesus Christ.”
“Nothing new happened at the Synod on Youth to change that reality, or the philosophy, metaphysics or theology that lies behind it and interprets it,”
she added. “I have encountered two young men in the past few weeks who are looking for clarity from the Church, not cultural capitulation.”
Posted on: Monday, July 09, 2018
by Curtis Schube
This article was first published June 29, 2018, at Life Site News.
NIFLA v. Becerra is better than anyone could have expected. The Supreme Court's ruling last Tuesday overturned California's onerous speech restriction on pregnancy care centers. Great news, to be sure. It gets better. NIFLA also overturned speech restrictions on therapists who assist people with unwanted same sex attraction.
Pregnancy centers encourage women to choose options other than abortion. The Court found that requiring such centers to post notices advertising abortion violates their First Amendment Free Speech rights. This is a very good result. However, few commentators have mentioned that the NIFLA ruling impacts attempts to ban so-called "conversion therapy."
Laws which ban sexual orientation change efforts ("SOCE" for short) have increasingly entered the national conversation, most recently in California. Before California's recent attempts to ban all forms of SOCE at any age, California already had such a law in place for minors. The law considered it "unprofessional conduct" to "seek to change sexual orientation" for a minor. Any counselor who violated the law faced professional discipline.
California's more recent SOCE laws take an even more extreme position. These laws ban all therapy that aims to change, or even reduce, sexual attraction to the same sex. Therefore, a patient who wants SOCE therapy cannot receive that service without risk to the professional counselor.
In Pickup v. Brown, same sex attracted minors and their parents, as well as counselors who wished to provide their services, claimed that this law violates their First Amendment rights to free speech and free expression. The Ninth Circuit, in 2013, determined that counseling is not speech, but rather professional "conduct." The "First Amendment does not prevent a state from regulating treatment," the Ninth Circuit concluded.
The Third Circuit upheld a similar law in New Jersey using the same logic in the 2014 case, King v. Governors of New Jersey. In relying partly upon Pickup, the Third Circuit concluded that counseling is speech (rather than conduct) but classifies that speech as professional speech. The Third Circuit states that a "professional's services stems largely from her ability to apply…specialized knowledge to a client's individual circumstances… Thus, we conclude that a licensed professional does not enjoy the full protection of the First Amendment."
In the NIFLA case, the Ninth Circuit had justified the requirement for pregnancy centers to advertise for abortion as "professional speech," just like the Ninth and Third Circuits had done for SOCE laws. The Supreme Court opinion overturning the Ninth Circuit's NIFLA opinion, specifically identified Pickup and King as examples of "professional speech" protected by the First Amendment. Writing for the majority, Justice Thomas (pictured above) stated: "Some Courts of Appeals have recognized 'professional speech' as a separate category of speech that is subject to different rules." However, "speech is not unprotected merely because it is uttered by 'professionals.'"
This is a paradigm shift in the existing precedents for SOCE bans.
Thomas seized the opportunity to provide protections to many other professions as well. "Professionals might have a host of good-faith disagreements, both with each other and with the government, on many topics in their respective fields." He identifies doctors and nurses who disagree on the prevailing opinions on assisted suicide or medical marijuana as examples of good faith disagreements. So too are lawyers and marriage counselors who disagree on prenuptial agreements and divorces, and bankers and accountants who disagree on how to commit money to savings or tax reform. One would have to conclude that Justice Thomas' intent is to protect all professionals from being regulated on matters of good faith disagreement.
This is a significant victory for free speech, and not only for pregnancy care centers. The "social justice" movement threatens many professionals in the exercise of their judgement and expertise. This Supreme Court ruling has created broad protections for a significant number of Americans who hold professional licenses. In doing so, the Court also reopened the seemingly settled question as to whether SOCE bans are constitutional. This is a welcome surprise from a case originally thought to be limited only to pregnancy centers.
Posted on: Saturday, July 07, 2018
The author of Why I Don’t Call Myself Gay says evangelizing the LGBT community starts the same way all evangelization starts: with building relationships.
by Leslie Fain
This article was first published July 5, 2018, at The Catholic World Report.
Daniel Mattson, author of Why I Don’t Call Myself Gay, recently served as the keynote speaker and received the “Public Witness Award” at the Ruth Institute Awards Banquet, June 15, at the Brick House in Lake Charles, La.
Mattson, whose story was featured in the documentary Desire of the Everlasting Hills, told the audience that as a man who is attracted to the same sex and is celibate, he is not supposed to exist. “I’m supposed to be celebrating at a parade, not here,” he said, referring to June being Gay Pride Month. The journey to what he now calls the “happiest time of his life” was difficult and tumultuous, he said.
Mattson, after years of struggling with same-sex attraction, became involved with the Courage apostolate, and witnessed the joy in the lives of many members, men and women. He eventually returned to the Catholic Church because of Courage, and was followed by his entire family, with one of his brothers becoming a Catholic priest.
Following the awards dinner, Mattson sat down with Catholic World Report and answered a few questions.
CWR: One criticism that has been leveled against Courage from some Catholics who have same-sex attraction is that it uses techniques based on Freudian psychology that the Church condemned long ago. As a longtime Courage member, what are your thoughts on that?
Daniel Mattson: Courage is based on the perennial teachings of the Catholic Church on chastity, and our God-given sexual identity, not Freud.
Since the beginning of the Courage apostolate, there was criticism leveled at it from all sorts of people, for a variety of reasons we don’t always understand.
The people who are in Courage have found it to be one of the greatest gifts of the Church to them. What’s driving that criticism is painful and mysterious to those of us who have found freedom and healing from the ministry.
CWR: How do we keep kids from being influenced by our permissive culture?
Mattson: You have to be very careful what you allow in your home, you have to monitor your computer. Computers should always be in a public place, not private. You should never allow cell phones in bed. Let’s be honest—[Satan] goes around the world like a prowling lion, seeking souls, and his easiest access is the cell phone.
Don’t give in to the pressure. You have to discern with each child whether he or she is wise enough to handle [a cell phone]. I’d recommend delaying it as much as possible.
There are good parental controls—parents need to educate themselves on that.
CWR: Is our culture suffering from too much sentimentality right now when it comes to love?
Mattson: We are suffering from sentimentality. Slogans like “love is love” are really meaningless, ultimately. People don’t even seem to know what love means anymore. That creates our opportunity in the Church to present a much more attractive alternative.
CWR: How do we reach Millennials and other young people with the Gospel?
Mattson: We have to use [the] communication tools that young people use. Using social media today is essential to evangelization. We have to be winsome and confident that we have the truth, because we really have what people are looking for—let’s tell them about it!
CWR: As far as the culture goes, do you think things will get better, stay the same, or worsen?
Mattson: I personally think we are on a downward trajectory, which means we have to be more serious about the mission that we are on, and to think back to how Christianity exploded in the first few centuries of the Church. Instead of being pessimistic, let’s be optimistic and bold about what God wants us to do to turn this culture around.
CWR: What is the best way to witness to our gay neighbors?
Mattson: First of all, let’s not view our neighbors as gay, or any letter of the LGBT alphabet. Instead, we need to view them as God sees them: as beloved sons and daughters of God. The key to evangelization is the same as it is with anyone else: building relationships with them and loving them and investing in their lives, because evangelism always follows from relationships. The key is the example of the woman at the well. They started with a drink of water together, and then evangelism came after that.
I wouldn’t bring up homosexuality to them. I’d let them bring it up first, and then focus first of all on the love that God the Father has for them. All evangelism must begin with that fundamental truth.
Posted on: Thursday, June 28, 2018
Protecting Therapists, not just Pregnancy Care Centers
by Curtis Schube
June 27, 2018
Exclusive to the Ruth Institute
NIFLA v. Becerra is better than anyone could have expected. The Supreme Court’s ruling overturned California’s onerous speech restriction on pregnancy care centers. Great news, to be sure. It gets better. NIFLA also overturned speech restrictions on therapists who assist people with unwanted same sex attraction.
Pregnancy centers encourage women to choose options other than abortion.The Court found that requiring such centers to post notices advertising abortion violates their First Amendment Free Speech rights. This is a very good result. However, few commentators have mentioned that the NIFLA ruling impacts attempts to ban so-called “conversion therapy.”
Laws which ban sexual orientation change efforts (“SOCE” for short) have increasingly entered the national conversation, most recently in California. Before California’s recent attempts to ban all forms of SOCE at any age, California already had such a law in place for minors. The law considered it “unprofessional conduct” to “seek to change sexual orientation” for a minor. Any counselor who violated the law faced professional discipline.
California’s more recent SOCE laws take an even more extreme position. These laws ban all therapy that aims to change, or even reduce, sexual attraction to the same sex. Therefore, a patient who wants SOCE therapy cannot receive that service without risk to the professional counselor.
In Pickup v. Brown, same sex attracted minors and their parents, as well as counselors who wished to provide their services, claimed that this law violates their First Amendment rights to free speech and free expression. The Ninth Circuit, in 2013, determined that counseling is not speech, but rather professional “conduct.” The “First Amendment does not prevent a state from regulating treatment,” the Ninth Circuit concluded.
The Third Circuit upheld a similar law in New Jersey using the same logic in the 2014 case, King v. Governors of New Jersey. In relying partly upon Pickup, the Third Circuit concluded that counseling is speech (rather than conduct) but classifies that speech as professional speech. The Third Circuit states that a “professional’s services stems largely from her ability to apply…specialized knowledge to a client’s individual circumstances… Thus, we conclude that a licensed professional does not enjoy the full protection of the First Amendment.”
In the NIFLA case, the Ninth Circuit had justified the requirement for pregnancy centers to advertise for abortion as “professional speech,” just like the Ninth and Third Circuits had done for SOCE laws. The Supreme Court opinion overturning the Ninth Circuit’s NIFLA opinion, specifically identified Pickup and King as examples of “professional speech” protected by the First Amendment. Writing for the majority, Justice Thomas (pictured above) stated: “Some Courts of Appeals have recognized ‘professional speech’ as a separate category of speech that is subject to different rules.” However, “speech is not unprotected merely because it is uttered by ‘professionals.’”
This is a paradigm shift in the existing precedents for SOCE bans.
Thomas seized the opportunity to provide protections to many other professions as well. “Professionals might have a host of good-faith disagreements, both with each other and with the government, on many topics in their respective fields.” He identifies doctors and nurses who disagree on the prevailing opinions on assisted suicide or medical marijuana as examples of good faith disagreements. So too are lawyers and marriage counselors who disagree on prenuptial agreements and divorces, and bankers and accountants who disagree on how to commit money to savings or tax reform. One would have to conclude that Justice Thomas’ intent is to protect all professionals from being regulated on matters of good faith disagreement.
This is a significant victory for free speech, and not only for pregnancy care centers. The “social justice” movement threatens many professionals in the exercise of their judgement and expertise. This Supreme Court ruling has created broad protections for a significant number of Americans who hold professional licenses. In doing so, the Court also reopened the seemingly settled question as to whether SOCE bans are constitutional. This is a welcome surprise from a case originally thought to be limited only to pregnancy centers.
Curtis Schube is Legal Counsel for the Pennsylvania Family Policy Institute. He is a 2009 alumnus of the Ruth Institute’s “It Takes a Family to Raise A Village” program.
Posted on: Wednesday, June 27, 2018
My father was incredibly emotionally and physically abusive. Although there was never any sexual abusive per se, he certainly denigrated me as a male. He was a hard man, and I was always a sensitive boy. I'm still a sensitive, empathetic man. I have never been a flaming gay guy, but as much as I hate it, I have struggled with Same Sex Attraction my whole life.
I have been divorced twice now. I would very much liked to have had some EFFECTIVE counseling in late adolescence or early adulthood. However, I grew up in a small town, and there was always such shame about "gay people" that I would never have dared discuss it with anyone.
Now that I've been divorced twice and have young children, I consider it my responsibility to get whole so that I can be a good example to my children. Although I may never be very open about the details with my children when they are adults, I will encourage them to read, learn and do whatever it takes to be emotionally healthy. I have been having Subconscious Reparative Therapy, which is helping. I think I am almost there. However, even if a healthy relationship presented itself, I don't think it would be fair to my children to have another relationship, at least until after they're grown.
I accept that I will probably be alone for the rest of my life. I accept this with a stoic lack of self-pity and with dignity. Having said that, I want
better for my children. My whole purpose in life is to coach my children in a direction they need to go so they will grow up to be healthy, well-balanced
adults. If that means my children will need some counselings and therapy, so be it. I will do whatever it takes for them to be more successful than
I have been in my personal life. Sexual sin is wrong. Certain things that happened to me weren't my fault, but it's my responsibility to get better
for my sake and for my children's sake.
Posted on: Saturday, June 23, 2018
by Dustin Siggins
First published at The Stream on June 21, 2018.
The Stream asked the president of the Ruth Institute why she brought Paul Sullins into their work.
Dr. Jennifer Morse: replied: “We are concerned that ordinary people are making life-changing decisions without accurate information about the long-term consequences. Millions of people have thrown away perfectly good marriages because the ‘experts’ assured them that ‘kids are resilient.'”
“In the post-Obergefell era,” she continued, “people will be deciding to have children within same-sex relationships. These people are entitled to have more complete information than the advocacy research that convinced the judges that same-sex parenting was harmless.”
She called his work on same-sex parenting “first rate.” It “has the potential to help many ordinary people.”
The Stream also asked her if by working with Dr. Sullins, the Institute is proving the SPLC’s claim that it mostly cares about LGBT issues.
“Not really,” said Morse. “He is working on other topics, including the psychological fall-out for women from procuring abortions. His work fits well with our larger concern of giving voice to victims and survivors of the sexual revolution.”
The Stream noted that a new Gallup poll claims that 4.5 percent of Americans are gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender. This is a record high since Gallup began polling on the question in 2012. It is also far higher than the percentage the CDC estimated in 2014. We asked Morse what she attributes the rise to.
“Describing oneself as ‘gay’ or ‘trans’ has become ‘cool.'” More replied. “We have known since at least 1994 that a person’s propensity to self-identify as ‘gay’ is responsive to social and cultural factors. I’m not surprised that young people are experimenting with these labels.”
“I just hope they don’t hurt themselves and make mistakes they cannot undo. If they do, they will join millions of other survivors of the sexual revolution: people who figured out too late that the culture lied to them.”
Posted on: Saturday, June 23, 2018
By Dustin Siggins
This article was published June 21, 2018, at The Stream.
Dr. Paul Sullins is a Catholic priest and a leading pro-family researcher. The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) recently targeted him for attack. His crime? Working with The Ruth Institute on research on the effects of same-sex couples-led households on children. The institute lost its credit card processor in August after the SPLC called it a “hate group.”
The Stream interviewed Sullins and Ruth Institute President Dr. Jennifer Morse before SPLC apologized to a British Muslim group it accused of extremism. SPLC gave the Quilliam Foundation $3.375 million as part of a settlement.
The settlement led to 48 groups the SPLC has “maligned, defamed and otherwise harmed” to release a letter. They urged “government agencies, journalists, corporations, social media providers and web platforms … to dissociate themselves from” SPLC.
The Ruth Institute signed the letter. Morse told PJ Media’s Tyler O’Neil that while “pursuing our mission is more important than attempting to take on the behemoth of the SPLC,” the SPLC’s apology “has caused us to consider our options.”
The interviews are edited for length.
The Stream: You’ve been at Catholic University of America for two decades. Why did you go to the Ruth Institute, and what role(s) will you have at CUA?
Paul Sullins: There is a great need for objective empirical social science research on questions of faith and family. Secular scholars either do not address these questions or address them in a politicized way. This masks or ignores evidence they would rather not be known in favor of their social goals: There are no harms from abortion or from hormonal contraception; gender is a social construction; children do not need a mother and a father; the world has too many people.I became more involved in research countering this agenda while teaching. I looked empirically at the Catholic faith and the natural law. Three years ago, I retired from full-time teaching to devote full-time to research along these lines. I had seed money from the Society of Catholic Social Scientists, initially affiliated with the Family Research Council. After Obergefell, FRC cut back on research in this area to focus more on religious freedom and advocacy. The Ruth Institute stepped up to ensure that this work goes forward.
This kind of research may not make headlines tomorrow. However, it lays the seed for genuine social change. It can help change minds and lives. The Other Side has for decades sponsored full-blown research institutes (Guttmacher, Williams) supporting their agenda. Pro-life, pro-family folk have mostly not supported scientific research from their perspective, then wonder why elite culture ignores them. I am grateful to the Ruth Institute for their vision to engage the culture at a high level of discourse on matters of faith and reason.
On what research projects are you working? What are the implications, source materials, etc. for them?
PS: I have been studying abortion trends and demographic effects to respond to a pro-abortion report issued by the National Academy of Sciences. They deny harm from abortions and argue that state regulations requiring waiting periods prevent women from getting desired abortions. We are showing massive evidence of harm, both psychological and medical. Also, regulations have not made abortions less accessible. The regulations have helped women choose life by thinking twice and/or finding family support. The abortion propensity (percent of unanticipated pregnancies ending in abortion, which The Other Side doesn’t measure) has dropped by almost half since 1981. Unintended pregnancies have not changed.
On same-sex parenting, I have updated the findings on emotional harm. I will look at adoptions using a large longitudinal economic survey (the Survey of Income and Program Participation). I am also pursuing studies that separate boys and girls, and male-male and female-female parents. I will look at where in the different mix there is greater and less harm. Do girls do better with two moms or two dads? Do they do better or worse than boys? These are big questions that go to the heart of gender ideology.
I also recently wrote, for a pro-gay book of therapy, a chapter portion titled “Ten Tips for Helping Your Straight Child Come Out Hetero.” It is a problem highlighted in research a lot. Maybe 3-4 percent of children with man-woman parents struggle with same-sex attractions and how to deal with that. In same-sex parent families, over 95 percent of children will have opposite-sex attractions, unlike their parents. So there is possibly more struggle.
Adult children of same-sex parents report this conflict repeatedly. No one has written anything to help these parents. I essentially take the literature on helping opposite-sex parents deal with their emerging same-sex-attracted children and turn it on its head.
The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) targeted you on March 15. They said research shows children raised in same-sex relationship-led households have equal development to those raised in opposite-sex-led homes. Your conclusions were criticized as “pseudoscience.” How do you rebut such claims? Why is your research more credible than what others have published?
Please address their claim that you’ve been published by inferior outlets with lower standards and little credibility.
PS: On my findings, I refer you to Mercatornet for background on the same-sex parenting research and my main study. They pull from my article(s) the reasons why the studies showing no differences are not credible (mostly, small sample sizes).
On the journals, this is a false smear. The SPLC recycles criticisms from a 2015 Atlantic article. A Mercatornet article responding to that article addressed your question. The Mercatornet piece summarizes a longer defense published in the American College of Pediatricians’ Obergefell brief. I wrote the brief, and you can look that up on Scotusblog.
For some background, the two scholars cited negatively in Atlantic, i.e., with the “pseudoscience” quote and the dissing of the journal, are both pro-gay activists (Drs. Cohen and Rosenfeld). Their work was cited and rebutted by my study. They had a personal and scholarly interest in undermining it. Atlantic (Emma Green) sought them out, did not inform me she was citing them, and gave me no chance to respond. SPLC (and Atlantic) cite them as random, representative scholars. They’re not.
To be fair to Dr. Cohen, who detracted the journals on his blog, walked back his comments to a much softer criticism after I sent him more information about the journals. But Atlantic (and SPLC) just quoted his initial, harsher detraction.
SPLC’s HateWatch unfairly denigrates a few foreign journals where my studies have been published. It doesn’t mention that top journals have published me. The American Journal of Sociology, Contemporary Sociology, Social Forces, Southern Medical Journal, Religion, Sociology of Religion, and the Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, for some examples.
I recently published studies on abortion and same-sex parenting in Sage Open Medicine and Demography. They both meet the National Institute of Health’s rigorous standards to be archived in National Library of Medicine. Less than one journal in a hundred qualifies.
My latest book was published by Oxford University Press. It was reviewed in the New York Times Review of Books.
Traditional views on sexuality are criticized as outdated and unpopular. In the eyes of the media, traditional views on gender identity are outdated. What evidence, strategies, and tactics should be used to swing people and the culture back towards those viewpoints?
PS: It is spiritual warfare. Our two weapons are faith and reason. The strategies I suggest are: first, help people find Christ. When people experience or encounter the love of God in Christ, we become willing and able to change. It doesn’t do much good if people adopt a traditional view of marriage/gender but don’t know that God loves them deeply and personally. The devil could fit in that category.
When people become alive in Christ, all kinds of illusions fall away. Ruth Institute does this by helping people heal and recover from the sexual revolution. When someone’s life has fallen apart from ignoring how God made man, woman, and marriage, you don’t have to do much convincing.
Second, for those who need reasons, give them reasons. There are many people open to evidence and argument. We should not shy away from engaging them in love and respect. The Church invented science to help us open our minds more to God. Truth honestly defended and clearly presented has great power.
TS: Please respond to the accusation that you and others who have traditional views on sexuality are hateful/bigoted.
PS: That accusation is emphatically backward. The SPLC has targeted many fine Christian organizations and individuals for nothing more than believing that God made humans male and female, and designed reproduction, family, and marriage to function accordingly. Those are not hateful beliefs, but the targeting can be hateful.
Unlike the Christians groups that it targets, the SPLC itself has incited actual violence, such as the gunman who in 2012 shot a security guard at the Family Research Council after finding the group on SPLC’s “hate map.”
I am relieved and happy to be labeled a hater. And if I am a hater, then surely the Catholic Church and a significant number of Protestant churches also are. SPLC acknowledges that I am a Catholic priest. Will SPLC put up page denouncing Pope Francis, who has compared “gender theory” (denying complementary sex differences) to nuclear annihilation and who teaches in his letter on marriage: “there are absolutely no grounds for considering homosexual unions to be in any way similar or even remotely analogous to God’s plan for marriage and family?”
To SPLC, Pope Francis must be a real hatemonger.
* Disclosure: The Ruth Institute was briefly a client of this reporter in 2017.
Posted on: Saturday, June 16, 2018
(June 15, 2018) Welcome to the Ruth Institute's First Annual Awards Dinner! We had an amazing night of fellowship, music, and food. We gave out awards to some incredible people and listened to entertaining and thought-provoking talks. Here we have our dinner's speaker and the recipient of our Christian Witness of the Year award, Daniel Mattson. Dr J makes a more full introduction.
Dan Mattson spoke on his journey through Catholicism, Christianity, the gay lifestyle, and back to peace as a child of God.
Posted on: Saturday, June 09, 2018
“I believed I could find happiness there, and I couldn’t.”
This article was first published at NCRegister.com on June 7, 2018.
Left to Right: Joseph Sciambra, Hudson Byblow, Daniel Mattson
Daniel Mattson is author of Why I Don’t Call Myself Gay: How I Reclaimed My Sexual Reality and Found Peace and was featured in the documentary Desire of the Everlasting Hills (https://everlastinghills.org/movie/). He is a professional musician from Michigan, raised in a Catholic home (his brother is Fr. Steve Mattson, in fact, a priest of the Diocese of Lansing) and is a featured speaker for COURAGE, the Catholic Church’s ministry to persons with same-sex attraction.
“I tried practicing the world’s view of sexuality. For a time, I considered myself “gay” and lived out that life. I rejected the Church’s teaching as archaic, outdated and unreasonable …
… I had no attraction to women, and I was addicted to pornography. I was angry and decided to turn my back on God. I found a man with whom I thought I wanted to share my life. I put a stake in the ground and said, ‘I am a “gay” man.’ However, God brought a woman into my life to whom I was attracted. I thought she was the most beautiful woman in the world. It made me angry all the more. I wasn’t supposed to be attracted to women anymore: I was “gay”!
So, in my experience, it is a mistake to put people into boxes as “gay” or “straight,” and not be open to the possibility that these attractions may change on their own. I am not attracted to many women, but there are some. A person can have many attractions in his life, but only some he should act upon.
Throughout the history of the world people have recognized that it is not uncommon for people to have attractions to both sexes, but only in the past 150 years have those attractions meant that you’re a certain sort of person.”
“… What led me to the Catholic Church was her constant teaching about the nature of the human person as well as my own dissatisfaction with the world’s view. This, in turn, led me to explore the correct use of words, which led me to the truth. Words are important in reflecting reality.
… I also came to understand our need for disinterested friendship and disinterested love, the love that Christ has for us and that we should have for one another. The word “disinterested” may have a negative connotation, but it means that we love others with no conditions and no demands.
… The chaste man is the man who sees reality, and lives in accordance with reality. All virtues do that, but chastity in particular helps us to see ourselves as we really are. I am a man, made for union with a woman. The reality of our bodies reveals that sex is ordered to procreation, and also the unity of man and woman in marriage.
Sexuality typically leads to children, so it needs to be tied to a marriage that is life-long. To use sex outside of marriage is to go away from the path of human fulfillment that God ordained for our lives.”
Hudson Byblow (http://www.hudsonbyblow.com/) is a Canadian Catholic speaker who has publicly shared his struggle with same-sex attraction. He developed an addiction to pornography in his youth, and while in college, “gay” rights groups pressed students such as Hudson to “come out,” to identify themselves as homosexual and to openly live the lifestyle. At the time, Hudson accepted various statements that “gay” activists were making, such as that people are born homosexual and that 10% of the population was homosexual (i.e. don’t fight it, just accept it and the lifestyle). He had previously held back from “coming out” out of fear of hurting his family. But by 2007, he thought it was his only road to happiness.
The week he decided to “come out,” however, he went to Mass and heard a homily by a “wise, humble” priest who challenged many of the statements put forth by “gay” activists. He decided not to “come out,” and instead explore Father’s viewpoint. He read voraciously and went to the priest for confession. Hudson said, “He assured me that God loves me, which I really needed to hear, as I felt myself to be dirty and unlovable. He made me see the love of Christ as accessible to me.”
“Until that point, I had isolated myself from men, and turned to pornography as a release from my frustration. The problem is, the more I exploited others, the more I hated myself. But I found out through COURAGE that despite my past, Jesus Christ still had room for me. I realized I was not alone. There were other people like me who wanted to live right with God. They wanted to live a life with God at the center, above their sexuality.”
[Part of his recovery from the promiscuous lifestyle was] “putting the face of Christ on every person … I found it impossible to exploit people when I saw Christ in their eyes.”
[The fellowship he experienced in COURAGE gave him] “a little taste of heaven on Earth. We’re brothers fighting for the same cause: to keep Christ at the center of our lives and our embraced identities.”
“We are not merely sexual beings. Sexuality is a gift from God, our loving Creator. I am a beloved child of God first, and I love God above my sexuality. Therefore, I cannot embrace an identity centered on my sexuality, regardless of the sexual attractions I experience.”
[Today, he enjoys a peace like] “none I have ever had before [as compared to the] “hopelessness” [that he felt as he prepared to “come out.”]
[Hudson hopes that all people] “will be open to responding to this invitation with an open heart, mind and spirit. Being fully honest with ourselves is the key to experiencing the greatest degree of joy, which is something we can only achieve if we choose to reject that which is not true, and instead embrace a greater degree of truth once we become aware of it.”
“The real struggle is getting the truth of the love of Jesus Christ and the Catholic Church out to the world, especially on this sensitive topic.”
Joseph Sciambra (www.josephsciambra.com), too, was addicted to pornography in his youth. Sexually confused at age 18, he made his way to The Castro, a “gay mecca,” to immerse himself in the “gay” lifestyle for 11 years. He lived it to the extreme, even acting in “gay” porn movies. But rather than the happiness, acceptance and fulfillment he sought, he found a life of misery.
“Porn is an addiction, and it is progressive. It is comparable to being addicted to drugs. When you begin taking drugs, you don’t start with heroin, but alcohol or marijuana. You become desensitized to what you are doing, and then move onto harder drugs. When you start with porn, you don’t start with S&M, bestiality or homosexuality. You look at soft-core porn. In my generation, it was Playboy magazine.
Today, children can be introduced to sexually suggestive imagery by watching music videos featuring Britney Spears or Lady Gaga. They get hooked young, and begin to see pornography as beautiful. It re-wires the way they think about sexuality. It changes the way they become aroused. They develop a dependence on it.”
… In my 11 years in the “gay” lifestyle, and with my ministry to that community now, I have never met a happy “gay” couple. Their relationships are transitory, fleeting and physically-based. And, even for people who are supposed to be involved in monogamous relationships, it is understood that these relationships will ‘open up.’ This happens despite the fact that you may be emotionally connected and living together.”
“… I was literally shocked out of the life. I was involved with porn the day I was converted. I got sick, was in the hospital and resigned with dying. But I realized that death would lead me to hell. I didn’t want to go to hell. I wanted out of the lifestyle.
… [Regarding a deliverance he had from homosexuality, with the help of a priest] It was a year or two after I left the lifestyle, and it was still a traumatic time. I was wounded, and I was having a hard time coming back to the Catholic Church. A priest could sense I was struggling. He asked to pray over me privately. Afterwards, I felt I was freed from multiple demonic influences.
… [How the “straight” population can help those in the “gay” lifestyle] Pray, fast and make sacrifices for the conversion of people in the homosexual community. Be the light of truth to them. Be charitable. Love them. Let them know you want what is best for them. Many Christians are afraid to express such thoughts to family members or friends in the lifestyle. They think they’ll alienate them. But if done in the right way, it can be very helpful.
… [Is he happy today?] Being in the “gay” lifestyle was a search for happiness. It was restless, frantic and unfulfilling. I believed I could find happiness there, and I couldn’t. Now that I have come back to Christ and his Church and embraced chastity, I’ve never been happier.”
Posted on: Saturday, May 26, 2018
by Maike Hickson
This article was first posted May 18, 2018, at One Peter Five.
Cardinal Gerhard Müller, the former Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, has given an interview to the Italian journalist Costanza Miriano, who works for the Italian television broadcaster RIA. In this new interview, the German cardinal rejects the notion of “homophobia” and explains that it is an instrument of an ideology that is contrary to reality.
Miriano posted the interview on her own private blog, on which she also promotes two books of hers in which she advocates the traditional understanding of marriage – namely, that wives be subject to their husbands and that husbands protect their wives even with their lives. In her own introduction to the new interview, she rejects the notion of “homophobia” – i.e., an aversion against homosexuals.
According to Giuseppe Nardi of Katholisches.info – who himself reports on this new interview – the aim of much of this gender ideology is to remove homosexuality, and more recently transsexuality, from the World Health Organization (WHO) catalog of diseases. (In fact, homosexuality was already removed from the catalog in 1990, demonstrating the effectiveness of such a strategy.)
Miriano’s interview with Cardinal Müller comes in the context of his upcoming participation in the presentation of a book about a man who has homosexual inclinations but who resists them, and now describes the ideologization of this problem.
The author’s name is Daniel C. Mattson, and his book’s title is Why I Don’t Call Myself Gay: How I Reclaimed My Sexual Reality and Found Peace. (The book was first published in English by Ignatius Press, in 2017, with a preface by Cardinal Robert Sarah.) Cardinal Müller will present the Italian edition on 25 May in Rome.
In his interview with Mrs. Miriano, herself a mother of four, Cardinal Müller says the following about the concept of homophobia, in the context of the 17 May International Day Against Homophobia:
Homophobia simply does not exist. It is clearly an invention and an instrument of the totalitarian dominance over the thoughts of others. The homo-movement is lacking scientific arguments, that is why it created an ideology which wants to dominate by creating its own reality. It is the Marxist pattern according to which reality does not create thinking, but thinking creates its own reality. He who does not accept this created reality is to be considered as being sick. It is as if one could influence an illness with the help of the police or with the help of courts. In the Soviet Union, Christians were put into psychiatric clinics. These are the methods of totalitarian regimes, of National Socialism and of Communism. The same happens in North Korea to those who do not accept the reigning way of thinking.
Costanza Miriano points out that she knows of several bishops who are more conservative, but who at the same time support such initiatives against homophobia, and she asks Cardinal Müller why they accept this “game.” Cardinal Müller responds:
Some bishops today do not have the courage anymore to speak the truth, and they allow themselves to be intimidated. They do not understand that homophobia is a deception which serves to threaten people. But we Christians may not have fear in the face of threats. In the first centuries [after Christ], the disciples of Jesus were put into prison, or one had them eaten up by wild beasts. Today one tears them apart with the help of psycho terror, while at the same time making use of the lack of knowledge. However, from a bishop and from a priest, one may expect that he is capable of looking behind these ideologies. We are the ones who try, with the help of God’s Grace, to love all people, also those who feel attracted to the same sex. But it must be clear that to love does not mean to obey the gender propaganda.
With reference to Daniel C. Mattson, the author of the new book, Cardinal Müller says that he tells his own story of his homosexuality in light of these current ideologies and that he rejects being called “gay.” The cardinal insists that “he who feels such an attraction has to live chastely, just as all, all of us who are not live in a valid and true marriage have to do.”
When asked about the fact that currently this gender agenda is being promoted by many governments in the West, the German cardinal responds, saying that “our politicians in Europe have to take care of many people, of those without work, of the problem of the lack of births, of the family, of many serious problems.” Instead, he adds, “they are busy turning our democracies into totalitarian systems. Ideology in itself is violent.” “How can a parliament decide what is true and what not?” asks Müller.
With regard to the current attempts at undermining the teaching on contraception as laid out in Humanae Vitae, the cardinal says that he explains this phenomenon “with the secularization of the Church.” “For some shepherds, the Church is only a means in order to make politics, in order to please people,” he adds. “For them, it is more important to respect the masses, rather than to respect the Word of God.”
The text has been updated, in order to make clearer one statement that actually stems from Giuseppe Nardi himself.
Posted on: Monday, May 07, 2018
by Stephen M. Krason
This article was first published May 2, 2018, at Crisis Magazine.
Recently, Utah found it necessary to put a law into effect that allows “free-range parenting.” That is, parents are free to make the judgment that their children are, say, free to walk to the local park by themselves or to bike a couple of blocks away from home without child protective services showing up at their door or, worse, the police coming to arrest them for child neglect. That a law had to be passed to uphold parental authority about such things shows how outrageous the ruling perspectives on child abuse and neglect have become in recent decades, where the state is prepared to second-guess parents left and right and to routinely treat all kinds of innocent parental actions as child maltreatment.
It’s no surprise that in recent years, according to Department of HHS statistics, that upwards of 80 percent of reports of child abuse and neglect are unfounded. It’s interesting that while self-styled child advocates, their academic allies, and the sprawling child protective system (CPS) are so ready to find child maltreatment inside almost every family’s front door, they are silent about the harms to children from being brought up by same-sex (male homosexual or, more typically, lesbian) couples. Almost intuitively, the average person would think this to be a recipe for serious, perhaps life-altering, problems for such children. The research now coming out suggests that the average person’s instincts are indeed correct—even though the mainstream academic social science and related professional organizations, which long ago became apologists if not mouthpieces for the homosexualist movement, ignore or try to discredit or even suppress it.
Many are aware of University of Texas sociologist Dr. Mark Regnerus’s studies several years ago which indicated—he was careful to avoid sweeping conclusions—that, among other things, children reared in homes headed by same-sex parents were “more likely” to: have poor educational attainment, cohabit when they became adults, be sexually molested, have sexually transmitted diseases, smoke tobacco and marijuana, be on public assistance as adults, be in mental health counseling or therapy and suffer from depression, and get into trouble with the law. Regnerus’s careful research, not unexpectedly, was met by denunciation from mainstream social scientists, who claimed his research was flawed without even seriously examining his data. The peer-reviewed professional journal that published the results of his studies was attacked, and the charge made that its review procedure was flawed. He was even subjected to a “scientific misconduct” investigation by his university, which ultimately exonerated him.
The attack on Regnerus occurred simply because of the overwhelming pro-homosexualist bias of mainstream social science and the efforts of homosexualist organizations against him.
The research of Fr. D. Paul Sullins, Ph.D., an emeritus professor of sociology at The Catholic University of America who has been connected with the Marriage and Religion Research Institute at CUA and now the Ruth Institute, has confirmed and expanded on Regnerus’s earlier findings. I have known Fr. Sullins for many years, as he has been a fellow board member of the Society of Catholic Social Scientists and is also the organization’s chaplain. He was one of the Episcopal clergy who converted to Catholicism and under the special provision put in place by Pope John Paul II was ordained to the priesthood. Like Regnerus, he’s a careful and ethical researcher who aims for what social science scholarship is supposed to be about: discerning the truth.
Fr. Sullins has convincingly shown that it is the research of the mainstream social scientists who have sought to deny the harm of same-sex parenting that is flawed. Not only have the sample of people they studied been too small to truly examine the question, but they have studied only what he calls “conveniently available or selected groups of participants, usually parents recruited from homophile sources.” The result was a “strong bias toward positive findings.” At the same time, their writing has refused to address the contrary findings. These have been either “dismissed in footnotes on specious grounds or, more commonly, simply ignored.” Among the studies that they have ignored which showed “substantially higher rates of problems or functional deficiencies among children with same-sex parents,” Sullins tells us, have been those relying on “large statistically representative” samples from the Centers for Disease Control and the University of North Carolina’s National Longitudinal Survey of Adolescent Health.
Sullins’s own research has shown the following. In comparison to children with opposite-sex parents, children in the care of same-sex couples, were: almost twice as likely to have a developmental disability; almost twice as likely to have had medical treatment for an emotional problem and three times as likely to have had medicine prescribed for a psychological condition in the past year before the study; ten times more likely to have been sexually touched by a parent or other adult and four times more likely to have been forced to have sex against their will; less likely, when reaching adolescence, to have romantic relationships or to see themselves in a future relationship involving pregnancy or marriage (which suggests that their situation influences them away from relationships with the opposite sex); twice as likely, when becoming adults, to suffer from depression and four times as likely to consider suicide; more likely to use tobacco and marijuana and to have been arrested and then pled guilty of a crime; and three times more likely to be unemployed, receiving public assistance, or if later married to have had adulterous relationships. By the time women who had grown up in same-sex headed households reached age thirty, they were only half as likely to be married or in a relationship lasting three or more years and only a third as likely to have ever been pregnant.
In his writing, Sullins also speaks about much earlier studies—before even Regnerus’s—which showed the harms of same-sex parenting and were also ignored by mainstream social science. He mentions Paul Cameron’s studies, which—confirmed by Sullins later—showed that children with same-sex parents were more likely to be sexually molested. Their households were also more likely to witness domestic violence and, unsurprisingly, the children were more likely to become homosexual themselves. If the harm-deniers could dismiss Cameron because he heads the Family Research Institute, which is concerned about issues that threaten the family as traditionally understood, they would be more hard-pressed to reject Sotirios Sarantakos. Sarantakos is a noted Australian sociologist and authority on research design and methods. Studying elementary school children, he found that those from same-sex led households suffered considerable educational and social deficiencies.
Like Regnerus, Sullins is careful to avoid sweeping or unsubstantiated conclusions. He says that as in other situations where there is not an intact family with two married opposite-sex parents—as when there is a divorce or cohabitation—“most children still turn out all right.” Nevertheless, the “primary harm” to children from same-sex parenting, as suggested by the research findings noted, is “developmental”—with consequences not apparent until at least early adulthood. He concludes that while we don’t yet know enough, it’s certain that “the idea of ‘no differences’ is clearly false.” Sullins’s cautious conclusions didn’t stop the mainstream social science organizations from making false claims that he had used faulty research methods and—as with Regnerus—the journals that he published his findings in had slipshod review procedures. In fact, Sullins published them in international medical journals, where he knew the standards for review are more rigorous than in mainline U.S. social science journals—but also where genuine objectivity, as opposed to ideology, still rules. An article in Mercator.Net about Sullins’s work explains the air-tightness of his research methods and also notes that the mainline social science journals have been strikingly silent about the review procedures used for the harm-denial articles they routinely run.
Even if further research makes the harm of same-sex parenting indisputable—which, to this social scientist, is virtually so already—don’t
expect mainstream social science to accept it. Ideology has long-since replaced true scholarship there—they are blind followers masquerading
as independent thinkers at the cutting edge. Also, don’t expect the CPS to start thinking that the damage caused to children by same-sex parenting—and
certainly not the whole notion of same-sex parenting itself—qualifies as child maltreatment. The CPS’s leaders and operatives are formed
by and most accept without much question the perspectives of mainstream social science—including its ideologically grounded biases. Most
are trained in the social work field and where its mainstream was seen a few years ago when a cadre of homosexual alumni from my university pressured
it to delete homosexuality from a list of behaviors to be studied in a course on deviant behavior by contacting the secular social work accrediting
agency, which they knew would agree with them. Besides, the CPS is too busy persecuting parents for innocent, commonsensical, traditional parenting
practices—routinely treating such things as simple spanking as child abuse and free-range parenting as neglect—to be concerned about
the problems Regnerus, Sullins, and the others have identified.
Posted on: Tuesday, April 17, 2018
Ruth Institute Announces the Rev. Dr. Paul Sullins as Senior Research Associate
Leading researcher on same sex parenting to join the Ruth Institute
April 17, 2018, Lake Charles, Louisiana—The Ruth Institute announces that Dr. Paul Sullins will serve as a Senior Research Associate. Recently retired from the sociology department at Catholic University of America, Dr. Sullins is a leader in research on same-sex parenting and its implications for child development.
Announcing the appointment, Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse, Founder and President of the Ruth Institute said, “We at the Ruth Institute are greatly concerned that ‘alternative family forms,’ such as divorce and unmarried parenthood, have been harmful to children. Dr. Sullins cares deeply about the impact of same sex parenting on children, examining topics such as ADHD, depression, and emotional problems. He is a good fit for us.”
Dr. Morse continued, “Treating same-sex couples as the legal equivalent of opposite-sex couples means increasing numbers of children will be raised in same-sex couple households. More information will be coming available about their experiences. We believe it is crucial to continue examining this evidence in a systematic way.”
Dr. Sullins explained, “The research in this area is really just beginning. Most of the studies which claim to show “no differences” between parenting by same sex couples and married heterosexual couples have used small, unrepresentative data sets. I have been examining large statistically representative datasets—principally the Centers for Disease Control’s National Health Interview Survey (NHIS), with 1.9 million cases; and the University of North Carolina’s National Longitudinal Survey of Adolescent Health (Add Health), with 20,000 cases. I have repeatedly documented substantially higher rates of problems among children with same-sex parents, and that the best context for child well-being is with his or her own mother and father.”
Formerly Episcopalian, Dr. Sullins is a married Catholic priest. He earned a Ph.D. in sociology at Catholic University in 1997 and taught there from 1998 until his recent retirement from teaching. He and his wife, Patricia, have an inter-racial family of three children, two adopted.
Among his many honors, he is Director of the Summer Institute of Catholic Social Thought and Director of the Leo Initiative at Catholic University. He has written four books and over 100 journal articles, research reports and essays on issues of family, faith, and culture.
Dr. Morse concluded, “We are delighted to assist Dr. Sullins’ efforts to discover the truth about same-sex parenting. Dr. Sullins is a careful researcher who follows the data wherever it leads. Ruth Institute followers can look forward to seeing him at Ruth Institute events and in our publications.”
To interview either Dr. Sullins or Dr. Morse, reply to this email.
Posted on: Saturday, April 14, 2018
by Jennifer Roback Morse
This article was first published at Clash Daily on April 18, 2108.
“Am I Gay?” Today, every family in America faces this question one way or another. Even the best families. Maybe you have a child, or sibling, or close friend who feels attracted to people of the same sex. Maybe a niece or nephew or grandchild wonders about their sexuality.
Maybe they are asking YOU these questions.
The book “Why I Don’t Call Myself Gay” challenges the idea that feelings of same sex attraction necessarily mean a person is “gay.” The author, Daniel Mattson, tells his story of experiencing same sex attraction, acting on it, and ultimately, allowing Jesus to turn his life around.
This is not a “pray away the gay” message. It is something much more powerful. The “pray away the gay” slur is meant to demean people’s efforts to change their patterns of sexual attraction. Mattson’s message is that every person can and must, make choices about their feelings. Even if same sex attraction persists, or reemerges, every person continues to have meaningful choices about important topics:
What meaning do I assign my sexual feelings? Whom do I choose as my friends? From whom do I chose to draw inspiration, advice, and encouragement? And most of all, how do I decide to behave?
I have heard Dan speak. (Full disclosure: Dan and I are friends. He says nice things about me in the “Acknowledgments” section of the book.I say nice things about him on the back cover.) Dan has a wonderful way about him. He loves talking with high school students. He invites them to write their questions on index cards, so no one knows who is asking what question.
Inevitably, a few kids will write “Am I gay?” on their cards.
Dan answers them so gently.
Feelings of attraction to the same sex are just that: feelings. Those feelings are not the same thing as an identity. You are more than the sum total of your feelings. So is every human being who has ever walked the earth.
Did you know, that in some states, Dan’s message could be considered illegal? That’s right. “You Must Stay Gay” laws are being proposed and passed across the country.
Of course, no one comes right out and says: “You Must Stay Gay.”
They say they are outlawing “Sexual Orientation Change Efforts.”They claim offering therapy is an “unlawful business practice.”
In other words, the government is telling you and me and every young person how they must interpret their own feelings. “You feel same sex attraction: you are gay.” End of story.
But Dan Mattson begs to differ. We can feel all kinds of things. We still have choices about how to label ourselves, what to think, and how to behave. He is not a therapist, and not making therapeutic claims. He is just one man, who is telling his own story. That is still legal. At least for now.
My identity: I am a child of God.
Noted Catholic Cardinal, Robert Sarah of Guinea, wrote the foreword to Dan’s book. Cardinal Sarah says of persons who experience same sex attraction:
Only when they lived in keeping with Christ’s teaching were they able to find the peace and joy for which they had been searching… They are called to chastity, and we demean them if we think they cannot attain this virtue, which is a virtue for all disciples.”
In fact, the subtitle of Dan’s book is “How I Reclaimed My Sexual Reality and Found Peace.” People need to hear this message of hope for people who experience same sex attraction.
A word to the many non-Catholic Christians on this site: Yes, this book is written by a Catholic man, published by a Catholic publisher, and endorsed by a Catholic Cardinal. There are plenty of culturally-Catholic quirks that may strike you as odd. But the overall message is just as biblically sound and solid as it can be. In this age of so many religious leaders in so many branches of Christianity promoting so much confusion, we small “o” orthodox believers have no choice but to support one another wherever we can.
Please buy this book. Read it. Share it with your pastor, youth minister, and others who work with young people. Help give Dan Mattson’s message of hope and peace the wide audience it deserves.
Jennifer Roback Morse, Ph.D., is Founder and President of the Ruth Institute, located in Lake Charles Louisiana. Daniel Mattson will be the keynote speaker at their First Annual Awards Dinner June 15, 2018.
Posted on: Saturday, March 17, 2018
“Dr. J” to her tribe, this influencer has a PhD and teaching experience at Yale and George Brown University. An economist by training, she has invaluable insights into the wreckage we see around us caused by the failed Sexual Revolution. The organization she founded, The Ruth Institute, exists to help survivors of this very public shipwreck.
With the Obergefel v Hodges (2015) decision redefining marriage at the federal level, we have reached a legal tipping point. Most Americans support marriage as it’s been defined for millennia, as the lifelong union of one man and one woman with openness to children. Culture is one thing, laws are another.
If you want practical insights into how to talk about this and other challenges such as our collective no-fault divorce attitude (yes, it has infected “good Catholic” circles), and the forgotten players known as children, this is the interview for you.
from Patrick Coffin's website here.
Posted on: Monday, February 26, 2018
Dear Dr. J:
My brother just announced he would be getting married to his boyfriend. They have been together for approximately ten years. My parents and brothers
raised their glasses to his plans and seem to be congratulating them. As a Roman Catholic with my principles of natural family and natural marriage,
how should I react about him getting married and what should I do when he invites me to his wedding?
Should you go to the wedding? In a word, no, you should not. They may ask you, "Would you go to the wedding of a divorced person who was remarrying?" The correct answer is, "No, I would not. They are entering publicly into an adulterous union. I would not go." If they reply, "But you went to Uncle Harry's second wedding and didn't say a word," the proper answer is, "I was wrong to do that. I should not have gone."
The longer-term question is: how do you maintain good relationships with these people and other family members who are going along with their plans to marry? This is the larger challenge.
Take every opportunity to show them love and compassion. Include your brother and his friend in activities whenever you can do so in good conscience. For instance, you can have them over for dinner, or go out to a show with them. These are not intrinsically "coupled" activities. You should invite them whenever you can. If they say no, that is ok. You have done your part. You can send them each birthday cards or Christmas cards.
If they want to argue with you about why you didn't go to the wedding, I suggest you decline to participate. Ditto if they want to argue about related topics, like the Church’s teaching on sexuality, unless you have reason to think they are sincerely interested in what you have to say. If they just want to argue, your answer is a polite, "No thanks."
Keep praying for them. Your time with the Lord will gradually reveal other specific ways in which you can show love to your brother. Eventually, the
Lord may show you an opportunity to explain the Church’s teaching in its fullness. Or maybe the Lord will place someone else in your brother’s
life who can share it with him.
Thank you for your question.
Posted on: Monday, February 12, 2018
New York is sacrificing a child's best interest in favor of "marriage equality."
By Jennifer Roback Morse
Published on February 9, 2018, at The Stream.
A little girl in New York is in foster care, even though her father is a perfectly fit parent. The court will not even recognize him as her father. How is this possible, you ask?
The little girl’s mother is in a same sex union. The girl is in foster care, because of neglect petitions pending against both the mother and her lover. The five-judge panel agreed that the fact that the child was in foster care was “relevant” and “concerning.” They nevertheless denied the father’s request to prove his fatherhood.
In the court’s logic, this man “merely donated sperm, belatedly asserting parental rights.”
In other words, he is not a father unless we say so.
The news stories about this case focus on its implications for “Marriage Equality.” The Daily Beast story has a sub-headline: “judges rule in favor of marriage equality over biology in case of 3-year-old girl.” A Canadian paper, The National Post describes the case this way:
Without legal advice, Christopher and the women drew up a contract in which he waived any claims to paternity, custody or visitation, and the women waived any claim to child support. But troubles arose, and they disagreed on Christopher’s access to the child … In April 2015, Christopher went to court, seeking an order for a paternity test, and later for custody of the child.
The Post is not too clear on what “troubles arose.” We get a clue, from the court documents (page 18), which The Daily Beast cited only in passing, that the child has been in foster care for a lengthy “period of time” since the 2015 hearing.
Perhaps this explains why he “belatedly asserted parental rights.” Maybe he saw what the child welfare authorities eventually saw. These women were neglecting the seven-month-old child.
Christopher volunteered his sperm as a “humanitarian gesture” to two women who were family friends. He evidently absorbed the Grand Gay Narrative that assures us:
If the Grand Gay Narrative is true, a man might logically conclude that donating his sperm could be a “humanitarian gesture.” He might well believe that agreeing in advance to stand down from active fatherhood was a fine thing to do, costless to himself and his child, and beneficial to these two women.
The problem is that the Grand Gay Narrative is false. Biology does matter. Both parents and children care about their biological connections. Being raised by a same sex couple does present risks to kids, compared with being raised by one’s own biological parents. The people who say otherwise base their opinion on highly suspect, cherry-picked data, from small unrepresentative samples. Frankly, most of it is highly publicized junk science.
Neither of these women has pulled herself together enough to have the little girl returned to her care. I was a foster parent in San Diego. I know that child welfare agencies try to give parents every opportunity to reunify with their children. If the child has been in foster care “for a lengthy period of time,” these two women must be bad news. Christopher was trying to be a nice guy in 2014 when he donated the sperm. He has been trying to be a responsible father since April 2015 when he first petitioned the court.
Isn’t this how we want men to behave toward the children they sire?
The five-judge panel was not interested.
We believe that it must be true that a child born to a same-gender married couple is presumed to be their child … A paternity test for an outsider, who merely donated sperm, belatedly asserting parental rights, would effectively disrupt, if not destroy, this family unit and nullify the child’s established relationship with the wife, her other mother. Testing in these circumstances exposes children born into same-gender marriages to instability for no justifiable reason other than to provide a father-figure for children who already have two parents.” (emphasis added.)
News flash to the judges: a child in foster care is already “exposed to instability.” Is letting her father be involved more disruptive than foster care?
The court’s ruling does not protect the child’s best interests. Their ruling circles the wagons to protect the Grand Gay Narrative.
“Marriage Equality” advocates assured us that removing the gender requirement from marriage was only a matter of making same sex couples the legal equivalent of opposite sex couples. This case shows that “Marriage Equality” creates a whole round of new inequalities. Some fathers are permitted to be involved in their children’s lives. Others are not: the law actively blocks Christopher from his own child. Some children have a legally recognized right to their fathers. Others, like this little girl, do not.
She only has the parents the government allows her to have. And that is way too much power for any government.
Posted on: Tuesday, January 16, 2018
by John Stossel; originally published at Creators.com on January 16, 2018.
Who will warn Americans about hate groups? The media know: the Southern Poverty Law Center.
SPLC, based in Alabama, calls itself "the premier" group monitoring hate. Give us money, they say, and they will "fight the hate that thrives in our country."
I once believed in the center's mission. Well-meaning people still do. Apple just gave them a million dollars. So did actor George Clooney.
Ayaan Hirsi Ali grew up in Somalia, where she suffered female genital mutilation. So now she speaks out against radical Islam. For that, SPLC put her on its list of dangerous "extremists."
Maajid Nawaz was once an Islamic extremist. Then he started criticizing the radicals. SPLC labels him an "anti-Muslim extremist," too.
While launching hateful smears like these, SPLC invites you to donate to them to "join the fight against hatred and bigotry."
SPLC once fought useful fights. They took on the Ku Klux Klan. But now they go after people on the right with whom they disagree.
They call the Family Research Council a hate group because it says gay men are more likely to sexually abuse children.
That's their belief. There is some evidence that supports it. Do they belong on a "hate map," like the Ku Klux Klan, because they believe that evidence and worry about it?
I often disagree with the council, but calling them a hate group is unfair. In my YouTube video this week, the group's vice president, Jerry Boykin, tells me, "I don't hate gay people. And I know gay people, and I have worked with gay people."
But once you're labeled a hate group, you are a target.
One man went to the Family Research Council headquarters to kill people, shooting a security guard in the arm before he was stopped.
The shooter told investigators that he attacked the FRC because he found them on SPLC's hate list.
Calling the council a "hate group" made its employees the target of real hate.
SPLC also smears the Ruth Institute, a Christian group that believes gays should not have an equal right to adopt children. The institute's president,
Jennifer Roback Morse, says they're not haters.
"I like gay people. I have no problem with gay people. That's not the issue. The issue is, what are we doing with kids and the definition of who counts as a parent."
The institute doesn't argue that gays should never adopt. "There could be cases where the best person for a particular child would be their Uncle Harry and his boyfriend," Morse told me. But the institute wants preference given to "a married mother and father."
For that, SPLC put the Ruth Institute on its hate map. That led the institute's credit card processor to stop working with them. In a letter to the institute, the processor company said that it had learned that the "Ruth Institute ... promotes hate, violence, harassment and/or abuse."
"We went and checked our website," Morse told me, "and we were already down."
I suspect SPLC labels lots of groups "haters" because crying "hate" brings in money.
Years ago, Harper's Magazine reported that SPLC was "the wealthiest civil rights group in America, one that now spend most of its time — and money — on a fund-raising campaign." People in Montgomery, Alabama, where SPLC is based, call its elegant new headquarters "the Poverty Palace."
"Morris Dees' salary is more than my entire annual budget," says Morse. "Whatever they're doing, it pays."
Dees, SPLC's co-founder, promised to stop fundraising once his endowment hit $55 million. But when he reached $55 million, he upped the bar to $100 million, saying that would allow them "to cease costly fundraising."
But again, when they reached $100 million, they didn't stop. Now they have $320 million — a large chunk of which is kept in offshore accounts. Really. It's on their tax forms.
In return for those donations to SPLC, the world gets a group that now lists people like Ben Carson and Fox commentators Laura Ingraham, Judge Andrew Napolitano and Jeanine Pirro as extremists — but doesn't list the leftist militant hate groups known as antifa.
SPLC is now a hate group itself. It's a money-grabbing slander machine.
John Stossel is author of "No They Can't! Why Government Fails — But Individuals Succeed."
Posted on: Monday, January 08, 2018
Posted by Marc & Julie Anderson on in Archdiocese, Leaven News
What part will you play in the future of the family?
It is a question that is on the mind of more than a few Catholic leaders these days, as we see the primary institution of our society fracture under seemingly insurmountable stress.
But the Catholic Church is not the only institution unwilling to throw in the towel on the institution of the family.
The Ruth Institute, founded in 2008 by Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse, is a global nonprofit organization aimed at ending family breakdown by energizing survivors of the Sexual Revolution.
And it’s a movement that is coming to the archdiocese next month.
On Jan. 27, the archdiocesan office of marriage and family life will host the institute’s “Healing Family Breakdown” spiritual workshop at the Church of the Ascension in Overland Park.
The event is open to all, Catholic and non-Catholic, and, according to Morse, is meant to accomplish three goals: (1) heal families; (2) help participants prevent family breakdown; and (3) help participants become agents of healing within society at large.
When families attend the workshop, Morse added, something important and life-changing happens to them.
“You realize you and your family are not the only ones,” she said. “For a lot of people, that is huge.”
That realization is an important first step in healing, she said, and is often made manifest to her in a tangible way in the seating arrangement of workshop participants.
“The Holy Spirit has a way of seating people at the table who belong together,” Morse said.
For example, at a past workshop, she witnessed a teenage girl’s perspective change as a result of a conversation she had with a man at her table.
The girl was the daughter of divorced parents. She blamed her father for the situation and did not want anything to do with him.
However, also seated at her table was a divorced man experiencing loneliness as his children would not talk to him. A conversation between the two, Morse said, led the young lady to consider the hurt and loneliness her father might be experiencing, a perspective the teenager had not considered previously.
And that’s just one type of healing and paradigm shift The Ruth Institute is trying to bring about in the world.
On the nonprofit’s website — www.ruthinstitute.org — Morse identifies a dozen different types of survivors of the Sexual Revolution, ranging from children of divorce and of unmarried parents, to a pornography addict or a post-abortive man or woman.
If you recognize yourself, a family member or a friend in one of the 12 survivor descriptions, Morse discourages you from trying to go it alone. Participate in the workshop and begin the healing process, instead.
“We need [survivors’] participation,” she said. “We need you to be witnesses to say the church was right all along [about its teachings on family and sexuality].”
Morse calls survivors “the secret weapon” to restoring the family to its greatness and its rightful place in society.
“All these wounded souls need to speak up,” she said.
“Many people leave the faith over sexual issues,” Morse explained. “I know. I stormed off in a huff.”
But just as people leave the faith over sexual issues, Morse said, countless people later realize the beauty of church teaching and return to the faith.
“I was completely wrong, of course,” she said of her departure from the faith.
Later, by studying the church’s teachings and by watching her adopted and biological children grow, Morse said she realized how much children need their father and mother as well as how much they want their parents.
“That’s how I got interested in the family and how the family fits into society,” said Morse.
As she has watched the family structure in modern society continue to deteriorate, however, Morse is not without hope.
“A lot of what society is trying to do is undoable,” she said. “We believe it is possible to make the family great again.”
Posted on: Thursday, November 23, 2017
(November 23, 2017) Dr J is once again Molly Smith's guest on From the Median. They're discussing the fallout from President Trump's attendance at the Values Voters Summit and the book The Health Hazards of Homosexuality.
Check out Dr J's article on the subject, too, originally published at The Stream and linked at our website: The Medical Risks of Homosexuality and the Values Voters Summit.Listen
Posted on: Monday, November 06, 2017
Sexual revolutionaries consistently change the subject away from medical risks and back to their favorite topic: the hatefulness of anyone who brings them up.
This article was first published on October 24, 2017, at The Stream.
The breathless headlines from the main stream media announced that the nefarious Donald Trump spoke to those nefarious Values Voters. “Trump Just Spoke At An Event Where Guests Were Warned Of ‘The Hazards Of Homosexuality,” BuzzFeed informed its readers. “‘Hazards of Homosexuality’ Flier Distributed at Values Voter Summit” screamed the NBC News headline.
Dig down a bit, what you find is a big nothing burger. The “anti-gay” flyer advertised a book that warned of the medical risks associated with homosexual activity. Oddly enough, the main stream media had no comment on the accuracy of the contents of the book.
BuzzFeed quoted Gregory T. Angelo, president of the Log Cabin Republicans, an LGBT group, “I’d expect nothing less from the wingnuts at MassResistance.” NBC News quoted Sarah Kate Ellis, president of GLAAD, which they described as a “media watchdog group”: “This morning, addressing a gathering of some of the most extreme anti-LGBTQ activists in the country, Trump once again legitimized hate speech.”
BuzzFeed couldn’t even get the title of the book right, calling it, The Hazards of Homosexuality, when the correct title is The Health Hazards of Homosexuality. Neither BuzzFeed nor NBC News quoted a single person denying a single point in the book, or the advertising flyer. Their stories were about the people who wrote or promoted the book. MassResistance authored it. Dr. Michelle Cretella of the American College of Pediatricians endorsed it. The Family Research Council organized the Values Voters Summit. The Southern Poverty Law Center has designated all three organizations as “hate groups.”
Full disclosure: I too, am a certified hater, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center. For the sake of argument, let’s take as a given that I am the meanest, most hate-filled person on the planet, and that my hatred is directed at sexual minorities.
Now that we have that out of the way, can we please discuss two serious questions: Is homosexual activity riskier than heterosexual activity? And if it is, does it matter?
As a certified hater, I’m friends with most of the other certified haters. I happen to have a copy of The Health Hazards of Homosexuality on my shelf. I’ve read it cover to cover. I have not checked out all 1,800 footnotes. But I am familiar with many of the references cited. Let’s look at a few topics, that can be easily checked with the most recent data from the Centers for Disease Control.
Syphilis: the CDC reports that “MSM continued to account for the majority of Primary & Secondary syphilis cases in 2016 (Figures 35 and 36). Of 27,814 reported P&S syphilis cases in 2016, 16,155 (58.1%) were among MSM, including 14,553 (52.3%) cases among men who had sex with men only and 1,602 (5.8%) cases among men who had sex with both men and women (Figure 36).”
HIV: “At the end of 2014, among a total of 722,244 males (aged 13 years and older at year end 2014), 70% of HIV infections were attributed to male-to-male sexual contact.” Bear in mind: Men who have sex with men (MSM) account for about 2% of the population.
Anal Cancer: Gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men are 17 times more likely to get anal cancer than heterosexual men. Men who are HIV-positive are even more likely than those who do not have HIV to get anal cancer.
The “wingnuts at MassResistance” quoted figures like these in The Health Hazards of Homosexuality. Do these facts matter? If you are an ordinary person, trying to figure out what to do and what to think, yes, I should think these facts matter greatly to you.
Why marginalize people who publicize facts like these? Because these facts interrupt the Grand Narrative:
Sexual activity is an entitlement for anyone able to give meaningful consent. There is no down-side risk associated with any kind of sex for anyone, if they use a condom every time. And if something bad happens to you, you must not have used the condom correctly or consistently.
In other words, the problems you experience are your fault. The Grand Narrative must never be called into question.
This is the same garbage Sexual Revolutionaries have been feeding straight women for years. Never mind the unwanted pregnancies or the STI’s or the broken hearts. Use a condom for “safer sex.” It’ll all be good. And anyone who connects the rather obvious dots between sexual activity and these outcomes, just hates you.
The Grand Narrative won’t work any better for gay men, than it has for us. Yes, of course, I am aware the gay men don’t experience unwanted pregnancies. They have other issues. Former gay porn star Joseph Sciambra reports on his experience with rectal incontinence. Not something most women have to deal with.
My point is this. Sexual Revolutionaries airbrush all the negative consequences out of the picture. They consistently change the subject away from these consequences and back to their favorite topic: the hatefulness of anyone who brings them up.
If you experience same sex attraction, you have choices beyond the Grand Narrative. Even if you have experienced same sex attraction all your life, so consistently that you think you must have been “born that way,” you still have choices about what to do, what to think, and how to describe yourself. The medical risks are not the result of stigma or “hate.” Anal sex is intrinsically risky, so much so, that the Surgeon General once declared it “simply too risky to practice.” Having large numbers of sexual partners increases the risks of STI’s. Anyone who tells you otherwise is not being truthful with you.
If you care about the health and well-being of sexual minorities, you should want them to have full information about the risks associated with various
practices. That is what the headlines screaming about “hate” get wrong. And that is what the “wingnuts at MassResistance” get right.
Posted on: Saturday, November 04, 2017
by Claire Chretien
This article was first posted October 16, 2017, at Life Site News.
WASHINGTON, D.C., October 16, 2017 (LifeSiteNews) – Liberal media and LGBT activists are outraged that President Trump spoke at a conference where an exhibitor warned people of the scientifically-documented health risks of sodomy.
On Friday, Trump became the first sitting U.S. President to speak at Values Voter Summit (VVS), an annual gathering of pro-life, pro-family activists hosted by the Family Research Council (FRC). The largely evangelical conference featured a number of Congressmen, pastors, and pro-life advocates.
Mass Resistance, one of the groups tabling in the conference’s exhibit hall, was selling and advertising its book titled The Health Hazards of Homosexuality: What the Medical and Psychological Research Reveals.
Mass Resistance was also selling copies of a book by Dr. Robert Oscar Lopez, a man who was raised by lesbians.
Buzzfeed and NBC News both wrote articles critical of Trump speaking at an event where vendors in the hall advertised for and peddled fact-based books about the risks associated with homosexual behavior.
Dan Gainor, Vice President of Business and Culture at the Media Research Center, said the left-leaning reports were biased.
“Conservatives need to understand that openly left-wing outlets like Buzzfeed will never cover conservatives fairly,” he told LifeSiteNews. “Editor Ben Smith says ‘there are not two sides’ on the issue, so why worry about what they say?”
The book in question used reputable sources for its information, including the U.S. Centers for Disease Control.
“This book brings together information from widely dispersed and hard-to-find sources, summarizing recent medical and psychological research in laymen’s terms,” The Health Hazards of Homosexuality’s Amazon page says. “Sources include the Centers for Disease Control, medical professional groups, published medical research, media reports, plus LGBT medical and advocacy groups – all documented in 1,800 endnotes with up-to-date links.”
The book’s website says it covers “the politicized medical and mental health establishments,” the mental health issues of “depression, anxiety, suicidality, substance use, partner abuse, and BDSM (bondage/sexual sadomasochism),” the “sexual practices of homosexual men and lesbians” and “how HIV/AIDS is re-emerging as an epidemic among homosexual men.”
And it's not just conservative-based outlets that are writing about the sky-rocketing rates of sexually transmitted diseases among active homosexuals.
Just last month, the Washington Blade, which describes itself as “America’s LGBT News Source,” ran an article on the country’s “all-time high” STD rate.
Sexually transmitted “diseases are on the rise in a number of groups, including women, infants, and gay and bisexual men,” the Washington Blade reported. “Between 2015 and 2016, syphilis rates rose nearly 18 percent. Most cases occurred among men, especially gays and bisexuals. Half of the men in those two groups also had HIV, according to the report.”
The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) labels FRC and Mass Resistance “hate groups.” This claim was repeated in media coverage of the flier promoting the book.
The SPLC’s placement of FRC on its “hate map” inspired the first incident of armed domestic terrorism in Washington, D.C. in 2012. A man shot FRC’s security guard and planned to massacre FRC staff. He said he found FRC because the SPLC labeled it “anti-gay.”
Sarah Kate Ellis, President of GLAAD, said the flier was “unequivocally false and baseless.”
But the evidence says otherwise.
According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) in 2014, "gay and bisexual men accounted for an estimated 70% (26,200) of new HIV infections in the United States.” This is despite the fact that “gay and bisexual men made up an estimated 2% of the U.S. population” that year.
“The comments in the BuzzFeed article are very revealing: none of them deny the facts, as reported by the Centers for Disease Control,” Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse, Founder and President of the Ruth Institute, told LifeSiteNews.
“Who is the real hater here?” Morse asked. “The person who points out highly skewed patterns of risk, or the person who understates or diverts attention [away from] from those risks?”
“No one has claimed that the book isn’t accurate or false,” Brian Camenker of Mass Resistance told LifeSiteNews. “They just don’t like that the information is being made available.”
The secular website WebMD reports that homosexual practice has "downsides.”
“There are a number of health risks with anal sex, and anal intercourse is the riskiest form of sexual activity for several reasons,” it states.
“Studies have suggested that anal exposure to HIV poses 30 times more risk for the receptive partner than vaginal exposure,” WebMD says.
“The anus is full of bacteria,” meaning even if neither partner has an STD, there’s still a chance of infections, it adds.
Posted on: Thursday, October 26, 2017
(October 26, 2017) Dr J is once again Todd Wilkin's guest on Issues, Etc. They're discussing the current sexual abuse scandal surrounding Harvey Weinstein, California's new "non-binary" gender designation, and not-so-nefarious goings-on at the recent Values Voters Summit.
We made mention of the articles Dr J penned on the subjects: The Toxic Ideas that Enabled Weinstein and Others and The Medical Risks of Homosexuality and the Values Voters Summit. Also: more information on Issues's annual Making the Case Conference.
Posted on: Thursday, August 24, 2017
by Jennifer Roback Morse
This article was first published at The Stream on August 23, 2017.
I categorically condemn the Alt-Right, white supremacy, racism, Nazism and all violent totalitarian political movements. But I am a bit confused. I thought I was supposed to be a member of the Alt-Right, or a racist, or a Nazi, since I voted for Donald Trump. I guess I am even supposed to be in sympathy with the Alt-Right marchers in Charlottesville.
People like me who have had the “hate” label pinned on them face a dilemma: we can defend ourselves and say, “I don’t hate anyone. I just don’t agree with you.” In my experience, this strategy goes nowhere. The more we attempt to defend ourselves, the more we appear, well, defensive. Hence, not believable.
Our other choice is to say, “The heck with it. I know I’m not a hater, bigot or racist. I officially no longer care what anyone thinks of me.” This second course has a certain nobility to it. But it presents dangers of its own. People can easily become jaded and cynical about the whole concept of “hate” and “bigotry.”
In the interests of full disclosure, I should reveal that this has been my preferred strategy. You see, the organization I lead, the Ruth Institute, is listed on the Southern Poverty Law Center’s “Hate Map.” I don’t know how one gets on the SPLC’s “Hate Map.” And I certainly do not know how one gets off it.
I suppose I am an “anti-LGBT” hater, because I believe children need their own parents. So here is my question: If believing children need their own parents lands the Ruth Institute a spot on the “hate map,” what words adequately describe white supremacists or neo-Nazis?
I am clear on one point: Sexual revolutionaries gain a strategic advantage by labeling people like me. Guilt by association is irrational, but powerful. The fear of being labeled a racist provides a potent disincentive for people to voice the view that children need their own parents. Silencing people relieves the Identity Politicians and Sexual Revolutionaries from the effort of having to defend their ideas.
This is convenient for said Identity Politicians and Sexual Revolutionaries, because their ideas are indefensible. Children actually do need their own parents. Sexual orientation is not the equivalent of race. Two mothers do not equal two fathers do not equal a mother and a father, and certainly not one’s own mother and father.
One typical Revolutionary response at this point is, “Why are you singling out gay people? What about divorce?” Please be aware that the Ruth Institute spends a LOT of time talking about divorce and other forms of family breakdown. Don’t change the subject. Society’s injustice to children through divorce is proof-positive that depriving children of a parent through genderless marriage will also be unjust.
But what does any of this have to do with being a Nazi? Or a racist? Or advocating violence? Nothing.
Our “opinion-makers” in the media, academia and assorted left-wing think tanks are playing a dangerous game. They have told us that the views of many ordinary decent Americans are the equivalent of racism. Some of those same ordinary decent Americans are fed up. They know they are not racists, haters or bigots. But we no longer have an adequate public vocabulary to describe actual haters, bigots and racists.
As I said, I categorically condemn the Alt-Right, white supremacy, racism, Nazism and all violent totalitarian political movements. You may search the Ruth Institute’s website all day long, and never find a racist word. Instead, what you will find are reasons and evidence to support sentiments that align with the vast majority of Americans, black and white, male and female. Children need their own parents. Men and women are different. Sex makes babies and therefore society has every right to expect people to control their sexual impulses.
The advocates of the Sexual Revolution cannot defend their ideas. That is why people with my views end up on their “Hate Map.”
On Wednesday, August 23, the Ruth Institute released a statement on being included on SPLC’s “Hate Map.” You can read that statement here. The Ruth Institute has also created a special page called “Where’s the Hate?” which lists items that some have deemed “hateful.” They invite the public to review these items and determine for themselves who is actually “hateful.”
Posted on: Wednesday, July 12, 2017
by Jennifer Roback Morse
This article was first published April 17, 2017, at Crisis Magazine.
My son and I saw the new Beauty and the Beast. It was lovely, magical, following the 1991 cartoon, almost scene for scene, song for song. This is the story everyone wants to hear: darkness and evil and selfishness transformed by love into light and good and self-surrender. Life and love conquer death and fear.
This just happens to be the Christian story. That is why we never tire of hearing it. We were meant for love, for communion with others, for radical self-giving.
We want the Beast to be transformed. We want Belle to see beyond his looks and love him. We love Belle’s father and mother when each of them sacrifices themselves for their daughter. (Spoiler alert: we find out what happened to Belle’s mother.) We do not need to be talked into loving these moments. We love them instinctively, from the deepest part of our hearts.
We love the authentic portrayal of masculinity and femininity. The villain, Gaston, is a caricature of manhood. He is a preening, self-indulgent bully. He uses his strength and power to lord it over everyone around him and get what he wants. We are meant to despise the trio of girls who fawn over Gaston. And we do, because they are caricatures of authentic womanhood. They are absorbed with their looks and in snagging a high-status man.
We love Belle, not because she is an embodiment of some new feminist protagonist, but for the same reasons we have always loved our heroines. She is kind, faithful, and capable of radically self-giving love. Yes, she speaks her mind. Yes, she is competent. Yes, she likes to read. But who ever thought these traits were incompatible with genuine femininity? Shakespeare? Tolstoy? Laura Ingalls Wilder? Only feminist ideologues in their fantasy worlds ever thought otherwise.
We love the Beast because he is transformed from being a punk like Gaston into a truly manly man. His willingness to sacrifice his life for the sake of Belle’s happiness transforms him. This just happens to be what St. Paul enjoins of husbands in Ephesians 5: “Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the Church, and gave himself up for her.”
We do not need to be taught to love this story. It is written on our hearts by our Creator. In spite of the ravages of sin, in spite of all the ways we Moderns have distorted ourselves, we still respond to the story of self-giving love triumphing over selfishness. Ideologically-concocted fantasies don’t satisfy.
The Gay Moments
This brings me to the Beauty and the Beast “gay moment” that got so much press prior to the film’s opening. The film has several gay innuendos. A viewer in the theater could blink and miss them. That is why I believe Christians can see it, and even take their kids. The gay double entendres will sail right over their heads.
Buying the DVD is a different story. If kids watch the film repeatedly as people tend to do in their own homes, they will eventually figure out the gay stuff.
Interestingly enough, the presumably-gay LeFou doesn’t actually fit the Official Gay Storyline. He is unsure of his masculinity. By attaching himself to the hyper-masculine Gaston, he tries to reinforce his own sense of maleness.
But contra the Official Gay Storyline, his attraction to Gaston does nothing positive for him. In fact, it weakens him. He lies for Gaston. He acquiesces in attempted murder. He participates in mob violence. All along, LeFou knows he is doing wrong. He stifles his conscience to please Gaston. When Gaston finally throws him under the bus (actually, under the piano), LeFou has second thoughts. He mentally ditches Gaston, and he can finally fight for what he knows to be right.
In other words, he becomes a man. He doesn’t need Gaston. At the end of the film, he is dancing with women, along with every other man in the castle.
Is it really a “gay moment” in the last scene when he momentarily gets partnered with a man? Or is it reversion to heterosexuality when LeFou dances happily with women in the bulk of the scene? More importantly, what is the Moment with a Man even doing in the movie? It adds nothing to the plot.
I think director Bill Condon felt he needed to pay obeisance to the Big Gay Activist Machine. The hints about the “exclusively gay moment,” to “the UK’s best-selling gay magazine” are part of the dance everyone now needs to perform to please the really powerful people.
But was it enough? Of course not. Nothing is ever enough for the True Believer.
Why isn’t it enough?
The sexual revolutionaries are peddling propaganda. They must. They are trying to manipulate people into believing things that are not true.
Love and sex are not the same. We cannot live without love, but we can live without sex. Men and women are different. Selfishness does not make us happy. These things are all true. The sexual revolutionaries are trying to create a society based on their opposites.
This project of theirs cannot succeed. But the impossibility of the goal does not dissuade them from their attempts. Their fantasy of what the world should be continues to propel them. Every new failure just ratchets up their commitment to keep trying.
Hence the need for more and deeper propaganda. The sexual revolutionaries must do as the Soviets did: enlist artists to create propaganda for the creation of their fantasy. Every work of art must point to the Glorious New World.
The Disney people painted a mustache on their Mona Lisa of a film, in order to placate the Activists, who, in the end, were not satisfied. Some have said that the “gay LeFou” character is a tribute to Howard Ashman, who wrote the original lyrics but died of AIDs before the cartoon was released in 1991. I find that suggestion offensive. I doubt that an artist of his stature would be “honored” by the Disney studios inserting the equivalent of a juvenile fart joke into his work. (Speaking of fart jokes, this not-nearly-gay-enough criticism of the film is gross. Is this how they really talk when they think no one is listening?) Soviet art is bad art. Pasting homosexual themes onto this story is bad art.
I watched the original cartoon endlessly, when it came out in 1991 and I had two preschoolers. How will the “gay moments” in this new version hold up after repeated viewing? All the rest of this live-action remake could be watched endlessly, without losing its charm. But the gratuitous gay scenes will be boring the second time you see them.
As for the Christians who called for a boycott of the film without even seeing it, well, I think that was ill-conceived. It is possible that Director Bill Condon, who is openly gay himself, was attempting to bait Christians. But taking the bait is not always wise. It could be more akin to a child repeatedly dropping his spoon from the high chair: he doesn’t really want the spoon. He just wants to see you pick it up over and over.
I think is more likely that Condon’s real audience for his comments was the Gay Commentariat. He felt he needed to pay homage to them, and win their approval. We conservative Christians are barely on his radar screen. We cannot hurt him the way gays in Hollywood potentially could.
The differences between the new Beauty and the Beast and the original cartoon from 1991 shows how far our culture has fallen into the grip of sexual revolutionary propaganda. We barely recognize it.
The telling of the Christian story resonates because it is calling out to our hearts with things everyone knows to be true. We Christians have Truth and Beauty on our side. We need to use them, without apology.
Posted on: Thursday, July 06, 2017
By Stoyan Zaimov
This article was published at Christian Post on May 17, 2017.
(Photo: Reuters) Children play in their kindergarten run by a private foundation which is not affected by the nursery caretakers' strike in Hanau, 30km south of Frankfurt, Germany, May 8, 2015.
An organization of teachers in the U.K. has argued that homosexuality and transgenderism should be taught to young children starting in nursery school.
Members of the National Union of Teachers group voted for a measure at a conference in Cardiff to "campaign to ensure a comprehensive age-appropriate content including promotion of LGBT+ matters for all schools from nursery throughout all phases of state education," The Evening Telegraph reported on Tuesday.
Annette Pryce, a NUT executive member from Buckinghamshire, claimed that the U.K. government hasn't been doing enough to promote inclusion.
"Those generations of young LGBT people who have been failed by the system are still not told explicitly in the law that their lives are important too," Pryce said.
"The NUT ... needs to ensure that SRE is inclusive to LGBT young people now and forever."
Education Secretary Justine Greening announced back in March that age appropriate sex and relationships guidance is to be made compulsory for all children, though it allowed parents and faith schools to opt out of the new rules.
U.K. ministers have been facing "mounting pressure" to respond to concerns that children are not being educated about online porn, cyber bullying and sexting, the Telegraph said.
Conservatives, such as Andrea Williams, chief executive at Christian Concern, have warned that teaching statutory sex education to 4-year-olds can be "devastating" and risks "robbing them of their innocence," however.
"Children [age 4] should not be introduced to this. Schools need to be safe places where the innocence of children is protected," Williams said in February.
"Very often sex education introduces children to concepts far too soon, destroying their innocence. This is not something that the state should be laying down. We are very concerned about this," she added.
Transgender issues being imposed upon children has stirred controversy in both the U.K. and the United States in recent times, with one critic calling a recently released book teaching children that men can have periods too "child abuse."
The Adventures of Toni the Tampon: A Period Coloring Book, which is being sold online on Amazon, claims that it's an "easy way to start a conversation with young kids about menstruation."
Cass Clemmer, a 2015 graduate of American University who created the Toni the Tampon character, said that Toni "is a little genderqueer tampon — kind of like me in tampon form — who just goes by Toni instead of any pronouns."
Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse, founder and president of the Ruth Institute that seeks Christ-like solutions to the problems of family breakdown, told The Christian Post in March that teaching children that men and boys can have periods is both "scientific malpractice and child abuse."
"This coloring book is a solution in search of a problem. Undermining children's comfort with their own bodies is no service to anyone. Most children who experience gender dysphoria grow out of it," Morse told CP.
Posted on: Wednesday, June 28, 2017
AUSTIN, Texas, May 22, 2017 (LifeSiteNews) — Two bisexual women and one man proclaim threesome marriage “should be the future of relationships” and that their threesome parenting is “setting a good example.”
Adam Lyons, 36, lives openly with two women, 28-year-old Brooke Shedd — with whom he has a two-year-old son, and 27-year-old Jane Shalakhova — who is eight months’ pregnant with his third son. He already has a seven-year-old stepson from yet another relationship.
“Three parents are better than two,” Lyons told the New York Post. “It enables us to manage daily life so much better.”
He says he notices “normal” two-person couples are often exhausted and struggle to keep up with work and children. “With three people, it’s logistically so much easier. … We share out the responsibilities, and it fits our sexual preferences too.”
“This should be the future of relationships, where people are able to enjoy love in any way they feel works,” Lyons advocated. “Three people and three parents makes so much sense to us.”
Shalakhova says she never wanted children until she joined the threesome. “I always thought that when you had a baby, you became a slave to your child,” she shared. But “with three parents, we can still have a social life, make time for one another, and share the parenting tasks so you don’t end up like the typical sleep-deprived mom.”
The unmarried polygamous arrangement has been going on for five years, which proves, Lyons says, “we’re a real family with healthy, happy kids.” All three say they are “setting a good example” for Lyons’ stepson, Oliver.
All three also admit they occasionally bring in a fourth sex partner. “We’re still open to fun when it comes along,” Lyons said. “We do sleep with other people outside the three of us” and “if we wanted to add someone, I’m sure we could.”
“We still make time to go to strip clubs together,” Shalakhova happily added. “We just hang out and have fun there.”
Shedd hints at a possible future political front in the culture wars. “I would definitely love to get married to Adam and Jane. It’s something we’ve always wanted, even though it’s not legal.”
Shedd says one thing is certain. “We definitely want a few more kids.”
Pro-marriage and family advocates say the threesome are in delusion.
“This is a form of child abuse, pure and simple,” National Organization for Marriage President Brian Brown told LifeSiteNews. “A child has a mother and father … period. To introduce an additional sexual partner into the home is to create confusion and chaos for an innocent child.”
Brown said this proves what opponents of homosexual “marriage” knew all along.
“We predicted that this would be the next step with the court creating the legal fiction of same-sex ‘marriage:’ This is a further step down the path of sacrificing children’s real needs to the sexual desires of parents.”
“I pray for the children who are being robbed of their innocence in such a home,” Brown added.
Dr. Mark Regnerus, professor of sociology at the University of Texas at Austin, expressed concern to LifeSiteNews over a lack of stability for the children.
“From a social scientific perspective, this is an inherently unstable arrangement — and we know stability is good for children,” the professor explained.
“Adding children to the ‘mix’ is likely to destabilize the (polyamorous) arrangement, whereas it often functions to unite a marriage between a man and a woman,” Regnerus observed.
Jennifer Johnson, the Ruth Institute’s director of the Children of Divorce Project, has seen the damaging effects of non-traditional family structures on children.
“These adults have created a structural inequality for the children and are celebrating it,” she explained to LifeSiteNews. “This is very typical for adults in our culture, who place their sexual liberty ahead of family structure equality for their children.”
“Family structure equality means that kids are raised with their own married mother and father, and that they don’t have step and half siblings to contend with,” Johnson illustrated. “Mom, dad, kids. That is equality from the child’s point of view.”
Johnson’s book, Marriage and Equality: How Natural Marriage Upholds the Ideal of Equality for Children, notes:
“Children are observant. Any school-aged child can see which of them live with their own married parents and which do not. They can see that some kids know and are connected to both halves of their origins, and others are not. If a particular child thinks or feels something about the inequality in which he finds himself, his thoughts and feelings may not be welcome. This is because they cannot be welcome. To welcome those thoughts and feelings might cast doubt upon the structure of the family itself.”
This inner disconnect is most often only acknowledged years later, once the damage is done to the child.
“For example, the now-adult children of unilateral divorce are finding their voices and beginning to speak out,” Johnson said. “They were silent for many years because of not wanting to hurt their parents, feeling too afraid to reveal their true feelings, and feeling isolated.”
Johnson says the pain, insecurity, and inner conflict that adult children of non-traditional family structures witness to shows that polygamous arrangements like Lyons, Shedd, and Shalakhova’s are deeply harmful.
“They are now telling their stories, and what they have to say isn’t pretty,” Johnson said. “It will undermine the belief that ‘kids are resilient.’”
The current generation is cursing the coming generation with an unbearable psychological and emotional (and sexual) burden.
“I will not be surprised when all the other kids of other kinds of family structure inequality also grow up, find their voices, and tell the ugly truth about what it was like to have their own intact families sacrificed on the altar of sexual liberation,” Johnson added.
Family Research Council’s Peter Sprigg pointed out that if Lyons’ “arrangement” is true, it confirms the many warnings of concerned Christians.
“Those of us who opposed the redefinition of marriage to include same-sex couples were routinely mocked for making ‘slippery slope’ arguments suggesting that such eliminating the male-female requirement for marriage would lead to further redefinitions, such as eliminating the requirement that marriage be limited to two people,” the senior fellow for policy studies told LifeSiteNews. “The slope is proving even more slippery than I might have imagined.”
Sprigg echoed his pro-family colleagues’ concern for the children.
“Living in a household with their mother, father, and another woman they also refer to as ‘Mom’ is likely to create confusion about their place in the world,” he explained. “As they grow older, there may well be rivalries between the half-siblings who have different mothers — as is clearly seen in the polygamous families of the Old Testament.”
Furthermore, polygamous relationships are unstable, Sprigg says.
“This ‘throuple’ is even more likely to eventually break up than a typical married couple, which can cause lasting trauma to a child,” he said. “While they present a rosy picture in this article, it is almost inevitable that jealousies would arise in this situation.”
“That’s not to mention the destructive role model of self-indulgent promiscuity that these three are providing for the children in their home,” the family advocate added.
“I would think that it is not only conservatives who should be concerned about such an arrangement, but feminists as well,” Sprigg noted. “One rarely hears of a woman sharing a household with multiple male sexual partners. If this model were to spread, it would mean more men would have difficulty finding wives, and a surplus of unmarried men in a society is a recipe for instability.”
“The one-man, one-woman model of marriage is one of the most egalitarian social institutions,” Sprigg concluded, “because it maximizes the likelihood that everyone, regardless of social status, will be able to find a suitable mate.”
Posted on: Monday, April 17, 2017
A Child of Divorce Speaks Out on the Importance of a Family
Jennifer Johnson is Director of the Children of Divorce Project at the Ruth Institute. She is an author, whose interests include homeschooling (she homeschooled her three children), children’s rights and family structure issues. She has worked full time with the Ruth Institute since 2010, an organization founded by Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse “dedicated to finding Christ-like solutions to the problems of family breakdown.”
Johnson’s most recently published work is “Marriage and Equality: How Natural Marriage Upholds the Ideal of Equality for Children.” She recently talked about divorce and its effect on her life.
What is your own personal experience of divorce?
I have a lot of experience with divorce, far too much to ask of any one person in my opinion. My parents divorced when I was three and went on to subsequent marriages, divorces, different children, a lot of back and forth between “two homes,” and a lot of chaos. By the time I was about 22, I had experienced three divorces: my own parents’ divorce and my dad’s two subsequent divorces. I am divorced as an adult and there is quite a bit of divorce in the rest of my family.
How did it affect you, and how have you been able to recover?
That is a whole story that I tell in my Special Report, “Marriage and Equality: How Natural Marriage Upholds the Ideal of Equality for Children”. The short version is that I did not have a family; I was the lone member of my family. The family experience that I had was shared by no other person. I include diagrams in the report to show what I mean.
That experience taught me to suppress my true thoughts and feelings about the original divorce and the remarriages. That chaotic situation taught me to ignore my own intuitions, taught me that letting my intuitions bubble to the surface of my mind was dangerous. Had I examined and revealed my intuitions about all that to my parents, it would have jeopardized my already-tenuous relationship with them. Learning to ignore my thoughts, feelings and intuitions about things that bothered me made me extremely vulnerable once I became an adult. I joined a cult at the age of 19, had an arranged marriage there, and participated and endorsed some horrific abuse and exploitation of others so that I could fit in and not be thought of as an outsider. The cult appealed to my deep need for belonging, for being a full-fledged member of a family.
Anthropologists have a concept that applies here. It is called “liminality.” Limin is Latin for the threshold of a doorway. The threshold is not one room or the other. It is the in-between place between two rooms, or between the outside of the house and the inside. Liminality is the condition of being between states or statuses. Sometimes it is referred to as being “betwixt and between.” When somebody is in a liminal state, they are no longer what they were and are not yet what they will be. The old rules no longer apply, and the new rules do not apply yet.
When my parents divorced, I ceased to exist as a full-fledged daughter in my family, because my family ceased to exist. I never again entered a full-fledged status with either of them. Their divorce and subsequent remarriages pushed me into a liminal state from which I have never emerged. Joining the cult was my attempt to exit the liminal state, to become initiated as a full-fledged member of a family, even if it was an abusive family.
There have been many studies about the effects of divorce on children. What are some of the findings?
It’s bad. It is worse than the average person wants to realize. Divorce shortens people’s lives. That alone should get people’s attention. Plus it increases the risk factors for addictions, not finishing high school, getting divorced as an adult and losing contact with grandparents. Children of divorce report feeling a lack of empathy from their churches, and don’t go to church as much as kids from intact families.
“No fault” divorce came to California in 1969, and the rest of the country soon after. How do you think divorce has affected society as a whole?
In order to talk about society, we need to talk about the mechanics behind the changes of “no-fault.” No-fault changed an important legal presumption in marriage. A presumption is a starting-point, a place where we say, “Here is where we begin, and we can make adjustments to individual circumstances from this place, but we need a beginning point so we always begin here.” Prior to no-fault, the legal presumption, the legal beginning point, was that marriage is permanent. It was viewed as a truly life-long commitment and the family courts honored this, at least in principle. Of course, there was divorce and separation prior to no-fault, but the presumption of permanence was honored by the courts. In order to get a divorce, that presumption had to be overcome by demonstrating why the marriage had failed. Such circumstances included adultery, addictions and abandonment.
No-fault changed the legal presumption. Now marriage is no longer legally presumed permanent by the family courts. The courts get involved in the minutia of family life at the behest of one spouse. One spouse has the power to harness the family court to destroy the family, like wielding a sledge hammer, and the family courts must comply. They no longer side with the family, giving preference to its legitimate claim on wholeness. They side with the person who wants to destroy the family. If the other spouse wants to keep the family together, that person has no legal remedy. The divorce will be enforced in all cases if one spouse wants it.
In this respect, no-fault divorce is like abortion. That might sound like a dramatic claim, so let me spell it out.
In both cases, the State sides with one person (the pregnant mother, the petitioner in a no-fault divorce action) to uphold or enforce the action that the person wants (the abortion, the no-fault divorce), while simultaneously providing no legal defense for the other person (the unborn child, the respondent in the divorce action). The individual who wants the action (of the abortion or to be divorced) must be “freed” from every restraint that he does not explicitly want. Even if he chose the restraint at a point in the past, if he changes his mind, then the State’s duty is to free him from it if this is what the individual wants.
In February, Archbishop Charles J. Chaput published a book called, Strangers in a Strange Land: Living the Catholic Faith in a Post-Christian World. He makes this same point when he says: “Without the restrains of some higher moral law, democracy instinctively works against natural marriage, traditional families and any other institution that creates bonds and duties among citizens. It insists on the autonomous individual as its ideal.”
Thus, as a society, we believe that the State’s duty to the individual is to annul or at least modify his familial obligations whenever he chooses in order to free him.
I’ve heard it said divorce may be a necessity when “the 3 A’s” are involved: addiction, abuse and adultery. Do you agree?
This is a complex question since it touches on a variety of issues. We can talk about it from the State’s perspective or the perspective of individual families. Taking the State’s perspective, we might ask: what is the State’s role in divorce? Should the State be involved? If so, at what point? I would say that yes, there is a role for the State, but to restore some semblance of justice in divorce we need to restore the legal presumption of permanence. I do not know how that should be done. Should we go back to some sort of fault-based system that relies on “the 3 A’s”? Should we at least eliminate the unilateral aspect of divorce and require both spouses to consent to it? I would say yes to both of those questions.
We can also consider the perspective of individual families. Perhaps somebody reading this article is experiencing one or more of those things right now. It is difficult to give blanket advice since each case is unique. Even so, I have heard many reports about couples who recovered from adultery. For addiction issues, help can be found through groups such as Al-Anon.
The good thing about the old fault-based system is that somebody was legally culpable. This person was then penalized by the courts. This deterred bad behavior. For example, if the child is not living with that person post-divorce, then this makes sense. Children should not be living with addicts or with abuse, especially when their other parent is not there to serve as a buffer.
What might you say to couples with children considering divorce when less serious issues are involved?
That triad of your family matters a great deal. It matters to your children, to all of the people around you, and to your grandchildren and the rest of your posterity. So try harder to work things out. I know you’re tired and you probably want to go find somebody else. But your kids need you there, at home. Don’t fool yourself into thinking that your situation will beat the odds for your kids. Are you willing to implicitly tell them that you don’t want to live with them for half of their remaining childhood? Because that is what you will be communicating to them if you split up. Do you want to throw away their sense of being your full-fledged child?
You will continue to have a relationship with your spouse even after the divorce, and you will have less say-so in the lives of your children than you do now. Your ex-spouse might bring undesirable people into your children’s lives, and your children will feel pressure to accept and love those people. Some spouses resort to parental alienation tactics, which means that you run the risk of losing all contact with your children for a very long time.
Please do not make the child live in “two homes.” Do not break up their daily life like that. Consider keeping the family home, letting the children live there full time, and getting a small place nearby that you share with your ex-spouse. Each of you takes turns going back and forth between the family home and the other place. If that doesn’t sound appealing to you, then please reconsider making your kids do the same. Apply the same standard to your children that you want applied to you.
What help/advice would you offer children of divorced parents to help them recover?
I don’t have any magic words here. Healing is an ongoing process. The first steps were the hardest for me:
I recommend my reading my book for more details about all of these concepts, plus many diagrams that make it easy enough for a child to understand.
Posted on: Wednesday, March 29, 2017
by Doug Mainwaring at publicdiscourse.com on March 2017.
This world does not need men to selfishly take whatever we want, especially if the price is the welfare of our children. Our children don’t need superheroes—just quiet, unsung, ordinary, everyday heroes who answer to the name “Daddy.”
When I was taking my first few steps out of the closet in the late 1990s, a guy who called himself Tex offered me a short version of his life story over drinks at a Dupont Circle bar. The conversation took an unanticipated turn: he explained that his current partner had moved halfway across the country, leaving behind an ex-wife and kids. Tex would sometimes answer the house phone (this was before cell phones) and would hear a small voice cautiously ask, “May I please speak to my Daddy?” This was his partner’s eight-year-old daughter calling from somewhere in the Rocky Mountains. Tex said that it troubled him deeply that his partner’s daughter had to ask permission of a stranger in order to speak with her daddy.
When I think of this little girl, my thoughts drift to folks like Alana Newman and others who have anonymous sperm donors for fathers, many of whom have daily asked that same question in their hearts. May I please speak to my Daddy?
When I started speaking out about the dangers of same-sex marriage for children, I found it difficult to get proponents of genderless marriage to engage in intellectually honest one-on-one discussions. Then I realized: at least half the people who wanted to clobber me with bumper sticker slogans were products of broken marriages.
In early 2013, following my participation in a panel discussion, a young man accused me of being unfair to gays, lesbians, and their children. So I took a chance and asked him point blank: “Did your parents divorce when you were a child?”
He was a little stunned by the personal question, but he answered, “Yes.” The smugness left his face.
“Did you live with your mother?”
“Did you see much of your father?”
“No. I almost never saw him.”
“Did you miss him? Did you wish you could be around him more?”
“Yes. Of course,” he answered, with a bit of wistfulness.
“Did your parents’ divorce increase your happiness—or your sadness?”
“So your parents dismantled your home and set up two new structures that put their needs first, not yours. In fact, they were structures guaranteeing your continued unhappiness. You learned to live with it, because as a child you had no control whatsoever over their actions, but these new structures weren’t necessarily built with your best interest in mind.”
“Well, no. I didn’t get to vote on the matter. I was a kid.”
“Exactly. So why would it be different for children of gays and lesbians who are denied either their father or mother? Do you really think two moms or two dads is exactly the same as having both mom and dad around to love and care for you? Seriously? Would having an extra mom around the house really have satisfied you, or would you still have an unanswered yearning in your heart for your Dad?”
“Then why would you want to condemn other children to be fatherless? Or motherless?”
He got it. He didn’t like it, but he got it—and then he walked away. I have no idea if he changed his mind, but at least he had finally actually heard and listened to an opposing point of view—one that resonated with him.
As I walked away, I thought to myself, “To be intellectually honest, I can’t keep speaking publicly against the dangers of genderless marriage without also simultaneously speaking about the objective evil of divorce for kids.” Divorce is an exponentially larger, far more pervasive threat to children than the prospect of gays raising children without moms and lesbians raising children without dads. I sighed. There is a lot to undo and set straight.
The Prodigal Dad
After my wife and I had been divorced for a few years, it was not unusual for her to call and ask me to drive to her house because our youngest son was out of control. When I would arrive, I found turmoil. He had gotten angry about something, and that had triggered a rage completely disproportionate to the issue. He would yell and scream and kick, then isolate himself in his bedroom. No trespassers allowed. It was gut-wrenching to witness this. Thankfully, he would calm down after a while and return to normal.
His rage would, in turn, trigger discussions with my ex-wife. What were we going to do about his behavioral problem? Did he require medication? Did he need to be spanked? Did he need psychological help?
After this happened a few times it became abundantly clear to me exactly what he needed. Our son did not have a behavioral problem. He needed just one thing: he needed his parents to get back together and to love each other. The slicing and dicing of our family had thrust unbearable stress on this four-year-old’s tender psyche. His Dad and Mom were the culprits responsible for this, yet we were approaching this as if it were his problem.
Our little boy bore no blame, but I sure did.
Posted on: Tuesday, February 21, 2017
A January conference in Phoenix will tackle tough issues of homosexuality, transgenderism
by James Graves at OSV Newsweekly on January 27, 2017
Clergy process out of the chapel at the Inn at St. John’s in Plymouth, Mich., in August 2015 after the opening Mass of the Truth and Love Conference. CNS photo by Mike Stechschulte
Courage International will join with the Diocese of Phoenix to host Truth and Love, a conference intended to offer practical and pastoral guidance on the topics of homosexuality and sexual identity on Jan. 9-11, 2017, at St. Paul Parish in Phoenix. Courage is the Catholic Church’s apostolate to help men and women struggling with same-sex attraction live in accordance with the teachings of the Church. The Phoenix conference will be Courage’s third since its founding in 1980; a similar conference was held most recently in Michigan in August 2015.
Father Philip Bochanski, Courage’s executive director, says that the conference is a tool to “share the good news that living chastely and finding our true identity as sons and daughters of God is the way to real happiness and authentic relationships.”
The theme of Truth and Love is “welcoming and accompanying our brothers and sisters with same-sex attractions or confusion regarding sexual identity.”
According to a joint statement released by the Diocese of Phoenix and Courage, many of the current approaches to homosexuality “do not include the fuller perspective of the human person. Rather, they limit themselves to ‘acceptance’ and to the protection of the ‘right’ of ‘sexual satisfaction.’ Yet, as the Catholic Church has consistently taught, these approaches will never lead people to the abundant life that Christ promises.”
Presenters include Father Bochanski; Coadjutor Archbishop Michael J. Byrnes of Agaña, Guam; chastity speaker Jason Evert; Walt Heyer, a former transgender person, speaker and operator of the site www.SexChangeRegret.com; Janet Smith, a professor of moral theology at Detroit’s Sacred Heart Major Seminary; John Cuddeback, a professor of philosophy at Christendom College in Front Royal, Virginia; and Jennifer Roback Morse, founder of the Ruth Institute.
Morse is an author and speaker specializing in the area of marriage and family, and played a prominent role defending traditional marriage in California’s Proposition 8 campaign. Her conference topic will be “Understanding the Sexual Revolution.”
Her topic, she said, includes refuting the belief of the sexual revolution that happiness comes merely by having sex, an idea that she says didn’t emerge without help.
“I’m 63, and the sexual revolution has been with us throughout my lifetime,” she said. “The good news is that we have decades of studies that have demonstrated that these ideas are a failure.”
Once the ideas of the sexual revolution had permeated society, she continued, “the building blocks for gay marriage were already there in the culture. People have come to believe that sex should be a sterile activity — that people can have sex and not think about babies — and gay sex is the ultimate sterile sex.”
Coupled that with the belief that “men and women are interchangeable and that kids don’t need their parents, so why not have gay marriage?”
Also featured at the conference will be speakers who have experienced same-sex attraction or sexual identity confusion sharing how chaste friendships and embracing the teachings of the Church have helped them on their journey toward chastity and sanctity. These include Daniel Mattson, who will present “Captivated by Truth: Why the Church’s Truth about Homosexuality has Set Me Free.”
Mattson is a professional musician from Grand Rapids, Michigan. He was baptized Catholic and raised an evangelical Christian. He experiences same-sex attraction, and although he was “clandestine” about it, he was once involved in the gay lifestyle.
He wanted to participate in the Courage conference, he said, in hopes that he could “communicate that chastity is a vital part of the Good News, and part of the reason I came back to the Catholic Church.”
Mattson noted that in the entertainment world of which he is a part, his fellow musicians “would celebrate me coming out, embracing being gay and having a boyfriend.” Instead, he continued, “They are mystified that I would choose to be Catholic.”
But, he continued, it was in the Catholic Church that he has found both “truth and freedom, and I accept that truth in humility, even though that does not affect that I am still attracted to men.”
Mattson returned to the Catholic Church after attending a Courage conference in 2009. He tells his story in the Courage film “Desire of the Everlasting Hills,” which can be viewed under the resources tab on the Courage website. He travels frequently to speak at high schools and colleges, often accompanied by Father Bochanski or Father Paul Check, the former executive director of Courage.
He recalled a question asked by a teenage boy at one of his high school presentations: “If I feel I’m attracted to the same sex, am I gay?”
“I responded, ‘No. The Church wisely teaches us that our feelings do not define who we are. Who we are made by God is what defines us.”
Mattson continued, “I do what I’m doing to help people like this boy. He’s living in a world that tells him it does mean he’s gay, but I’m here to say that he doesn’t have to follow every feeling or desire. These kids are being told lies and falling into a trap.”
Mattson also will soon release a book through Ignatius Press sharing his experiences. Mattson’s brother, Steve, is a priest of the Diocese of Lansing, Michigan, and also is a presenter at the conference.
Mass celebrants include Phoenix Bishop Thomas J. Olmsted and Los Angeles Archbishop José H. Gomez. Bishop Olmsted was pleased to have his diocese host the conference.
“The work of Courage International, helping those with same-sex attraction to build friendships and virtue, and helping the Church to share the Good News of Christ in a challenging area, is essential in our time,” he said. “I encourage all who have pastoral responsibilities to join us at the conference. It will help you to grow in knowledge and fellowship.”
Posted on: Friday, January 13, 2017
(November 21, 2016) Dr J was invited to speak at the Altar Society in Lake Charles on the work and history of the Ruth Institute.Listen
Posted on: Tuesday, January 10, 2017
(January 10, 2017) Dr J traveled to Phoenix to participate in the Courage Conference, a Roman Catholic organization dedicated to helping persons with same-sex attraction live chaste lives and seek holiness. Her topic was "Understanding the Sexual Revolution."
She also fielded a brief Q&A session after the her talk; that's available to listen to as well.
Posted on: Tuesday, November 08, 2016
(November 8, 2016) Dr J is once again Todd Wilkin's guest on Issues, Etc. They're discussing domestic violence against children, specifically in situations involving a live-in boyfriend or other unrelated adult.
Posted on: Monday, October 03, 2016
The Ruth Institute recently sent a letter of commendation and 24 white roses to Bishop Francis X. DiLorenzo of Richmond, Virginia congratulating and thanking him for his defense of Catholic teaching. Tim Kaine, Democratic candidate for Vice President, has said that the church will change its teaching on marriage. Bishop DiLorenzo, Kaine’s local bishop, disagrees. The Bishop’s office posted the following:
“Despite recent statements from the campaign trail, the Catholic Church’s 2000-year- old teaching to the truth about what constitutes marriage remains unchanged and resolute.”
The statement continues by pointing out a foundational belief shared by the Ruth Institute: “Redefining marriage furthers no one’s rights, least of all those of children, who should not purposely be deprived of the right to be nurtured and loved by a mother and a father.”
The Ruth Institute is a global non-profit organization dedicated to finding Christ-like solutions to the problems of family breakdown. Founded by world renowned author, speaker and academic, Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse, the Ruth Institute has accumulated decades of research to support individuals and families harmed by divorce, the hook-up culture and other forms of family breakdown.
Dr. Morse stated, “We are particularly encouraged that Bishop DiLorenzo defended the rights of children to be nurtured and loved by their mothers and fathers.”
Dr. Morse continued, “The Ruth Institute dreams of the day when every child will be welcomed into a loving home with a married mother and father. We believe every child has the right to a relationship with both natural parents, unless some unavoidable tragedy prevents it. We believe every adult without exception has the right to know his or her cultural heritage and genetic identity. Bishop DiLorenzo has restated the ancient teachings of Christianity and of Jesus Christ Himself. These teachings protect the interests of children, as well as the interests of men and women in lifelong married love.”
As a sign of support for Bishop DiLorenzo, the Ruth Institute sent 24 white roses to the Bishop’s office, and offers prayers for him and for everyone in the Diocese of Richmond.
Dr. Morse is available for interviews about the Roses from Ruth Initiative, the Bishop’s statement, and Catholic teaching on marriage. To interview Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse, contact the Ruth Institute at:
Posted on: Friday, September 09, 2016
by Jennifer Johnson
This article was first published at Clash Daily on September 1, 2016.
There is a lot of controversy over the Catholic annulment process, both within the Catholic world and outside of it. I am grateful that the Church has such a process, but there is confusion about it. So I thought of a way to explain it by using a hypothetical story about a same-sex couple:
Once upon a time there was a man and a man. They fell in love and decided to get married. They planned a large wedding in a beautiful church. They obtained a marriage license from the county and found a minister to conduct the ceremony. They planned a beautiful reception.
On the big day, all their family and friends came. The ceremony went smoothly and the reception was a lot of fun. Everybody had a wonderful time and many people remarked on what a joyous occasion it was. They went on a honeymoon and after they got back, they decided to buy a home together. They hung their marriage certificate on the wall. They were very happy.
After a few years, one of the men slowly became convinced that he was not living the way God wanted him to live. He eventually submitted his life to Jesus Christ, and sought a divorce. He started going to church that disagreed with same-sex marriage and made a lot of friends there. He had gotten to know a Christian woman there, and they became close friends. He told her of his past life and she didn’t seem to care. They loved each other and decided to marry.
They knew the ancient Christian teaching regarding marriage, and wondered if perhaps God viewed the man as still being married in God’s sight. So they went to the pastor with this question. The pastor told them that no, just because the man went through a wedding ceremony and had a marriage certificate, did not mean that he was married in God’s sight. The pastor assured them that the man was free to marry the woman, since he had not been married in God’s sight when he was with the other man.
Any Christian can see that this would be true, if it were to happen. Same-sex marriages are not marriages in God’s sight. If somebody in the situation above were to later desire marriage with somebody of the opposite sex, they would be free to marry since they were not truly married in the first place. As Christians, we say this because the ancient teaching is clear in passages such as Matthew 19.
Unfortunately, the same thing can happen in male/female marriages. Sometimes they are not married in God’s sight even though they had a wedding, a reception, a marriage certificate from the county, children, and a divorce. Even civil law acknowledges this concept, and calls these situations “putative marriages.” This is a problem that has grown along with the sexual revolution. So-called “sexual liberation” has distorted people’s understanding of marriage, to such an extent that some of them fail to enter into real marriages in the first place.
I am grateful to the Catholic Church for having a process to determine whether or not marriages are valid. Although I am sympathetic with some of the criticism of that process being made by orthodox Catholics, I am grateful the process exists. And it needs to exist as a matter of justice. Marriage is a public commitment, a public institution, not a private one. Determinations regarding it should happen in a public forum.
Catholics call this “the external forum” which is a tribunal that exists to make these kinds of determinations. Because marriage is a public institution, I disagree with “internal forum” or private/personal determinations regarding the status of a marriage in God’s sight. Our own testimony, feeling, and conscience regarding the status of our marriage is certainly valuable, but it is not enough. “Private marriage” is oxymoron, and so private (aka “internal forum”) determinations of it can’t satisfy the requirement for justice. If we rely solely on a private or “internal forum” solution regarding the status of our marriage, we are being the judge and the petitioner in our own case. It should be clear that justice can’t be rendered, since there is a conflict of interest. The judge needs to be separate from the petitioner.
Once such a marriage has been found as invalid by the external forum, it is referred to as a putative marriage. A putative marriage as some of the elements of a valid marriage, such as legitimate children. A valid marriage can be likened to a circle, and a putative marriage can be likened to a circle with a part missing. It looks like a complete circle until it is examined more closely by people who know how to do such things.
Are there any such procedures in non-Catholic Christian churches? I am not aware of them but I’m certainly no expert on what goes on in those churches. I would appreciate learning about these procedures in other denominations.
For Christians, an invalid marriage is a relationship that looks like a marriage yet was never a marriage in God’s sight. Somebody who was in such a relationship is free to marry. He is not in violation of verses such as Matthew 19 if he should seek marriage in the future.
Jennifer Johnson is Associate Director and Treasurer of the Ruth Institute and Contributor for Ruth Institute Blog.
Posted on: Monday, September 05, 2016
The fact that an ideology is incoherent does not mean that people are not deadly serious about implementing it.
By Jennifer Roback Morse
This article was first published at The Federalist on June 6, 2016.
I hate to disagree with Rachel Lu, whom I admire and consider a friend. But we simply cannot count on the LGBT movement self-destructing. I agree that this ideology is incoherent and destructive. But that is no guarantee it will implode. I fear Lu does not fully appreciate just what manner of thing we are dealing with.
Lu suggests the LGBT movement is a passing fad: “Whether it’s Malthusian population controls, global temperature freak-outs, low-fat diets, or disco, it often seems that idiocy seems unassailable until suddenly it isn’t. A page turns, and the emperor has no clothes, as his folly becomes a cautionary tale for future generations.”
By contrast, I believe the LGBT movement is one feature of the overall movement called the Sexual Revolution. The Sexual Revolution is not like low-fat diets or disco. It is more like the other items on the list. I hate to break it to you, but population control and global temperature freak-outs are still with us.
Also, what do these three things—the Sexual Revolution, population control, and global warming ideology—all have in common? They are ideologies that demand total control over large numbers of people. These ideologies are appealing to some people, precisely for that reason: they imagine themselves as the controllers, not the controlees.
The fact that an ideology is incoherent does not mean people are not deadly serious about implementing it. Look: it is not possible to create a prosperous society without private property rights. Marxist ideologues believed they had a high moral duty to try. The Soviet Union lasted 70 years and did not “self-destruct.” Ronald Reagan, Pope John Paul, Margaret Thatcher, and, yes, Osama bin Laden all had a hand in pushing it over.
These three points sum up the ideology of the sexual revolutionaries. They believe a good and decent society should: Separate sex from procreation, separate both sex and procreation from marriage, and obliterate all differences between men and women, except those individuals explicitly choose. Do you recognize our society? Do you notice that all these of these objectives are impossible?
It is not possible to create an entire society in which sex does not make babies. Sex and child-bearing should both take place within marriage because children really do need their parents. Marriage is society’s institutional structure that allows children a stable and ongoing relationship with both parents. Finally, men and women actually are different, starting in the womb (little boys are less likely to survive pregnancy and childhood) and going all the way to differential causes of death.
All the branches of our government, the media, academia, big business, and entertainment are committed to the fantasy ideology of the Sexual Revolution. It takes a lot of force to do the impossible. It takes a lot of propaganda to make people believe the impossible. That is why the Sexual Revolution is a totalitarian movement, standing all on its own, quite apart from the usual categories of Left and Right.
That’s not a bug, as they say. It is a feature. Many of the most militant activists are drunk on their own power. Look at the “trans-activists” getting the city of New York to place onerous fines on people for using the wrong pronoun. Look at the college students, getting professors fired for insufficient conformity to the ever-changing standards of “sensitivity.” Look at the gay activists suing small Christian businesses, as if there were a constitutional right to get your picture taken by the photographer of your choice. These militants are intoxicated with power.
We must see the Sexual Revolution for what it is: a tyrannical movement that resents the limitations of the human body, especially those caused by our maleness and femaleness.
With all due respect, Lu, the LGBT movement will not self-destruct: it will morph into new and more virulent forms. The LGBT true believers are already throwing over the Ls (lesbians, remember?) in favor of the Ts (transgender people). Lesbian couples made nice, non-threatening images for commercials for redefining marriage. But many lesbians do not accept “transmen” as women. Lesbians are no longer useful as battering rams for taking down sex differences. Therefore, their objections don’t count.
The Ts are the current battering ram. A very useful battering ram they are, too. If you can make people say and believe that Bruce Jenner is a woman, you can make them say and believe anything. If you can make people afraid to say anything other than that the 1976 Olympic decathlon winner is a woman, you can make them believe that black is white, up is down, and freedom is slavery. Or, more to the point: that slavery is freedom.
No, we cannot count on the Sexual Revolution to just fade away. It has caused enormous human suffering already. That has not stopped the true believers from carrying on. The Ruth Institute has a plan. This column is not the place to go into it. Suffice to say, that our plan calls on everyone who has been harmed by the Sexual Revolution to tell the whole truth about what happened to them.
If we all speak up, we have a chance. If we are afraid to speak, if we try to live our lives quietly, as if nothing out of the ordinary is going on, the revolutionaries will continue unimpeded. Eventually, we won’t be able to protect ourselves and our children.
I for one, am all in: total, unapologetic opposition to the whole destructive course of the Sexual Revolution. Total solidarity with the victims and survivors of the Sexual Revolution.
Posted on: Wednesday, August 03, 2016
by Jennifer Roback Morse
This article was first published July 23, 2016, at The Blaze.
Earlier this week, the Ruth Institute sent a letter of commendation and 24 white roses to Charles Chaput, the Archbishop of Philadelphia.
Our letter thanked him for “his clear teaching on marriage, family and human sexuality in the Pastoral Guidelines for Implementing Amoris Laetitia in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.”
With all the excitement of the political conventions, why would we spend our time sending flowers to an archbishop? We want to shine the spotlight on the positive things people are doing to build up society.
The archbishop’s guidelines restate the Ancient Teachings of Christianity regarding marriage, family and human sexuality. These teachings are obscured today. No less a theological heavy weight than the mayor of Philadelphia castigated the archbishop, saying the Guidelines were un-Christian!
To be fair to Mayor Jim Kenny, we have to admit that the publication of Pope Francis’ Apostolic Exhortation, Amoris Laetitia, has caused worldwide confusion over Catholic teaching on marriage. Yelling at the pope has become a new cottage industry among tradition-minded Catholic writers. Pulling his words into a sexually indulgent direction has become a cottage industry among progressives of all faiths. And trying to parse out what he really meant has been a full employment guarantee for everyone.
Rather than getting involved in all that, we want to call attention to people who are implementing the unbroken teaching of the Church in a vibrant manner. Focus on what we know to be true and good. Archbishop Chaput’s Guidelines provide a clear and practical statement of ancient Catholic teaching, in the spirit of genuine mercy, incorporating language from Amoris Laetitia.
I believe that these teachings are correct, good and humane. I founded the Ruth Institute for the purpose of promoting those teachings to the widest audience possible. I don’t believe these things because I am a Catholic. On the contrary. It is precisely because I came to believe in these teachings that I returned to the practice of the Catholic faith after a 12-year lapse.
Let me discuss just one issue that has caused a lot of hand-wringing in the past 2 years. Jesus told us very clearly that remarriage after divorce is not possible. If attempted, it amounts to adultery. Why? According to Jesus, Moses only permitted a man to issue a bill of divorce because of “the hardness of your hearts.” (This is the Gospel of Matthew, Chapter 19, in case you were wondering.)
At that point, he could have said, “So, I’m going to eliminate this appalling male privilege and allow women to divorce their husbands, exactly like Moses allowed men to divorce their wives.” However, he did no such thing. He didn’t extend the male privilege. He eliminated it entirely. “From the beginning it was not so,” referring back to God’s original plan for creation. “I tell you, anyone who divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, and marries another woman commits adultery.” One of the “hard sayings” of Jesus, no doubt. But pretty darn clear.
(And please: don’t trouble me with that so-called loophole, ok? The real innovation in modern no-fault divorce law is that it allows an adulterer to get a divorce against the wishes of the innocent party. No sane person can argue that Jesus provided that “loophole” to allow the guilty party to validly remarry.)
The Church teaches that civilly divorced and remarried Catholics cannot receive communion because she is trying to implement this teaching of Jesus. A civilly divorced and remarried person is living with, and presumably having sex with someone, while still validly married to someone else. If the first marriage is still valid, the second attempted marriage is not valid, and is in fact, adulterous. What is so hard to understand about that?
You know who really understands this concept, who intuitively “gets it?” Children of divorce. Kids look into their parents’ bedroom and see someone who doesn’t belong there. “Who is this guy in bed with my mom: my dad is supposed to be there.” Or, “who is this woman in bed with my dad? My mom is supposed to be there.”
At the Ruth Institute, we know there are situations in which married couples must separate for the safety of the family. But we also know that those cases are by far not the majority of cases. No-fault divorce says a person can get divorced for any reason or no reason, and the government will take sides with the party who wants the marriage the least. The government will permit that person to remarry, against the wishes of their spouse and children.
This is an obvious injustice that no one in our society will talk about. The children of divorce are socially invisible. In fact, I bet some of them felt like crying when they read my paragraph above quoting with approval, what might have gone through their little minds. Many of them have never heard an adult affirm their feelings that something dreadfully wrong and unjust took place in their families.
Jesus knew. Jesus was trying to keep us from hurting ourselves and each other. And the Catholic Church has been trying to implement Jesus’ teaching. You may say the Church has been imperfect in her attempts and I won’t argue with you. But I will say that no one else is even seriously trying.
Political campaigns come and go. Political parties come and go. In fact, nations themselves come and go. But the teachings of Jesus are forever. What we do about marriage and children and love reveals what and whom we truly love.
That is why we congratulate Archbishop Charles Chaput for his guidelines. We wish the Archdiocese all the very best. Make Marriage Great Again.
Posted on: Wednesday, August 03, 2016
by Jennifer Roback Morse
This article was first published at The Blaze on August 3, 2016, under the title, "Under Obama, Transgenderism Is Not Medical Condition. It’s a Political Stepping Stone."
This may seem to be a remarkable headline for a well-known social conservative.
But I must defer to the authority of the Obama administration’s Department of Justice. A careful reading of their “Dear Colleague Letter on Transgender Students,” has convinced me that the proper understanding of transgender people is not to view them as sick.
I generally like to make a thorough study of an issue that is new to me. I thought I would have to inform myself about medicine and psychology. But the DOJ’s letter, and the press release that announced it, “U.S. Departments of Justice and Education Release Joint Guidance to Help Schools Ensure the Civil Rights of Transgender Students” have convinced me that no such careful study is required. Anyone who wants to weigh in on the controversy over “bathroom bills” can do so, with no particular scientific expertise.
Gender neutral signs are posted in the 21C Museum Hotel public restrooms on May 10, 2016 in Durham, North Carolina. Debate over transgender bathroom access spreads nationwide as the U.S. Department of Justice countersues North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory from enforcing the provisions of House Bill 2 that dictate what bathrooms transgender individuals can use. (Photo by Sara D. Davis/Getty Images)
By contrast, Intersex is a medically diagnosable condition. According to the Intersex Society of North America, the term “intersex” “is a general term used for a variety of conditions in which a person is born with a reproductive or sexual anatomy that doesn’t seem to fit the typical definitions of female or male.” The Intersex Society of North America does not advocate that intersex individuals be treated as a third gender or as having no gender. Instead, they advocate that parents of children born with these conditions work with their physicians to make a long-term, individualized plan for that particular child.
Intersex children are nowhere mentioned in the “Dear Colleague Letter.”
Gender Dysphoria is defined this way in the Fifth Edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual:
Gender dysphoria refers to the distress that may accompany the incongruence between one’s experienced or expressed gender and one’s assigned gender. (pg. 51).
The term “assigned gender” is what most people would call “biological sex,” which of course, is not “assigned” at all. Rather biological sex exists from conception and is literally in every cell of the body. Biological sex reveals itself at birth for all to see.
Gender Dysphoria is nowhere mentioned in the “Dear Colleague Letter.”
The “Dear Colleague Letter” is not about the Intersex medical condition or the Gender Dysphoria psychological condition. The “Dear Colleague Letter” makes this very clear when it states on page two, under the heading Compliance with Title IX:
Under Title IX, there is no medical diagnosis or treatment requirement that students must meet as a prerequisite to being treated consistent with their gender identity.
Ah. We see that for purposes of law, children of any age can diagnose themselves as transgenders. Elsewhere, the guidelines make it clear that students may present themselves as a different sex at school without telling their parents. Students of any age can change their self-identification as they wish. The “guidelines” offer no guidance whatsoever about this possibility.
A student can suddenly decide transgender is cool, after a binge on social media. They can decide to irritate their parents. They can decide they want to fit in with the kids they meet at the LGBT after-school program. And yes, some boys can decide they want to see the inside of the girls’ locker room.
We are on one hand, meant to think that transgenders are unfortunate souls who need special attention from society in order to fit in and feel better about themselves. But on the other hand, we are told that no medical or psychological diagnosis is needed.
On one hand, we are told that the unique situation of these children requires special accommodation from the entire society. On the other hand, we are presented with a one-size-fits-all legal commandment. The federal government hands down the mandate telling each and every school district in America how they must handle the unique needs of these children.
Children with either Intersex medical conditions or Gender Dysphoria psychological conditions need more privacy and parental help. But the Department of Justice “Dear Colleague” letter will limit parental involvement and give children less privacy.
Allowing a child to define themselves into the “transgender” category without parental involvement or knowledge does accomplish one thing, though. It allows kids to become part of the political Transgender movement at the lowest possible cost. It requires the schools to become part of the ideological destabilization of the concept of innate biological sex differences.
This is why I say that transgenders are not sick. Oh, some of them may be. But some of the kids who define themselves as transgender under these guidelines will be lonely kids trying to find friends. Some will be horny and predatory. Some will be conformist to the newest ideological fad. Some will just be ornery.
Under the Obama guidelines, “transgender” is a not a medical or psychological term. “Transgender” is a political term.
Posted on: Wednesday, July 27, 2016
Petition to: Archbishop Charles Chaput of PhiladelphiaThank you for the wisdom and clarity in your Guidelines. We are praying for you!
For the Petition:
Posted on: Wednesday, July 13, 2016
My friend Daniel Mattson hits it out of the park today, "Why Homosexuality is a Natural Law Issue." I'm thinking pretty much every moral issue can be framed as a natural law issue, but that's just me. Dan has had great succes talking with young people about sexual morality using this approach. Must read for everyone who knows someone struggling with sexual morality issues with someone in their family.
It is simply wrong to say the natural law is ineffective concerning homosexuality and evangelization. During a three-day period a few years back in the Diocese of Wichita I spoke to over 3,000 high school students. After one of my talks, a theology teacher at one of the high schools shared with me what one of his students said to him: “You know, I wasn’t sure what to expect from this guy, but now, it all makes sense to me—all of the Church’s teaching. This isn’t just about the stuff he has to deal with. What he said helps me make sense of what the Church has to say about sex, all of it.” And no wonder it made sense to him: the natural law makes sense because it’s true, for its truth comes from being rooted in reality.
Read it all here:
Posted on: Wednesday, July 13, 2016
This looks like a good book, and a good resource for our Gay Lifestyle Refugees.
Jeremy Bell was in a long term, same-sex relationship and had not yet met his now-friend and co-author John McCaughan when he began, six years ago, to think seriously about the meaning of marriage.
John, on the other hand, had been raised in a traditional Catholic family, but was going through a spiritually gruelling time, some years later, when he began thinking about the issue.
Becoming firm friends, the two Sydney men – Jeremy, a philosopher who converted to Catholicism in 2012, and John, a professional writer – decided to undertake that search together.
This book will be published by an Australian publisher, Connor Court. It will be launched at Parramatta Cathedral Hall on 14 July. I hope some of our Australian friends will attend and give us a report,
Posted on: Wednesday, June 22, 2016
by Jennifer Roback Morse
This article was first posted at The Blaze on June 21, 2016.
As an observer of the human species, I believe I have discovered a new type. I call them “paid internet protesters,” or “PIPs” in internet-speak, who are all armchair culture warriors.
Dr. Lu and I agree on one basic point: The ideology driving so much of today’s demands for radical social change is incoherent. We disagree on exactly what to conclude from this fact.
Plenty of fodder here for a pretty interesting discussion, don’t you think?
But, no. After a day or two, the site was swarming with people making rude, off-topic comments from accounts that disguised their identity with pseudonyms.
Most importantly, they didn’t discuss anything. They called names and changed the subject. The subject is no longer the coherence or incoherence of the sexual revolution. The subject now is bigotry, my religion, my personal history and my appearance. Seriously.
Likewise, Lu’s original article has received more than 8,500 comments, few of which have anything to do with her point.
These people are commonly called “trolls.” I have an idea why they appear so regularly. And, I have an idea what to do about them.
The sexual revolution is built on an intellectual house of cards. It cannot withstand close scrutiny. Therefore, sexual revolutionaries cannot afford to discuss ideas, reasons and evidence. Instead they spend their time making noise that appears to be pointless.
But the noise has a very definite point. The Revolutionaries want to change the subject away from them and their illogic. Incidentally, thinking people want to leave the room, just to get away from the god-awful racket.
I suspect some of these perpetual commenters are paid by advocacy organizations. I believe this because:
That is why I suggest we call them paid internet protestors, or PIPs.
They are the online intellectual equivalent of the paid street protestors who show up at Trump rallies and other places. Not physically destructive, obviously, but intellectually, they are every bit as destructive. They want you and your ideas to go away. They want you to be afraid.
Can I prove all of this in a court of law? No. Am I convinced enough to act as if it is true? Absolutely. I think it would be highly imprudent to do otherwise.
So, how should we respond when PIPs appear in an otherwise good conversation? Here are my suggestions:
In short, give tons of energy and attention to the points you agree with, not the knuckleheads who are purposely changing the subject.
Don’t feed the PIPs! It just encourages them!
Posted on: Friday, June 10, 2016
(June 9, 2016) Dr J fields questions after addressing law students participating in the Alliance Defending Freedom's Blackstone Legal Fellowship. If you missed her talks on the family as the foundation of society and the agenda of the modern sexual revolution, check out our podcast stream.
Posted on: Saturday, June 04, 2016
By Marilyn Rodrigues May 27, 2016 at Catholicweekly.com.au.
Dr Jennifer Roback Morse believes surrogacy will become more prevalent if same-sex marriage is introduced along with a renewed push for legalisation of commercial surrogacy. Photo: Patrick J Lee
The inherent right of children to be raised by their biological mother and father should be the focus of efforts to promote and defend the traditional understanding of marriage, a leading US marriage and family advocate has urged Australians.
“Arguments about religious liberty and freedom of speech didn’t work in the US when we were debating this issue, they were a bit abstract, and sadly, the public’s respect for religion has been lost,” Dr Jennifer Roback Morse told The Catholic Weekly.
Dr Morse is a widely read author on the importance of traditional marriage and family as well as the founder and president of the Ruth Institute which provides support for sufferers of post-divorce family breakdown, the hook-up culture and other outcomes of the sexual revolution such as anonymous donor conception.
“I think the way [that approach] came off is that people felt that we were just worried about ourselves and how we were going to be inconvenienced. It sounded like we were whining about ourselves – and that’s not very attractive.”
Dr Morse visited Australia this month to advise and assist those promoting natural marriage in the lead-up to the anticipated national plebiscite on same-sex marriage after the election.
She also had the advantage of being able to set out where American pro-family groups had made tactical mistakes and the hard lessons learnt from the loss of the fight for the definition of marriage.
“Someday the kids [of this generation] are going to want answers from us about what we were thinking,” she told The Catholic Weekly.
She warned that redefining marriage by permitting same-sex couples to obtain marriage licences under the law will usher in an era where the right of children to be raised by their biological mother and father, where possible, will be undermined as never before.
She says that contraception and no-fault divorce had already paved the way, helping to separate sex from marriage and procreation, and marriage from procreation, and fostered an adult-centric notion of family.
The creation of genderless marriage will lead to the normalisation through surrogacy of children being born and raised without relationship to their biological parents, their parents’ culture, traditions, and ancestral heritage.
“If you redefine marriage, you redefine parenthood,” she said.
“Instead of parenthood being a natural reality that the state records; parenthood is going to be something that comes about through contracts among interested adults that the state then adjudicates and enforces.
“There have already been cases in the UK where four adults [two same-sex couples] were in court contesting parental rights and custody of a child. These types of situations are unresolvable in a way that is just to everyone. It is important to ban them in the first instance.”
Dr Morse is the author or co-author of four books including Love and Economics: It Takes a Family to Raise a Village, and Smart Sex: Finding Life-Long Love in a Hook Up World.
She and her husband are parents to a birth child, an adopted child, and godchild. They also fostered eight children.
“I know from my own experience how much a child needs his or her own mother and father,” she said.
“It is an injustice to children to separate them from one of their parents without a very good reason.”
In adoption, she argues, people stand in for parents lost through an unavoidable tragedy, which is completely different from deliberately denying a child a relationship with one or both parents through surrogacy.
She believes that the use of surrogacy will become more prevalent if same-sex marriage is introduced, along with a renewed push for legal commercial surrogacy in Australia.
Dr Morse also believes that the gay marriage lobby’s own agenda will be hijacked by others if marriage is redefined.
“All kinds of things will change because if we change the law to redefine the institution of marriage, for the sake of the few people who identify as gay or lesbian, we change it for everyone,” she said.
“If you change family law to say marriage is between any two persons, then it can be any two persons for any reason. Two women or two men would be able to get married without proving that they are gay. The incentives will change for people.
“I think there will be some women who will say all things considered I think it’s easier to put up with another woman than a man. I’ll have my kids and she’ll have her kids, and we’ll get married although we’re not sexual partners. The gay lobby can’t stop that from happening. If you redefine the institution; you’re going to change it for everyone.”
This is similar to what happened with easy divorce, she pointed out, which has caused an untold level of suffering among the children of divorce.
“What [divorce’s advocates said at the time] was that no-fault divorce is just going to make it easier and cheaper for the small percentage of couples who are going to get divorced anyway, never realising that they were making divorce easier and thinkable for people. A lot of people began calculating and acting in ways that would have been unimaginable before.”
Dr Morse has real hope that proponents of natural marriage will succeed if we are to have a plebiscite on the issue here.
However, she concedes that given the momentum that the sexual revolution has garnered over the last 50 years, and the fact that most large English-speaking countries have permitted same-sex marriage, we may end up with it in Australia.
In that case, she believes that most people will look back on the decision with regret.
“It wasn’t so long ago that eugenics was seen as the most progressive, enlightened way to go for society. That idea horrifies us now,” she said.
“I think that down the road if these policies come into effect that these so-called progressives want, we are going to look back and be ashamed.
“We’ll say, ‘What were we thinking, that children could get along without a mother; that they could get along without a father; that children could get along with no rights in that respect at all’.
“We already have the situation where two gay men can get a donor egg from a friend and a surrogate mother from some other country, in order to get a baby. That child is likely to never be meaningfully connected to either of those women.
“The Catholic Church can be proud of the fact that we were the only ones who were against eugenics consistently from the beginning.
“In the same way we are the only ones, from the beginning, who have consistently been against the deconstruction of the family in whatever form that may take.”
In promoting natural marriage and family life to young people Dr Morse agrees that there can be no turning back the clock to a time before there was
a divorce and contraceptive culture.
She says that one way to inspire young people to help rebuild a marriage and family culture is to look to the past to find inspiration and hope for going forward.
“When Jesus appeared to St Thomas, he said to him, ‘You believe because you’ve seen, blessed are they who gave not seen and yet believe.’
“That’s what we have to say to young people who have not really experienced what a culture centred on marriage and family is like; you need to believe that it is possible.
It’s important to feed the imagination if you don’t have the lived experience of a culture geared toward supporting marriage and family. I have a friend in the US who is a professor of Renaissance poetry.
“He tells his students that this is how men and women treated each other, and isn’t it charming? This is possible for us today; this is our species, it’s not completely alien to us.”
In families that are reasonably intact and functional, she says, it is important for people to talk to their older children about sexual mistakes they have made, apologise for any affect these have had on the family, and listen to their children without judging.
“That makes us much more credible to our children when we then discuss these issues with them.”
While in Australia, Dr Morse had some other advice for those defending natural marriage in the public sphere and ordinary Catholics wanting help in how to defend marriage in conversations with their friends, family, and work colleagues:
We need to mind our language
It’s more precise to speak of redefining marriage than marriage equality, same-sex marriage, or gay marriage, Dr Morse says. This is because language not only reflects but guides the way that people think.
“If you talk as though there’s such a thing as gay marriage you’re conceding a crucial point,” Dr Morse said.
“Our position is that there’s no such thing as gay marriage. Whatever two men or two women in a same-sex relationship are doing together it’s not marriage. So it’s important to say that and not implicitly affirm it by using the term gay marriage.”
“If you say instead: Changing the terms ‘man and woman’ in the family law with the term ‘any two persons’, it makes people stop and think about what is really being asked for here.”
Transgender rights is next in line
Promotion of transgender culture and a push for transgender rights is “the next step” for the LGBTQ lobby, she says.
“We can ask people who want to know why we don’t support gay marriage, ‘Do you think gay marriage is the last thing you’re going to be asked to accept?’
“Look at the US and most people will see right away that that transgenderism is part of the next step. In the US they’ve almost stopped talking about gay marriage. That battle’s been won and so they’re onto transgenderism which is the next thing.
“People have the idea that if we just give the gay lobby what it wants, it will leave us alone and go away. But they will not go away. The deconstruction of gender is very important to them. They want a completely genderless society.”
It confuses the issue to say children are better off in heterosexual households
This is one argument sometimes used in the context of the marriage debate. But whether or not measurable outcomes are better for children raised in heterosexual households misses the point, Dr Morse says.
“It’s a poor argument. You could just as well say that maybe we should remove all children from poor people and give them to wealthier people so they will get a better education and job prospects.
“Rather, we need to think about what is owed the child; a relationship with both of their parents, and the fact that they don’t get it is what is driving a lot of bad outcomes.
“They may have no role model of the opposite gender, or of their same gender. They may have feelings of loss associated with the biological parent who’s not present.
“That’s why the donor conception issue is so important.”
Posted on: Saturday, May 21, 2016
(May 21, 2016) Dr J is in Australia! She was invited to speak at All Saints Greek Orthodox Church in Sydney. Her talk is entitled "Same-Sex Marriage Affects Everyone." She took questions afterward, too--those are available on the Ruth Refuge podcast.Listen
Posted on: Friday, May 20, 2016
(May 20, 2016) Dr J is in Australia! She was invited to speak at a Marriage Alliance event in Sydney. Her talk is on public policies and personal strategies for sparking discussion and change on the marriage issue. She took questions afterward, too--those are available on the Ruth Refuge podcast.Listen
Posted on: Wednesday, May 18, 2016
(May 18, 2016) Dr J is in Australia! She was invited to speak at the Sydney Roman Catholic Adult Education Center. Her talk is entitled "Same-Sex Marriage Affects Everyone." She took questions afterward, too--those are available on the Ruth Refuge podcast.
Posted on: Tuesday, May 17, 2016
(May 17, 2016) Dr J is in Australia! She was invited to speak at the South Toowoomba Baptist Church. Her talk is entitled "Same-Sex Marriage Affects Everyone." She took questions afterward, too--those are available in the Ruth Refuge podcast.
Posted on: Monday, May 16, 2016
(May 16, 2016) Dr J is in Australia! She was invited to speak at the Community Church in Cooper's Plain near Brisbane, Australia.
Posted on: Sunday, May 15, 2016
(May 15, 2016) Dr J is in Australia! Archbishop Julian Porteous invited her to speak at the Hobart Cathedral of St. Mary's on the island of Tasmania. Her talk is entitled "Same-Sex Marriage Affects Everyone." She took questions afterward, too--those are available in the Ruth Refuge podcast.
Posted on: Saturday, May 14, 2016
(May 14, 2016) Dr J is in Australia! She was invited to speak at Our Lady of the Rosary near Sydney. Her talk is entitled "Same-Sex Marriage Affects Everyone." She took questions afterward, too--those are available in the Ruth Refuge podcast.Listen
Posted on: Saturday, April 02, 2016
The headline over at LifeSiteNews says this is a story out of the gay lifestyle. And so it it. But it is first and foremost an inspiring story of forgiveness and repentance. Any Survivor of the Sexual Revolution, any person seeking peace, can benefit from this article.
I embarked upon an incredible journey of forgiveness, having many people from my past, and especially men, that I needed to forgive. The therapy and prayer sessions I now regularly engaged in never focused solely on my being sexually attracted to men, but I was encouraged to look every aspect of my present and past in the eye. This included the painful process of accepting that I had been consistently sexually abused by a number of men as a child over a three-year period.
Much of my spiritual journey became concerned with recognizing where, during my infancy and childhood, my little soul had chosen to build walls within myself against significant others in my life, especially against my parents, siblings and other prominent people from my past.
He faced the wrong that was done to him (child sexual abuse) and at the same time took responsibility for the ways he had built walls around himself. Eventually, he became able to forgive those who had wronged him.
Survivors of all sorts: please study this!
Posted on: Monday, March 21, 2016
by Jennifer Roback Morse
This article was first published March 17, 2016, at The Blaze.
They made this very clear in the U.S., with their big donors and corporate sponsorships. And they are making it clear in Australia too.
Price Waterhouse, the second largest accounting firm in the world, has produced a tendentious study, claiming that allowing the Australian people to vote on the definition of marriage will just be too expensive.
A bit of background for American readers:
Australia still has man-woman marriage, the only kind of marriage that protects the rights of children to their own parents. Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull stands firmly in the “marriage equality” camp, but has agreed to hold a plebiscite after the upcoming federal election, if he wins.
Now, along comes the Australian office of Price Waterhouse, claiming the proposed special, non-binding election on the definition of marriage will cost $525 million Australian dollars. “Too Much!!” they cried.
Price Waterhouse economics and policy partner Jeremy Thorpe claimed:
“Overseas examples show that spending on the ‘for’ and ‘against’ campaigns alone can reach over $6 per voter, as happened in California. That’s a huge waste of money that could be better allocated in our low-growth economy.”
He says that like it is a bad thing.
As someone who participated in California’s Proposition 8 vote in 2008, I firmly believe that citizen participation in important social issues is a good thing. How else are ordinary people going to make their voices heard if the elites rule that elections are a “huge waste of money?”
Price Waterhouse really gives away the game with this shocker:
“Momentum from Corporate Australia to resolve this issue is building with over 800 large and small organizations having now signed the corporate letter of support for marriage equality.”
They say this like it is a good thing. Ordinary people who want children to know both of their parents beg to differ.
Now Australian commentators question some of Price Waterhouse’s creative accounting. (Honestly, an accounting firm should be a bit more careful, don’t you think?) I want to point out how the rich and the powerful just love, love, love the sexual revolution.
Please notice: On virtually every issue of the sexual revolution, liberal lites push and promote while ordinary people resist and rebel.
Like corporate Australia, corporate America is firmly behind the whole sexual revolution, supporting “marriage equality” along with “abortion rights” and other bogus inventions designed to privilege adult sex lives at the expense of children’s rights.
If you aren’t sure, ask yourself this: have you ever seen a major bank supporting your local pregnancy care center? But they support Planned Parenthood, though, don’t they? Have you ever seen a major airline supporting a pro-family event, or organization? But they support gay pride parades and the anti-child, pro-adult redefinition of marriage.
Look, I don’t really care about “income equality.” I really don’t. Rich people can have all their fine cars and multiple houses and boats and all the rest. But doggone it, I’m fed up with the super rich and the elite managerial class using their money, power and influence to shove their ideological orientation down our throats.
I know for a fact that ordinary people of America just want to get married, stay married, raise their kids and pass on their values to the next generation. I bet the ordinary people of Australia feel the same way.
Posted on: Monday, February 22, 2016
After crunching census data, a Canadian economist has found that children in same-sex homes are worse off educationally.
This article was first published at Mercatornet.com.
Douglas W. Allen, an economist at Simon Fraser University, in Vancouver, has just published a highly controversial study in the journal Review of Economics of the Household. It breaks with the conventional wisdom that there is no difference between parenting by a mother and a father and parenting by a same-sex couple.
MercatorNet interviewed Professor Allen about his findings.
* * * * * *
MercatorNet: What has your research found about educational outcomes for children of same-sex couples versus children of opposite sex couples?
Doug Allen: There have been about 60 studies over the past 15 years or so that have asked “do child outcomes differ when the child is raised in a same-sex household." Almost all of this literature has the following characteristics: the samples are tiny and biased, the outcome measures are subjective and difficult to replicate, and the finding is always one of "no difference."
Despite the limited scientific validity of these studies, they all end with sweeping policy recommendations. It really is not a scientific literature, but rather a political literature targeted at judges, lawyers, and politicians.
Then came a paper by Michael Rosenfeld, published in Demography 2010. This paper had a large random sample and looked at normal progression though schools in the US. It was, in my opinion, the first solid piece of statistical work done on the question, and he confirmed the "no difference" finding. Later, Joe Price, Catherine Pakaluk, and myself replicated his study and found two problems.
First, he didn't find "no difference". What he found was a lot of noise, and so he was unable to statistically distinguish children in same-sex households from children in any other type of household - including ones we know are not good for children.
Second, the lack of precision in his estimates came from a decision he made to throw out children from the sample who had not lived in the same location for five years. This turned out to be heavily correlated with same-sex households. Hence, he inadvertently threw away most of the same-sex households from the sample. Without that information, he did not have the statistical power to distinguish between family types.
So, the three of us restored the sample and used the statistical technique of controlling for household stability. What we found was that children of same-sex households were about 35 percent more likely to fail a grade.
While this was going on, I was using the Canada census to look at some other questions. I noticed several things about the census that differed from the US. one. First, unlike in the US, the Canada census actually identifies same-sex couples. This solves a big measurement problem with the US census, which could include room mates, family members, and opposite sex couples as same-sex ones.
Second, the Canada census had a nice link between the children and the parents, so I was able to control for the education of the parents and their marital status. Poor performance in school is correlated with marital disruptions of parents, so this is an important control. In many ways then, the Canada census is a much better data set for addressing this question, and I decided to simply redo the Rosenfeld study using this data. (The census does not record progress through school, so I examined high school graduation rates instead).
So, what did I find? First, I simply looked at how any child in a gay or lesbian home did compared to children from married, cohabiting, and single parent homes. Most of the discussion in the paper compares children in same-sex homes to those in opposite sex married homes, but a reader can do all of the comparisons by looking at the tables.
I found that on average, children in same-sex homes were about 65 percent as likely to graduate from high school, compared to similar children in married opposite sex homes. That finding seems very similar to the one we found in the US regarding normal progress. Next, I wondered if the gender composition mattered at all, so I separated out the boys and girls. I was very surprised by the results.
On the boy side, I just found a lot of noise. Some boys do well in same-sex households; some do quite poorly. I cannot statistically determine the effect.
Just looking at the point estimates, boys in lesbian homes are about 76 percent as likely to graduate, in gay homes they are about 60 percent more likely to graduate. But neither of these are statistically significant, meaning they cannot be distinguished from zero.
Girls are another story. First, the estimates are very precise. Second, they are low. A girl in a gay household is only 15 percent as likely to graduate, in a lesbian household about 45 percent as likely. The result found by lumping all of the children together is being driven by this girl effect. This result is very robust, I tried many specifications, sample restrictions, and estimation techniques, but it always remained.
So, my paper no only rejects the "no difference" consensus, it points to a finding -- that if upheld by other studies -- seems incredibly important.
It's particularly hard on girls, isn't it? Why is that?
Allen: It is important to point out that I make no theoretical claims in the paper. I'm simply pointing out an empirical finding that is based on a high quality large random sample, and which is inconsistent with almost everything that has come before.
Having said that, as an economist, I would make the following speculation: specialization. It makes sense to me that fathers and mothers are not perfect substitutes. Indeed, mothers may provide some parenting services that a father cannot provide, and fathers may provide parenting services that mothers cannot. These services may be necessary for girls but not necessary for boys.
For example, I've been told by medical people that when a biological father is present in the home, daughters begin menstruation at an older age. Later menstruation is likely correlated with delayed sexual activity, etc., and this may lead to a better likelihood of high school completion.
It seems to me there could be dozens of channels this could work. As a father of two girls and one boy, I've often had discussions with other parents noting that with boys you just have to keep them fed and away from explosives, but with girls rearing is a little more complicated. That's a poor attempt at humour, but the bottom line is, this is an interesting question that deserves to be looked at.
One explanation of poor school performance in general is that children of same-sex couples may be discriminated against at school. This seems less likely given the different finding between boys or girls. Or at least one would have to come up with a different more complicated story of discrimination.
This turns the conventional wisdom on its head, doesn't it? Most people think that there is no difference. Was there anything wrong with the quality of previous research?
Allen: I think I've answered this above. I should point out one other thing, however. I've read just about every paper on this subject that has been published since 1995. Although many of them claim to find "no difference", they often do find something. Again, the finding is coming from a biased small sample, but differences are found. For example, children growing up in same-sex homes are more likely to experiment with alternative sexual lifestyles, etc.
I should also point out that not all studies are created equal. For example, an Australian sociologist named Sotirios Sarantakos has done considerable work in the 1990s that (though not random) uses large longitudinal studies of objective, verifiable, and hard measures of performance. He finds many differences with children in same-sex households in terms of mathematics, language and other school performance measures. Interestingly, his work is never referenced in most literature surveys. Again, this points to the political nature of this literature.
Your conclusions are based on Canadian census data. Why is that better than US data?
Allen: I've mentioned this above, but let me give more detail. The US census does not identify same-sex cohabiting or married couples. So how did Rosenfeld and others find them? They looked at a series of questions: for example, what is your sex, are you married, what is the sex of your spouse? If someone answered male / yes / male, then this would be considered a gay couple.
The problem with this is that it can lead to a number of measurement issues. Suppose I'm a married man, bunking with another man in a work camp (this may seem far fetched, but it is a real example). When I answer the survey I say I'm male, I'm married, and I'm currently living with a male. I may get counted as a same-sex couple even though I'm not. This can happen with same-sex family members who live together, room mates, and others.
There is also the problem of random mistakes. No one fills out a form perfectly, and sometimes the wrong box is ticked off. Because there are so many heterosexuals compared to gays and lesbians, it only takes a small fraction of seniors to tick off the wrong sex box and it can swamp the same-sex sample. The Canada census avoids these problems. It not only identifies same-sex couples, but they must be in a cohabiting or marriage relationship.
Canada has also had legal same-sex marriage before the census was taken. Many have argued that Canada is more open and accepting of same-sex marriage. As a result, the reporting bias is likely lower in Canada than in the US.
Finally, as mentioned above, I was able to control for the marital history of the parents. This also turns out to be statistically important, and in the paper I show what happens when this is not controlled for. Children in same-sex households are much more likely to come from a previous heterosexual marriage than from adoption or other means. Divorce, however, reduces the likelihood of graduation. If you don't control for this effect, children of same-sex households look like they do even worse at graduation. So this is an important variable to consider.
Does your study prove conclusively that there is no difference? What questions does it raise?
Allen: Assuming there are no mistakes in the study, it rejects the claim that there is "no difference." I personally think that in social science we should never place too much weight on a given study. It is important that we look at evidence from different countries, etc. I would say this study builds on a few others that are questioning the long held consensus. An examination of the literature shows that the consensus is built on only a series of preliminary work. Now that people have started looking at this more seriously, we're finding no evidence for that conclusion.
In such a contentious field, will your study make an impact upon the public debate?
Allen: I don't know, but I suspect it will have little impact. The debate seems to have shifted from the statistical lab to the bumper sticker. The concept of "marriage equality" and the alignment of same-sex marriage rights with the civil rights movement seems so powerful that I doubt one little study will matter much.
If there is merit to the study, and if there really is a difference that matters, I think it is much more likely that 20 years from now we'll be asking "how did we get here and how can we clean up the mess" -- in much the way we now wonder how we ended up in a world where so many children are raised by single parents.
Sociologist Mark Regnerus published a paper which came to a similar conclusion last year and was all but crucified by his colleagues and activists. Do you expect a similar reaction?
Allen: Prior to the publication of his paper I was unaware of Professor Regnerus' existence. Because I was working in this area I saw what immediately happened. I was struck by the hypocrisy of those who attacked him.
Here was someone who had looked at the literature and decided to do something better. There were tiny samples, so he went and found a large sample. There was nothing but bias and snowballing (the procedure of asking friends to join a study), so he did a random procedure. There was way too much soft-balling of questions, so he asked a series of quantifiable ones. He was trying to improve the work, and that is commendable.
Was his study perfect? No, but a study never is. His great error, of course, was that he found the wrong answer. Those who came later and complained about the things he did should have been equally outraged by what had come before. Had Regnerus found otherwise, they would have lauded his work as path-breaking.
I rather suspect this will not happen to me for a number of reasons. First, after the Demography comment came out last year, my university received several letters (sent to the president, various other administrators, and many of my colleagues) demanding that I be fired. These were the same tactics that were used against Professor Regnerus.
Fortunately for me, I'm well known and respected at my institution and we have a strong sense of academic freedom. Indeed, Simon Fraser University has recently been ranked as one of the safest universities to express ideas that may be politically incorrect.
Second, my study only looks at one margin of child performance: high school graduation. Professor Regnerus looked at many and in many ways he found more problems than I found.
Third, my sample is a 20 percent sample of the Canada census. No one can claim I have a small biased sample or that the agency in charge of collecting it is not trustworthy. Fourth, Professor Regnerus was first, and I think being first is much more likely to come under fire. Fifth, the US Supreme Court has already made a decision on Prop 8 and DOMA, so much of the incentive to attack has passed.
Having said that, I have come under some attack, and I would like to relay one incident that has happened.
Last week I received an email from David Badash, the editor of The New Civil Rights Movement, a prominent gay rights website. In it he said he'd heard about the study, wasn't happy about it, but wanted to talk to me before he wrote about it. I emailed back, sent him a copy, and invited him to ask me any questions about the work.
On Monday, when I arrived at work, there were a number of colourful emails waiting for me, calling me all kinds of four-letter words. I soon realized that these were coming from people who had read Mr Badash's blog page.
So I went to have a look myself. What I found was a mixture of personal attacks, misunderstandings and misrepresentations of my work, and a general meanspiritedness. Just the opposite of what I've always believed a public discussion should be.
So, maybe I'm naive, maybe the attacks will come. I hope not. Anyone who wants to read my work is welcome, and I'm willing to have a reasonable discussion about it with anyone.
Douglas W. Allen is the Burnaby Mountain Professor of economics at Simon Fraser University in Burnaby, British Columbia, where he earned his undergraduate degree. He has a PhD in economics from the University of Washington, and is the author of four books and numerous articles.
Posted on: Monday, January 11, 2016
by Jennifer Roback Morse
First published January 4, 2016, at Crisis Magazine.
The Sexual Revolution was supposed to liberate us from sexual stereotypes. In fact, we have replaced the old stereotypes of gay men with new and even more rigid stereotypes. Perhaps some people regard the new view of gay as more positive and affirming than the old view. But the New Gay Man is no less limiting, impersonal, and ultimately dehumanizing. If a particular gay man does not fit into the narrow politically correct boxes, we can’t see him. And worse, he may not be able to see himself clearly.
So let us open up some options for our brothers who experience same-sex attraction. No, actually, that is not quite correct. Let us recognize the options that already exist. Let us take notice of the variety of ways in which these men can and do live their lives.
Some of the holiest men I know are men who have experienced same-sex attraction as an ongoing inner reality in their lives. They have made a decision not to act on their same-sex desires. Their holiness stems precisely from the challenge this decision presents. They know they need God. And like Mary Magdalene, they love much because they have been forgiven much.
Some men struggle with and eventually conquer their sexual temptations. But some men still struggle with related issues: needing to be the center of attention, inappropriate hostility toward women; undue insecurity around men; general insecurity about their identity; troubled relationships with their fathers. All these concerns can plague the same-sex attracted man, even one who is successfully living a celibate life.
Some same-sex attracted men participate in sexual activity with other men. They do it to varying degrees and at varying times of their lives. Some may have periodic sexual experiences and a “take it or leave it” attitude. Others are full-on sex addicts. Depending on their age and temperament, some same-sex attracted men may be content to partner with one particular person. Others have hundreds of sex partners and are still unsatisfied.
Some same-sex attracted men are empathetic and good listeners, whom women find appealing. Others drip with contempt for women. Still others are just obsessed with themselves, and indifferent to everyone around them. As Oscar Wilde’s wife said of him, “Through all his struggles, he did not learn the one thing he most needed to learn: that he is not the only person in the world.”
Some men engage in same-sex sexual activity for a season of their lives: all-male boarding schools, prison or aboard ships. Some of these men later marry, father children and live conventional lives. Some same-sex attracted men get married without denying that they feel same-sex attractions. They love their wives and are good and faithful husbands and fathers.
Some same-sex attracted men are attracted to younger men, over whom they can exert power and dominance. Others seek out older men in an effort to heal their father-wounds. Some behave in a predatory manner, seeking out vulnerable younger men and even boys, grooming them and gaining their trust as a prelude to seduction.
Some same-sex attracted men are deeply ashamed of themselves, and wish they could change some or all of their behavior. Others are totally shameless.
We don’t really know why some men experience same-sex attraction and others do not. Most likely, there are a number of factors operating in different people to different extents and in different combinations. Some men may have become sexually fixated on men after being molested at an early age. Some men may have experienced parental influences that drove their sexual desires in a particular direction. And yes, it is possible, though not proven, that some people were indeed, “born that way.”
In fact, the significance of that phrase, “born that way,” can vary considerably. For one person, it may be the truth as he experiences it. For another, it may be a permission slip to engage in behavior he could not justify otherwise.
And coming from the lips of a narcissistic predator, it could be nothing more than a pick up line: “You were born that way. You can’t help it. It is ok. Doing this with me, letting me do this to you, is your true self, your path to happiness.”
And the most manipulative of all the seductive whisperings from a predator to his prey, “God made you this way. He wants you to be happy. You should do this with me.”
What do these beliefs have in common? The idea that there is one and only one valid form of expression for each person who experiences same-sex attraction is a form of moral determinism that robs the person of meaningful choices. Likewise, the “Born That Way” belief suggests that once a person discovers an inkling of same-sex attraction, he need not engage in any further moral deliberation. Both beliefs are a kind of Calvinism without grace, a terrifying prospect, even for—or maybe especially for—a Calvinist.
As a Roman Catholic, I have no patience for Calvinism, with or without grace.
It should be obvious that it is a disservice to use a single word, “gay,” to describe all these people. Calling oneself or another person “gay” does not do justice to the full range of choices regarding how to view himself, how to behave, and how to relate to other people that each man possesses.
So who benefits from these ideological straight jackets? The Sexual Revolutionary ideologues of course. No doubt they are recruiting more foot soldiers for their political crusade. But foremost on their mind is a desire to promote more self-indulgent sex. They owe the other person the courtesy of revealing what they are signing up for. A sleight of hand of this magnitude is manipulative, not liberating; dehumanizing, not uplifting.
This is why I avoid the term “gay.” I urge you to do the same. Let’s give our brothers the dignity of seeing them as they really are: men.
Posted on: Friday, November 13, 2015
COMMENTARY: A tenured professor of English is threatened with dismissal because he challenged one of the sexual revolution’s core assumptions.
Robert Oscar Lopez, a tenured English professor at California State University-Northridge, is on the verge of being suspended without pay, ostensibly due to a conference he organized a year ago. In fact, I believe this is not the real reason why this man of Puerto Rican and Philippine heritage, who knows six modern languages as well as Latin and Greek, is being hounded out of his job.
Professor Robert Lopez of the University of California at Northridge
Lopez’s parents divorced when he was a toddler. His mother formed an intimate relationship with another woman. His father disappeared from his life for a long time. Lopez believes that these events were traumatic for him, and he has been outspoken in saying so. His countercultural views are an embarrassment to the Sexual Revolutionary Establishment at his university and beyond. They believe he must be silenced. Getting him fired is one step toward that end.
I was one of the presenters at the conference in question, “Bonds That Matter.” And, unbeknownst to me, I was one of the sources of controversy in Lopez’s interaction with the Cal State administration.
Lopez invited me to present at the conference on the topic of divorce. I was eager to be part of the event, as my organization, the Ruth Institute, agrees with his general perspective: that it is unjust to deprive a child of a relationship with his or her parents without good reason. Millions of children have their relationship with a parent damaged by parental divorce.
I agreed to waive my usual fee, as a way of supporting this initial effort of Lopez’s new organization, the International Children’s Rights Institute. As part of our agreement, the Ruth Institute was permitted to have a display table. We did not sell anything, nor did we offer participants the opportunity to sign up for our newsletter, activities we normally do when I speak at events. I did not mention anything regarding homosexuality, gay marriage or gay parenting during my talk, which you can listen to for yourself.
Imagine my surprise when I received a call from Lopez, many months later, asking me about some Ruth Institute brochures.
“Did you pass out this brochure called ‘77 Non-Religious Reasons to Support Man/Woman Marriage?’” he said.
“No. They were probably lying on our book table. Why do you ask?”
He asked because a student had filed a complaint against him. These brochures were submitted as evidence that his conference had created a hostile environment. Mind you, the student who lodged this complaint received an A in the course in question and did not file her complaint until after she had graduated.
I confirmed that I did, however, pass out and discuss another pamphlet, “Are You a Survivor of the Sexual Revolution?” — which you can look at for yourself. We have revised the artwork since the conference and made modest changes to the content. In fact, the version the students saw did not include the last sentences about children of same sex-parents, under “Gay Lifestyle Refugee.”
I believe the sexual revolutionaries despise Robert Lopez because he challenges one of their core assumptions. The sexual revolution is based on the idea that all adults able to give meaningful consent are entitled to unlimited sexual activity with a minimum of inconvenience. What they never mention is this: Children just have to accept whatever adults choose to give them.
Lopez believes that children have rights to a relationship with both of their parents, in the absence of some unavoidable tragedy. Children have a right to know their identity, so that all adults without exception can know their cultural heritage and genetic identity. These entitlements of children impose legitimate obligations and limitations on adult behavior, including, potentially, public policy and personal sexual behavior.
All of us who presented at that conference agree with this basic point. We disagreed among ourselves about the exact nature and contours of those obligations and limitations. But this common ground created a fruitful avenue for serious discussion.
The very concept of children’s rights that impose limitations on adult sexual behavior threatens the fragile intellectual structure of the sexual revolution. The true revolutionary is counting on no one noticing that sex makes babies and that children need their parents.
The true revolutionary needs to change the subject away from this topic,and on to any other topic. For example:
Here is a link to a summary of the case. Here are the letters filed on behalf of Lopez by attorney Charles LiMandri of the Freedom of Conscience Defense Fund and by the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education. Looking at these documents, any sensible person must conclude that the answer to all these questions is “No.” Yet these are the questions the sexual revolutionaries, including the students with their frivolous complaints and the University Equity and Diversity Establishment, would prefer to discuss.
Never mind whether children are traumatized by the divorce of their parents. Never mind whether children feel wounded by the state-sanctioned loss of one parent through third-party reproduction. Never mind whether surrogate mothers are fully informed about the health risks they face. Never mind whether some adoption practices improperly commercialize and commodify children and harm their mothers.
The university should drop all charges against Robert Oscar Lopez. Please sign our petition to the chancellor of the California State University System, asking him to drop all charges.
Posted on: Thursday, November 12, 2015
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA, November 10, 2015 (LifeSiteNews) -- Robert Oscar Lopez isn’t your typical social-conservative professor: he was raised by his mom and her lesbian partner, and he openly admits that he is bisexual.
But he also opposes same-sex “marriage” and adoption, and even submitted a brief to the United States Supreme Court arguing against the redefinition of marriage. He bases his views in part on the trauma of his parents’ divorce when he was a toddler, and his subsequent experiences of being raised in a same-sex household.
Now he says he's under attack for defending the rights of children to be raised by their natural parents. Specifically, he may lose tenure, and even faces suspension without pay, from California State University-Northridge, the taxpayer-funded university that tenured him just two years ago.
Lopez says that it all began when he gave his students the option to attend and present research, for credit, at a conference he organized on parenting and children's rights at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in 2014.
One of the speakers there, Jennifer Roback Morse of the Ruth Institute, spoke on the topic of divorce, during which she says she never discussed the issue of homosexuality. However, at her table she had several pamphlets, including one titled “77 Non-Religious Reasons to Support Man/Woman Marriage.” She says that speakers at the conference supported the right of children to be raised by their mother and father.
After choosing to attend the conference, a student subsequently filed a complaint against Lopez, claiming that he discriminated against her based on gender. She also submitted a copy of Roback-Morse’s pamphlet, and one other pamphlet entitled "Are You a Survivor of the Sexual Revolution?" as evidence that Lopez had created a "hostile learning environment on the basis of gender and sexual orientation." Other students also reportedly filed similar complaints about the conference.
In an e-mail sent to media, Lopez says that he has been under investigation by the University of California's Northridge administration for 378 days for alleged discrimination and retaliation against students. Lopez says he himself didn’t find out he was under investigation until 245 days after the process was launched.
He also said that one of the three people heading the investigation compared the event at the Library to being tricked into going to a KKK rally.
Harassment is nothing new for Lopez. The radical LGBT organization Human Rights Campaign targeted Lopez in 2014 as part of the so-called "Export of Hate", something he says leaves him fearing for his family's safety.
Now, he says the university violated policies when it targeted him, and he is threatening legal action against the university for violations of California employment and civil rights law.
University policy states that it will complete investigations "no later than 60 working days after the intake interview," with a 30-day extension if necessary. However, in a deposition, the university told Lopez he was investigated after formal charges were filed in May.
Lopez also points out that the deposition says the allegations made against him by a female student “were similar to the allegations made" by two students "about the conference just days after it took place on October 3" of last year - meaning the investigation apparently started in 2014.
The university eventually found Lopez innocent of discrimination, but last month found him guilty of retaliation against a student. Lopez says the “retaliation” claim is clearly bogus, pointing to how the student in question got an "A" in his class, even after reporting him, and that there is no documented proof of retaliation.
The findings could cause Lopez to lose his job.
In a letter to the university, Lopez's attorney -- Charles LiMandri with the Freedom of Conscience Defense Fund -- wrote that the finding of retaliation violated university policy, noting that while "intimidation" and "retaliation" have high bars in official university documents, the charges against Lopez are based upon conversation fragments that took place seven months apart.
"In sum, this evidence does not even begin to meet the CSUN's own standard for 'retaliation,'" says the letter. "Under these circumstances, we have no choice but to conclude that the disposition of this investigation is purely political and ideological attack on Dr. Lopez for holding -- and exposing his students to -- ideas about children's right in the context of family and reproduction which are apparently unpopular at CSUN."
Lopez says that when it comes to the question of same-sex "marriage," he is most concerned about the rights of children.
"Same-sex 'marriage,' theoretically, does not impinge on anyone else's rights," Lopez told LifeSiteNews last year. "But if you guarantee a right to children as part of marriage, now this drags in the rights of other people -- there is a third-party...Not everyone gets married but every human being has a mother and father; those latter relationships are more fundamental than a spousal relationship.”
Lopez filed an amicus brief with the Supreme Court on behalf of children and against redefining marriage, saying that it was children, not same-sex couples, who have real standing in court on the issue of marriage.
Lopez also strongly opposes IVF, telling LifeSiteNews that "gay advocacy groups are pushing for the creation of children through artificial reproduction technology and for adoption systems that give children to gay couples because the gay couples want to be parents, not because children need to be in their homes."
"This is the transformation of human beings into chattel in a way we haven't seen since before slavery was abolished. I have stated many times that this isn't identical to the African slave trade, which involved far worse abuse, but there is an undeniable commonality between pre-13th-Amendment slavery and what is being advocated by groups like the Human Rights Campaign," he said.
Roback-Morse has come out in support of Lopez. "I believe the sexual revolutionaries despise Robert Lopez because he challenges one of their core assumptions," she wrote this week at the National Catholic Register. "The sexual revolution is based on the idea that all adults able to give meaningful consent are entitled to unlimited sexual activity with a minimum of inconvenience. What they never mention is this: Children just have to accept whatever adults choose to give them."
Posted on: Monday, November 02, 2015
By PEGGY FLETCHER STACK
This article was first Published at The Salt Lake Tribune on October 29, 2015, and last updated October 31, 2015.
On the third day of the World Congress of Families meeting in Salt Lake City, stirring speeches about assaults on the family from the government and media, costs of the sexual revolution, and the urgent need to protect religious freedom rang through the Grand America ballroom.
The family was "ordained of God," the Rev. Samuel Rodriguez said in a plenary session of the international gathering Thursday morning. "In essence, it is the heart of God by which we experience the fullness of God's glory."
The idea of the family "does not stem from a political ideology," said Rodriguez, who ministers to a multiethnic evangelical congregation in Sacramento, Calif., "and I don't believe the U.S. Supreme Court has the power and authority to redefine it."
Close, loving families led by a mother and father provide, he said, the "antidote to poverty, gang violence and economic disparities. ... It is a God-ordained firewall against so many ills."
An attack on the institution, Rodriguez said, "is an attack on communities that need it most."
Jennifer Roback Morse added her voice to the chorus of worried Christians, sounding the alarm about the aftermath — and victims — of the so-called "sexual revolution."
Morse — who was named one of the "Catholic Stars of 2013" along with Pope Francis, Pope Benedict XVI and others — was so troubled by what she sees as the decline of marriage that she launched the nonprofit Ruth Institute in 2008 to raise awareness about the costs.
The list of those victimized by the family breakdown includes children of divorce, children of unwed mothers, women who have been abandoned and children of same-sex couples, she said. "Men, women and children have been harmed ... by the lies [about marriage]."
Society's view of sexuality "is a totalitarian ideology," the Catholic scholar said. "Even [its] most ardent opponents don't know how insidious the revolution is."
Morse then challenged the gathering to speak against sexual freedom and its consequences.
"We are up against powerful people in our world," she said, "but Bill Gates and George Soros do not have enough money to silence all of us."
The Rev. Paige Patterson, former president of the Southern Baptist Convention and current president of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, tackled the topic of religious freedom.
It began, he said, when God created the first couple — Adam and Eve.
"God could have created automatons," the Baptist preacher said, "but our progenitors were created with the freedom to reject God or honor him."
The Constitution's First Amendment outlaws any government-established religion and forbids limits to the "free exercise of religion" — unless the state has a compelling interest to do so.
"Those concerned about the future of the family can no longer lend support to any candidate who doesn't vigorously support the First Amendment or is seeking to impose restrictions on religious freedoms," he said. "All such [office seekers] must be resisted."
Without religious freedom, Patterson said, "all other freedoms become relatively meaningless."
The Utah gathering wraps up Friday. The 10th World Congress of Families is tentatively scheduled for May 16-18, 2016, in the Georgian capital of Tbilisi.
Posted on: Tuesday, October 27, 2015
By Dr. Jeff Mirus
This article was first published October 14, 2015, at CatholicCulture.org.
I mentioned two weeks ago that Living the Truth in Love from Ignatius Press is an important book, and that I would have more to say about it. Having now read each of its score of theoretical, testimonial and pastoral essays, I am even more convinced that everyone concerned about the “gay revolution” should read them as well.
I learned something valuable from each one of this winning combination of writers, who possess personal, academic, therapeutic, medical and pastoral experience with same-sex attraction. But to my surprise the essay which had most to offer me personally was Jane Hallman’s “Do No Harm: Considerations in Supporting Youth with Same-Sex Attraction.” Hallman pointed out that young people who experience SSA are already likely to feel “different”, as if they do not “belong” owing to problems in their affective development. Therefore, if they experience anger and rejection as they try to discuss their difficulties with friends, parents, family members and other significant adults, it only exacerbates the problem. Hence her title: “Do no harm.”
In particular, common parental reactions, such as scorn and denial from fathers and “How can you do this to me?” from mothers, will almost inevitably alienate the child even further from a healthy affectivity. Instead, all who love the child must continue to accept him or her with love, including a continuation of habitual displays of affection, such as looking pleased rather than distraught when the child seeks to spend time with the parent. The focus needs to be on taking the child’s experiences seriously while maintaining a clear moral instruction which distinguishes feelings (which generally arise unbidden) from sins. This is the best context for other appropriate steps, such as counseling.
The Way Forward
There is no one best way for a same-sex attracted person to deal with his or her disordered affectivity. As with other disordered affectivities (including, really, all the inordinate attachments which constitute temptations in our lives), bringing them under control is largely a process of prayer, sacramental life, sound spiritual direction, helpful insights and encouragement from others, trial and error, sin, and repentance—all leading over time to self-mastery.
Sometimes God intervenes with a particular gift of grace which removes even the temptation that this (or any other) cross entails. This point is made by Robin Beck in her personal testimony entitled “Why Maintaining Biblical Language Matters.” She recognizes the importance of confidence in Christ’s ability to make of us a new creation: “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has passed away, behold, the new has come” (2 Cor 5:17). At a certain point in committing herself to Christ, Beck experienced freedom from all of homosexuality, both “the behavior and the desire.”
But—again, as with other trials that come to us through God’s permissive will—most of us are not healed in this way, but through a patient struggle to conquer sin without completely eliminating temptation. For this reason, many will find Daniel C. Mattson’s witness more helpful: “Total Abandonment to Divine Providence and the Permissive Will of God”. There are also testimonies from Joseph Prever (“The Curse of the Ouroboros: Notes on Friendship”), Eve Tushnet (“In This Our Exile”), David Prosen (“Breaking Free”), Doug Mainwaring (“Married and Same-Sex Attracted: Are We Hiding the Light of the Gospel under a Basket?”), and Bob and Susan Covera, whose “From Pain to Peace” explains their journey as parents of a same-sex attracted child.
Incidentally, one fairly common thread throughout the book is the importance of the Courage and EnCourage apostolates, founded by Fr. John Harvey and continuing under the leadership of one of the editors, Fr. Paul Check. This apostolic work has helped many men and women deal with the challenge of same-sex attraction in accordance with a sound spiritual life and a true Christian anthropology.
What We Know and What We Don’t
New challenges invariably lead the Church and her members to a fuller and more accurate understanding of and response to the problems each challenge represents. In the present case, it has been necessary to explore the philosophical and theological dimensions of Eros along with the biological and psychological developmental factors that might incline a person to same-sex attraction. This need is addressed by the sections of Living the Truth in Love which deal with theoretical knowledge and pastoral care.
For example, Rachel Lu addresses the question of sexual identity in “Eros Divided: Is There Such a Thing as Healthy Homoerotic Love?”. In addition, although Bob Schuchts may be too quick to claim an almost miraculous process of healing in Christian therapy, his emphasis on “Restoring Wholeness in Christ” is clearly important to the kind of self-knowledge and spiritual growth which must be part of any healing process. Deborah Savage explains what she believes is “At the Heart of the Matter: Lived Experience in Saint John Paul II’s Integral Account of the Person”. My favorite natural law theorist, J. Budziszewski, explains how we can make important connections through “The Conversational Use of Natural Law in the Context of Same-Sex Attraction”.
Msgr. Livio Melina studies a much-contested issue: “Homosexual Inclination as an ‘Objective Disorder’: Reflections of Theological Anthropology”. There is even an essay on “The Healing Role of Friendship in Aelred of Rievaulx’s De spiritali amicitia”—a work which some of the witness essays mention as well—by Dennis J. Billy, C.Ss.R. All of these authors are impressively credentialed in their fields.
In the pastoral section (after learning from Dr. Hallman to do no harm), we find careful considerations of the psychological and medical aspects of same-sex attraction. Again, the titles are indicative. Timothy G. Lock explores “Same-Sex Attractions as a Symptom of a Broken Heart: Psychological Science Deepens Respect, Compassion, and Sensitivity”. And Timothy Flanigan, MD details “HIV and Other Health Risks Associated with Men Who Have Sex with Men”.
Two essays map out the cultural background underlying the way we deal with same-sex attraction. Jennifer Roback Morse’s essay, “Understanding the Sexual Revolution”, explains what old hands have long known about the tactics used to break down traditional sexual morality, an analysis which will put things into perspective for those new to the struggle. Peter Herbeck insists in “Our Prophetic Moment” that only a strong and vibrant Catholic proclamation of the vision of Christ for the human person and human sexuality can possibly make a positive difference. Accommodation is deadly.
Edited, introduced and concluded by Fr. Paul Check of Courage and moral philosopher Janet Smith of Sacred Heart Major Seminary in Detroit, Living the Truth in Love not only covers many aspects of the subject but also permits the expression of a variety of slightly different (but always Christian) viewpoints on how best to deal with same-sex attraction—both personally and in counseling. As Janet Smith states in the preface, “We believe that some of the differences are matters of prudence, and others perhaps are more serious. We include different positions because we believe it is important that we remain in dialogue with those who share important foundational views.”
This actually makes the book stronger. Whether there will ever emerge a single paradigm for best addressing same-sex attraction by those who are morally committed to chastity as enjoined by Christ and the Church, it is clear at this stage that one size does not fit all in terms of successfully coming to terms with SSA and integrating it into a thoroughly Christian life. I found myself more indebted to some contributors than others, but let me say again that I benefited from all of them.
For those who are not otherwise genuinely expert in the problem of same-sex attraction (which is the vast majority of us), I would venture to say that, after the publication of Living the Truth in Love, it has become irresponsible to hold forth on this subject based on gut feelings. Do not risk your credibility! Before addressing same-sex attraction again, read this extraordinarily apt, fascinating and incomparably convenient book.
Posted on: Monday, October 19, 2015
Deliberately depriving children of a relationship with one of their parents is an injustice to the children.
by JENNIFER ROBACK MORSEThis article was first published at National Catholic Register on October 16, 2015.
My assignment at this conference is to describe the impact of same-sex parenting on children. I can recall back in 2008, when I was a campaign spokeswoman for Proposition 8 in California, one of my first assignments was to present our case to the editorial board of the Los Angeles Times, the largest newspaper in California.
I showed the editor a birth certificate from British Columbia. Canada had already redefined marriage to be the union of any two persons of any gender.
“Look: There is a place for the mother’s name and information. But down here, where the father’s information ought to be, there is a check-off box for ‘father’ or ‘co-parent.’ Motherhood is still intact. But fatherhood has been reduced to a check-off box.”
The editor tossed the birth certificate aside. “Lots of kids don’t have fathers. Who cares?”
I was appalled. I am still appalled at the callousness that Western culture has developed toward the suffering of children. I am convinced that this callousness, which started in the United States at least 40 years ago, is a prime contributor toward the situation in which we now find ourselves.
We are faced with two competing worldviews. The Catholic worldview, and up until recently the worldview of all Christian denominations is this: Every child (and hence every adult) has identity rights and relational rights with respect to their parents.
And this is the part we do not like to say too loudly: These rights impose legitimate obligations on adults to provide these things to children. We don’t like to say this too loudly because people resist hearing that they have obligations to others that they did not explicitly choose to bear.
The competing worldview is this: Every adult has a right to the sexual activity he or she wants, with a minimum of inconvenience, and children have to accept whatever the adults choose to give them. We do not just blurt out that last part explicitly because we would be ashamed of ourselves if we said it out loud. But that is approximately the position of most of the people in power in most of the so-called developed countries.
Let us listen to the words of our Holy Father, Pope Francis, as he spoke to the Ecclesial Congress of the Diocese of Rome on June 15, 2015.
“It’s lovely when the child sees father and mother kiss one another — a beautiful testimony. When children see that father and mother love each other, the children grow in that atmosphere of love, of happiness and also of security, because they are not afraid: They know they are secure in the love of the father and of the mother.”
As soon as we begin speaking this way, of the rights and entitlements of children, we can see that we are talking about something much larger than same-sex couples raising children. We are, by implication, talking about any situation in which children are separated from a parent through the decisions of the parents. That forces us to talk about divorce.
Very well then. Let us by all means talk about divorce and its impact on children.
We now have literally hundreds of scholarly articles and books showing the risks that children of divorce face. These negative outcomes derive from the basic injustice done to children by separating them from one of their parents without an unavoidable reason.
Secure attachments between a child and each of his or her parents builds the foundation for the development of the child’s personality. In the child’s little world, mother and father are the most powerful and important people in their lives. Parents act as “stand-ins” for God himself. From this most basic relationship, the child develops his sense of himself as a social and spiritual being. Is the world a safe place for me? Do I really belong here? Am I worthy of love?
Divorcing parents may say to their child: “We still love you. We just don’t love each other anymore.” But the child’s other parent is half of who they are. The child cannot make sense of these contradictory claims because they are not really true. The whole truth is that the parent creating the separation is telling the child, “I want something else more than I want a relationship with your other parent, that is, with half of you.” And if the parent has a new lover, the real message is, “I value my relationship with my new boyfriend or girlfriend more than I value my relationship with you.”
This is the most immediate thing that children of divorce have in common with children of same-sex couples. The adults’ relationship with their sex partners is more important to them than their relationship with the child’s other parent.
Needless to say, this conflict does not even arise in families where the mother and father are continuously and faithfully married to each other.
It is no wonder the child cannot make sense of this impossible situation. We can see why so many difficulties and pathologies result.
The individual parents are not necessarily to blame. People can be good and decent and doing their very best. But sometimes the mere absence of the child’s other parent in the home, or the mere presence of a substitute parent in the home, can create a set of problems that good parenting skills and good intentions cannot entirely overcome.
Perhaps you have children like this in your parishes: a little girl who was the flower girl at her mother’s second wedding. Her heart is secretly breaking because her mother’s second wedding means that her mother and father will never get back together again.
Or perhaps you have little boys who are angry and hurt at the loss of their fathers. Boys who break things; boys who scream for no apparent reason; boys who are sullen and unapproachable; boys who hurt people.
The entire culture of Western countries has been telling people that “kids are resilient,” and “the kids will be fine as long as their parents are happy” for 40 years. Many people broke up perfectly adequate marriages and embarked on new relationships with this idea in their minds. If they had known how their children would suffer, many of them would surely have chosen something else.
The Catholic Church can take pride in the fact that we have consistently taken the divorce issue seriously. But even we have not done enough for these children who feel abandoned and confused. Even we have not done enough for the adults who have been discarded and divorced against their will. Even we have not done enough to combat the systematic lies our culture has been promoting.
Examining what is known about the impact of same-sex parenting on children, we find quite a bit of overlap with the issues faced by children of divorce.
We really should not be surprised that the children have problems. Children suffer in every one of the “alternative family forms” studied so far. It simply strains the imagination to believe that, somehow, same-sex couples will be able to accomplish what no other alternative family form has accomplished.
The impression that the advocates create is that the children who will be created by same-sex parents in the future will be different from those in other alternative family forms that have been studied so far. These children will be so wanted by their parents that the chosen-ness of the children will override the problems that arise from living with an unrelated adult and the heartbreak of being separated from one of their natural parents.
People who speak this way are tacitly referring to third-party reproduction: a sperm donor as a third party for a female couple or an egg donor and surrogate for a male couple.
These arrangements are morally problematic for all the same reasons as divorce, only more intensely so. For most of these children, their gamete donor is anonymous and is not part of their family. One of the parents has made a decision to completely cut the other parent out of their lives. This is a greater injustice than a divorce or separation, because it is deliberate, from the beginning, and permanent.
Finally, we should take a few moments to hear from the adult children themselves. Their testimonies deserve to be heard.
Deliberately depriving children of a relationship with one of their parents is an injustice to the children. The fact that we have been doing so for the past 40 years through divorce is no excuse to create another whole class of injustices to children. The ancient teachings of the Church insist on keeping the unitive and the procreative aspects of sex together, inside matrimony. These teachings are humane and true. They do not deserve to be watered down or abandoned.
The ancient teachings of the Church deserve to be promoted from the housetops and defended to the end.
Posted on: Wednesday, October 14, 2015
(October 14, 2015) Dr J is once again Todd Wilkin's guest on Issues, Etc. They're discussing the Catholic church's worldwide Synod on the Family and the educational conference immediately beforehand in which Dr J participated.
Posted on: Sunday, October 04, 2015
This article on same sex parenting by Michael Cook appeared at Mercatornet.com on September 23, 2015.
Australian research from the 1990s has emerged as key evidence in the debate about same-sex parenting.
The constant refrain from supporters has been that there is no difference in outcomes for children in traditional marriages or same-sex couples. In 2010 Judge Vaughn Walker struck down a voter-approved constitutional referendum in California, partly because he found no sociological evidence of a difference. He put the conventional wisdom in a nutshell:
“Children raised by gay or lesbian parents are as likely as children raised by heterosexual parents to be healthy, successful and well-adjusted. The research supporting this conclusion is accepted beyond serious debate in the field of developmental psychology.”
And a brief sponsored by the American Psychological Association (APA) in 2005 asserted baldly that “none of the published research suggests conclusions different from” the “no difference” hypothesis.
This is simply not true. There was a study. It showed disadvantage. And it was ignored. Why?
Perhaps because it came from Australia, far from the bright lights of San Francisco or New York.
In the latest issue of the journal Comprehensive Psychology, Walter R. Schumm, Professor of Family Studies at Kansas State University, investigates why a 1996 article by Sotirios Sarantakos at Charles Sturt University in Wagga Wagga, a city in country New South Wales, has sunk into obscurity.
Sarantakos’s article, “Children in three contexts: Family, education, and social development” was published in a small journal called Children Australia. It dealt with 58 children of heterosexual married parents, 58 children of cohabiting heterosexual parents, and 58 children of 11 gay and 47 lesbian parents. It has some limitations but Schumm believes that it is “comparable or better than much research of the same time period, even better than some that has been done since 2001”. Sarantakos followed it up with other studies of homosexual parenting.
Sarantakos was favourably disposed toward gays and lesbians and even appears to have supported the idea of same-sex marriage. He was by no means a conservative ideologue.
What did he find about the children?
And the parents? Same-sex parents appeared to have different and not necessarily better parenting styles.
These findings are based on 20-year-old research. Since then, the debate has moved on and many more studies have been done. However, Dr Schumm says that several articles in recent research have confirmed what Sarantakos found. It is still a valuable contribution to a controversial field.
So why has Sarantakos been overlooked?
Essentially because its data is a bright red pimple on the heavily powdered face of same-sex parenting. This pioneering look at how children fare in same-sex unions gave them a big thumbs-down. It has been a mortification for labourers in the vineyard of activist scholarship ever since.
It’s not quite true that the APA brief – which is cited as gospel writ in today’s debates – overlooked the Sarantakos study. It states confidently that “none of the published research” contradicts its rosy picture of same-sex parenting. But then it devotes a gigantic footnote – its only footnote! -- to the Australian study, rubbishing it as anomalous, idiosyncratic, unreliable, skewed and invalid.
A more candid text would have read: “ … none of the published research (except that embarrassing Sarantakos stuff which threatens to wreck our happy snapshot of unanimity which is why we have left it out)”.
Dr Schumm’s closer reading of Sarantakos suggests that this dismissive attitude is driven by bias – “the political success of false negatives, in which positive results are overlooked systematically or heavily criticized when reported”.
By coincidence, a new website was launched this week called Heterodox Academy with the backing of some of the biggest names in progressive social science, including luminaries like Jonathan Haidt and Steven Pinker. Its purpose is to highlight the loss or lack of “viewpoint diversity” in universities. “In most academic fields, progressives outnumber conservatives by ratios that often exceed ten to one,” they point out. Can there be a better demonstration of this than the reception given to the family research of Sotirios Sarantakos?
Posted on: Thursday, October 01, 2015
(March 7, 2015) This is Dr. Morse's talk from the 2015 "Bringing America Back to Life" convention in Cleveland, Ohio. It's entitled "The Impact of Redefining Marriage on Children and Society." Special thanks to Molly Smith and From the Median for this audio.
Posted on: Monday, September 28, 2015
A powerful moving speech by a *sperm donor child* of two lesbians who talks about her upbringing (starting at 2:12 in this video).
Posted on: Saturday, September 26, 2015
A National Review Online Symposium,
June 27, 2015
Posted on: Monday, September 21, 2015
“Living the Truth in Love” conference and resource event will be held Oct. 2 in Rome.
Courage International and Ignatius Press announce their first Rome conference to address the pastoral needs of men and women who experience homosexual tendencies. Living the Truth in Love is a conference and resource event which will be held October 2, just before the start of the Ordinary Synod on the Family, at the Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas ("The Angelicum").The theme of the conference will be "The Ways of True Love—Pastoral Approaches to Welcome and Accompany those Living with Homosexual Tendencies."
The conference will feature Cardinal Robert Sarah, Cardinal George Pell, and Msgr. Livio Melina, as well as Dr. Paul McHugh of Johns Hopkins University; Dr. Timothy Lock, a clinical psychologist; and Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse of the Ruth Institute. A panel discussion will be held featuring the testimonies of faithful Catholics living the reality of homosexuality in their everyday lives.
Resources will be available to conference attendees, including a collection of books recently released by several of the conference participants, among them Cardinal Sarah and Cardinal Pell. A press event will take place in conjunction with the conference for members of the media.
The conference will take place just days before the opening of the Ordinary Synod on the Family that begins at the Vatican on October 4 and extends through October 25. The conference offers a response to the important question before the synod regarding how the Church should give pastoral care to persons with homosexual tendencies and their families.
The conference approaches homosexuality not as a cultural or political issue of the day (without forgetting that it is those things), but rather as a personal reality in the lives of individual men and women. The speakers will address the complex reality of homosexual tendencies through the lenses of the empirical and social sciences, the personal experience of homosexuality, the testimony of Sacred Scripture, as well as Sacred Tradition—the bi-millenial wisdom of the Catholic Church.
Conference organizers intend the event and its resources to help those responsible for pastoral ministry to better understand each of these dimensions and to be better equipped to welcome and accompany men and women with homosexual tendencies, and ultimately to help them find the fullness of joy in their journey with and to Christ.
Father Paul Check, executive director of Courage International, explains that the Living the Truth in Love conference distinguishes itself from other conferences by offering a fuller and more precise understanding of the human person. "Through his Church, Christ invites everyone to the abundant life (Jn 10:10). He offers his mercy ('neither do I condemn you'), and then he calls us to conversion of heart ('now go and sin no more'), and he gives us the grace to make this possible. In the Gospel, Jesus not only offers his compassion but he also calls us to conversion because he knows we will only be truly joyful and fulfilled when we live as he created us to be."
"So many of the current approaches to homosexuality do not include this fuller perspective of the human person," said Check. "Rather they seem to limit themselves to 'acceptance' without recognizing Jesus' call to conversion. And they defend a 'right' to sexual intimacy, but they do not acknowledge God's design for marriage to which Jesus himself refers in Matthew 19."
Father Joseph Fessio, SJ, founder and editor of Ignatius Press, adds: "Genuine compassion and mercy require that we support all those who desire to live authentic Christian discipleship. We are pleased to join with Courage not only in holding this conference, but also in providing a range of pastoral and personal resources that will provide practical guidance long after the conference-and the synod-are over."
This event is open to the public. Registration is free but lunch is included for an additional fee. Those interested in registering or in further information can visit http://www.TruthandLove.com.
Posted on: Wednesday, August 12, 2015
(August 12, 2015) Dr J is at the Courage Conference in Plymouth, Michigan, near Detroit, where she spoke with Teresa Tomeo of Catholic Connection. Teresa is interviewing Dr J and Father Paul Check, head of Courage International, the Catholic Church's ministry to persons dealing with same sex attraction. They discuss how to work as a force for healing in the midst of all the sexual pressure our culture applies.
Posted on: Monday, July 20, 2015
This article was first published July 9, 2015, at The Federalist.
Some same-sex marriage supporters say redefining marriage will strengthen it. Others say it will destroy marriage. They can’t both be right.
Some who support same-sex marriage argue it will strengthen the family. For example, President Obama said this on June 26, 2015 regarding the SCOTUS ruling that made same-sex marriage legal across the United States: “This ruling will strengthen all of our communities by offering to all loving same-sex couples the dignity of marriage across this great land… It’s a victory for their children, whose families will now be recognized as equal to any other.”
Others take a very different view. Masha Gessen, for example, is an author who is perhaps most well-known as being an expert on Vladimir Putin. She was honored at the State Department in June 2014 for her gay-rights activism in Russia. She is a same-sex marriage supporter who believes the institution of marriage should not exist. She had this to say about marriage in 2012 at a writer’s conference in Sydney:
Fighting for gay marriage generally involves lying about what we are going to do with marriage when we get there — because we lie that the institution of marriage is not going to change, and that is a lie. The institution of marriage is going to change, and it should change. And again, I don’t think it should exist….
I have three kids who have five parents, more or less, and I don’t see why they shouldn’t have five parents legally… I would like to live in a legal system that is capable of reflecting that reality, and I don’t think that’s compatible with the institution of marriage.
Obama’s view is not compatible with Gessen’s view. How do we know which is correct?
If somebody wants to destroy marriage, would they support a policy initiative that strengthened marriage? Of course not. Thus, Gessen really does believe that same-sex marriage will harm if not destroy marriage.
Second, Gessen’s goals are coming to pass as a result of same-sex marriage. Here are two examples. In response to a lesbian marriage and custody dispute, California enacted a bill that allows a child to have more than two legal parents. Gessen correctly argued that man-woman marriage is not compatible with her desire for an unlimited number of legal parents for children. Same-sex marriage has accomplished this goal in California. The state of Alabama tried to abolish marriage licenses as a response to same-sex marriage. Gessen wants to abolish marriage, and abolishing marriage licenses is a step towards abolishing marriage.
Remember Gessen’s desire for five legal parents for her children? Let’s examine how much damage to the family is already possible before same-sex marriage came along. The following diagram is not hypothetical. This is a real-life situation.
Locate the oval that says, “Older half-sister.” This diagram is based on her experience. She has her mom (Wife 1) and dad—those two are her legal parents. She also has three step-parents: one step-dad and two step-moms (who are labeled Wife 2 and Wife 3). This looks quite fractured, doesn’t it? But consider that several popular cultural ideas made this possible:
Gessen advocates that all of the adults should be legal parents, not just the natural mother and father. So instead of the older half-sister living between (only!) two homes from the time she was three years old, she would live between three or more homes. Would adults ever choose to spend years living like that? Of course not. That is one example of the new kind of family breakdown.
Another example: after what he has said about his father’s absence from his life, would President Obama choose to be raised as a child in a lesbian marriage? I can’t see how he would, since he has spoken about how painful it has been to live without his father. He has made remarks about the importance of fathers on more than one occasion. In 2013, for example, he said: “I was raised by two wonderful grandparents. But I still wish that I had a dad who was not only around, but involved, another role model… That’s why I try to be, for Michelle and my girls, what my father was not for my mother and me.”
I commend President Obama for being that kind of man for his family. When a child is raised in an intact home with his married biological parents, it’s like winning the lottery. But fewer and fewer kids have access to that kind of life. Why? One reason is that kind of life creates demands that may go against the adults’ sexual identities and sexual desires. That’s what marriage is about now: to affirm adults in their identities and their choices. What happens to kids is an afterthought.
Gessen was raised with her own married parents, and I’ve never seen her state that she wished it were otherwise. She wants to destroy marriage as an ideal, not only for her own children but for everybody’s children. President Obama was not raised with his married parents. He has lamented the absence of his father and he wishes to strengthen marriage.
Gessen is correct about same-sex marriage and Obama is not. When will same-sex marriage supporters realize they’ve been naive?
Posted on: Monday, July 20, 2015
An interview of Dr. Morse by Zoe Romanowsky at aleteia.org.
Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse believes we are experimenting with vulnerable children.
Prior to the Supreme Court’s decision on same-sex marriage, the court heard testimony from adult children who grew up in same-sex relationship households. The Washington Post ran a piece about this just before the SCOTUS ruling.
On one side were the advocates—those who claim to be living proof of the words Justice Anthony M. Kennedy wrote when the federal Defense of Marriage Act was struck down two years ago: that the law as it was “humiliat(ed) tens of thousands of children” being raised by gay parents.
As part of legal briefs in the Obergefell case, some of these adult children shared their experiences of feeling marginalized, less-than, and unwelcome because their families weren’t recognized as "real" families.
Others who oppose gay marriage and were also raised by same-sex couples told their stories, too. One of them was Katy Faust who was raised by a gay mom in Portland, Oregon. Although Katy’s father remained involved in her life, when she began to reflect on her childhood and became a mother herself, she became convinced that no child should be deprived of a mother.
Robert Oscar Lopez also gave testimony. A professor at California State University at Northridge and an outspoken critic of gay marriage, he believes same-sex parenting can even constitute child abuse. In July 2013, he wrote:
"Single-parenting and divorce have always been understood as a breakdown of the married mom and dad ideal, but the demand to view same-sex parenting as “normal” imposes a silence on children about the wound caused by the loss of one parent or the other."
Lopez has also said that he believes many adult children of same-sex parents like himself feel the way he does, but don’t speak up in order to protect their parents, "whom they love despite their ambivalence."
The Supreme Court's decision to legalize same-sex marriage is now a reality, but the question remains: How does same-sex marriage change the rights that children do—or should—have as it relates to their parents? Do children have a right to know and be raised by their biological parents? Is marriage an institution designed solely for adults, or do children’s rights factor into it—and what exactly are those rights?
Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse, president and founder of the Ruth Institute, an organization that promotes life-long marriage, says that what the Supreme Court has done with its decision is say that there is no necessary connection between marriage and natural parenthood.
"Marriage has always helped assign parental rights. So when a baby is born, the mother is the person who gave birth to the baby—that’s the typical rule—and then after that we answer "who’s the daddy?" by saying the mother’s husband; he’s presumed to be the father of the children the women gives birth to during the lifetime of their union. With marriage now a genderless institution, we have broken that connection between marriage and parenthood. Children don’t have natural parents anymore; they have legal parents."
Morse says the idea that children have the right to know their biological identity, or to receive support, care and identity from their biological parents, is now in the process of being written out of the law.
Some may point to adoption as a clear example of children being raised by non-biological parents where ties to biological parents are often completely severed, In adoption, however, the loss the child has experienced is recognized and acknowledged and it is understood that his or her new parents are stepping into the shoes that biological parents can’t fill for one reason or another.
"Adoption is a child-centered, child-oriented set of legal rules, rather than adult-centered. And that is the difference between adoption and third-party reproduction," says Morse.
With same-sex marriage, it’s now discriminatory to say that the ideal family arrangement for a child is with his or her biological parents.
Related to this is the issue that Professor Lopez brought up: a child's right to both a mother and a father. With marriage "equality," it is now discriminatory to say that a child is better off, or has a right to, both a mother and a father.
In the interview above, Dr. Morse says married gay parents is a societal experiment and we shouldn’t be experimenting on children, especially those who too often have already experienced the profound loss of their natural parents.
"What I see happening rhetorically, and probably even legally, is people saying that biology isn’t all that important; that we need to break our social belief in bio-genetic parenting as the norm. I think this is a very dangerous place to go. I think it’s just wrong for adults to say children have no right to their natural parents."
Posted on: Friday, July 10, 2015
Dear Dr. Morse,
My name is Alicia. When I looked at the categories on your website, the one I wanted to select was "gay and lesbian lifestyle" refugee -- except in a peculiar way [Note from editor: Alicia is referring to the 12 Survivors of the Sexual Revolution, located here]. However, I've never had a lesbian relationship, and I've never been tempted to go out and get a girlfriend. It is also important for you to know that I have Asperger’s and that I am a Catholic convert.
I became active with an online community known as the Xena Online Community (XOC). It is for people who are fans of the Xena Warrior Princess TV series. The sexuality of the people on the board wasn't even a factor at first. The XOC had a large lesbian population but that wasn't the board's defining characteristic, and we had straight women and guys as well. Over time, the board became more skewed toward lesbian and the culture seemed to become more dysfunctional. I had many friendships that eventually fell apart.
That's my first problem when it comes to the marriage issue today. I don't know how to talk about it. I understand the way God's gift of sexuality works, I completely agree with the Church's teaching. I have done a lot of research but people on the XOC still called me a mindless sheep. That was actually where I ran into my first huge political struggle. It was right around the time the protect marriage amendment in Arizona went up for vote. At the beginning, the XOC people were pretty supportive of everyone's faith, but then people started posting the stuff about Christians being hateful. The militant lesbians of the XOC viewed the Xena board as their safe haven, and minorities like Christians were no longer welcome. That hurt, especially since the rules had changed on me without me knowing it. I've had a lot of friends, even Christian friends, post things in the last few days to the effect that Christians need to love people who identify as gay and lesbian before we do anything else. It hurts. I scream inside that I tried to do that, and they rejected me.
My first question: how do I cope with the memories of lost friendships? There are several people I used to be extremely close to who would now say that they hate me and I have no idea how much responsibility I bear.
My second question: how should I handle such situations in the future? The XOC was the first time in my life I'd felt accepted. The only advice I can get is "state your view charitably and agree to disagree." I guess that works in casual friendships, but it doesn't help much if your best friend just invited you to Gay Pride (completely out of the blue) and then took great offense when you said you couldn't go. The advice I usually get is "she shouldn't be your best friend, you should have other Christians" -- and I can't say anything out loud, but I always think that I tried to make best friends with other Christians and they rejected me. I don't think I can be effective in evangelizing unless I figure some of it out. If I make friends with someone, I give that person my whole self -- something I've had people tell me is a mistake.
Finally, a friend told me once that she didn't have a problem with me being Catholic, but that she had a problem with me refusing to give her blessing to her new same-sex relationship, then cited a couple of other Christians who'd just encouraged them. It seems like the world is exhorting us to keep our beliefs but be more loving in our expressions (whatever that means), and applauding "liberal" Christians who compromise.
I am looking for pastoral support on the questions outlined above. I would be honored to join the Ruth community, and I'm desperate for a spiritual director / pastoral support / resources on the emotional resonance of the marriage issue from the perspective from the outside.
Submitted on July 7, 2015.
Harmed by the Sexual Revolution? Go here to learn how to tell your story.
Posted on: Thursday, July 02, 2015
(June 30, 2015) Dr J is Matt Swaim's guest on "The Sonrise Morning Show" to discuss the Supreme Court's ruling on marriage in Obergefell v. Hodges.
Posted on: Monday, June 29, 2015
(June 29, 2015) Dr J is once again Molly Smith's guest on "From the Median" to discuss the Supreme Court's ruling on marriage in Obergefell v. Hodges.
Posted on: Monday, June 29, 2015
By Originally posted June 25, 2014 by Jennifer Johnson.
Around March of 2013 I came across the words of a prominent LGBT activist named Masha Gessen:
I have three kids who have five parents, more or less, and I don’t see why they shouldn’t have five parents legally… I would like to live in a legal system that is capable of reflecting that reality, and I don’t think that’s compatible with the institution of marriage.
Imagine having five parents! Here’s what it means: it means going back and forth between all those households on a regular basis, never having a single place to call home during your most tender and vulnerable years. It means having divided Christmases, other holidays, and birthdays–you spend one with one parent, and another with the other parent, never spending a single holiday or birthday with both parents. Imagine having each of your parents completely ignore the other half of you, the other half of your family, as if it did not even exist. Meanwhile, imagine each parent pouring their energy into their new families and creating a unified home for their new children. These experiences give you the definite impression of being something leftover, something not quite part of them. You live like that on a daily basis for 18+ years.
|As a child, would you choose a family structure advocated by Masha Gessen? Does this look fun?|
I don’t have to imagine, because I had five parents. I had five parents because my mom and dad divorced when I was about three; my mom remarried once and my dad remarried twice. So I had a mom and two step-moms, and a dad and one step-dad. In this day and age children can already have five parents. That’s how badly marriage has deteriorated already. The main difference between what Gessen advocates and my experience is that my step parents were not legal parents; she advocates for all of the adults in her situation to be legal parents.
Having more than two legal parents will be a nightmare for a child. Of course, I am making the reasonable assumption that the legal parents will not be living under the same roof, because there is no longer any societal accountability for adults to create a unified home for children. Thus, adding additional legal parents will create more disruption for children’s daily lives, more chaos, more confusion, less unity. And why are we doing this? So that adults can have the sexual partners they want.
Masha Gessen had a mom and a dad, so it appears that she benefitted from the socially conservative family structure--it appears she was not raised under the family structure she advocates. That sounds about right. I’ve talked to many people who think deconstructing the family in favor of adult sexual choice is a good thing… and these very same people lived under the socially conservative family structure with their one mom who spent her life with their one dad, and they all lived together in their unified home. Since I lived under the family structure they advocate, I will sometimes ask them: would you trade childhoods with me? They either say no or they don’t reply.
If what I had is so great, then why don’t they want it as children? Here’s my conclusion: they want it as adults but not as children. They want the benefits of the socially conservative family structure when they are children. But as adults, they want sexual freedom, or at least they want to appear “open minded” and “tolerant” about others sexual choices, even at the expense of children, even though they themselves would never want to live under what they advocate. It’s a bizarre sort of a “win-win” for them, I guess.
It’s very painful for me to have conversations with these people. They don’t understand what they advocate, and they don’t seem to want to understand.
Posted on: Saturday, June 27, 2015
Posted on: Friday, June 26, 2015
(June 26, 2015) Dr J is once a again Teresa Tomeo's guest on "Catholic Connection" to discuss the upcoming Supreme Court ruling on marriage...
Posted on: Tuesday, June 23, 2015
by Jennifer Johnson, Associate Director
June of 2013 was the last time the Supreme Court made a ruling on marriage. Remember how those "equals" signs went viral on social media at that time?
Why was that? I think one reason is that people really care about the ideal of equality. They believe that we should treat others fairly. I agree that
equality is a good ideal. It is not a perfect ideal, but it is a good one. We might wish the general public would talk about the marriage issue using
other concepts, but they don't. Right or wrong, they care about equality and that's how they think about marriage. So, since we know they care about
equality, shouldn't we talk about equality too? We can. And we can do it without sacrificing our principles.
Posted on: Monday, June 08, 2015by Austin Yack - UC Santa Barbara on May 27, 2015
The College Fix’s exclusive video shows demonstrators chant, hoist vulgar signs
ISLA VISTA – More than 20 UC Santa Barbara students disrupted the start of a talk on campus in support of traditional marriage on Tuesday night with a rowdy protest that included loud chanting and crassly worded signs.
The demonstrators – who wore black shirts with pink balloons stating “Queer” – stood up as soon as the talk began and continually chanted “ain’t no power like the power of people ‘cuz the power of people don’t stop.”
The row of protestors blocked the view of the stage as they continued their demonstration. Several students held signs that offered phrases such as “Anal is the most inclusive form of f*cking,” “There is a Future in Sodomy,” “God Loves Fags,” and more.
The featured speaker – Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse, a former Ivy League professor and founder and president of the pro-traditional marriage nonprofit Ruth Institute – left the stage and attempted to engage the protestors in conversation, but they would not stop shouting.
The chanting lasted for about four or five minutes, then the protestors marched out of the lecture hall, allowing the event to continue without disruption. After the protestors left, about 45 students, scholars and community guests remained and listened to Morse’s lecture:“Same Sex Marriage: Why Not?”
The talk was sponsored by the newly formed UCSB Anscombe Society, which aims to promote sexual purity and the traditional family on campus.
Morse works to help what she calls the Sexual Revolution’s victims. Morse taught economics at Yale and George Mason universities for 15 years and also served as a research fellow for Stanford University’s Hoover Institution from 1997 to 2005.
The event had been highly publicized through an email to the 20,000-member campus community as well as through fliers hung on doors at dorms and apartment complexes near the university.
“Whatever one’s views on this very important and contested question may be, we invite and encourage all to attend to critically interact with the speaker’s arguments and to ask tough questions during the Q&A in the interest of encouraging intellectual engagement on this issue,” the Anscombe Society’s invitation to the campus community had stated.
As this was the Anscombe Society’s first official event, it was uncertain how many people would show up. Campus officials had asked society members to purchase security for the talk. However, after the group’s student president, Carlos Flores, got an attorney involved, the fees were dropped, he told The College Fix.
If an event on campus is anticipated to have any sort of backlash, organizers are usually required to pay fees for security guards or police officers. In this case, four campus security officers lined the back of the lecture hall, paying close attention to the protest but allowing it to proceed.
As for Morse’s talk, her argument against gay marriage primarily revolved around protecting the child and his or her right to grow up in a home with a mother and father.
“Kids need and deserve their own parents, and same-sex marriage will enshrine into law the opposite,” she said.
She also explained how gay marriage changes the entire family structure and gender roles.
“If you’re going to redefine marriage, you’re going to redefine parenthood,” she said.
She added: “Genderless marriage is going to create genderless parenthood.”
According to her online bio, Morse is “convinced that children need relationships with their mothers and fathers and that marriage provides the most reliable way of assuring that children receive this.”
“And she came to believe that our toxic sexual culture lies at the root of our crumbling marriage culture. She is passionately dedicated to inspiring the victims of the sexual revolution to become survivors and ultimately advocates for positive change.”
College Fix reporter Austin Yack is a student at UC Santa Barbara.
Posted on: Friday, June 05, 2015
by Cabot Phillips
This article was first posted at Campus Reform on May 28, 2015.
Via Wikimedia Commons user Coolcaesar.
The University of California Santa Barbara has backed down from forcing a student group to pay extra security fees for a pro-traditional marriage event.
The Anscombe Society of the University of California, Santa Barbara hosted a lecture Tuesday by Jennifer Roback Morse titled “Same-Sex Marriage: Why Not?” which is described on a Facebook event page promoting the event as a “provocative talk on same-sex marriage and why it ought not be accepted.”
The lecture was free and open to the public. Morse is founder of the Ruth Institute, which according to the nonprofit’s website is “dedicated to lifelong married love, and healing hearts damaged by the Sexual Revolution.”
The Anscombe Society is “a student organization at UC Santa Barbara dedicated to affirming the importance of the family, marriage, and a proper understanding for the role of sex and sexuality” according to the group’s mission statement.
The university requested $128 for extra security in an email to Carlos Flores, the UCSB Anscombe Society President, six days before the event.
The email, sent by the University’s Associate Dean of Student Life and Activities, detailed how “there are students who are struggling personally with these issues that may be seeking support and be blind sided [sic] or upset by the actual content which appears to be clear opposition to the concept of gay marriage.”
The extra fee was rescinded after Alliance Defending Freedom, a nonprofit Christian legal defense organization, came to the aid of the Anscombe Society.
In a letter obtained by Campus Reform and addressed to the University’s Chief Campus Counsel as well as the Associate Dean of Student Life and Activities, the ADF called on UCSB to revoke the fees, arguing that they represented “unconstitutional content-based discrimination.”
The letter, sent by David Hacker, the senior legal counsel for the ADF, went on to argue that, “UCSB is using the unbridled discretion inherent in the Campus Regulations to impose an unconstitutional heckler’s veto.”
A heckler’s veto is a term used to describe a situation in which speech is restricted over concerns regarding the reaction to the speech.
“We are thankful that the University of Santa Barbara has removed the unconstitutional security fee and is protecting the group’s right on campus to have this lecture on a critically important cultural issue,” Hacker told Campus Reform.
Posted on: Friday, June 05, 2015
This article was first posted at Crisis Magazine on June 3, 2015.
The Conservative Media brilliantly covered my presentation of the inaugural event of the Anscombe Society at the University of California Santa Barbara. The College Fix broke the story, with an on-the-ground reporter posting within hours of the event, including a video of obnoxious protesters. We got coverage on The Blaze, on the Truth Revolt, and National Review. As great as all that attention was for the newly formed student pro-marriage club, something was missing. Yes, the protestors discredited themselves. But none of the stories mentioned that this event was a clear win: for free speech, for unpopular student clubs and most of all, for children’s rights.
Let me explain.
Prior to the talk, the University demanded extra funds from the club for “security fees” due to the “controversial” nature of my talk. Thanks to the intervention of David Hacker from the Alliance Defending Freedom, the University dropped its demand for extra fees. The fees constituted “unconstitutional content-based discrimination.”
Victory #1. The Alliance Defending Freedom got the University of California to stop its unconstitutional viewpoint discrimination.
All was calm the night of the event. But a few minutes prior to the 7 PM start time, a group of about 25 students marched into the auditorium, wearing matching t-shirts and carrying home-made signs. The fronts of their black shirts had a pink bomb on the front, with the word “queer” inside the bomb. The backs of the shirts proclaimed, “We do recruit.”
Once I was introduced, they began their political theater. College Fix editor, Jennifer Kabbany reported on National Review:
[A] crowd of students disrupted a talk on campus in support of traditional marriage with a rowdy protest that included loud chanting and crassly worded signs such as “anal is the most inclusive form of f*cking,” “there is a future in sodomy” and “God loves fags.” When the featured speaker—Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse, a former Ivy League professor and founder and president of the pro-traditional marriage nonprofit Ruth Institute—left the stage and attempted to engage the protestors in conversation, they continued shouting in her face before they angrily filed out of the lecture hall, allowing the talk to finally proceed.
This is certainly a fair description of the first five minutes of the evening. Still, something is missing. Complaining about how bad the other guys are is a defensive position. We can’t win on defense. We must go on offense. Someone, sometime, has to put some points up on the scoreboard.
In other words, we need to tell more about our side of the story. Besides talking about the protesters and their message, let’s talk about the Anscombe Society, the Ruth Institute and our message. In addition to the students who protested and left, let’s give some time and attention to the students who listened, and stayed.
My message was that the Sexual Revolution has claimed many victims, whom are almost completely invisible in our society. Many Children of Divorce have been deeply harmed by the divorce and remarriage of their parents, often feeling like leftovers from previous relationships and strangers in their own homes. I pointed out that this is a structural injustice to children. No matter how kind and well-intentioned the adults may be, it is an injustice to separate a child from his or her parents without good reason.
Genderless marriage, a second structural injustice against children, will create genderless parenting. Children in these homes will have their rights violated in many of the same ways as stepchildren. Why are we doing this, I asked? Have we really considered the full implications of having the government claim that children don’t need, and aren’t entitled to relationships with their own parents?
Victory #2: I presented the idea that children have rights, and these structural injustices violate those civil rights.
The students who stayed for the talk engaged the issues. While they were not wearing helpfully color-coded t-shirts depicting their beliefs, their questions indicated that they were all over the map. Some were deeply committed to the redefinition of marriage. Others, even members of the Anscombe Society, had questions that they were struggling with.
The students who stayed in the room, deserve a lot of credit. Thanks to their willingness to engage the issues, their willingness to step outside of their comfort zones, thanks to all of them, our evening was a model of civil discourse.
During the question period, I had the perfect opportunity to tell them so. I said, “We often hear a lot of noise around these issues, but we don’t always hear all the arguments we need to make an informed judgment. Did tonight’s lecture make you think about things you’ve never thought of before?” Many of them nodded in agreement. I continued: “And we had a group of people who literally made noise, and walked out before any discussion at all.”
The students saw the point.
Victory #3: Students from across the ideological spectrum allowed themselves to be challenged, and engaged in serious discussion about important issues.
So instead of continually looking at the videos of obnoxious protestors, let’s take a moment to look at the smiling faces of these members and friends of the Anscombe Society, taken immediately after the event. They are justly proud of themselves. They are enjoying being together. They are looking forward to taking a positive stand in favor of children’s rights to know their parents. They are ready to learn, and share what they learn.
This event at UC Santa Barbara, “Same-Sex Marriage: Why Not?” was a big win for the cause of civil discourse on campus. It was a victory for the victims and survivors of the Sexual Revolution. The upcoming Supreme Court decision will undoubtedly create more harm to more people. It is about time we acknowledged the victims and survivors of the Sexual Revolution.
And claim our victories where we can.
Posted on: Thursday, May 28, 2015
(May 27, 2015) Dr J traveled to UC Santa Barbara to speak at the Anscombe Society; she's about to give a talk called "Same-Sex Marriage: Why Not? However, all does not go as planned...
The Q&A session afterward is available for download at the Ruth Refuge.
Posted on: Friday, January 09, 2015
(January 9, 2015) Dr J is once again Todd Wilkin's guest on Issues, Etc. They're discussing GOP presidential hopeful Jeb Bush's recent statement about same-sex unions.
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