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This blog is maintained by the Ruth Institute. It provides a place for our Circle of Experts to express themselves. This is where the scholars, experts, students and followers of the Ruth Institute engage in constructive dialogue about the issues surrounding the Sexual Revolution. We discuss public policy, social practices, legal doctrines and much more.
Posted on: Wednesday, August 14, 2019
“It’s been a month since the White House conference on social media censorship and nothing has changed,” said Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse, Ph.D., founder and president of the Ruth Institute.
Twitter recently banned a video posted by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. “Twitter said the video’s ‘violent language’ violated its standards,” Dr. Morse stated. “But the threats were being directed against McConnell by activists demonstrating at his home. If social media giants like Twitter can do this to the leader of the United States Senate, imagine what they can do to ordinary pro-family groups,” Morse observed.
She cited the recent example of Google’s refusal to run ads for the movie Unplanned and Amazon’s decision to ban books about conversion therapy.“The Sexual Revolutionaries can’t answer our arguments, so they suppress, suppress, suppress,” Morse charged. “Their Big Tech allies have become Big Brother, protecting us from thoughts that disturb their regime.”
Commenting on Google’s treatment of Unplanned, Dr. Morse noted:
“This film is based on a true story, about the director of a Planned Parenthood clinic who quit after watching a sonogram of an abortion for the first time. This woman had been kept in the dark about the nature of abortion. Now Google tried to keep moviegoers in the dark about one of the first general-release films to expose Planned Parenthood.”
Dr. Morse also noted Amazon’s decision to ban books about Conversion Therapy, which offers hope to adults experiencing unwanted same-sex attraction. These include the works of the late Dr. Joseph Nicolosi, considered by many as the father of Conversion Therapy. Amazon caved to pressure from gay activists.
“For heaven’s sake, what are they afraid of?” Morse asked. “For years, we have been told no one can be harmed by a book. Unless, of course, it is a book that contains ideas they don’t like. Amazon banned books containing the testimony of people who were once gay, and who now live a different life. These people defy the ‘born that way’ article of sexual revolutionary faith. So, naturally Big Tech Brother wants to ban them.”
Morse concluded: “We invite those interested in factual analysis and the unvarnished truth to visit the Ruth Institute’s website, www.ruthinstitute.org.”
Posted on: Tuesday, August 06, 2019
by Jennifer Roback Morse July 29, 2019 at ncregister.com.
COMMENTARY: The American Library Association’s promotion of ‘Drag Queen Story Hours’ is just one example.
To which I reply, these things didn’t spring up overnight out of nowhere. Many members of the college-educated professional classes are deeply committed to these ideas. Many professional societies have become corrupted by Sexual Revolutionary ideology and captured by committed ideologues. These people have been plowing this ground for a long time.
The American Library Association is a case in point. This is the association for professional librarians, including school librarians and public librarians. The ALA is deeply committed not only to the Drag Queen Story Hour concept, but to a general advocacy of the Sexual Revolution.
Joy Pullman describes the American Library Association’s recent convention. The program included workshops with these titles: “Creating Queer-Inclusive Elementary School Library Programming,” “Developing an Online Face for a Lesbian Pulp Fiction Collection” and, of course, “Telling Stories, Expanding Boundaries: Drag Queen Storytimes in Libraries.”
The ALA annual conference’s workshop selections also included “A Child’s Room to Choose: Encouraging Gender Identity and Expression in School and Public Libraries” and “Are You Going to Tell My Parents?: The Minor’s Right to Privacy in the Library.”
Politically charged talks and workshops like these formed at least one-third of the conference offerings, according to the ALA’s own description and a review of the conference catalog.
Pullman obtained much of her information from a member of the association: “The attendee who gave me her conference catalog and mobile app access has told me of internal conflict between her public library employment and Christian faith due to the saturation of this kind of bias in the interconnected library and book publishing worlds.” The ALA actually trains its members on how to promote the Sexual Revolutionary ideology against the wishes of taxpayers and parents. “Prepare. Prepare. Prepare,” when planning events such as DQST (Drag Queen Story Time) advised deputy director for ALA Communications and Marketing, Macey Morales, at another workshop, titled “Controversial Speaker Planned for Your Library Event? Things to Consider.”
The movement to “queer the library” is not a grassroots movement. Rather, it is a well-funded campaign orchestrated by elites to recreate the world according to the fantasy ideology of the Sexual Revolution.
American Psychological Association
Meanwhile, the Society for the Psychology of Sexual Orientation and Gender Diversity, a division of the American Psychological Association (APA), recently announced that it will set up a task force that promotes awareness and inclusivity about “consensual non-monogamy.” “Non-monogamy” means multiple concurrent sexual partners. In plain English, it’s what your grandma used to call “cheating.”
The task force website’s description of it mission is beyond parody:
“The Task Force on Consensual Non-Monogamy promotes awareness and inclusivity about consensual non-monogamy and diverse expressions of intimate relationships. These include but are not limited to: people who practice polyamory, open relationships, swinging, relationship anarchy and other types of ethical, non-monogamous relationships.
“Finding love and/or sexual intimacy is a central part of most people’s life experience. However, the ability to engage in desired intimacy without social and medical stigmatization is not a liberty for all. This task force seeks to address the needs of people who practice consensual non-monogamy, including their intersecting marginalized identities.”
Please notice: the task force’s mission has absolutely nothing to say about the well-being of any children who might result from these “consensual non-monogamous” unions. Indeed, the underlying, but unspoken presumption is that there will be no children. Ever.
Mental health professionals used to believe that children deserved love and support from their parents. Now the APA is completely ignoring the impact of adult sexual behavior on children.
The APA’s position seems to be that as long as sex is consensual, no one should pass negative judgment. In the #MeToo era, we have learned just how thin a reed “consent” can be. This idea has been a recipe for abuse across many sectors of society. Do we really believe that the more financially or socially powerful person in a relationship will not pressure his partner into accepting other partners? Is the APA planning to collude with him in describing this as “consensual?”
Both the American Library Association and the American Psychological Association have been corrupted by the ideology of the Sexual Revolution. Catholic, Evangelical and Mormon members of these professions often feel marginalized and beleaguered in their vocations. These people invested many years and a lot of money to enter these occupations. Now, they fear for their jobs.
So, what can they do about it? Some professionals are organizing to combat these trends. Small but plucky groups are having an impact. Some, like the American College of Pediatricians, are making a public splash. Others, I have no doubt, are working quietly behind the scenes.
I call on members of the professions to discern what they can do to reclaim the integrity of their vocation. Retired members: You may have an important role to play. After all, they can’t fire you!
All of us can help our friends and colleagues by supporting them when they go into combat, by encouraging them, and maybe even by helping their organizations financially.
The Sexual Revolution appeals to the human desire to have unlimited, child-free, guilt-free sex. Since this desire is intrinsically disordered and cannot ever be fully satisfied, the Sexual Revolution cannot sustain itself. Experience and evidence will inevitably arise to show people that this path is a mistake. Therefore, the Sexual Revolution requires continual artificial support.
We need to stop providing such support.
Posted on: Monday, July 22, 2019
By Michael W. Chapman
This article was first published July 17, 2019, at cnsnews.com.
The American Psychological Association's (APA) decision to establish a "Consenual Non-monogamy Task Force" to promote "polyamory, open relationships" and "swinging" as normal sexual behavior was condemned by the Catholic League and the Ruth Institute, respectively, as a form of "mental breakdown" and another step in a long march "to normalize aberrant sexual behavior between adults."
"The APA is not a scientific body—it is an activist organization in service to sexual libertinism," said Bill Donohue, president of the Catholic League. "The latest APA endorsement of polygamy and swinging (and my favorite, the all-inclusive 'relationship anarchy') was announced this month as part of the APA's 'Non-Monogamy Task Force' program; it says it is promoting 'inclusivity.'"
"It has not yet endorsed bestiality (which is no doubt a tribute to the animal rights folks), but who knows what lies beyond the bend?" said Donohue. "That may be next. Isn't that what 'inclusivity' is all about?"
Ruth Institute President Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse said, "In plain English, 'non-monogamy' means multiple concurrent sexual partners, sometimes known as polyamory.... The APA’s position is that as long as sex is consensual, no judgement should be attached. In the #MeToo era, we have learned just how thin a reed 'consent' can be. This idea that individuals are entitled to whatever sex life they want, regardless of the consequences, is a basic belief of the Sexual Revolution."
"In the past half-century, this has been a recipe for disaster, as statistics on divorce, out-of-wedlock births and fatherless families show," said Morse.
Earlier this month, the American Psychological Association disclosed that it had launched the "Division 44 Consenual Non-monogamy Task Force." The purpose of the task force is to promote awareness and inclusivity about consensual non-monogamy and diverse expressions of intimate relationships," said the APA. "These include but are not limited to: people who practice polyamory, open relationships, swinging, relationship anarchy and other types of ethical non-monogamous relationships."
The APA clarifies that its goal is to make sleeping round with multiple partners in a variety of situations, i.e., swinging, acceptable. "Finding love and/or sexual intimacy is a central part of most people’s life experience," stated the APA. "However, the ability to engage in desired intimacy without social and medical stigmatization is not a liberty for all. This task force seeks to address the needs of people who practice consensual non-monogamy, including their intersecting marginalized identities.”
Back in 1973, the APA followed the lead of the American Psychiatric Assocation to declare that homosexuality was no longer a form of mental illness, although there was no new scientific evidence to back up that change. In 2009, the APA rejected the idea that homosexuals could alter their behavior through gay conversion therapy.
"Let's face it, the APA leadership is actively pushing the radical gay agenda, the goal of which is to eradicate the cultural basis of Western civilization, namely the Judeo-Christian ethos," said Donohue. "Their ideology is so entrenched that they are unable to see the psychological and social damage that is done to everyone, especially women and children, when a sexual ethic based on restraint is destroyed. And have they not learned of the body count attributed to lethal sex practices?"
"Since the 1970s, the APA helped to normalize aberrant sexual behavior between adults," said Dr. Morse, Ph.D. "No one has stopped to ask about the long-term price children have paid, and that society continues to pay. Now it’s taking that one step further, by trying to get the pubic to accept multiple sexual partners. If they succeed, children and society will pay a steep price."
Dr. Morse futher asked, “What happens when little Johnny comes home and finds Mommy in bed with a strange man? If she explains to him that the relationship is ‘consensual,’ and Daddy knows about it, will that lessen the emotional trauma? What about the rights of children? Will their consent be sought too?"
Dr. Morse’s latest book is The Sexual State: How Elite Ideologies are Destroying Lives (and how the Church was Right All Along).
Bill Donohue's latest book is Common Sense Catholicism: How to Resolve Our Cultural Crisis.
Posted on: Monday, July 22, 2019
By Jennifer Roback Morse Published on July 18, 2019, at The Stream.
The American Psychological Association recently announced that it will set up a task force. (Oh goodie!) This one will promote awareness and inclusivity about “consensual non-monogamy.” That is, multiple concurrent sexual partners, also sometimes known as polyamory. What your grandma used to call “cheating.”
Here is how the task force describes its mission. This description comes directly from the task force website, and is not a parody.
The Task Force on Consensual Non-Monogamy promotes awareness and inclusivity about consensual non-monogamy and diverse expressions of intimate relationships. These include but are not limited to: people who practice polyamory, open relationships, swinging, relationship anarchy and other types of ethical, non-monogamous relationships.
Finding love and/or sexual intimacy is a central part of most people’s life experience. However, the ability to engage in desired intimacy without social and medical stigmatization is not a liberty for all. This task force seeks to address the needs of people who practice consensual non-monogamy, including their intersecting marginalized identities.
Please notice: the task force’s mission has absolutely nothing to say about the well-being of any children. You know, who might result from these “consensual non-monogamous” unions. Indeed, the underlying, but unspoken presumption is that there will be no children. Ever.
At the Ruth Institute’s recent Summit for Survivors of the Sexual Revolution, we heard the testimony of a man whose wife left him for another man. He recounted how his daughter had formerly crawled in bed with her parents when she got scared at night. When her mom acquired a new boyfriend? The little girl no longer felt quite right about it. There was something different about crawling into bed with her mommy and her new sex partner who is not her daddy. Go figure!
I challenge the APA to consider the outcome of human sex, which (since we are mammals) is human children. Just because all three adults agree to a sexual arrangement, does that make it safe and comfortable for kids? You may swear up and down that biological ties are animalistic primal superstitions. Taboo we should all cast aside in the name of “progress” and “freedom.” But will the little girl feel the same way?
And can any honest person believe that the risk of abuse from a mother’s new love interest is the same as the risk from the child’s biological father? The members of the APA aren’t scared of statistics, are they? Well all the statistics show where the highest risk of abuse for children comes from. A mother’s boyfriend who is unrelated to the child. How much higher a risk? According to one study, twenty times higher.
I once had a young law student approach me after a talk. He told me how awful it was for him to find his mother in bed with a parade of strange men. Whether the relationship is “consensual” was not particularly important to this young man. Let’s say Dad knows about it and approves. Will that lessen the emotional trauma? Is anyone asking whether the children consent?
Maybe “stigma” is the only problem. We can re-engineer opinion so that goes away. People will no longer feel jealous of their sex partner’s other sex partners. Parents will no longer feel any preference for their own children. They will treat their own and their partners’ children interchangeably. Children will no longer care about the identity of their parents. And pigs shall fly.
We already know this is not true. While some stepfamilies get along fine, many have a tough time managing these very issues. Often these families think they are the only ones having problems. “If we were just cool enough and together enough like those people on TV, we could manage this. It must be our fault.”
Sexual revolutionaries like those in the APA seem to believe they can remake human nature. This is a fool’s errand. Even “old, outdated” studies show that we have known from the beginning. Divorce and remarriage and multi-partner fertility and cohabitation and non-marital childbearing are problematic. Why in the world would we think that “consensual non-monogamy” would be any less so? Mental health professionals used to believe that children deserved love and support from their parents. Now the APA is completely ignoring the impact of adult sexual behavior on children.
The APA’s position is that as long as sex is consensual, no one should pass negative judgement. In the #MeToo era, we have learned just how thin a reed “consent” can be. This idea has been a recipe for abuse across many sectors of society. Do we really believe that the more financially or socially powerful person in a relationship will not pressure his partner into accepting his sexual will? Including other partners? Is the APA planning to collude with him in describing this as “consensual?”
The Ruth Institute, the organization I founded, has a creed.
Every child has a right to a relationship with a natural mother and father except for an unavoidable tragedy.
Traditional Judeo-Christian sexual ethics protected these rights of children to stable relationships with their own parents. Those of us who still
hold Christian sexual ethics believe that adults should sacrifice for the sake of children, not the other way around. The APA can’t seem to
figure this out. Please people, let’s show some common sense and compassion for children.
Posted on: Wednesday, July 17, 2019
Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse, Ph.D., founder and president of the Ruth Institute, expressed grave concern over the American Psychological Association’s announcement that it will set up a task force that promotes awareness and inclusivity about consensual non-monogamy.” In plain English, “non-monogamy” means multiple concurrent sexual partners, sometimes known as polyamory.
Morse said, “The goal of mental health professionals used to be to help individuals overcome harmful tendencies. Mental health professionals used to believe that children deserved love and support from their parents. Now the APA is completely ignoring the impact of adult sexual behavior on children. Their only considerations seem to be making adults feel good about themselves and fighting ‘stigmatization.’’’
Dr. Morse added, “The APA’s position is that as long as sex is consensual, no judgement should be attached. In the #MeToo era, we have learned just how thin a reed “consent” can be. This idea that individuals are entitled to whatever sex life they want, regardless of the consequences, is a basic belief of the Sexual Revolution. In the past half-century, this has been a recipe for disaster, as statistics on divorce, out-of-wedlock births and fatherless families show.”
The Ruth Institute affirms that: “Every child has a right to a relationship with their natural mother and father except for in an unavoidable tragedy.” Traditional Judeo-Christian sexual ethics protected the rights of children to stable relationships with their own parents.
Morse asked, “What happens when little Johnny comes home and finds Mommy in bed with a strange man? If she explains to him that the relationship is ‘consensual,’ and Daddy knows about it, will that lessen the emotional trauma? What about the rights of children? Will their consent be sought too?
When little Susie is scared at night and wants to get in bed with Mommy, will it really be ok for her to get in bed with Mommy’s partner who isn’t her Daddy? Please people, let’s show some common sense and compassion for children.”
Since the 1970s, the APA helped to normalize aberrant sexual behavior between adults. No one has stopped to ask about the long-term price children have paid, and that society continues to pay. Now it’s taking that one step further, by trying to get the public to accept multiple sexual partners. If they succeed, children and society will pay a steep price.
Dr. Morse’s latest book is “The Sexual State: How Elite Ideologies are Destroying Lives (and how the Church was Right All Along).”
For more information on the Ruth Institute http://www.ruthinstitute.org/
To schedule an interview with Dr. Morse email@example.com
Posted on: Thursday, July 11, 2019
“The Sexual Revolution says we’re all entitled to sex. But who actually believes such a thing? The rapist, that’s who!” Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse, President of the Ruth Institute.
Ruth Institute Founder and President Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse Ph.D. said that Jeffrey Epstein, Harvey Weinstein and former Cardinal Theodore McCarrick were all enabled by society’s acceptance of the ideology of the sexual revolution.
Writing in the July 10th National Catholic Register, Morse noted that all three were aided by “a belief system that claims that sex is an entitlement. They operated according to the tenets of the most powerful ideology in the world: the ideology of the sexual revolution.”
Morse urged us to reject the rationalization that, “The rich and powerful have always been able to buy their way out of problems.”
Yes, wealth, fame and power aided predators like Epstein. But the tenets of the sexual revolution softened up their victims. These tenets include: Sex is no more than a physical act. What are you ashamed of? And everyone is entitled to do whatever they can get away with.
“This toxic belief system is destroying individual lives and leading to social chaos,” Morse observed.
The Ruth Institute opposes this with “The Catholic belief system which tells us no one is entitled to sex. Children are entitled to a relationship with both of their parents. Women and men are entitled to the love and loyalty of their spouses.”
“Our belief system of traditional Christian sexual ethics has made us Public Enemy No. 1 of the sexual revolutionaries,” Morse added.
The Ruth Institute works to empower survivors of the sexual revolution – including victims of divorce, abuse and the LGBT culture. In April, the Institute held the first-ever Survivors’ Summit in Lake Charles, LA.
The Institute has been particularly effective in researching the crisis of clerical sex abuse, with its reports on homosexuality and the priesthood being cited around the world. In a June 10 story, The Washington Post quoted Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano on the importance of the Institute’s research.
Since the beginning of 2019, Dr. Morse has addressed leaders and activists at the Family Research Council and been interviewed on the Mike Huckabee Show on TBN and “The World Over” with Raymond Arroyo on EWTN.
For more information on the Ruth Institute http://www.ruthinstitute.org/
To schedule an interview with Dr. Morse firstname.lastname@example.org
Posted on: Thursday, July 11, 2019
This article was first published July 10, 2019, at National Catholic Register.
Jeffrey Epstein, Harvey Weinstein and Theodore McCarrick operate(d) in different sectors of society, have different marital statuses and sexual preferences and profess different religions. What do these disparate men have in common? A belief system that claims that sex is an entitlement. They operate according to the tenets of the most powerful ideology currently at work in the world: the ideology of the sexual revolution.
Epstein, the millionaire financier and admitted sex offender who pleaded not guilty July 9 to charges of sexual trafficking, allegedly got away with sickening crimes for a long time. But it would be a serious mistake to succumb to cynicism. “What do you expect? Wealthy guys like him have always gotten to do what they want. It is not fair to blame the sexual revolution for their abuses.”
That is, at best, a partial truth. The rich and powerful have always been able to buy their way out of problems that would crush an ordinary person. But the widespread acceptance of the sexual revolutionary ideology smooths their path. To an unprecedented extent, the reigning secular religion of our time enables sexual abuse, disarms victims and empowers predators.
“You don’t want to be a prude, do you?”
“You want to be ‘sex positive,’ don’t you?”
“Sex is nothing to feel guilty about.”
“You just have to take off your clothes and let him look at you. It is nothing be ashamed of.” (That’s one of Epstein’s contributions to the pick-up-line genre.)
“You were born this way.”
“God made you gay.”
Of course, the rich and powerful have always been able make promises to entice a sex partner into giving “consent.”
Hollywood mogul Weinstein promised his victims that he’d make them stars. Epstein offered modeling careers. McCarrick promised advancement in the Church. The sexual revolutionary ideology provides the predator added advantages, including aborting unwanted pregnancy and undermining nosy neighbors and other witnesses.
Epstein’s alleged network spanned the globe. It must have been supported and propped up by numerous people, some who actively participated and benefited. Others looked the other way, such as the superintendent of the apartment building where he housed his teenage “models” and the “modeling agency” staff and the pilots who flew his private jets that were fully decked out for his orgies.
The sexual revolution conveys the unmistakable message that everyone is entitled to do whatever they can get away with. Prosecutors say Epstein has three active U.S. passports and owns multiple jets and houses around the world, including his own private island. Witnesses and victims feared Epstein’s retaliation and blackmail. This is a man who appears to get away with a lot.
This ideology relieves people of nagging consciences. Epstein’s conscience is malformed, to put it mildly.
In 2011, he told the New York Post, “I’m not a sexual predator; I’m an ‘offender.’ It’s the difference between a murderer and a person who steals a bagel.” He once allegedly received three 12-year-old girls as a birthday present. He doesn’t need an ideology that justifies or excuses his actions.
However, the sexual revolutionary ideology weakens the already vulnerable. The Miami Herald’s investigative report into Epstein’s activities showed:
Most of the girls came from disadvantaged families, single-parent homes or foster care. Some had experienced troubles that belied their ages: They had parents and friends who committed suicide; mothers abused by husbands and boyfriends; fathers who molested and beat them. One girl had watched her stepfather strangle her 8-year-old stepbrother.
One of Epstein’s victims who was 14 when she was first recruited said, “We were stupid, poor children. We just wanted money for school clothes, for shoes. I remember wearing shoes too tight for three years in a row. We had no family and no guidance.”
Yes, rich and powerful men love this concept that sex is an entitlement.
The magisterium of the Catholic Church stands in direct opposition to the sexual revolution. The secular #MeToo movement is trying to combat sexual abuse. But the movement’s advocates do not seem to want to surrender the intellectual framework that enables it. They seem to be counting on a combination of legal action and periodic public shaming to stop predatory behavior. I believe this will never be enough. The power imbalances are too many and too severe.
The Catholic belief system tells us no one is entitled to sex. Children are entitled to a relationship with both of their parents. Women and men are entitled to the love and loyalty of their spouses.
Every human person is entitled to be born as the result of an act of love between their mother and father. This act of love is an icon of the love of God and that God’s love is the ultimate source of everything that exists. All of Catholicism’s caveats (for which we are ridiculed) are aimed at protecting these positive values.
Yes, our belief system makes us Public Enemy No. 1 of the sexual revolutionaries. We are a big problem for those who believe they are entitled to unlimited child-free, problem-free, guilt-free sex. Not only do we tell them they are wrong, but also our belief system equalizes people. The poorest girl from an unknown family is encouraged and supported in refusing sex to any man of any station, in the same way a daughter of a billionaire would be encouraged likewise.
Faithful Catholics despise clerical sex abusers not only for their crimes, which are bad enough. We hold them in contempt because they disgrace the one philosophical system that has a prayer of finally combating this toxic ideological soup in which we are all swimming.
The Epstein Network, surrounded by enablers or those who turned a blind eye, sounds all too much like the network of clergy abusers. Society does not yet have a full accounting of either system. As faithful Catholics, we want the same kind of reckoning for both kinds of abuse. We want a full investigation of both Epstein and clerical abusers. We want punishment for the guilty and restitution for the victims. We want protection for the innocent and the whistle blowers.
Be not afraid, believers! We are on the right side of history on this issue.
Posted on: Tuesday, July 09, 2019
By Paula Adamick
Posted on: Tuesday, June 04, 2019
by Rev. Ben Johnson
This article was first published February 8, 2019, at Acton.org.
The Sexual State: How Elite Ideologies Are Destroying Lives and Why The Church Was Right All Along
Jennifer Roback Morse, Ph.D.
TAN Books, 2018. 406 pages.
Reviewed by Rev. Ben Johnson
Keen-eyed analysts have probed every ideological trend threatening liberty – from socialism and fascism to the Alt-Right – with one glaring exception: the revolt against personal responsibility. Jennifer Roback Morse, the founder of the Ruth Institute, capably fills this void in The Sexual State. Building on her previous book Love and Economics, Morse summarizes the sexual revolution in just a few propositions: It separates children from sexual activity and marriage, and eradicates all differences between men and women. This apparent personal freedom expands government by creating new avenues for regulation, increasing the need for means-tested welfare programs, and breaking down the “little society of the family.”
No public program can care for children as fully, selflessly, or naturally as two parents in a lifelong, committed union. From a social standpoint, Morse writes, the genius of marriage as a social institution is that its “extremely minimal legal structure” creates “a largely self-regulating, voluntary system of long-term cooperation between parents.”
Thus, we should not be surprised to learn that totalitarians of all stripes have sought to control the family. Inside the family, people develop loyalties to real people, not the Dear Leader. They develop habits that may not further the interests of the totalitarian State, with its all-embracing designs on every person. Inside the family, people may commit to ideas other than the state-sanctioned ideology.
The new ideology co-opted Marxism’s dialectic of inevitability, now known as standing on “the right side of history.” However, this ideology finds advocates across the political spectrum.
Certain factions of the liberty movement embrace the Liberationist Narrative – something she calls “the Walmart theory of sex” – which celebrates changes to family life for giving us greater choice and agency. “Under a no-fault legal regime, we are freer on the front end” of a divorce or paternity settlement, Morse writes. “But we are less free on the back end, as the State steps in to manage the consequences.” Divorce courts dictate the time and money parents spend on their children, the language spoken in the home, even such mundane decisions as a child’s prom dress. This degree of intrusion into an intact family would be “unthinkable.”
Family breakdown, whether through divorce or illegitimacy, strongly harms children and beckons the government to fill the void left by absent parents. “Increases in the likelihood of poverty, physical illness, mental illness, poor school performance, and crime have all been associated with being separated from a parent,” Morse writes. This elevated risk persists even in nations as committed to egalitarianism and progressive social values as Sweden. Such pathologies usher children into the welfare system where, once inside, a matrix of laws holds them in place. Medicaid, SNAP, TANF, and WIC eligibility guidelines disfavor marriage. The cost of family breakdown to the U.S. government alone totals an estimated $100 to $112 billion, Morse notes, adding that studies show the same phenomenon increases welfare spending in New Zealand, the UK, and Canada. “The ordinary tax-paying citizen faces a greater tax burden than otherwise would be the case as a direct result of what, by the Liberationist Narrative, is an increase in sexual freedom,” Morse writes.
Similarly, gender ideology “creates a separation between children and their parents and inserts the State between them,” as the “State sets itself up as the public enforcer of their new identities.” In Minnesota, a school district facilitated a minor’s gender transition without parental notification. Laws now police the permissible use of pronouns.
“Civil libertarians, fiscal conservatives, and open-minded liberals should all be troubled by the actual results as opposed to the supposed benefits of this ‘freedom,’” Morse writes.
References to “class warfare” and “class analysis” may lead some reviewers to caricature the book as a rejection of a free society. Nothing could be further from the truth. Morse, who highlights her “affiliations with all three of the major schools of free market economics,” ascribes changed cultural mores to excusing the libidinous excesses of “the managerial elite”: the nexus of academics, lobbyists, government bureaucrats, thought leaders, and mass media sharing the same narrative. Yet she defines the term by noting:
The managerial class goes beyond the purely class designation in this respect: it’s built upon the idea that society is something that needs to be managed. … Seldom have the privileged classes taken it upon themselves to “nudge” their neighbors and fellow citizens about their eating habits, sex lives, spending habits, personal safety, and even their thoughts. …
Legal historian Joseph Dellapenna observes that the rise of the managerial class was not unique to the United States in the twentieth century. “The managerial class rose to dominance in the U.S. with the New Deal in the 1930s, and has continued to dominate ever since. … Evidence of the transition to social domination by a managerial class can be traced back to the nineteenth century, particularly in England. Nor was this transition limited to western or capitalist nations. In a real sense, the rise of Communism and Socialism was nothing more or (less) than a rise of the managerial class.”
“Ponder that last sentence for a while,” Morse writes.
Somehow, an a historical breed of Christian – especially Roman Catholic – intellectual believes he will capture, sanctify, and redirect the vast apparatus of the State toward theologically approved ends. Assuming an entrenched bureaucracy will simply acknowledge defeat and implement an opposing viewpoint seems naïve, albeit less so than the notion that the State’s coercive power will forever remain in holy hands. Revolutionaries yearn to control the levers of power more than those who believe in natural law, if only because the State need not compel actions that occur naturally.
Morse roots her hope for the future in nature and culture. An entire chapter defends the notion that differences between men and women are real, biologically based, and ineradicable. Each section ends by presenting the relevant Catholic teaching, which she describes as “the common heritage of all Christians.” And she remembers the victims of the sexual revolution in each chapter, showing the very real toll that comes from shunning self-restraint and refusing to deny instant and perpetual gratification. True liberty rests on the foundation of personal responsibility or sinks into the quicksand of the paternal state.
Morse concludes with a 15-point “Manifesto for the Family,” two-thirds of which consists of asking the government to “stop doing things it never had any business doing in the first place.” Virtually unique in political literature, her last three proposals can be adopted only by individuals. Building a “civilization of love” literally begins in each human heart. That private sanctuary, the link between the individual conscience and the fiery flame of divine love, kept the spark of civilization alive after the barbarian sack of Rome, times of plague and pestilence, and through the dark night of atheistic Communism. That flame can outshine the strange fires of fallen passions and realign society according to its light again.
Posted on: Monday, May 13, 2019
Let's mobilize the Victims and Survivors of the Sexual Revolution into a force for social change.
By Jennifer Roback Morse Published on April 22, 2019, at The Stream.
The Conservative-Christian-Catholic hopefulness, even triumphalism, expressed by George Weigel and the late Michael Novak and Richard John Neuhaus, in the 1990’s has evaporated. Couched as a critique of these famous “neo-cons,” Wolfgang’s real point was “Man, we’ve got a mess on our hands. None of our Smart Guys has a clue what to do.”
I sympathize. I’ve been thinking about it too. I do have a plan. It goes like this.
Social conservatives of all religious backgrounds agree: The Sexual Revolution has been a disaster. Millions of people have been harmed. The solution? Organize the Victims and Survivors of the Sexual Revolution into a force for social change.
Let’s do a tally of just a few groups:
Now, you may feel overwhelmed by this list. I look at it and see a potential constituency.
Look at how the post-abortive woman has become a game-changer for the pro-life movement. In the rhetoric of the Sexual Revolution, these women don’t exist. Abortion is no more traumatic or dangerous than pulling a tooth. Yet, we have known since 1990 that 10 percent to 30 percent of women experience regrets over their abortions.* The claim that abortion is a harmless procedure that solves women’s problems is not so convincing when looking out over a sea of “I regret my abortion” signs.
What if you could get 10 percent of those 45 million adult children of divorce all marching in the same direction? Heck, what if you got 1 percent? A social movement with 450,000 committed activists would be a force to be reckoned with. Add in the abandoned spouses, and the women whose contraception failed them or hurt them, add in the people whose cohabitation experience soured, that is a lot of upset people.
So, here’s the plan. Go all in. Talk about all the social issues, not just the gay parts. We need to tell the truths no one else will tell. Guilt-free, problem-free, attachment-free sexual activity is an illusion, not an entitlement. Men and women are different. The sex differences expressed in the human body are significant and not to be tampered with.
Most of all, children need their parents. Children have a right to know their genetic identity and cultural heritage. They have a right to the love and support of their parents, unless some unavoidable tragedy prevents it. These needs of children place legitimate demands on adult society. The sexual culture created by traditional Christian sexual ethics protected those rights. The Sexual Revolutionary culture denies that kids have these rights.
This plan also allows us to sidestep the whole “wrong side of history” business. We can say, “history will show that your revolution harmed people.” We don’t have to be defensive about our religious beliefs either. “History will show that only the people of faith had the sense to realize that something was wrong and had the courage to speak out against it.”
The millions of people who have been harmed by our sexual culture, propped up by the Sexual State, can be a formidable power. But we have to help them connect the dots between the problems they face and the toxic cultural soup we are all swimming in.
The Church should have done this long ago. The Church should have taken a stand against no-fault divorce, sexual propaganda in the schools, and all the rest of the poison. As Catholics, Peter, you and I have our suspicions about why so few of our clergy opened their mouths: They have sexual “issues” of their own. Some of them were/are secret or not-so-secret participants in the sexual revolution themselves.
The Conservative Chattering Class is mostly clueless on social issues. They’d rather talk about the Free Market or the American Founding or anything but Divisive Social Issues. Some of our Catholic intellectuals, the contemporary equivalent of Weigel-Novak-Neuhaus, have good ideas and sound instincts. But eventually, somebody has to get out of the office and talk to ordinary people. Professional Smart Guys tend not to do this.
Don’t get me wrong: We need college professors and policy wonks and think tank guys and media commentators. But at the end of the day, somebody has to step away from the desk, roll up their sleeves and engage the wide swath of the public that doesn’t read First Things.
That leaves people like us, Peter. You have the organizing skills, the people skills, the political instincts. You just need a bigger team, a bigger microphone, and a better plan.
Oh, we do need one more thing: a spine. We need to be willing to have people call us names and be mean. But you and I are already used to that, right Peter?
So, what are we waiting for? Let’s get this done. The Survivors of the Sexual Revolution deserve a voice. And when they find it, the political and social landscape will never be the same.