Rotten to the Core: Obama’s “First Time” Video and the Democratic Party

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By now everyone paying attention to the presidential race has heard of the tasteless double-entendre ad the Obama campaign has put out, comparing voting for the President to losing your virginity.  I am trying—I am failing—to imagine the astonishment if someone had suggested the like to the leaders of the Democratic party of my youth and my father’s youth.  Those men loved their country, even if their policies have led to the leviathan that now buys our submission with our own money.  There was something else besides patriotism that united men like Stevenson, Humphrey, Muskie, Scoop Jackson, McGovern, Shriver, Nunn, and Bradley.  They were men, and they understood that there are things a man does not stoop to do.

Plenty of people have noted the contempt for women that lies just beneath the sniggering ad, the supposition that women are ditzy dames who vote for dame-issues, which is another term for baby-making without baby-making.  What they are missing is the callous disregard for a group of people most devastated by the sexual revolution.

When President Obama came to office, he had the good wishes of an overwhelming majority of his countrymen.  His party controlled both houses of Congress.  He marked a turning point in the nation’s troubled history of race relations.  He had a free hand.

Nixon went to China when a McGovern could not have gone, because everyone was certain of Nixon’s hatred of communism, but not so certain of McGovern’s.  President Obama could have led a renewal of marriage among poor Americans generally and among blacks in particular, and who would have held it against him?  Not the Christians, certainly, who would have been gratified and surprised to find, in this regard, an ally in the White House.  Not blacks themselves, because they looked to him as their leader.  Not the media, who would have found themselves caught in the pincers.  President Obama could have led the moral rally that Bill Cosby has for so long wanted to lead.  He could have said, “There’s a reason why God included adultery among the things forbidden in the Ten Commandments!”  He could have said, “I wasn’t virtuous either when I was young, but I now see that that was wrong.  Fornication is not a sport.  You should marry before you do what brings children into the world.”

He could have reached out to evangelicals, of whatever race, to promote the virtue of chastity.  He could have roused the sluggardly mass media from its stupor and forced them to acknowledge how children suffer when they do not grow up with a married mother and father.  He could have visited prisons and interviewed the men about the homes where they grew up.  He did none of these things.  Instead he acted so as to inscribe the sexual revolution in granite, as a new Ten Commandments from on high.  In generations to come, this colossal cultural failure, this tremendous opportunity squandered, may loom larger than his economic failure.

When he and his people agreed to this repugnant ad, they said, “You, boy, growing up without a father, to hell with you.  We want your vote, and we’ll arrest you if you hold up a gas station, but otherwise you can go hang.”  They said, “You, girl, looking for somebody to marry and finding nobody because there aren’t that many decent men around anymore, to hell with you.  We want your vote, and we’ll burn the Constitution to provide you with artificial estrogen, and we’ll throw you a party when you give up, when you get pregnant without marriage, but as for the real loss you and your children will incur from the cultural disarray, that’s your lookout and not ours.  Besides, who needs a husband anyway?”  They said, “You, people of faith, trying desperately to keep the moral sewage out of your homes, out of your children’s lives, fighting the television and the school textbooks and the internet at once, you can go to hell.  Who cares if your children capitulate?”

Every citizen who still holds to the truth long neglected or scorned, that sex is for marriage, and children should grow up with a mother and a father, should pay heed.  We may disagree about this or that economic policy.  That is no exact science, and unforeseen events may save a bad strategy or frustrate a good one.  But no believing Christian (or Jew, or Muslim) can justify so antisocial and vicious an ad.  The people who conceived it are not on the road to corruption.  They must already have rotted all the way through.

Anthony Esolen

By

Professor Esolen teaches Renaissance English Literature and the Development of Western Civilization at Providence College. He is a senior editor for Touchstone: A Journal of Mere Christianity, and a regular contributor to Crisis Magazine. His most recent books are The Politically Incorrect Guide to Western Civilization (Regnery Press, 2008); Ten Ways to Destroy the Imagination of Your Child (ISI Press, 2010) and, most recently, Reflections on the Christian Life (Sophia Institute Press, 2013). Professor Esolen has also translated Dante.

  • cloonfush

    Good piece.

  • ahcreative

    Amen

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  • Ford Oxaal

    Obama may as well be groping your children with this ad, and if we the people vote for this vicious animal, we deserve what we get. I’d be embarassed for Obama, but now I think he is just evil.

  • David

    Great piece, but I quibble with this comment: “What they [the makers of the ad] are missing is the callous disregard for a group of people [women] most devastated by the sexual revolution.” No matter what the situation may be, wherever both sexes are affected, it is always and everywhere assumed that the greatest victims are women. Mr. Esolen’s above remark is hard for me to stomach as a 26 year old man. I have lived my whole life in a culture that is obsessed with women. Women and their concerns dominate our culture in every respect – education, academia, the workplace, government, media, politics, etc. My concerns certainly have never gotten any airtime. I don’t have the requisite genitalia, so I don’t make the cut. On the contrary, my genitalia condemn me: numerous are the times I’ve been blasted, either directly or indirectly, for not being what my elders think I ought to be – ‘be a man’, etc. This is usually said by people, again directly or indirectly, who know nothing about me, or, if they are generalizing, about the men in general whom they are criticizing. It’s hard to communicate just how galling and outrageous this is, at least to me. It’s as though we young men are something who exist outside the whole trajectory of our social history of the last sixty years: somehow, although everything else has changed, young men were supposed to remain exactly as they were sixty years ago. We are imagined to be impermeable, immutable, and utterly independent, needing nothing from the world around us. And yet in reality men, like all human beings, are both responsible for their own behavior and dependent upon their environment for assistance in being what they ought to be. These people who say (or assume, really) I’m not ‘decent’ enough to marry – where were they when no-fault divorce laws were enacted, making it easy for my father to leave when I was a boy? Where were they when I was being taught all through my formative years that I was inherently oppressive and tyrannical, by virtue of my maleness? Who defended me then? Where were those people when same-sex associations, which once helped young men to mature in the presence of male peers and older men, were being torn apart by feminist lawyers? What have those people done to defend, support, and promote a strong, healthy male culture? Coming back to Mr. Esolen’s comment – after all this, I’m supposed to believe that women are the greatest victims of the sexual revolution – women, who were and are its greatest proponents. Give me a break. They are nothing but the beneficiaries of endless public concern, while my own sex has stood in the background, villainized, put down, blamed, and misrepresented. I’m a bit sick of hearing how victimized women are. Why don’t we men get some airtime now? I think the discussion could use some balance.

    • Adriana

      There’s a book called “Future Men: Raising Boys to Fight Giants” by Douglas Wilson that’s awesome. I love Dougals Wilson because he is a Christian writer that has excellent things to say to boys and men. I have two sons and I also see how much boys are neglected :( God has called men to be His warriors and to be the Glory of God!

      • Ford Oxaal

        A woman in our area organized a father/son retreat at the Divine Mercy Shrine in Massachussetts, and it was fantastic — a great idea, and the start of some lasting friendships.

    • pleasethink

      This is a little mixed up and once one enters a tirade, it gets unbalanced. The women who are used as ‘front men’ for the sexual revolution were either socialists or coached by socialists.That surely doesn’t taint all women. Many communist victims say that when their country was taken over, the sexual mores were the first item on the agenda; forcibly changing that is. All morality out the window and abortion and contraception readily available. This is not a woman vs man issue. In this country we have ALL been hurt by feminist lawyers, feminist educators that created scummy textbooks and courses (that’s why I homeschooled) including us females who are traditional and just trying to raise children free of the scum that is floating everywhere. I don’t raise my sons as though they are immutable and impermeable…I also don’t raise them to whine. That is not a building or problem-solving behavior. They are responsible as are their sisters to simply do their best in any given environment. Maybe it helped that we were never financially ahead, because they know they need to work hard to be on whatever path they choose. None of them have victim attitudes, even though at times they have all experienced the down side of someone else getting preferential treatment.( At work and in university) It will happen to you no matter what kind of work place or college you choose. It’s life. It’s better to be able to move on and see the good things around you, learn to be grateful and not develop a resentful soul. There is always something to be grateful about…

      • David

        My comment is not mixd up or unbalanced at all, if you keep in mind that women are, in fact, a constant subject in this society, while men are not. And usually the subject of discussion is how women in one way or another are adversely affected by this, that, or the other thing. The total one-sidedness of the public discussion is what is unbalanced.

        Your comment comes across as haughty and condescending. Good for you and your children for being hard workers who never complain (despite your complaining here about my comment) and who always do your best. I’m glad for you. Your assumptions about me, however, are completely unfounded and amount to a weak attempt at character assassination. I did not come from a well-to-do family as you imply. I came from a lower middle class family. I work, I bought my own car and pay the loan on it, I pay my student loans, I pay my own rent, etc. I do not complain about having to do any of these things any more than I think I’m special for having done them. Like your children, I also do the best I can with what I’ve got. So please, for the love of God, come down from your high horse.

        Women most certainly are the foremost proponents of the sexual revolution. It is because women are an identifiable voting bloc, having identifiable, aggregate political positions, that Romney and Obama had to say so much about contraception and abortion during the debates. All women? No, of course not. But my point was that to pretend that the sexual revolution and everything that followed after were all things that just somehow ‘happened’ to women, almost against their will, so that we can think of them here as everywhere else as victims, is dishonest. The reality is that women are the sexual revolution’s foremost defenders. If you can’t see this, it’s only because you don’t want to. This is not the same as saying that you yourself want contraception to be free and abortion to be available on demand.

        As for your calling my comment ‘whiny’ – well, too bad. I am a part of this society. I have a stake in the way things go, not only as a generic human being, but also as a man. It’s not long before the ‘grin and bear it’ mentality you would have me assume to myself slips from noble to cowardly. Some things need to be said and it is time for us to say them.

        • NAME

          Dude, …First of all be nice to Pleasethink.

          She is a Godfearing woman and should therefore be treated well.

          Secondly: Whatever the feminists tell you to do, just do the exact oposite.

          Its as simple as that. Find a virgin and marry her, and keep her in THE KITCHEN. If you dont go to bed with no modern liberal whore, you wont wake up with no modern liberal whore.

          Be nice to decent, Godfearing girls like Pleasethink – but always tell the rest to go to Hell and burn. Never show any respect for modernists.

          And throw the TV out the Goddamned window

          Thirdly: Do not provoke my anger.

          • David

            Do not provoke your anger…? What are you going to do, say mean things to me? I hope you’re joking.

            Pleasethink does not come across as a nice, godfearing women in her post. She comes across as disingenuous, manipulative, and coldhearted.

            • Ford Oxaal

              She comes across somewhat as a mother giving advice to a son.

              • David

                It’s a farce, Ford Oxaal. I’ve been in these discussions many times. Women are always the first to tell men to stop talking (followed closely by men), and they always find apparently nice ways to do it. The mother shtick is a useful cover in that regard. Here it only masks indifference. As I said above, her comment is basically a thinly veiled character assassination, an extended ad hominem attack. She did not in any way address what I actually said. One can reasonably conclude this is because she simply doesn’t care. Fair enough if she feels that way but she should just say so: “Shut up, I don’t care.” Almost everyone has this antipathy to a man speaking as I did. In the final analysis, this is because our society does not actually want men to do well, despite all the protestations to the contrary. Men cannot do well as long as we deny that they have needs as men. This is an uncomfortable fact for us to face, but it’s not a fact anyone could reasonably deny. Further, whether or not anyone likes to hear men complaining, the fact is that legitimate grievances need to be redressed. Men in this society have been wronged, and we should have no shame saying so. It is part and parcel of resolving the problem, which is systemic.

                • Ford Oxaal

                  So what’s the game plan?

                  • David

                    My suggestions? Well, reverting back to fault divorce would be a great start. Continuing the increase in ‘alternative’ educational systems, e.g., homeschooling. Boycotting television and radio. Increasing the number of unisex environments, particularly middle schools and high schools. Of course, outlawing abortion and contraception, although that’s a distant dream at this point. (I believe if we could win those two victories in particular so much of the culture would fall back into place.) Obviously, most of these items will be difficult or almost impossible to achieve at this point. So I think we should also strive, as much as possible, to create alternative, ‘underground’ communities that are not dominated and suffocated by the state and elite ideological agendas.

                    Men in particular should not be as silent as they are today. On occasion I’ve come across hints that men have a lot to say about the way things are going, but they can scarcely be heard to speak as men in particular – at least, they won’t say anything that is politically incorrect. That needs to change. Men need to learn to be unabashedly offensive in their speech (offensive from the point of view of radical egalitarians). We need to be vocal on every platform that is available to us. We need to reclaim our own thoughts, hearts, and minds. Talk might not sound like much but I believe it could lead to change. Much would change if men would challenge the culture instead of constantly backing down from it.

                    • Ford Oxaal

                      Sign me up. A Catholic marriage contract should be available under the law. I would not get married for a long time. Every woman I dated had this weird prejudice against the male of the species, and I would not be surprised if abortion is a huge part of that, as in they had one. The percentage of women who suffer everytime the birthday of the baby that did not make it comes around is crazy. I finally got lucky and met a woman with a Catholic backbone of steel, a mind of clarity, and a heart of gold. Well, maybe St. Jude had something to do with it. I adopted the child she refused to abort at her former “boyfriend’s” behest. (Instead of an abortion, she got over her broken heart and successfully sued him for birth expenses.) We had four more, and have four grandchildren already as well. My adopted daughter married a guy with 100 first cousins and has the four little ones so far. Catholic Darwinism. Be afraid.

                    • David

                      A Catholic marriage contract… what a great idea. Can that be done??

                      Thanks for sharing your story of victory. Catholic Darwinism indeed! Liberalism is a suicidal ideology. Be very afraid!

                    • Ford Oxaal

                      Would take legislation, and a bench that actually enforced black letter law instead of going off into the weeds at every available opportunity. So marriage in the civil arena really has all downside risk for the guy, in my opinion. But over time, we need a personhood amendment, and a marriage amendment. Marriage should be available in a civil society. It’s not.

        • Andrew K.

          David, as a 20-something man and a recent college grad, I completely share your feelings. I did most of my studies in the humanities and literature, and I was made to feel like I should apologize for being a man. Feminism and the sexual revolution have completely screwed men over. It has also messed up relations between men and women, and hence destroyed the family. Women are now made to feel that raising kids is something that just gets in the way of a career. When the reality is just the opposite, raising kids is the most important thing a mother can do. I wish more people could understand what you clearly see is going on in our society.

          • David

            Liberal arts programs in most universities are de facto castration programs.

        • Tout

          After reading a long argument, I often wonder; is the person ‘for’ or ‘against’. When possible, I prefer a clear ‘yes’ or ‘no’

      • David

        “Shut up and go away,” pleasethink says, as she mounts her high horse to tell me how fantastic she and her children are.

        No, I will not shut up, and I will not go away. I’m sorry that your sons lack the courage to speak as men, and not merely as generic human beings whose very minds are circumscribed by their mother’s intolerance to the full range of reality.

    • NAME

      Dude, if that is what you are, first of all you need to stop whining like a woman, man up, and send your wife back to the kitchen if were she belongs. It is as simple as that.

      Your sobbing is an embarrasment to all Men.

      Secondly, you need stop taking women seriously.
      Women bitch and complain all day long and that is what they have been doing always.

      Just slap them on the butt and cheer up. You are above them and will always be.

      Seriously Dude.

      • David

        Thanks, Og. By the way, how’s it going with the the sticks and flint? Any luck yet?

  • David

    President Barack Obama presents himself in this ad campaign as the lover of every ‘right-minded’ young woman.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Tony-Esolen/1184164082 Tony Esolen

    To David below: I agree with what you say. You’ll notice that I did not write that women have suffered worst from the sexual revolution. I’d hoped that people would have drawn the conclusion that the poor — the working class — have suffered the worst. But you are right. People who should know better complain that young men aren’t up to snuff. Well, people, what the heck have you done to the institutions that used to make decent men out of boys? What’s left? The always-attacked Boy Scouts? What else? Crickets ….

    • David

      Thanks, Mr. Esolen. I misunderstood your comment. The working classes are definitely the worst affected by elite idiocy.

  • poetcomic1

    Now this and before it the women dressed up as pink rubber ‘female parts’ protesting the Republican ‘War on Women’… what is encouraging is their cluelessness about how offensive they are, even to their own feminists!

  • poetcomic1

    Now this and before it the women dressed up as pink rubber ‘female parts’ protesting the Republican ‘War on Women’… what is encouraging is their cluelessness about how offensive they are, even to their own feminists!

  • Peadar Ban

    I did not like him then, and I do not like him now. I like him not at all. He is not a good man. He is an empty man. A hollow man rotten to the core, skin stretched tight over an empty skull, soul dead, a well dressed automaton. a sounding drum. He has bowed down before the prince of this world and been emptied, carried away. What he was burns already, everlastingly. He is dead and cold and all things bad.

    • http://twitter.com/zoecarnate Mike Morrell

      ROFL! Melodrama much?

  • Ford Oxaal

    Obama could have done all those wonderful things, but he didn’t, because the concept of chastity as an essential ingredient for a happy culture is alien to him, even though he has children of his own. He may suffer from a massively deformed conscience with no concept of innocence, but objectively, on the face of it, he is a force for evil — a force against innocence itself. Obama is selling sexual promiscuity as a civil right — right in your face — for every kid with a handheld to see. I see that as a frontal assault on my family, my young nieces and nephews, my grandkids, etc. But it is an honest ad — this is where he wants to go. If America buys into that, there may be no return.

  • Indeed

    Precisely correct, Tony.

    Kudos to you.

  • http://www.facebook.com/thomas.coleman.146 Thomas Coleman

    Sexual nihilism is not only a common but an essetial element of revolutionary thinking. Iit is aimed at upsetting the whole order of human existence as set up by the Creator. Mmarx and his fellow demoniac Engles regarded marriage as the the Fall of Man and actually believed that prior to that Original Sin people enjoyed lives of conugal anarachy. revolutinaries know that by spitting at the most sacred of insitutions they can nearly obliterate among men the very sense of sacredness itself, and they believe and fhat by denying the order of thing as ordained by God they can make gods of themselves. How can anyone who knows what the Almighty ahs ordained not see what evil these ptitful slaves of Satan are scheming?. .

  • Bill

    The second to last paragraph is the most absurd of this overwrought piece. Let’s get back to reality, folks! Obama has been an excellent role model as a husband and father. To suggest he and “his people” want the poor “to go to hell” or that they’d “throw a party” if a woman has a child out of wedlock is plain histrionic. He wants the poor to have health care. He wants to provide children with stability, structure, and good education. He wants to stop the increasing bifurcation between rich and poor, which can only be done by a return to a more just tax code (and I say that as someone who earns in the top 1%). I don’t like the ad either, but the conclusions the author draws are wild and melodramatic. Cheer up, Mr. Esolen. Life really is not so bad! People are not so bad! The world is a great place if you care to look at the good around you.

    • Ford Oxaal

      What’s not to like about the ad? It is kind of cute, makes the point, albeit subtly, that birth control and abortion are a part of normal health care that should be paid for by everyone, and that losing your virginity is the normal thing to happen in college, and is a large part of what college is all about — exploration of all kinds. This is all very true to the progressive philosophy. And it’s an easy sell, now that the culture has replaced the Christian notion of love your neighbor, with the more progressive notion of make love to your neighbor (if the neighbor consents, of course). What Mr. Esolen is not cheery about is that it is precisely this progressive laissez faire approach with sexual morality that ruins families for generations in a downward spiral of instant gratification. Education is reduced to daycare, and schools resemble prison camps, because parents are either non-existent, engaged in servile activities so they can have the good life (which involves donning a feedbag at a corporate chain restaurant), or staring into the mind-numbing rays of the television set. To “get back to reality”, the progressives are still serving caviar on the upper decks, and a good time is still to be had if you can crash that party, but the adults onboard are starting to notice the gaping hole in the bow of the ship.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Tony-Esolen/1184164082 Tony Esolen

      Mr. Obama’s personal life is one thing. The sexual revolution is another. If he indeed wants to provide children with “stability, structure, and good education,” he should do all he can to encourage marriage, which means encouraging chastity before marriage, and to discourage the vices that undermine it. You should get around a bit more. You should take the trouble to look at the wreckage. You seem to think that a bit of money solves everything — but it can’t, when the problem is human and moral. And you don’t address the main point. He had the leverage to begin the moral rally that I suggested, which would have benefited the poor and the working class above all. He didn’t. He prefers to kiss up to the wealthy left-libertines. There are good reasons why they don’t care that they have turned the culture into an open sewer. They live upstream from it — and they get jobs doling out the worthless gas masks.

      • Bill

        I get around plenty, which is why I understand the gritty reality of the need for contraception. It’s also why I see so much good in people. It’s inordinately gloomy to see life as an “open sewer”. Now, more than at any other time in decades, young people are becoming sexually active at later ages. Teen birth rates are at all-time lows. Abortion rates are declining. Divorce rates are declining. It is unrealistic to aspire to perfect chastity. There has never been any time in history where chastity has reigned, but we’re probably less decadent today than at any time in the past. People are, in general, more responsible about their sexuality today. People tend to have fewer sexual partners. Our society is more conscious than ever before of its obligations to children. That doesn’t mean there isn’t a contingent of dysfunctional people who are promiscuous. What do you want Obama to do? Criminalize pre-marital sex? Good education and access to health care and, yes, contraception, along with economic stability and psychologically healthy, mature adults provide the foundations for healthy families and childhoods. We don’t do our children any favors by giving them hang ups about sex that leave them psychologically damaged and sexually dysfunctional. We have to respect that their choices may be different — and potentially better — from ours. If my intelligent, stable, mature, and good-hearted daughter decides to have premarital sex with her fiance, I trust her to make good choices because I believe she is a better person than I. She is probably happier than a young woman her age who has chosen to live like a nun and certainly happier than one who is promiscuous. We need to trust, love, and educate — not spew neurotic and medieval fear and anxiety.

        • Ford Oxaal

          So now it’s blame the victim. Mr. Esolen is reacting to the spew of a sexually immoral presidential campaign which is reaching out and touching millions. I hope your daughter does not consent to pre-marital sex, and I hope you have shown her fiance, in friendly terms, the shotgun under your bed which is waiting for the gentleman who transgresses the norms of Christian human dignity and decency as regards your daughter. Because the non-dysfunctional, red blooded American male, Christian or otherwise, will typically think twice about marriage after the immediate needs have been taken care of.

          • Bill

            Ford Oxaal, the “American male” seems to want marriage these days, even when the “immediate needs” have been taken care of. At least, this is the impression I get from the young men of my acquaintance. Marriage imo should transcend the mere dependence of a woman who wants financial support and a man who wants sex. It is my hope for my children that their marriages will be lifelong sources of joy, comfort, partnership, and companionship, rather than mere conveniences.

            • Ford Oxaal

              Ha ha, well I hope so. I am more circumspect, but some of this does have to do with age and genetics. You may also be a more advanced specimen than me — I really need to live Catholicism to the full or I fear I might revert to pre-Viking-Catholic paganism. And so I project that onto suitors that might come creeping around for my daughters. Nor could anyone argue with your desires regarding marriage. I will say, though, based on my experience, chastity (meaning chastity within your state in life) is the key virtue to marriage (and a better, more romantic intimate life), along with patience — never, ever claim to be doing more work around the house, just suck it up. But here’s why I think pre-marital sex starts a Catholic marriage off on a bad foot — a certain respect threshold will never again be able to be demonstrated — and oh yeah, fornication is a mortal sin. But for non-Catholic marriage, it might be different.

        • http://www.facebook.com/people/Tony-Esolen/1184164082 Tony Esolen

          Provably false on all counts.
          Sure, every society has sinned against chastity. But before the Pill, if a society sinned against it all the time, then almost all children would have been born out of wedlock — which, of course, did not happen. Almost all children were born within wedlock, even among the poor.
          It is hard to cheer about abortion rates “dropping” when there are well over a million abortions performed in this country every year. The number before 1960 was minuscule by comparison — another provable fact.
          It is hard to cheer about the very modest decline in divorces when almost half of all marriages end that way. Also, the divorce rate right now does not capture the whole problem. If we had a “dissolution rate”, the rate at which, let’s say, all sexual liaisons lasting more than two years and involving cohabitation, dissolved, then that rate would be higher still. So too if we included all dissolutions of sexual liaisons that produce a child.
          Less decadent than at any time in the past? You’re kidding, right? Porn is everywhere, and little kids are looking at it. I know that some peoples have had their decadent ages — usually it was limited to upper class rogues who could afford the decadence. The decadence of the Roman Empire was largely limited to the senatorial classes in the very largest cities — it was not a feature of the country folk. That is not the case now. The upper classes open the sewer, then pitch their tents — their mansions — upstream.
          You haven’t read Humanae Vitae closely enough. Your notion of contraception is entirely static. It’s as if you were to apply a “solution” to what is conceived as a merely local and personal problem, without understanding that your solution has changed the stakes for everybody else. It is absolutely true that marriage is fast disappearing among the lower classes. It is absolutely true that DATING — of all things — is all but gone from college campuses, replaced by “hooking up.” I teach these kids. They confide in me….
          One last thing: “medieval.” People use that word without knowing a thing about the middle ages — it is just a silly insult, a substitute for thought. The belief that sex is for marriage was, with few exceptions, universally held as recently as, in cultural terms, the day before yesterday. It was universally held within living memory. If your daughter and her fiancee are devoted to one another for life, let them marry. If they are not, then let them not pretend that they are. Let them not to the child-making thing unless they are ready to welcome a child into the world.

          • Adam_Baum

            “Falling abortion rates” seems to be the new mantra in the pathetic defense of the “Catholic” left (all left, and not at all Catholic) of their golden calf, Lord Obama.

            Of course when somebody uses the morning after pill, there’s still an abortion, just not one with CPT code.

          • Bill

            The past was an orgiastic explosion of violence and decadence. Look at the Roman circuses, where people were crucified or fed to the lions while the spectators ate lunch. Tacitus, Homer, Herodotus, and Livy have written about the soldiers of antiquity sodomizing their conquered armies and raping boys and women.

            You really need to brush up on your medieval history. Genghis Khan and his Mongol hordes, the Vikings, and even the chivalric knights raped, looted, and pillaged their way through history. You were 35 times more likely to be murdered during the Middle Ages than you are today. Prostitution was rampant. The times were so licentious that the Church reacted with oppression, leading to widespread neurosis, perversion, and histrionic conditions. Self-flagellation and the fetishized sadism of the Inquisition substituted for healthy sexual expression.

            The belief held that sex is for marriage until the “day before yesterday”??? Look at the extravagant concubinage of biblical times. The rulers of yore, on all continents, until quite recently kept either large harems or had a few “favorites” on the side.

            You have a truly sad view of the world and seem to see sexual wrongdoing everywhere. Stop looking for it and open your eyes to the good. Believe me, the world has much more good than bad.

            • Ford Oxaal

              Not sure about that thesis. Look how many hundreds of millions have been killed in the last hundred years alone — 450,000,000 in the womb, not to mention the tens of millions to mass starvation and the bombing of population centers. The Romans perhaps had nothing on the Nazis. And the abortions, which are by today’s science inarguably real live human beings with unique DNA and unique human destiny, are the product of the sexual wrongdoing you don’t seem to see. So the sexual license, made possible by contraception, is directly responsible for a death toll more akin to the plague than to some knights riding around hacking their non-civilian opponents.

        • http://theveilofchastity.com/ The Veil of Chastity

          Your intelligent, stable, mature and good-hearted daughter would be considered promiscuous upon having sex with someone who is not her husband. “Chastity is the sure way to happiness.” Blessed JP2

      • pleasethink

        Thank you for the great article Tony! In a short space it sums up Obama; he had an historic opportunity to do real good and decided not to. It was a conscious decision. He definitely was friends with extremely wealthy people. He definitely stokes up the LOW or lack or culture, and then doesn’t have to live in those infected areas. You’re right; he’s upstream from it,so no worries about the devastation that results from torn-apart families. He can happily live indifferently and removed from the results of his policies and influence.

        • Ford Oxaal

          And a great irony here is that Obama will, in ten years, be fabulously wealthy — like Al Gore, the ultimate con-artist. His money, like Al Gore’s, will come directly from taxpayers via government subsidies for ‘green business’ — think of them as large, bloodsucking ticks. Presidents used to go back to their lives — now they can sign on with the kleptocracy.

          • Adam_Baum

            His recent tax returns are online. He’s already a millionaire and a “one-percenter”. If he wins this election, it might be a phyrric victory. Unlike his predecessor, he doesn’t have a ranch to retreat to and he might poison the ‘green energy” thing so much that a cushy board seat fueled by federal grants might be out of the question

            • Ford Oxaal

              Gore has raked in $100 million for his taxpayer subsidized snake oil projects that end up going under. He gets the money from his cronies in the federal government, cashes his piece out, and moves on to the next pot of gold. The feds are kleptocrats with no real stake in anything — no real downside — no performance criteria — they don’t know or care to know about their limitations — they augment themselves — they should not be allowed to vote due to conflict of interest.

    • Adam_Baum

      Bill, if you are in need of disgorging yourself of some income, perhaps you should send an amount that is more “just”. The U.S. Treasury will GLADLY cash your check.

      I’ll even save you the effort of finding the place to send it:

      http://www.fms.treas.gov/faq/moretopics_gifts.html

      Anybody who things that the “bifurcation” between the rich and poor is to abated or mitigated by the tax code-well you are a fool-this argument has been going on since the 1920′s.

      • Bill

        You know, Adam, it wouldn’t help much in the grand scheme of things. Tax rates are at historic lows, which is why we’re in the mess we’re in. Remember, it was Reagan’s increase in tax rates (TEFRA) that fueled an economic boom. The last 17 months of Bush’s tenure saw a 58% erosion of the stock market from peak to trough. This is worse than any 17-month rolling period during the Great Depression. Maybe you could learn something from the discussions going on since the 1920s.

        • Rich

          Bill, thank you for your patient, intelligent, and wise words. I find the mindset of the authors and those who comment on this website to be frightfully narrow. There is almost no point in posting, though, as most of what you have to say is falling on deaf ears.

          Personally, I thought the ad was clever yet base. Welcome to America, folks. It is NOT a Christian nation.

          • Ford Oxaal

            Relax, form an intelligent comment. If you can provide a better reason for your opinion, I will switch to your side. Anyway, back when it *was* a Christian nation, hitchhiking was a normal mode of transportation — there was trust — I miss that. And the occassional non-Christian realized the incredible generosity and openess of the American folk was due to the legacy of Christianity — not make love to your neighbor, but love — befriend — your neighbor. Then came contraception, the national orgy, party drugs, divorce, self-medication, perpetual adolescence, the killing of babies in the womb en masse, moms now forced to work, schools that resemble prisons, ritalin, pornography, child pornography, and a 4 trillion dollar shakedown by the kleptocracy since no one is watching the til. I agree with you: Welcome to America, folks. It is NOT a Christian nation.

  • VerbumMilitant

    This sick ad makes sense only when you know who funded and produced it. Obama gave Planned Parenthood $480 million under ObamaCare when he thought the Supreme Court was going to declare it unconstitutional. Planned Parenthood then took $12 million of that money and created this abomination.
    Who funded this ad? You and I did, with our tax dollars. With Obama; evil has no bounds!

  • Proteios1

    Lets not overlook the sheer stupidity and puerile nature of this. The lack of intellect from the makers and to the target of such ads is a stunning display of looking down on the ignorance akin to most sitcoms. Are they stupid for making it. No. They appeal to fellow fools.

  • Jani

    He could have done it? I guess I have to disagree because being a great uniter was never in Obama’s heart. Getting even with the country for his parentage; giving “Whitey” his due; never knowing his father, whom, ostensibly, the country drove to drink and licentiousness; his mother and her liberal ideology; revenge against his grandmother for her fear of Negroes; this is what seems to be in his heart.

  • Mother of six

    In response to Bill, I know from experience that sex while using contraceptives (whether before or after marriage) is bad for women. There are number detrimental side-effects, including increased tendency for blot clots, breast and cervical cancers and decreased sexual response (i.e. lack of pleasure). Your rose-colored perspective concerning our culture is mired in utter denial. Contraceptives turn women into objects to be used and discarded. Why has addiction to pronogrtaphy excalated so much in recent years? Its because of the contraceptive mentality. I fear for your daughter if this is the kind of counsel you have given her. Fathers should protect their daughters’ honor, not sell them out to an immoral culture.

  • http://theveilofchastity.com/ The Veil of Chastity

    Great article. This part is particularly sad and true: “When he and his people agreed to this repugnant ad, they said, “You, boy, growing up without a father, to hell with you. We want your vote, and we’ll arrest you if you hold up a gas station, but otherwise you can go hang.” They said, “You, girl, looking for somebody to marry and finding nobody because there aren’t that many decent men around anymore, to hell with you.”

  • Ellen

    When I first saw that ad I was shocked. I could not imagine any candidate stooping to such a level. I was also amused; did they not realize that it came across as a parody?

  • http://twitter.com/purisomniapura Kathleen A. Peck

    The Democratic party seems to have evolved into a group that believes any means justify their end. The founders of this country whom the Democrats consider their fathers …would not likely recognize what their party has become today. The more serious question is how bad will it get?

  • http://www.facebook.com/david.pair.16 David Pair

    I’ve not seen the ad in question. Judging from this article and the other comments, I am thankful for that.

  • Angela

    David, I wrote a long reply to you, but I think I messed up the reply mechanism, and it did not post. I just want to tell you that I agree with everything you wrote, and I am sorry for the way your generation of young men has been treated. My oldest sons are a few years younger than you are, and their experience has been similar to yours. If this message posts, I will try to rewrite the other one.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Travis-Busbar/1500753741 Travis Busbar

    Obama and his ilk are repulsive. Sad that your article needed to be written.

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  • Angela

    David, as I mentioned, our oldest sons, who are a few years younger than you are, have had a similar experience. When they were very young, they were incessantly criticized for not acting like girls. Many of their male friends were given ritalin to control their behavior (eliminate any sense of initiative they had) in school. I home schooled them to protect them from all of that, but they still “caught heck” for being active and curious (even though they were nice kids, not malicious to anyone, just energetic). My husband led them through the Boy Scout program, which seems to be the one of the few refuges where boys can act like boys, and form same sex friendships and mentoring relationships without being accused of being homosexual.

    The sexual revolution has been hard on everyone. I was criticized severely for not having a career, for staying home with my kids full time, and for having so many kids– by my mother’s generation (NOT my mother herself). Our daughters are pressured to adopt a sexualized look at a young age, and our fourteen-year-old daughter has had random guys ask her if she likes sex and similar comments. This is when she is innocently walking around wearing jeans and a sweat shirt. Our older girls are pressured to do everything that both women AND men have traditionally done, all at once, flawlessly (as I was pressured to do).

    Yet the problems of boys and men ARE often ignored.

    David, one big problem with the radical feminists is that they view men as their enemies. I hope that your generation of men does not make the mistake of viewing girls and women as your enemies. Believe me, a lot of them are just as upset about this as you are.

    The fact that you are not simply capitulating to societal pressure gives me hope. We need young men to be leaders, to act like true men– not beasts who dominate women, or doormats who allow the extremists to walk on them, but strong men who treat girls and women with respect while also respecting themselves, and accepting their maleness.

    David, you can find like minded young people. The Catholic Church is a good place to do so– although not everyone you meet will think this way, some will. If you are not already engaged in worthy volunteer work, I suggest it; there you will meet the generous and virtuous people of your generation.

    Incidentally, my father abandoned me as well, and although it was not easy to learn what marriage is all about, I have been married to the same husband– the first and only!– for over twenty years. You can do this also.

    The most important thing in life is to love the Most Important Thing– God!– and to find others who do the same. That is what will help you endure the persecution to which you prefer, and to change society for the better.

    Sincerely,
    Angela

    • David

      Hi, Angela,

      Thank you. You seem to be one-of-a-kind. I think the way boys are treated in schools is outrageous. If teachers aren’t going so far as to ‘treat’ their maleness, they are, from my experience at least, certainly promoting an environment in which impressionable young boys are made to feel like embarrassed, defective females. This does real damage to young boys, and I believe it is a form of child abuse. Sometimes the message is subtly communicated, but if it is repeated often enough, it sinks in. At the same time, boys are hearing all about the victimization of women at the hands of men, sometimes in school, but more often… everywhere else they go. This not only reinforces the first message (that men are defective and women are perfect), it is also bitterly ironic in a way that cannot possibly escape the mind of a young boy, at least on a subconscious level: it is actually the boys, in this context, who are being victimized, and often by women and girls. If any boy grasps this consciously he does so in absolute solitude. In the school setting and elsewhere he faces the inexorably, indomitably superior position of his female peers: not only do they perform better than him academically and emotionally, they also get to look down on him from the moral high ground they have so long been taught is theirs to enjoy.

      So if anyone would like to take a break from harping on the bad character of younger men, and take a moment to understand what it is exactly that is going wrong in their development, this would be a good place to start. Do I mean to suggest that this is uniformly, absolutely the situation for every boy out there? No, of course not; but it is a trend. ‘Be a man’, they say. When I went to college I found that many of my male peers were indecisive, uncertain, insecure, passive, deferential, even timid. Were they born this way? What happened to their soul, their backbone, their identity? When were they gutted and made into the empty husks where real men might have lived? When did they lose so much of themselves that they were reduced to parroting liberal doublethink, anxious to please and impress their female superiors (I mean their peers) — ‘fighting’ ‘nobly’ and ‘bravely’ against the so-called ‘rape culture’ as if they weren’t mere cowards, stabbing their fellow men in the back in a desperate bid to prove that maleness isn’t a disease?

      You say many young women also feel the sexual revolution (just using this term for the sake of simplicity) has been a disaster. Well, I’m sure that’s true, but it would certainly be only for the reason that the sexual revolution has been a disaster *for them*. That’s not bad in itself (good for them for realizing it) but it certainly doesn’t make them the friends you would seem to have me believe they are. I do not remember ever having heard a woman my age really express understanding, compassion, and respect for what it is today’s young man is up against. They don’t seem to have a clue and they don’t seem to care. They are upset, understandably, at the difficulty of finding a suitable male partner. But they aren’t upset for the men themselves. The difference is probably not worth noting to most people, but for me the difference is huge. Even the traditional girls aren’t exactly on my side.

      As for younger women in general — well, it’s not that you can reduce any one person to a social category, but there are trends, and I find my female peers to be quite often arrogant, disrespectful, snarky, sometimes spoiled, often merciless, and ruthlessly judgmental toward men. Not in general — they don’t treat each other that way — toward men. These women are absolutely and unequivocally my enemies. Again, sometimes the hostility is more overt, sometimes it is less so, sometimes it’s not apparent at all. Besides the behavior itself I also understand that fundamentally there is a divide between my female peers and me. They are not really on my side, nor will they ever be. I understand they have absolutely NO clue what is going on, on my side of the fence. They are oblivious.

      I do want to express my sadness at hearing the way your girls were treated. You just have to drive past a high school to see the pressure girls are under to dress like… well, tramps, to put it bluntly. I won’t say ‘women’ because I don’t think women who value themselves dress that way. The boy who asked whether she liked sex should be taken to task. You can bet my boys (if I ever become a father) would not dare act like that.

      And thanks also for sharing about your father, and how it took time to learn how a marriage works. That gives me hope and I appreciate it.

      At the end of the day, justice only comes from above, and nothing in life is perfect. I’m thankful for the Crucifix which makes that point crystal clear.

      Thanks again for your letter,

      Regards,

      David

      • Angela

        Dear David,

        I am sad to hear about the young ladies you are meeting! I have to admit that, since I am still a stay-at-home mom with young kids, I am not out in the world very much. The young ladies I know tend to be the daughters of other Catholic home schooling moms who, like me, love our husbands and sons and appreciate their maleness. Those young ladies do not view boys and men as their enemies. I am sad that they are in the minority! I hope, with prayer, you will be able to find such a young lady for your wife some day.

        It is heart breaking that these young ladies you meet are being raised to be so selfish. It sounds like that there is a sort of fear that they have to keep men down or men will oppress them.

        Our own three teenage daughters have two older brothers, and two younger brothers. In general, they find their brothers’ maleness charming. They do not expect their brothers to act like girls. For their part, our older sons are both protective, and respectful, of their sisters. Our 14 yr old daughter went shopping with her cousin and returned with a skirt that was far too short. 20 yr old brother exclaimed, “There is NO WAY you’re wearing that skirt out of the house!” and she respected his opinion far more than she would have respected mine. They have been trying to discourage the girls from wearing make up or acting disingenuous in any way. The girls really respect their opinion, and have been far more inclined to side with their brothers’ values than with those of their peers. The boys had difficulty with a stifling school system, which the girls found easy; the girls think highly of their brothers and think it is the system, not their brothers, who are broken. They are a blessing to each other, as males and females are intended to be. My own close friendship with my brother helped me to avoid seeing males as my enemy, even though I had a rotten father. You might find that young ladies who have close friendships with their brothers are less inclined to view you as their enemy. I hope and pray you will be able to find some such young ladies out there!

        David, if you ever have the time and inclination, you might really enjoy volunteering with the Boy Scouts. That is an excellent way to help young boys grow into virtuous men- who are happy to be men! It is a refuge from the societal problems you describe. You would be a really good example to those boys, and I think having that male fellowship would enrich your life as well. Many Catholic parishes have Boy Scout troops. Now, I have to admit that the Boy Scouts, being an organization run by humans, are necessarily imperfect, but no place on this earth is perfect. In any case, through the Boy Scouts, you could be the male role model for a boy who has no father. And you might meet older men you admire who will be role models for you.

        You will be in my prayers, David! I admire your independence of thought. You are already a blessing to this world be refusing to call evil good.

        Sincerely,
        Angela

  • Sabrina

    The ad was stupid and insulting on several levels, whether one is Democrat or Republican. Anyone who reduces the voting process to a sexual encounter probably should re-think voting at all.

  • Briana

    Developing countries whose leaders are having the “moral crusade” Professor Esolen describes here are having far fewer problems with STD’s than countries who have surrendered to the sexual revolution. We need to try what these nations are doing, and not only for that reason! :)

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YYtH3x2GiG8

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Tony-Esolen/1184164082 Tony Esolen

    David, on the off chance you see this comment — I hope you will — I’d like to continue this conversation. Please write to me directly if you agree.

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  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Tony-Esolen/1184164082 Tony Esolen

    Just a few days ago, we received the news that more than 40 percent of children in the US are born out of wedlock. Open that file again: Worse Than I Thought.

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