Demolition

Monday, 08-08-2022

 

Naïvely, the Roe Court didn't expect many abortions.  Yet legalization unleashed a gushing deluge of them.  Though Roe itself has been rescinded, it will take a lot longer to sponge from the nation’s ravaged conscience the red stain of legally slaying 63 million babes who were still in their mothers’ wombs – not to mention those who are still being slain.

Since 2015, we have been on another long march.  The Obergefell Court didn't expect much disturbance in norms and customs.  Yet endorsement of homosexual “marriage” opened the gates to a swiftly rolling juggernaut.  The violation of women’s dressing rooms, lavatories, and sports, the invasion of library and school story times by drag queens, and the administration of powerful hormones to children without even telling the parents – these things are spreading, and they are just the beginning.

Go ahead and knock down those load-bearing columns.  They don’t do anything.  Nothing will happen, don’t you see?  Everything stays up by itself.  Nothing is connected with anything else.

 

 

Life After Roe for Pro-Lifers

Monday, 08-01-2022

 

The pro-life movement has always promoted the well-being of mothers and children in general -- not just of children in the womb.  Even after the demise of Roe v. Wade, killing developing babies remains legal in many states, so protecting their lives is still crucial.  But in places where their lives are already protected, the spotlight will shift even more to helping mothers and children in general.

This change may unearth a latent faultline even among the ranks of the pro-life movement:  For how should the well-being of mothers and children be promoted?

Some pro-life folk may assume, like many politicians, that the best thing to do for women with children is to throw money and benefits at them.  Others, reasoning that it is in the best interests of women with children to marry the father rather than the government, and that a culture of dependency keeps people in poverty forever, may assume that the one thing necessary is to encourage sexual restraint, stable marriage, paid employment, responsible parenting, and loving family life.

Both sides are partly right.  The latter approach is obviously more fundamental; the sexual revolution has disordered families, impoverished women, and done grave injury to children, and the wrong kind of material incentives can generate further disorder.  But just as obviously, women in trouble need some material assistance.  Their children need doctors.  Deadbeat dads need to be traced and required to contribute support.  Mothers with small children should be free to care for them; they should not be expected to chuck them into daycare and go off to work themselves.

The difficulty is to distinguish between forms of “help” that help, and forms of “help” that hurt.

This may seem a purely sociological puzzle.  It isn’t.  What makes the problem difficult is that there are strong vested interests in favor of answering it the wrong way.

Corporations don’t want their employees to be distracted; they want women to be free from the competing responsibilities of family life.  Social work bureaucrats aren’t interested in working themselves out of their jobs; they want a permanent clientele.  If they see the poor at all, politicians see them as political dependents; they want voters who can be bribed.  And too many churches would rather give handouts than involve themselves in the messy business of bringing people into the community, bringing order to their lives, and helping them get on their feet.

To say these things isn’t cynical.  It’s just life.  If we really want to help people, we had better remember original sin.

 

 

On Getting What One Asks For

Monday, 07-25-2022

 

The Atlantic says pro-abortion protesters who chant “Hail Satan” aren’t really hailing Satan, but only mocking religious people.

The Atlantic is naïve.

To be sure, the chanters are baiting religious people, but they are not mocking them.  One mocks people by making their cause seem ridiculous.  One does not make their cause seem ridiculous by portraying one’s own cause as evil.

I haven’t the slightest doubt that not everyone who chants “Hail Satan” really thinks that he is hailing Satan.  Yet he is doing it.  If he is not adoring the prince of the powers of darkness, then he is saluting the supreme symbol of these powers.  He is celebrating the commission of evil to spite God.

Christians are sometimes told that they should be careful what they pray for, because they may get it.  This is good advice for abortion proponents too.  If they hail darkness, it will come to them.

 

Masculinity Isn’t Toxic to Women -- Feminism Is

Monday, 07-18-2022

 

Men are stronger and more aggressive than women, but the difference lies not just in faculty.  Men want to use their strength.  Bemoan the fact if you will, but if they don’t use it to protect others, they will probably use it to take advantage of them.

Given this fact, the obvious and natural way to keep men from taking advantage of women is to teach them chivalry.  Don’t suppress their manhood, ennoble it.  Don’t tell them not to act like men, tell them to act like proper men.  Teach them that the right use of strength is to cherish, protect, and assist the weaker sex.

The opposing theory thinks the problem isn’t debased masculinity, but masculinity.  To keep men from taking advantage of women, denature them.  Don’t ennoble their manhood, demean it.  Teach them that offering protection or assistance to women is insulting, regressive, and condescending.

This anti-chivalric regimen doesn’t keep men from taking advantage of women, but only makes them irresponsible louts.  It teaches them to view women not as ladies, but only as possible lays.  It replaces the culture of marriage and fatherhood with a  jungle of hookups, and tells women that if they don’t like it, there must be something wrong with them.

You don’t make men good men by telling them how poisonous they are for being men.

 

 

Interview with Tom Loarie of Mentors Radio

Saturday, 07-16-2022

 

G’day, folks.  Tom Loarie of The Mentors Radio interviewed me recently about my new book How and How Not to Be Happy, and the podcast has just been posted.  You can go straight to it, or you can see it in the menu of other talks and interviews on my Listen to Talks page.

The main audience of The Mentors is entrepreneurs, CEOs, and other business folks, but since the program emphasizes ethical leadership and management, which is pretty broad, he brings in guests to talk about all sorts of interesting topics, and this is one of them.

 

Incompetent, or Just Too Old?

Thursday, 07-14-2022

 

By dumping on Mr. Biden just for being too old, The New York Times has given the rest of the progressive media permission to join in.  Why now?  This isn’t about the president, but about the former president.  Mr. Biden is already toast.  But if the progressive media can establish the line that the problem with him isn’t his extremist policies, his general incompetence, or even his dementia, but simply his age, then the same line can be taken if his predecessor seeks to run again.  Mr. Trump does not seem to suffer cognitive decline, but he is certainly old.

Republicans who think that they are scoring a point against a dreadful incumbent by joining in on the Too Old chorus are naïve.  Think how many old Republican politicians there are.  Of course there are just as many old Democrat politicians, but the progressive media can be trusted to swing the mallet of senectitude selectively.

Age, per se, doesn’t matter.  Fitness does – both moral and mental.

 

So-Called Replacement Theory

Monday, 07-11-2022

 

Progressives like to say that a racist doctrine they call “replacement theory” is very big on the right.

I won’t say there is no such theory.  There is.  Actually, though, versions of the theory are held both on the farthest, farthest fringes of the right and – more quietly – among large, large sections of the left.

The right wing version is that immigrants, especially immigrants of color, outbreed people who were born in the country, so that descendants of the former will “replace” descendants of the latter.  This is supposed to be bad.

The left wing version is that immigrants, especially immigrants of color, trend more to the left than people who were born in the country, so that leftists will “replace” conservatives.  This is supposed to be good.

Both versions of the theory are nuts.

As to the former version:  If the country becomes browner in a few generations, so be it.  People who are too selfish to have children deserve to be “replaced” by people who love them.

As to the latter version:  Immigrants who are acquainted with the politics of the country are often quite conservative; they don’t want to lose what they’ve worked and suffered to attain.  So if left-wingers think immigration will lead to the “replacement” of conservatives by liberals, they may have it backwards.

We like to say that we are a nation of immigrants, and it is true.  The real question isn’t, or shouldn’t be, whether immigration is good, but whether chaotic immigration is good.  What is happening at the southern border is simply cruel.