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MORE THOUGHTS ON VIRTUE: THE PORN WARS


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April 23, 2012

“To separate pain from ill-doing is to fight against the constitution of things and will be followed by far more pain. Saving men from the natural penalties of dissolute living, eventually necessitates the inflictions of artificial penalties in solitary cells, on tread-wheels, and by the last.”

(Herbert Spencer in The Man Versus The State, P. 23)

People in the 21st Century are burdened with a moral indebtedness that may never be repaid.  The cultural economy where virtue is a cheap and disposable commodity has given us decades of shattered families, poverty, corruption, and the predominance of carnal appetite. This has heaped upon the backs our children a terrible debt for generations to come. This debt will paid through of suffering, estrangement, bondage, and national decline.

Virtue is not just an old-fashioned dictum that separates the genteel from the bawdy. Personal virtue is the hedge against bondage at all levels. The Commandments of God are not created to restrain and limit His children. They are given to us so we may be free. The National debt is not inflamed not by the defense budget but by social and entitlement programs designed to guarantee people certain things that are not natural rights, like nourishment, comfort, jobs, and medical attention. Personal virtue and national debt are connected through the central and eternal principle of moral agency.  Whole populations of people, whether consciously or as a matter of social habituation, have eschewed virtue for a check from the government. The government, whether county, state, or federal, provides monthly funds to single mothers in proportion to the number of babies they have out of wedlock.  Across the country, especially within the black and Hispanic communities, unmarried parenthood is often the primary means to a steady income. Men as providers and fathers have been replaced by the state. Virtue has been exchanged for monetary gain. Welfare state-ordained poverty in America is more often than not, an alternate lifestyle choice made by the able-bodied, and not an insurmountable socioeconomic condition.

Virtue is derided and rejected in pop-culture. There are exceptions to this, but the wide acceptance of what 40 years ago was deemed as disgusting and perverse, is now the rule.  And all of these perversions, real or simulated, are broadcast in every avenue of media.  Children are exposed to perversions couched as “alternative lifestyles,” on a regular basis. Homosexuality, bisexuality, transgenderism, transvestism, and pedophilia are all woven into social studies and health curriculum materials and taught as acceptable variations of normal; options to be chosen freely if an individual seems compelled to do so.  Again, man’s agency is the cynosure of our current moral crisis.  The personal choice by many of perversity and libertinism over the virtues of traditional families, marriage, and children with healthy and functional identities, leads to suffering, blight, and national decline.

The “war on women,” and the “war on mothers,” have been topics of a recent national debate.  These premises are flawed however, since women and mothers don’t live in societal vacuums. They have men, children, friends, and other loved ones who are connected to them and invested in them.  No demographic carve-out population is isolated from another. All women are members of larger biological and social families. And the acts of the individual whether, large or small, touch in some way those within their sphere of influence.  The “war on mothers” is really just a skirmish in the “war on families.”

There is a terrible and costly war on men. The welfare state has done more than any other influence to destroy men’s identities as providers, husbands and fathers.  They have become optional and disposable in the eyes of women who are accustomed to the dole.  Our little boys are taught in public schools that their boyishness is “inappropriate,” and that their natural physical activity and spunkiness are “violent,” and “hyperactive.”  Our young men are beset with sexually aggressive young women who treat men as objects to be used for social, sexual, and monetary gratification, but are deemed unfit for commitment and partnership within the proper order of marriage. Our young men are punished for being warriors. We ask them to fight our wars, but we condemn them when they kill the enemy and celebrate the victory in the way that men do.  The virility and instinctive qualities of maleness have become alien and threatening to a feminized culture.  The masculinity that make men protective fathers, husbands, and fearsome warriors have been ridiculed to the point that any natural impulse for a boy to be a boy, or a man to be a man is met with knee-jerk aversion by the Liberals in our institutions and pop-culture. The most compelling case study in point is the terrible cost paid by our black and Hispanic communities who have been ripped apart by generations of welfare-state induced poverty. When men are jettisoned out of their biological roles within a nuclear family, they become a part of a gang family.

The most pernicious influence upon men and their families today is the sneak attack of pornography. Moral agency plays a role in whether or not men are engaged in this battle for their minds, hearts and spirits.  But the total avoidance of porn is nearly impossible in the linked-in world.  You may have to hole up in a cave and give up all exposure to the wide world in order to be untouched by smut. It is everywhere. From the low-level radioactivity of television and radio, to the lethal levels of exposure on the Internet, print media, movies, and live sex shows, pornography is the airborne poison that is making our society weak and morally incapacitated. It is asphyxiating the spirits of those who become inured, accustomed, and addicted to its deadly contents.  The ordinarily healthy dynamics of family and intimate relationships with spouses and sweethearts become unappealing.  Men and women who replace the complications of intimate relationships with porn, are opting for sexual gratification that is easily accessible, quick and self-contained. Porn destroys intimacy and the chemical bonding and biologically driven connections that make men husbands and fathers, and women wives and mothers.  Without intimacy love fails. Without bonding relationships are temporary. Without men and women willing to undertake the rigors of forming marriages and families, society collapses into a fatal entropy, and a population of rejected and disenfranchised children revert to tribalism and mob rule.

Pornography wrecks the capacity for its viewers to form and maintain healthy relationships for a number of reasons. First, it desensitizes the physical responses to normal touch and stimulation. It is an addiction that feeds on itself, requiring more intense exposure, more often. Second, porn lies to the viewer by portraying sex in ways that are so glamorized or so outre that an ordinary partner probably would not, or could not replicate such acts in ways that are satisfying to the porn addict. Third, the spirituality of the viewer is so compromised that shame and ruined self-esteem further isolate him or her, interrupting and severing relationships to the point that they are no longer salvageable.  If the media, cultural, religious and political leaders in the United States want to have a real dialogue about the “war on this or that gender, ” let’s start with the Porn War.

Lasciviousness, the loss of virtue, and the disintegration of families are incompatible with freedom, and all are in themselves forms of bondage.  The Constitution of the United States does not mandate personal morality to the degree that it compels one to chose good or evil.  The Constitution is in fact, nullified by an electorate who is ripened in immoral and irresponsible behavior.  The Constitution cannot grant liberty, it only provides for a structure where in it can be protected by a government performing its proper role.  Liberty can, however, be forfeited by individuals who choose to become servants to addiction and insouciance, and their own injurious behaviors formed through volitional and incorrigibly bad choices.  Personal virtue is essential to civil society, and it is upon this principle that empires rise and fall.  The state can constrain, through the enforcement of civil law, certain behaviors.  And in our time, unfortunately, the constraint of law has been substituted for self-control. Where the character and restraint of the individual are minimized and the state will automatically care for the careless and support the somnolent, government grows monstrously beyond its proper bounds.  When personal responsibility and care are taken and individual rights are not under constant threat by the atrocities of one’s neighbors, and when the citizen uses his liberty with reverence to the Creator from whom it was bequeathed, the need for government decreases.  They are inversely proportional, Virtue and Government.  For the patriot who is concerned about the size the government, remember the only way to nullify the need for entitlements, vast penal systems, and cradle to grave life on the dole, is to exercise virtue within the smallest units possible, our homes and our own hearts.

 By Marjorie Haun  4/23/12

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