Gay and Transgendered: What Comes Next?
In 1965, Lyndon Johnson prohibited Federal discrimination in hiring based on race, religion, gender and nationality. President Obama’s latest executive order amends that to include sexual orientation and gender identity. In 1969, Richard Nixon prohibited any sort of discrimination in Federal employment practices based on race, religion, gender, nationality, age or disability. Bill Clinton later amended this to include sexual orientation. President Obama’s new executive order amends it to include gender identity. This applies to all organizations which receive federal contracts. What’s next?
Just about anything could be next, because this latest executive order is completely divorced from reality. It views gender as a social construct or a psychological attitude unrelated to our biological sexuality. Instead of viewing an estrangement from our bodies as a problem, the new executive order insists that behavior based on such a disjunction must be upheld and honored as good. Apparently, we are what we want to be, and nobody can contradict us based on evidence.
Of course, there is nothing really new here. The gay revolution, and particularly the drive for gay marriage, is based on a total repudiation of our reproductive functions as reasonable and moral indicators of sexual behavior. There is a flight from reality at the center of sexual politics which would be almost funny if its personal and social consequences were not so deadly. Even setting spiritual consequences aside, the personal price tag is way too high in terms of health, psychological stability, and even life span. If we add these costs to the destruction of the family, the social and economic results are similarly catastrophic.
It seems to be our lot to witness the end of a civilization. We can trace its death to the empire of desire. Clearly, this pleasure principle began to affect us in unusually deep ways with the wholesale separation of sex from life in contraception. Since then, it seems, there has been no turning back. Our deadly divorce from reality now seems all but irrevocable.
It has been truly astonishing to witness the dramatic change of socially dominant opinion on these issues over the past two generations. We have gone from a rebellion against the “restrictive conventions” of sexual identity and morality in the 1960s to the establishment of an entirely reversed set of conventions, already imposed with far greater rigor in both education and policy, all in the space of about fifty years. Nature, strengthened by spiritual formation, has been replaced by desire, legitimated by political diktat.
Nobody likes to deny another person’s desires, lest our own desires should ever be similarly thwarted. And so we have raced from a condemnation of the perverse, to a tongue-in-cheek “not that there is anything wrong with it”, to the acceptance of change on behalf of others, to the moral condemnation of any who dare oppose the latest trend. As President Obama sagely noted yesterday, “We’re on the right side of history.” Of course, this is exactly like the Emperor in Star Wars saying “Everything is proceeding as I have foreseen.”
But do the spiritually blind ever really see? No, and what is even worse, the blindness can sometimes still be found in our own ranks. In a Catholic school system in Vancouver, Canada, when parents of a transgendered boy (who now prefers to live as a girl) complained about their boy not being allowed to use the girls’ bathroom, the administration hastened to devise a new policy. The schools in question will now make ample provision for students who “express their gender in ways that are different from prevailing stereotypes.” What did I just say about diktat?
Moreover, because President Obama deliberately refused to include a religious exemption in his latest executive order, and since court cases have been as uneven as they are unpredictable, we can expect to see other Catholic institutions go along to get along. Dare we hope for resistance by the majority? Perhaps, but it would be historically unusual. At the level of formal compliance, at least, politics tends to trump religion. One inevitably expects a certain spiritual dodginess. But will our Catholic maneuvers to be truly “deft” or just plain “shifty”?
God and Politics
Driving down the road to destruction yesterday, I saw an old “Catholics for Obama” bumper sticker. It has its analogues all over the world! How, I wondered, can people fail to see the seeds of a broken future in the heady utopian politics of the present? What causes an entire population to hide from reality, to assume that happiness will grow if we simply refuse to call bad things evil? “How beautiful,” says Isaiah, “are the feet of him who brings tidings of good, who publishes salvation, who says to Zion, ‘Your God reigns’” Is 52:7). But this does not seem so to us: To shoot our messengers is surely an act of ultimate despair.
Sex is God’s marvelous gift for making babies in the wedded love of family. Families are for nurturing children in the security of life-long commitment. Men and women together mirror the wholeness of God, and in their families they participate in God’s incomparable fecundity. Those who cannot (or are not called to) mirror God’s fecundity in their own flesh, are called to mirror it in other ways, for all are made in the image of God’s Trinitarian love. So it is that countless families combine to form full-fledged societies, imbued with solidarity, raising up rich and varied civilizations to the glory of the Creator.
Yet it is just this that we have forgotten, that our blessed dominion begins with an act of creation: “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them” (Gn 1:27). If awareness of this primal gift is lost, what will follow? Polygamy? Pedophilia? Bestiality? Termination of the sexually irrelevant? Life in the test tube and the petri dish? Nurture by the State? Exploitation of all by all? This and even worse than this! I do not say we have reached the antichrist or the end, but I do say we should be grateful that God always shortens the days for those with Faith (Mt 24:22; Mk 13:20). For we are certainly witnessing the wholesale substitution of man’s plans for God’s. We are witnessing the substitution of politics for love.
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Posted by: filioque -
Jul. 23, 2014 11:18 AM ET USA
The acceptance of sex without babies certainly started the inevitable chain. Soon enough we had babies without sex, then marriage without babies and both sex and babies without marriage. I did not think the last possibility of rupture, marriage without sex, was possible. But now we are instructed that it is. We are deep into denial of reality. It is only a question of how far into the pit we will fall before true civilization begins the long climb back by Faith.
Posted by: koinonia -
Jul. 23, 2014 7:43 AM ET USA
And sports figure, Tony Dungy is under fire for saying that he would not have wanted to deal with the issues of having to coach the first-publicly announced homosexual football draftee. The prevailing wisdom in the media has been nearly unanimous claims that he is wrong and backward. He is raining on their parade, and the prevailing wisdom among the media is not if but when he will issue his mea culpa. After all he is Christian and should have humility. His attitude cannot stand. Or else.
Posted by: shrink -
Jul. 22, 2014 9:46 PM ET USA
If the progressive/left sexual policy takes root in the society (as is probable) then the only hope of return will come from a catastrophic outbreak of disease. Wide-spread infection, disability, and death, will see a return to sexual sobriety. Science was the intoxicant that fed the delusion that licentiousness has no consequences. When science fails sexual delusions retreat, sobriety returns. The Christians will be left to pick up the pieces while many innocents will remain in their tombs.