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The coming social Frankenstorm
There is a storm brewing that the election results can only fuel.
Cartoon by MeAndFolly
As the destructive roar of Hurricane Sandy dwindled and died last week, leaving Americans along the Atlantic coast facing colossal damage, the climate change alarm bells could be heard in all their urgency. Warming oceans and melting ice caps could have played a decisive role in creating the “Frankenstorm” that claimed 100 lives, left hundreds homeless and will cost $60 billion to repair. “Now will they listen?” the global warming pundits demanded of the sceptics.
This week the alarms are sounding again for many Americans, but it’s nothing to do with continuing stormy weather. The cause does, however, have a lot to do with ecology: human ecology -- the integrity of the human being who is both matter and spirit and the conditions under which he or she may thrive and contribute to genuine social progress.
On Tuesday just over half of US voters put Barack Obama back in the White House. This is a president who supports abortion and free contraception as women’s rights, who has declared support for same-sex “marriage”; whose last campaign ad propositioned the youth vote with the sultry line, “If it’s your first time, do it with a great guy.” This a president who, for all his rhetoric about freedom and diversity will not allow religious objectors to his “contraceptive mandate” the freedom to run their businesses, their schools and other institutions according to their consciences.
In short, this is a president who is a distinct threat to the natural family and to its chief supporting institution, the church, and no amount of “God bless America” can disguise that.
With the encouragement of his example, voters in three out of four states with initiatives relating to marriage on Tuesday’s ballot (Maine, Maryland and Minnesota) have opened the way for same-sex marriage. The tally will likely be four by the time the count is finished in Washington. Like the popular vote for Obama himself, the margin of victory is small but potentially very damaging to the foundations of American society -- and to others which still look to the United States for leadership.
The foundation of society is the family. The family is constituted by the marriage of a man and a woman exclusively committed to each other for life and open to the generation of children by their loving intercommunion. This is the norm indicated by the body and by human reason enlightened by religious faith, by the experience of the ages and in our own day by social scientific studies. This is the basic ecological system that allows individuals and society to flourish, and it is the breaking down of this family environment that is pushing the US and other Western societies over fiscal cliffs.
That breakdown is in large measure due to the attack on human sexual ecology represented by government promoted contraception and abortion, to which we can now add the reproductive technologies that enable lesbian and gay couples to acquire children since they cannot generate them. In all this the rights, the health and the happiness -- the very existence -- of the next generation is gambled with.
President Obama talked in his victory speech about obligations to future generations. “We want our children to live in an America that isn’t burdened by debt; that isn’t weakened by inequality; that isn’t threatened by the destructive power of a warming planet,” he said, provoking another round of applause.
But the threats to coming generations are far more profound than debt or global warming. As for inequality, it can only be fuelled by the further breakdown of the family conceived of as a collection of human beings arbitrarily assembled -- and just as arbitrarily taken apart again. Unless the President of the United States can get a grip on the basics of human ecology he will escalate the human Frankenstorm that is already brewing in the overheated social experiments of the 21st century.
Carolyn Moynihan is deputy editor of MercatorNet.
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