Obsession Over Social Sexual Issues Is Destroying America
I have long railed against American values being hijacked by gay marriage and abortion. But even I did not foresee that contraception would join to create a trifecta of social sexual issues that utterly dominate the American values and political discourse. God Almighty. How long are we going to do this?
Let me tell me you just how destructive this is. While we obsess over gay marriage, heterosexual marriage has gone off a cliff. A front-page New York Times article just reported that half of all births in the United States to mothers under thirty years of age are outside of marriage. The divorce rate among baby boomers has surged over the past two decades by more than 50%. In 2010, a third of adults ages 46 through 64 were divorced, separated or never married compared to just 13 percent in 1970. Then there’s the intimacy famine in the American marriage that I addressed in my book The Kosher Sutra, whereby up to a third of marriages are platonic. Fifty percent of first marriages, 60% of second, and 70% of third marriages end in divorce. And get this: people in conservative voting states actually have higher rates of divorce than those in liberal voting states.
All this has happened while, to cite just one example, evangelical Christianity in the US has moved from humble beginnings about a hundred years ago to a movement that now boasts approximately 25% of America’s population.
So how’s it possible that the more religious America becomes the more the institution of marriage crumbles? A huge part of the problem is that we are mired in religious distractions that take us away from focusing on core issues. The same applies to other urgent campaign season issues that seriously challenge the United States, like unemployment, a bad economy, ballooning debt, and the threat from Iran. How was it all reduced to a discussion about Rush Limbaugh and free contraception?
It’s time to once and for all expose the lie that morality is principally about sexual issues. There are Ten Commandments. Only one is about adultery and sexual immorality. The other nine concern themselves with not worshiping gods made of gold (hear that Wall Street?), honoring parents, having a weekly Sabbath so as to strengthen family and community, respecting one another’s property (a good lesson for some in Washington who believe that what we earn belongs to government), and not coveting another’s success (a good lesson for Hollywood which wants us to live vicariously through celebrities).
My Christian brothers and sisters point out that homosexuality is singled out with particular opprobrium in the Bible with the word ‘abomination.’ But of the 103 times “toeva” is used in the Hebrew Bible, it appears only twice with regards to homosexuality.
Furthermore, the Greek word used for abomination, “bdelygma,” appears only four times in the entire New Testament, two of which are merely using a quote from the book of Daniel in which he describes “the abomination of desolation.” The other two references are found in Revelation 21:27 which says that anyone who practices abomination will not enter Heaven, and Luke 16:15 where Jesus implies that the love of money is an abomination. This teaching is echoed earlier in the Hebrew Bible where love of money that leads to dishonest business practices is decried in four different verses as an abomination. But where is the discussion of runaway materialism and American greed in our discussion of values?