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Archive for the ‘Being Dad’ Category

I have been criticized in the past for my stance on gay marriage.  Usually, it’s because I start talking about the slippery slope and the poor legal reasoning used to justify it, which is generally something like this: 

“the voluntary union of two persons as spouses, to the exclusion of all others. Nothing that “civil marriage has long been termed a civil right,”‘ the court concluded that “the right to marry means little if it does not include the right to marry the person of one’s choice, subject to appropriate government restrictions in the interests of public health, safety, and welfare.” 

-Goodridge v. Department of Public Health. 

Of course, this case cites the cases of Zablocki v. Redhail and Loving v. Virginia, but fails to note that in both cases, the couples were attempting marriage as it has always been defined in western tradition and common law, that is to say between a man and a woman, and in the former, the state was blocking the petitioner’s right to marry based on back child support and in the latter, the state was attempting to prevent an interracial marriage.  When you strip these important facts from the quotations cited, the argument boils down to “I want it.  You say I can’t have it.  That violates my civil rights.” 

Of course, my response was, and remains, “If we are going to grant such rights based on what you want, then we don’t have a basis to say no when in ten years, or fifteen years, or twenty years, we have someone standing in front of us who really loves their dog, and wants to get married, or wants more than one spouse, or wants to marry a child…because after all, it’s what they want, and if it is good enough for you, then it has to be good enough for them.” 

The first response is typically “That’s a ridiculous example.  No one would ever think that such a thing was ok.” 

“Really?  What’s the basis for denying it?” 

“Well, it just isn’t acceptable.” 

“Maybe not, but I don’t have to go back too many years to find a time when homosexuality “wasn’t acceptable”, and gay marriage was unthinkable.” 

“Well, your arguments make it sound like they are perverted or something.” 

“And?  There still are many in society who see it that way also.” 

“You’re a mindless Bible-thumper.  We are building a society that doesn’t make moral judgments.” 

“Baloney.  You are trying to change the moral judgments of society when you try to make the law favor this activity instead of sanctioning it.  Don’t kid yourself.  Your position isn’t moral neutral.  You just want to remove a moral code that is time-tested and that works, and substitute it for one that is untested, but has a boatload of warm ‘n fuzzy feelings and good intentions that you hope will get you past its inherent short-sightedness.” 

“It’s a fundamental right.” 

“It’s a change to a legally defined term reaching back centuries on no firmer basis than “I was made this way, and you have to change who you are as a society in order to conform to my whims.  Frankly, that’s a pretty flimsy justification for a lifestyle choice, especially when on the other hand we are constantly being told that it isn’t a choice, but the ones crying the loudest have absolutely no proof that it is anything other than a choice.  At least in a case like Loving v. Virginia, the denial at stake was based on a provably immutable characteristic.  Everyone can understand that a white person cannot wake up one morning, decide they are now black, and make it so.  The same cannot be proven for gays, and if we are going to institutionalize a lifestyle choice that was hitherto a frowned upon practice in society, then we have no basis for stopping  the next “couple”.” 

“Well, you can’t equate homosexuality with pedophilia.” 

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I think that argument just got a little tougher to make with a straight face (no pun intended). 

I posted earlier this week about Assistant “Safe Schools” Czar, and militant gay activist Kevin Jennings, and his connection to the group he founded, the Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network (GLSEN), and how speakers at a GLSEN conference were talking to young (14 year old) conference goers about sex, and sexual practices…BUT WAIT!  There’s MORE! 

One of the male teachers at this conference decided that this was an appropriate conversation to have with the young students at the conference: 

Male Teacher: … Spit versus swallowing – I don’t know about the calorie count of cum. All right. Is it rude? Let’s ask this question: Is it rude not to swallow? 

Students: No! Oh, no! [Many “no’s” from the children.] 

Male Teacher: No. So it’s in good bedroom etiquette … [unclear] to spit out? 

That’s right.  A teacher.  A public employee, of the type that we used to count on to look after our childrens’ best interest was caught having a completely inappropriate conversation with children (14 year olds) about oral sex. 

Even better?  You can listen to it yourself: 

I sure am glad someone told me it was wrong to think of homosexuality as a perversion, and that there was no reason to put it in the same category as pedophilia.  ‘Cause after all, there isn’t anything creepy or wrong about a public employee, a male teacher discussing whether or not its rude to spit after oral sex with a bunch of fourteen year olds.  Relax, these are just the kind of people President Obama wants to appoint as “safe school czars”.  And it must be working…this pervert felt perfectly safe discussion such things with those children. 

I guess the safety of public school students takes a back seat to tolerance and promotion of perversion.  Once again, “Some animals are more equal than others.”

Nice Deb has more on the perfectly acceptable goings-on… 

H/T Gateway Pundit

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“Of all the views of this law [for public education], none is more important, none more legitimate, than that of rendering the people the safe as they are the ultimate guardians of their own liberty.”Thomas Jefferson: Notes on Virginia Q.XIV, 1782. ME 2:206

Religion, morality, and knowledge, being necessary to good government and the happiness of mankind, schools and the means of education shall forever be encouraged.”–Article 3, Northwest Ordinance

“I believe that education is the fundamental method of social progress and reform. All reforms which rest simply upon the law, or the threatening of certain penalties, or upon changes in mechanical or outward arrangements, are transitory and futile…. But through education society can formulate its own purposes, can organize its own means and resources, and thus shape itself with definiteness and economy in the direction in which it wishes to move…. Education thus conceived marks the most perfect and intimate union of science and art conceivable in human experience.”John DeweyMy Pedagogic Creed, 1897

Anita Bryant was also for homophobia.  She started a campaign in the late seventies called ‘save our children.’ which was designed to repeal the few protections that existed in that time in our country for LGBT people. She succeeded. She panicked our nation. She started a nationwide crusade that led to the creation of the moral majority and the election of Ronald Reagan in 1980. She was very successful, and I look at Oregon in the year 2000, and I think history repeats itself, and as Marx once said the first time as tragedy and the second time as farce. I am hoping this will be a farce.”–Current Assistant Deputy Secretary for Safe and Drug-Free Schools Kevin Jennings, speaking to the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN), in Iowa, 2000.

Jennings founded GLSEN, and was its executive director for a long time.  GLSEN promulgates a reading list that it purports promotes safe schools.  Teachers can order these books as part of their curriculum, or students can order them directly.

Gateway Pundit has more on the books, including excerpts.   You don’t have to be a Christian to find them wildly inappropriate for children, and it is just one more indication among many that Mr. Jennings should not be allowed near children, let alone acting as a safe schools czar.  One could ask, with cause, just who he is making the schools safe for,  since he has already indicated that he is perfectly ok with adults stealing our children’s innocence

Reading even a portion of the excerpts, and considering the judgement that finds a place for this sorry excuse for a human being in education, or an educational establishment that would for even a second, tarnish its credibility by even considering letting him be involved in any way, shape, or form, it is clear that we have departed completely from the goals set forth in the Northwest Ordinance, and as that has happened, can the safety of our people, resting on what is now an unguarded liberty, be far behind?

Of course there are many who think that Mr. Jennings needs to go.  I’m given hope by the fact that I am not the only one.  But it does nothing to soften my opinion.  It’s time for Mr. Jennings to go…before he makes the mistake of getting too close to my children.

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I had an afternoon to ponder some of the implications of Francis W. Porretto’s post at Eternity Road  (Wastrels: A Sunday Rumination) this morning.  And I started to feel depressed.  I think he’s right.  Right about the decline of America, and right to peg it to a lack of trust.  I started to think about what that means.

There are very few relationships that can recover from a lack of trust, and the situation is only exacerbated when you start considering how it is that much harder when the lack of trust exists in our relationships with our elected officials, too.

Trust between parent and child can be restored, when both are willing to work on it, and enough time is spent.  Trust between spouses can often be restored, although it requires genuine contrition and more work than many people are willing to put into it.  But the common feature to the restoration of trust in important relationships is time, and time is something that people who have been paying attention generally are not willing to give politicians.  For politicians, time is insulation.  It is enough time to make a fortune.  It is enough time to consolidate power.  It is enough time to let the electorate forget when you put someone else’s interests before their own, or at least enough time to toss the silly peasants who were foolish enough to elect you a bone on a regular enough basis that their selective amnesia will forgive your transgressions and cumulative compromises.  Time allows a politician to get comfortable enough to change his or her priorities.

So how else do we let them earn our trust?  Term limits?  While it may help to limit the damage they can do by keeping them from contracting beltwayitis, they will be leaving office because they are being compelled to do so.  Perhaps the best idea I have heard says “Use technology and require them all to stay in their districts, rather than go to D.C.”

It has the virtue of simplicity, but there are days when I wonder if anything is going to turn this train around.  I know that there are plenty of people who know that something is not right, and there are many, many more who can look at the decline and see it for what it is, but has there ever been a civilization that managed to stay or even reverse a decline?  I really don’t know.

In the early 1950s, wiseacre and all-around smart guy Issac Asimov wrote a trilogy of books about the decline of a galactic empire and the small group of farsighted people who managed to fool that empire’s ruling elite into banishing it to the outer rim, where it could preserve and advance mankind’s knowledge, and make the inevitable dark ages that would follow the fall of empire eminently shorter than it otherwise might be. Of course, they also had the benefit of interstellar travel, and a theory of mathematics that helped them to predict what human civilization was going to do at key points in the future, and how to keep it all from falling apart.

I’m not looking for such an easy answer.  I live here, and my kids will have to live here.  Leaving isn’t an option.  Yet when I see my fellow countrymen eager to give up more and more of their inherent and god-given power to a government that has proved continually that it simply isn’t capable of repaying that trust, simply because we no longer trust each other, I don’t have really stretch my imagination in order to contemplate a country where I may one day be considered a rebel because I refuse to yield the God-given freedom that better men than I risked everything to give to we, their posterity.  I wonder how those who were paying attention in 1859 and 1860 felt.  And in many ways, I feel deeply for the good men who, with sorrow in their hearts, made the decision to serve the South, not because they thought that slavery was a good and noble institution, but because they believed that the federal government kept trying to exercise power over their lives that was not granted to it.  And there are still moments when I realize that I’m looking for our version of Hari Seldon.

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 …but there are some people that it matters to more than others.

I know. The world seems to suck right now. Like “We’ve passed the event horizon of a black hole and are being pulled like taffy into microscopic threads” sucks. The Fist-Bumper-In-Chief and the Most Ethical Congress EVAH! seem Hellbent on destroying the economy, imposing a regime of environmental indulgences that will benefit everyone but the average citizen, and passing a health insurance takeover that will be just peachy…except for the reduced choices that it will lead to, along with rationing, poorer quality of care, government control of our private medical information, access to our bank accounts, and the basic unconstitutionally of what they propose, but aside from that, its all good. Well, except for the eurotrash and old media who just can’t seem to quit the President. So many accolades for so little in the way of accomplishments. Anyway, between this barrage, the ever-cycling “work stuff”, and some recent events for me personally, finding the time to try to deal with everything has been a little rough. But today I spent the day with heir number one, going to see the Certified Lego Professional in Tacoma, going to Johnny’s Fish Market and getting some fresh alder smoked king salmon, having lunch with him at Jimmy Mac’s, checking out the local sporting goods store, which had a mighty sweet Kimber I fell in love with, going to the comic shop, checking out a big fire engine, going to the family bookstore, and then checking out the legos at Target, before picking a little set for him to put together. An entire day, and no discussion of politics. No discussion about work. Just me and the boy, checking out some cool stuff, having a carnivore’s lunch, getting some neat old comics, mulling over future career possibilities, and getting some legos. I learn what is important to him, and maybe, just maybe, I get to shape the man he will one day become, and just have a carefree day in the meantime. It was good.

 

Ethan in the Firetruck

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