Discussion in 'Debate and Discussion' started by Jason McCullough, Jan 23, 2013.
This is certainly something.
Add to the mix that the "Silver Ring" crowd is more likely to become unintentionally pregnant, and oh the irony is rich.
This made me remember this blog entry from Peter Watts:
I admit that my initial reaction was "Well, duh." If you prevent unmarried women from getting abortions, you end up with more single mothers. But once I actually read the article, it was interesting to see the sort of sociological changes they were talking about.
I experienced some of that myself when I was in high school; in our Sunday School class, they had one day in which they very bluntly said, "Don't get married just because you're pregnant or got someone else pregnant. Marriage is for life, and it's better to have a kid while unmarried than to bind yourself forever to someone just because you had sex with them once." About half the class considered this a "Well, duh," sort of moment, but we were a little shocked that adults would actually admit that this made good sense. (Not that it stopped the one girl in that high school who got pregnant--the only one I ever heard about, anyway--from marrying her boyfriend, but...complex situation.) "Don't have sex outside of marriage" was an important thing in the community, but "Marriage is a sacred commitment and should only be with someone God wants you to be with FOREVER" was considered much, much more important.
But then we get into the really weird hierarchies of more and less acceptable sexual "sins" in the community, and that could be...weird. I still remember hearing about one support group for Christian parents with straying adult offspring, where one father talked about how upset he was that his daughter was living with a man while not married, and another set of parents pointed out that, hey, at least she was having sex out of marriage with a man. Which was recounted as a sort of wry humor: "At least your non-virginal daughter is still heterosexual! Ha ha! Could be worse!"
tl;dr version: Article makes sense. Hierarchies of disapproved-of behavior in a culture can make for weird yet logical results.
Yeah, I'd never seen it quite laid out that clearly. Pregnancy is bad; getting married is very bad; abortion is unthinkable.
I wonder what long term effect this has on political views, voting, and so forth? I would expect that being a single mother is the sort of thing that would swing you over to the left on many issues, but such things are hard to predict.
I feel like I could make some sort of chart where sexual sins get ranked from least to most evil. Something like:
- Not having sex with one's spouse.
- Being in a situation where someone could think you were having sex with someone, even though you weren't.
- Fooling around without actually having sex (unmarried).
- Actually having sex (unmarried).
- Actually having sex, while living with the person you're having sex with.
- Marrying someone you shouldn't marry.
- Having sex with someone who is married (while unmarried yourself).
- Having sex with someone who is not married (while married yourself).
- Having sex with someone who is married, while you're also married (to someone else).
- Divorce. (Though in some communities, this slides back to right before the various forms of adultery.)
- Molesting someone.
- Raping someone.
- Wild orgies in the streets.
- Having sex with someone of the same sex.
- ...and not trying to hide it, but actually being okay with that.
- Having an abortion.
So if you've already had sex outside of marriage (bad!), continuing to raise the kid without getting married isn't adding any new sin, while marrying the wrong person would be a move upward on the sin scale, especially because it might lead to the even worse prospect of The Divorce. But of course having an abortion is out of the question, because that's even worse than living with your acknowledged lover of the same sex. So you end up with a lot of Good Christian Girls ending up as single mothers, because that's viewed as the second-best response to the first mistake. (The best response, of course, is to provide your healthy white infant to a nice Christian family that wants to adopt. But I digress.)
I've never been able to figure out what the hell the deal is with divorce in the (mostly Southern) evangelical world. It's "bad", but it's very very sotto voice criticisimed because there's so many powerful or reliable people in the community who do it. I'd say it's ranked the least sinly sin of the bunch judging by rhetoric and actions.
Oh, well. There's also that part. There's the chart for the order in which you arrange badness based on what people say is worse and worst, and then there's the other chart, for the order in which you arrange badness based on what will actually get you the most social flak. I conflated the two a bit there. If you have enough social pull, you can very very quietly get an abortion and be right back with the rest of the protestors in front of the clinic a week later. If you're already a bit of a disdained person in the community, "Was once in a situation where possibly having sex could've occurred" can be enough to tar you as a Shameless Wicked Bad Influence Who's A Hypocrite For Denying It Happened for life.
But being a single mom does end up a bit lower on the scale than some of the others, because as abortion (and GL rights--B and T really don't show up in the fight here, except as more proof of debauchery in the G and L part) becomes more of the one defining issue, being a single mom immediately proves three things:
1) You had sex. (Bad!)
2) ...but it was with a man. (WOOHOO STILL NOT GAY.)
3) ...and didn't have an abortion. (HURRAH FOR BABIES.)
Which starts running into the issue where a lot of young gay and lesbian teenagers end up having unprotected sex leading to pregnancy because it's a way of fending off the social hostility for being perceived as non-straight... argh. But I guess that's sort of a topic for a different thread.
Where does "having non-procreative sex with a spouse" rank? Or is that just a Catholic thing, and not part of the larger Christian belief system?
Just a Catholic thing, though some weirder (from my perspective!) branches of fundamentalism have started trending that way. I was raised by missionaries, and they were of the opinion that birth control was a Damn Good Thing, as was having marvelous enthusiastic sex with one's spouse even when infertile, after menopause, etc. (They gave me a book about having good sex (the Christian way!) when I got married. It was very sweet.) I associate the emphasis on "only for making the babies!" with fringe groups.
Which is why conservative Catholics make me narrow my eyes faster than other conservative Christians. I was raised Catholic, I know how Fucking Crazy being a conservative one would make you.
I like reading history books, and the ones about sex and religion are especially fun. According to some authors, in the Middle Ages Catholics believed that a woman couldn't get pregnant unless she had an orgasm during intercourse. Great for women who wanted sex, very very bad for women who got pregnant from rape. The original Puritans let their older-teens-and-up children sleep with their significant others in the same house as the parents, as long as the lovers got married if the female got pregnant. And the same Victorians who were shouting about the horrors of masturbation had doctors getting women off as part of the "cure for hysteria". (In fact, vibrators were invented because male doctors got bored with manually stimulated clitorises.)
Old time sexual mores are not always what we think they were...
Well, it is true that orgasm causes the cervix to act as a "pump" that sorta dips into the pool of semen.
Not necessarily pleasant imagery there but I don't know how else to phrase it.
Well, yeah, it's a tiny bit easier to get pregnant if the woman orgasms, but it's not anywhere near a requirement for pregnancy.
Yeah I understand that, I'm just wondering if they actually found that out through uhh... testing and record keeping, or if it was just something they postulated without any evidence.
I think their theory was the man has to orgasm, so clearly the woman does too, since we all know women's bodies are just somewhat defective men's bodies.
Medical science needing evidence is really only a comparatively recent development. One of the go-to examples being poor old Ignaz Semmelweis, who had the very unscientific idea that if doctors would wash their goddamn hands that maybe mortality rates from infections would be a bit less absurdly high. Colleagues rejected this as being not at all scientifically sound.
You know what else will create single mothers?
Laws that force women to carry rape babies. Because, y'know, it's evidence.
oh my fucking god what
Non-intellectuals have to actually play things out to their logical conclusions, because they can't do intellectual exercises.
My only problem with this theory is that once things have played out, the response is "the test is still ongoing, these last thirty results were flukes!"
Obama administration backs off on the prescription requirement for underage women for morning after pill. Appeasement shifts into lower gear, I guess.
Was the basis for their argument really "common sense"? Simply citing that should lead to beatings.
"It's common sense to be chickenshit in the face of anti-abortion activist pressure, especially when the the president is a moderate conservative rather than the liberal he is mistaken for sometimes by virtue of not being a monstrous hatemonger."
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