Friday, May 22, 2009

Stop Destroying the World

marriage, pseudogamy, esolen, traditional, christan, jesus, divorce, stupid,
On the one hand, I'm happy to finally see a "traditional marriage supporter" do something other than bash gays, on the other hand, somebody needs to stop worrying so very much about what others do. (Oh, and an award for the weirdest use of the word "addled" ever.)

Pseudogamy 101
Anthony Esolen

I've written in a post below that the real social problem we in America face is the number of people who are not married who behave as if they were. I'd like to revise that claim. Our problem is pseudogamy, false marriage, and it assumes many forms. Same-sex pseudogamy is but the latest and most flagrantly absurd, but it is not the first. We find the most fundamental form, from which other corruptions rise up like diseases, when a man and woman go through the ceremony and utter the traditional words "as long as you both shall live," while harboring the mental reservation, "as long, that is, as I am happy," or "as long as the marriage 'works,'" whatever that is supposed to mean. In other words, in the fundamental form of pseudogamy, we don't have people who are not married behaving as if they were, but people who are married (or who present themselves as having been married) behaving as if they were not.

Basically, if you get divorced, you were never married in the first place. Not really. It's a No True Scotsman, and it's no more valid in this instance than that particular logical fallacy ever is. It also reminds me of Ray Comfort's obsession with "false converts": if you used to be christian, but now you are not, then you never were a christian. It doesn't matter how sincere your belief was, it wasn't, and Ray is capable of determining that- even if he never met you. Mr. Esolen is capable, it appears, of determining who was really, truly married, and who was not. Yeesh.

Mr. Esolen seems to have predicted my response to "pseudogamy": who cares?

Why should anyone care about the private mental reservations entertained by the couple next door? The obvious answer is that those reservations are not really private. They will inevitably be talked about, urged upon others, or acted upon, if not by the couple next door, then by the couple two doors down, and then their problems are also ours.

Divorce is catching? We must "inevitably" gossip about others, try to talk our neighbors into divorcing, and . . . wtf? That's Teh Stoopid. You have to gossip about your neighbors. You don't have to get divorced because the Jones did, and anyone who does is just as stupid. We should encourage them to play in traffic.

We must live with their divorce. why? i have no idea which of my neighbors are married, cohabiting, divorced, whatever. i like my neighbors, but it's none of my business. We must try to teach their addled children. addled: confused or unable to think clearly. it's generally used to describe the mentally ill or drunk. i know children of divorce, and while they do tend to have some issues, they're not "addled" or unteachable. We must get along in neighborhoods blasted by the instability and the chaos. um, what, do you live in a war zone? i would imagine a certain percentage of my neighbors are divorced, my neighborhood is neither "blasted", "unstable" nor "chaotic" We must help feed the sharks in the divorce industry. who is this "we"? when did i start having to pay divorce lawyers for other people? We must suffer the now greater probability that other couples near us will follow their example. the horror! A culture in which divorce is common is a different thing from one in which it stands under severe disapproval; and everyone, divorced or not, must breathe the same cultural air. i for one, and glad that i live in a culture that allows abused women a way out, instead of "severe disapproval" for leaving their tormentor. Mr. Esolen is a little too into the severe disapproval.

jesus, jesus, jesus, god, god, god.

I know full well that men and women are sinners. dirty sinners in need of severe disapproval I'm a sinner, after all. shocked! i'm shocked! But even a poor marriage, when husband and wife do their duty by one another, stands as an example of the ideal, and in one way a more powerful example of it than will the good marriage, i think he means "loveless". a really bad marriage is not an a powerful example of anything other than pain. just as the man who stands by his post in defeat is a greater hero than one who does so in victory. marriage as war? we need to have a little talk about analogies, mr. esolen. And of course, just as the determination to stand by your post helps your comrades to victory even when all seems bleak, so the determination not to revoke your complete gift of self in a poor marriage may turn that marriage itself around and help others navigate through the storms. sorry, i'm not wasting the only life i'm getting in a loveless or abusive marriage just to make other people, what?, determined to stay in their own bad marriages? no, thanks. But in a nation of pseudogamy, the only place to turn to for the noble call for complete gift of self will be the military -- a call which few of us will even hear. mr. esolen is a little too into the sacrificing.

then we get a whole lot of words about self, and retaining your sense of self and how dare you retain your individuality instead of . . . yeah, i don't fucking know. i'm gonna go somewhere and sin. and introduce chaos to the world!


  1. Pasta! Christians are stupid! Addled kids? Fundy please. I begged my mom to divorce my Dad. If she hadn't have stayed with him "for the sake of the children" we both would have had a lot less bruises.

    Yes in a limited way he has a point. My wife and I don't always dance around waving sunshine and roses at each other. Believing in the marriage has helped us through some bad patches. There are exceptions however.

    This tard seems to think that saving the marriage is the ultimate objective and it just isn't. Building a happy, loving environment for a family is. He also seems to think that everyone who gets a divorce just jumps right into it for fun. That may happen sometimes, I even know of a case but it isn't the standard.

    Most people I know who have gotten divorced have had damn good reasons. Cheating, spousal abuse, child abuse, drug abuse. These are not the sort of issues a person should just "put on a happy face" about.

    If your spouse cheats LEAVE. If your spouse beats you LEAVE. If your spouse hurts your kids LEAVE. It is that simple. I believe in marriage and I take my vows seriously. I have no doubt my wife and I will be together forever, but we left the "till death do us part", line out of our vows for a reason. Neither one of us would put up with that kind of abusive crap even once.

  2. This guy is pro-perjury and bearing false witness. Before no-fault divorce, when both parties wanted a divorce, they would often either arrange for the women to find a hired mistress with her husband so that "adultery" would have taken place, or else to claim to have been subjected to cruelty. In either case, perjury was being committed, and everyone knew what was going on, making a mockery of the justice system.

    Given he was given half the chance, I wouldn't be surprised if he wanted to ban divorce for any reason.

    Of course, no amount of facts will get in the way of this guy's misogyny. No wonder so many people like him are big on covenant marriage; that should really be called a wife beater's protection act.

  3. Oh, my, GOD. (Hi, remember me? I'm back!) I've heard this kind of logic a lot, actually, which is sort of terrifying. Especially the "stand firm in your post" and "perservere despite the threat of destruction" call to stay in a marriage, no matter how bad.

    Which is twisted. Christians will argue that one must honor their vow before God, which is interesting, because the argument can easily be made that if the other spouse is abusive or acts lovelessly toward you, the vow is already broken. Anyway, the argument that God calls us to stay in a marriage no matter how bad it is really only is valid for those who believe in God. So to call a marriage that doesn't hold that ideal a "fake" marriage is a tricky proposition. Either one is stating that only God fearing Christians have real marriages, or, well... Okay, so that's what he's inferring.

    so, in that case, is a gay marriage any more fake than a straight marriage made by two non-
    Christians? Heh.

  4. Some of these people are so out of touch with reality that they're still trying to fight battles they lost long ago. Treating divorce as shameful and expecting people to sacrifice their lives to a mistake is just one of those battles. Next up, he'll be trying to re-open the case against giving women the vote.

  5. This stuff is like Rick Warren. There's two ways to interpret it, one smarmy, the other terrifying.

    The smarmy way is "Gee whiz, folks. We shouldn't go around criticizing the gosh-darn sinners for not respecting the institution of marriage, when we ourselves get married without both making a total commitment to our spouses. Let's all try really hard to be better husbands and wives and set a good example!"

    The terrifying way is "If you end your marriage for any reason, you're no better than teh couples who live in sin or teh gays or teh [insert naughty people here]. So you find strange bruises on the kids, then come home from work early to find your husband or wife stabbing them with a kitchen knife? No divorce for you! So your husband or wife cheats, gambles away their paycheck, drinks away yours, and refuses to mend their ways after repeated interventions etc? No divorce for you! Also, per strict Biblical rules, only one marriage per person per lifetime! Anything less is adultery, and remarriage should be treated as adultery no matter the reason the first marriage ended!"

    Those who wish to see it the smarmy way would be horrified, simply horrified, should you or I suggest to them that the terrifying interpretation exists. They may say we are cynical and always want to think the worst about people. Perhaps they have never seen those arguments used on anyone.

  6. welcome back, Lindsey K!

    yeah, i begged my mom to leave my dad. if she had, well, a whole lot of things would have been different. like me not dropping out of college to work two jobs to help pay for her and my sister's life saving medications after my father took off for parts unknown with his younger-than-me girlfriend.

    for the sake of the children, my ass.

  7. @Infidel753 - Women can vote?

    It's true that some people give up on marriages too easily, that goes for any relationship, not just the ones where public vows have been made.

    Apart from that, I agree with what everyone else has said about staying in abusive relationships, male or female: get out of the relationship, get your kids out of there too.


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