Prejudice in America—Part II! . . . (Moral Values)

by Jimmy Akin

in Apologetics, Current Affairs, Moral Theology

A_million_ways_to_go_green_badge In my previous postwe talked about whether anti-Catholicism is the last socially acceptable prejudice remaining in America, as is often claimed.

We saw that, while what counts as “socially acceptable” can be debated, there are a number of easily namable prejudices that are quite acceptable in America, including prejudices against conservative Protestants (Evangelicals and Fundamentalists), against organized/western religion as a whole, and against Muslims (in the sense of actual undue hostility, not just prudent caution due to 9/11). (There is also, of course, some anti-Semitism, but it is not socially acceptable in general American culture.)

Contemporary America’s socially acceptable prejudices go way beyond religion, however. Let’s name a few non-religious ones . . .

1) Prejudice against large families: This is something that some Catholics end up experiencing. Stories about of people with large families encountering those who sneeringly ask them (even in front of the children), “Haven’t you heard of birth control?”

This form of prejudice—originally inspired by the Rev. Thomas Malthus and reinvigorated in the 1960s & 1970s—is particularly short-sighted since children are the economic future of the country. We need more children to stave off a demographic winter like the ones poised to sweep across Japan and Europe.

This leads to another prejudice . . .

2) Prejudice against non-environmentalists: Environmentalists have been so successful in worming their way into American media culture that you can’t watch TV or listen to the radio without a constant, Chinese-water-torture-like series of exhortations to “Go green,” minimize your “carbon footprint,” and promote “sustainability.”

Story after story focuses on environmental issues with either no challenge at all to the environmentalist viewpoint (it is simply assumed to be true) or with only lip service (frequently sneering lip service) given to alternative viewpoints.

3) Prejudice against traditional values concerning homosexuality:  Homosexuals have achieved great success in framing their cause in terms of the civil rights model, with the result that objectively disordered behavior is commonly treated as normal, and anyone who disagrees with this is treated as a pariah.

The way the trend is going, expect anyone with traditional sexual values to be regarded as the equivalent of a Klansman within a generation.

On the other hand, there is also:

4) Prejudice against homosexuals: While the Holy See has been quite firm that homosexual behavior is objectively disordered and not to be given societal approval, it also recognizes that there is such a thing as unjust discrimination against homosexuals (see also here, and here).

While conscientious Catholics studiously avoid such prejudice, not everybody is a conscientious Catholic, and all one has to do is look at the bullying behavior of teenage boys toward those they even suspect of homosexual tendencies to see the malice that is out there.

These prejudices go beyond religion and into the realm of moral values, but then there are prejudices that are at best only peripherally related to such values.

Those will be the subject of our next post.

What are your thoughts?

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{ 7 comments }

Gregory Williams October 27, 2010 at 5:54 am

I applaud your bravery, Jimmy!
Nothing brings out the trolls like a post that even tangentially mentions homosexuality. I pray for a steadfast resolve for you now and when you make your next post.

Charlene October 27, 2010 at 8:02 am

Large families–no kidding. Just the other day I had some environmental whackadoo tell me that people like me (a mom to more than 2 kids) should be taxed heavily for my indiscretion. You know, to prevent such things happening in the future and ruining his “precious” environment with more people. Because “everyone knows” parents who have more than one or two (or perhaps any) biological children are “irresponsible breeders”.
This, during a conversation in which a friend, in passing, said “saying there are too many children is like saying there are too many flowers” which prompted aforesaid whackadoo to go off on a tangent about how “responsible” people would “adopt, but not procreate” and how there were, indeed, too many children on the planet. To which I replied “you’re heartless”…among other things which I should probably relate in confession, not here.

Dominic October 27, 2010 at 9:45 am

To the whackadoos in question,its irresponsible because they want to reduce the world population to a more workable,more subjugatable ratio.
And as far as the insults thrown at you go,they are formulated to illicit a response from you,to shame you,and to make you feel like an outcast from the ”mainstream”.
It’s all a part of the liberal/leftist strategy-book,used daily by the so-called Gay Mafia,to marginalize and ridicule Christains worldwide.
They want you to try and haul off and land a punch,that way,they can say,”See?we told you these religious nuts are dangerous.”
Pretty subtle eh?
Dominic.
+++

Mary October 27, 2010 at 1:28 pm

Too many children.
Not too many adults.

Dominic October 30, 2010 at 6:45 am

If there are no offspring,there will be no future adults.
The procreative process is ingrained in most normal humans.
It is only the misfits,the malcontents and the deviants that either deny or try to subvert this,aside from those of us that have denied themselves and stayed their natural urges for higher causes.
So,are you one of the ”extinction of humanity”crowd,or just running off at the mouth like every other liberal?
I’ve dealt with both types.
Usually,i’ve more often than not found that any liberal is simply a moral coward,without fail.
Dominic.
+++

Burnt Marshwiggle November 1, 2010 at 11:14 pm

Charlene, I too have felt the scorn from the world as soon as the fourth child arrived. The scorn from weekly mass-goers came long before that.
I’ve spent the last few years trying to come up with some responses that wouldnt require me to make an extra trip to the confessional.
You do know where babies come from don’t you?
I think it has something to do with my wife’s stunning good looks and her irresistable charm. OR
Well, my co-worker did warn me that something like this might happen after I bought my wife some chocolates even though I hadnt done anything to make her mad… OR
Yes, do you need some expert advice? You look like you need some.
Are they all yours?
Heck no, the teen-agers are back at home baby sitting the newborn.
Looks like you’ve got your hands full
Only when I don’t give the kids enough chores to do.
You must have so much patience
Heck no, I had patience back when I had two or three kids and they ran wild. Now that I’ve got zero-tolerance for bad behavior, no one calls me patient anymore but they do sometimes comment on how well behaved my kids are.
You are so brave
You don’t need to be brave to have kids because they aren’t scary. They’re like vintage cars, they cost a lot of money and require lots of work but they aren’t scary and so you don’t need to be brave to have one.
You are crazy
Yes, but not because I have so many kids but because I’m not independently wealthy. If I were independently wealthy, I’d be eccentric, not crazy. And if I were filthy stinking rich, I could write a book on how having a large family gave me the life skills to becoming filthy stinking rich and you’d all buy my book and try to be more like me.
When are you going to get snipped?
Would Conan the Barbarian get snipped?
So when are you going to have another kid?
It’s a little early to be talking about another one. Maybe I should wait until my wife gets amnesia and forgets what happened in the delivery room.

Bob November 6, 2010 at 6:05 pm

With great sadness, I would argue that anti-Semitism is becoming more and more socially acceptable. This seems to be following a historical trend with other countries that are experiencing economic hardships of one degree or another. And the shoddy treatment, both in words and in actions, of Israel by our current administration isn’t helping much either. Very sad.

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