If you had told someone in the 1950s that, in about two generations, homosexuality would largely be normalized and faux (same-sex) marriage would be gaining widespread approval, they’d have called you crazy. Never, ever under the stars and stripes. Why, pugnacious pundit Bill O’Reilly himself opined as recently as 10 to 15 years ago that faux marriage would never be accepted in America. Ah, what a difference a decade makes in the (mis?)information age, where ideas can be transmitted worldwide at a button’s touch.
I can’t tell you exactly when I knew faux marriage would gain traction — not in terms of date and time, anyway — but suffice it to say it was at least as soon as I heard the idea uttered by some obscure academic or activist on society’s fringes. As for homosexuality, there were some sagacious souls who realized decades ago that it would eventually be accepted. How? The same way a few of us knew in high school, almost instinctively, that our education paled in comparison to that of previous generations: trajectory. If you know an asteroid’s trajectory, you can predict not only where it was years ago, but where it will be in the future. And so it is with cultural trajectory.
Yet if I say that our current cultural trajectory — a bizarre trek that has caused us to boldly go where no American had gone before — has as a point on its arc the acceptance of pedophilia, I’m sure I’ll hear “never, ever under the stars and stripes!” This is a normal human reaction. But the past is a picture of futures man inevitably will paint again, and history hollers its warnings for those with ears to hear.
First consider a simple fact: There is virtually no historical precedent — if any at all — for faux marriage, yet we’re accepting it. But there is great historical precedent for pedophilia, that thing most would currently say we could never accept. And the obvious place to start here is with ancient Greece. The civilization is well-known for its acceptance of homosexuality, yet what actually was most common in this arena was pederasty, sexual relationships between men and boys. It is said that in the mid and late periods of ancient Sparta, the practice was institutionalized in the city-state’s military camps, with a 12-year-old boy being attached to a mature man who would become the child’s mentor and, apparently, molester. And homoerotic ancient Greek art and, more significantly, the casual way prominent Greeks spoke of pederasty attest to its widespread acceptance. As to the latter, historian Plutarch addresses Theban pederasty in Life of Pelopidas and explains that it was an educational device for boys that was designed to “soften, while they were young, their natural fierceness” and “temper the manners and characters of the youth.” The poet Solon gushed about pederasty in his poem “Boys and Sport,” and tradition tells us that the warrior group the Sacred Band of Thebes comprised pederastic man-youth pairings. In fact, the Greeks even had words describing the players in man-boy relationships: An erastes was an adult man who courted or was in a sexual relationship with a boy (this accounts for part of the derivation of “pederast”), who himself was known as an eromenos.
Yet it wasn’t just the “advanced” Greeks. History is littered with examples of primitive peoples that practiced institutionalized pedophilia; the Sambia tribe of Papua New Guinea does so to this day, and many military personnel will attest to how the abuse of “dancing boys” is widespread in Afghanistan. The reality? When it wasn’t actually prescribing it as a good that created a bond between brothers in arms or served some other end, pagan morality often had little negative to say about pedophilia (and Islamic cultures may tolerate it). Perhaps now we see why philosopher C.S. Lewis once said, “Sex is not messed up because it was put in the closet; it was put in the closet because it was messed up.” And since that closet was made with Christian morality, and the faith is now ridiculed and attacked and its closet is being thrown wide open, isn’t it logical to suspect that anything and everything within it could, quite possibly, emerge? Yet how would we get from where we are now — perhaps point G — to a pederastic point X? Well, it’s instructive to explore how we got to G in the first place, and this brings us to the ABCs of social manipulation via the use of media, entertainment, academia, specious science, and philoso-babble.
A book was published in 1989 entitled After the Ball: How America Will Conquer Its Fear and Hatred of Gays in the 90’s. In it, authors Marshall Kirk and Hunter Madsen — a marketing man by trade who, take note, once used the pen name “Erastes Pill” — called for a desensitization of Americans to homosexuality through a “continuous flood of gay-related advertising,” a “conversion of the average American’s emotions, mind, and will, through a planned psychological attack, in the form of propaganda fed to the nation via the media.” Of course, Kirk and Madsen weren’t puppeteers or prophets as much as good trajectory readers, as the movement they encouraged was well under way by the time they penned their book.
In 1977 already, we had the sitcom Soap with its openly homosexual character Jodie, played by comedian Billy Crystal. And while some would argue that the character was created to make the show cutting edge rather than to manipulate hearts (and, of course, both could have been motivations), it certainly made for ingenious propaganda. Take a funny and sympathetic character — and Crystal was most comedic — but make him a homosexual on an entertaining show that is the “thing to watch.” This is effective because whether it’s Soap, La Cage aux Folles, or another work, if you laugh at something enough, you’re no longer outraged by it. Also be sure to have that homosexual character say things such as “I’m a person, just like you,” which Jodie did (or a paraphrase of it), but, most significantly, just show him acting, and interacting with others, just as you would. For a big part of normalizing something is showing those who embody it acting normally.
The next step after normalization and tolerance is engendering sympathy and affection, and entertainment’s role in this is simple to understand. Just as people may condemn the sin but not the sinner, they also have trouble loving the sinner but not the sin. This is why a mother may accept even a son’s heinous crimes and why people will justify the scandalous behavior of a favorite politician or sports figure. Likewise, when people come to like a show — and, more specifically, a character on it — they generally start to accept what that character represents. And just think how successful this entertainment campaign has been. Homosexual characters are now a staple of TV and film and, as in the movie Sling Blade, are sometimes the work’s only compassionate voice of reason.
But then there are the agencies working in concert with entertainment. There is specious science reported — and often twisted — by special-interest media and academia; thus do we hear about things such as the “gay gene,” which not only doesn’t concern the heritability of happiness but also has never been found. Nonetheless, it is used to give weight to the argument that homosexuality is inborn and, well, haven’t you heard, “God doesn’t make mistakes”? The media and academia are also careful to frame the homosexual agenda as a matter of “rights,” “equality,” and “minority” victimhood while avoiding talk of “morality” (they will, however, apply their feelings-derived preferences and call opponents “haters,” “bigots,” and “intolerant”). This is easy to do, too, since they’ve discredited moral reality with the philoso-babble of moral relativism and its refrains, “Who is to judge?” and “All values are equal.” Of course, this credo could be used to justify killing homosexuals as easily as accepting them, but this realization involves understanding an intellectual argument, and manipulating emotion is the name of the game here. And as long as entertainment — an arena so powerful that Plato warned how even just music had the capacity to reshape civilization — pushes people’s emotions in the desired direction, the field will be yours.
But will a day really come that marks the first time entertainment is placed in pedophilia’s service? And when would this be? I can predict this with some precision: in about 20 years ago.
There has long been the “Pedobear” Internet meme, a little comedic cartoon character Web users often associate with news stories about pedophilia. And remember what happens when people start to laugh at something? Then there was the “Chester the Molester” cartoon character in Hustler magazine (the creator of which, Dwaine Tinsley, was once convicted of molesting his 13-year-old daughter). Far more significant than a porno-mag offering, however, was a film made in 1993 called For a Lost Soldier. Based on a true story, the movie somewhat vividly portrays a WWII-era sexual relationship between a Canadian soldier and a 13-year-old European boy. What I’d like to focus on here, however, is a New York Times review of the film written by someone named Stephen Holden. Entitled “Treating a Delicate Story of a Soldier and a Boy Tenderly,” you’d think the paper was reviewing Romeo and Juliet. Holden writes that the story “takes up … a romantic relationship between a grown-up and a child, and invests it with an aching tenderness”; that it is “more than a love story”; that “Walt [the molester] seems almost as innocent as Jeroen [the child]”; and describes the “affection” between the two as “touching.” Moreover, the Times not only takes no issue with the film’s non-judgmental treatment of pederasty, it writes, “One of the strengths of the film is its refusal to load the story with contemporary psychological and social baggage. There is no mention of homosexuality. Nor is there any implied accusation of child abuse.... The film assigns no blame and assesses no damages.” In fact, the paper says the movie’s only failure “is in finding a coherent dramatic frame for the story.” And then there is the kicker: The review describes the “affection” between Walt and Jeroen as “the love that dare not speak its name.” My, where have we heard that one before? And what is the implication here? Should a man-boy sexual relationship be able to speak its name? NAMBLA certainly thinks so.
A more recent film in the same vein is L.I.E. (2001). It portrays pederast Big John, an ex-marine with a penchant for young male prostitutes but who also, you see, has a human side. As Ed Gonzalez wrote at SlantMagazine.com, the film “suggests that a pederast could actually have something useful [to] contribute to society.” And as A.O. Scott of the New York Times put it, compared “with Howie’s [the 15-year-old main character’s] well-meaning but clueless guidance counselor, Big John seems like a benign, common-sensical uncle.”
Of course, neither Big John nor For a Lost Soldier’s Walt is portrayed as particularly sympathetic. But they’re not portrayed as particularly villainous, either. And this non-judgmentalism is in fact a judgment, in that it serves to place, via embodiment representation, morally evil behavior in the morally neutral category. Except for their habit of indulging the ancient Greeks’ “unspeakable vice,” Walt and John are presented as acting, and interacting with others, normally — and often even charitably. After all, they are “people just like you,” right?
That is how it starts.
With entertainment having already broken the ice in whitewashing pedophiles, can the first claims that their desires are just another inborn orientation be far behind?
Actually, they’re already behind us.
On January 14 of this year, the Los Angeles Times ran an article entitled, “Many researchers taking a different view of pedophilia: Pedophilia once was thought to stem from psychological influences early in life. Now, many experts view it as a deep-rooted predisposition that does not change.” (Emphasis in original.) The piece starts out with a story about one Paul Christiano, who, as a young child, was fascinated by girls and loved “how their spindly bodies tumbled in gymnastics,” wrote the paper. We’re then told that while Christiano grew up, his sexual tastes didn’t: He remained tormented by an attraction to pre-pubescent girls. Christiano is the “sympathetic character,” mind you, the hapless soul meant to put a human face on pedophilia. But now consider what he said about unsuccessful court-ordered therapy he was forced to undergo after being caught with child pornography in 1999. As the Times reported, “‘These people felt they could snuff out the desire, or shame me into denying it existed,’ he said. ‘But it’s as intrinsic as the next person’s heterosexuality.’”
“As intrinsic as the next person’s heterosexuality… ” Where have we heard that before? And the paper then does something else that should sound familiar. It gives Christiano’s claim the imprimatur of science, writing:
In the laboratory, researchers are coming to the same conclusion.
Like many forms of sexual deviance, pedophilia once was thought to stem from psychological influences early in life. Now, many experts view it as a sexual orientation as immutable as heterosexuality or homosexuality. It is a deep-rooted predisposition — limited almost entirely to men — that becomes clear during puberty and does not change....
Scientists at the Toronto center [Center for Mental Health and Addiction in Toronto] have uncovered a series of associations that suggest pedophilia has biological roots.
The paper then tells us that pedophiles are generally an inch shorter than normal people, have I.Q.s 10 points lower on average and less white matter in their brains, and that the first two of these factors are “consistent with developmental problems, whether before birth or in childhood.” They sure are — and their interpretation is consistent with a cultural problem. The operative phrase here is “whether before birth or in childhood” because, if the latter, it indicates a nurture-oriented cause of pedophilia, not a nature-oriented one (as to nurture’s significance, research has indicated that environment can influence even, amazingly, gene expression). Yet the Times article glosses over the nurture possibility — it doesn’t match the agenda the paper is trying to advance.
There is another fact the Times has to massage. Continuing with the inborn theme, it tells us, “Among the most compelling findings is that 30% of pedophiles are left-handed or ambidextrous, triple the general rate. Because hand dominance is established through some combination of genetics and the environment of the womb, scientists see that association as a powerful indicator that something is different about pedophiles at birth. ‘The only explanation is a physiological one,’ said James Cantor, a leader of the [Toronto] research.” Yet the Times had written earlier in its piece that researchers have basically dispensed with the “popular belief” that childhood sexual abuse is a significant factor in pedophilia because “only about a third of offenders say they were molested” as children. So let’s get this straight: When 30 percent of pedophiles share some sort of inborn characteristic, it’s compelling evidence for the nature thesis. But when (only?) 33 percent share a traumatic life experience, it’s compelling evidence discrediting the nurture one? This clearly is the spinning of data to fit an agenda.
And who are the “experts” cited in the Times article? Many of them, it seems, crawled out of the woodwork to attend a 2011 symposium in Baltimore, Maryland — an event whose focus was the normalization of adult-child sexual relationships. WND.com reported at the time that it was “held by the ‘minor-attracted people’ advocacy group B4U-ACT to disseminate ‘accurate information’ on the position that pedophilia is just one more alternative sexual orientation.” As such, the conference speakers contended, the American Psychiatric Association should no longer list pedophilia as a psychological condition in its Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM). Drawing an important parallel, Dr. Judith Reisman, a longtime crusader against child sexual abuse who attended the symposium, “explained that the same strategy was used by homosexual activists in the 1970s when same-sex attractions were removed from the APA’s list of disorders. Eventually, the legalization of ‘gay marriage,’ the mandatory homosexuality lessons in public schools and the brand new policy of allowing open homosexuality in the U.S. military resulted,” writes WND. Reporting further on the positions taken at the conference, WND wrote:
Dr. John Sadler (University of Texas) argued that diagnostic criteria for mental disorders should not be based on concepts of vice since such concepts are subject to shifting social attitudes and doing so diverts mental-health professions from their role as healers....
Fred Berlin of Johns Hopkins … argued in favor of “acceptance of and compassion for people who are attracted to minors....”
… Richard Kramer, who represented B4U-ACT at the event, contended listing pedophilia as a disorder stigmatizes the “victims” of the lifestyle choice.
… Conference speakers said the Diagnostic Manual should “focus on the needs” of the pedophile and should have “a minimal focus on social control” rather than a focus on the “need to protect children.”
… Self-described “gay activist” and speaker Jacob Breslow said it is proper for children to be “the object of our attraction.” Breslow said pedophiles shouldn’t need to get consent from a child to have sex any more than they would get consent from a shoe to wear it.
… Andrew Hinderliter of the University of Illinois said the boundary between the helping professions and the criminal justice system can be blurred.
Note that B4U-ACT takes pains to rebrand pedophiles as “minor-attracted people” in the same way activists once strove to ensure the euphemism “gay” would supplant “homosexual.”
Liberty Counsel Action vice president J. Matt Barber, who also attended the conference, summed up its themes thus (quotations are Barber’s, as reported by WND): Adult lust for children is “normative,” people indulging it are unfairly “demonized,” children are capable of consenting to sex, “wrong” as a concept isn’t applicable to “minor-attracted people,” and the DSM “ignores that pedophiles ‘have feelings of love and romance for children’ the same way adult heterosexuals have for each other.”
Logically Defending Illicit Lust
Just as significantly, these are far from the only times such views have been expressed. In a 2002 article entitled “Raising Sexually Healthy Youth: Rights. Respect. Responsibility & Parent-Child Communication,” the group Advocates for Youth stressed that children are “sexual from birth.” Ann-Katrin Müller in Der Spiegel reported that German homosexual “rights” organizations and even a sizable number of Green Party politicians have a long history of supporting pro-pedophilia causes. Author Judith Levine penned a 2003 book in which she “suggests the threat of pedophilia and molestation by strangers is exaggerated by adults who want to deny young people the opportunity for positive sexual experiences,” wrote Fox News. Anti-fracking activist Vera Scroggins has advocated that parents initiate young children into sex, writing, “Who better to do it, than the parents first?” And, of course, there is bug researcher turned self-proclaimed sex expert Alfred Kinsey, who we now know was a pedophile using science as a cover for the indulging of his perversion. As I reported in “According to Kinsey, Deviancy Is the New Normal,” in The New American, all the aforementioned ideas — that children are sexual from birth, that relations with adults don’t harm them, etc. — can be traced back to him and his associates. And these ideas are lent credibility even though it has been established that Kinsey was a scientific fraud who misrepresented data for the purposes of legitimizing perversion.
And when you combine this special-interest “science” with specious reasoning, you have a very dangerous one-two punch of prevarication. For example, consider again the Los Angeles Times article. It does contain a grain of truth. That is to say, people generally don’t ask for the feelings they have, and, as C.S. Lewis noted ages ago, sexual problems can be quite intractable. Yet it’s silly — and often just agenda-greasing spin — to confuse intractability with innateness. We all know that influences and events during formative years can have far-reaching consequences and can almost imprint behavior (that is why they’re called formative years); raise a boy in an abusive and criminal ghetto home, for instance, and he may exhibit change-resistant negative behavior patterns the rest of his days. This also places in perspective a claim made by many a homosexual: “I’ve had these feelings for my whole life.” This is either sloppy thinking or a rationalization. Since most everyone has recollections reaching back to only three, four or even five years of age, all virtually anyone can say with assurance is, “I’ve had these feelings for as long as I can remember.” And those lost-in-memory first few years of life are the most significant of all.
Without Morals, Everything Is Normal
The folly of the intractability-equals-innateness thesis is further illustrated by applying it consistently. For example, it’s applied to homosexuality and “gender dysphoria” (feeling you’re a member of one sex stuck in the body of the other), but what about “Body Integrity Identity Disorder” (BIID), which involves persistent and seemingly irremediable feelings that a body part doesn’t belong on your body? Would it justify amputation? Actually, two BIID “patients” found a Scottish doctor willing to do just that and had two healthy legs removed, a testimonial to what can happen when we elevate feelings to ultimate-arbiter status. When beset by anomalous, self-destructive, or perverse impulses, the default assumption should be that the issue is a psychological problem, not a physical or genetically induced one.
But this counsel is now viewed as heresy because the “experts” have transitioned back to the nature side in the nature/nurture debate (at least when political correctness allows it: They certainly won’t attribute different achievement among the races to genetics — yet). It was in fashion during the early 1900s as well, then in the form of the eugenics movement, until the association with Nazi horrors discredited it. We then saw nurture dogma’s ascendancy and heard pap such as, “The sexes will be the same if we raise them identically,” as these pendulum-and-pabulum practitioners swung from one extreme to the other and proved that G.K. Chesterton was right when he called common sense “that forgotten branch of psychology.” But of more concern right now is what is quickly becoming a forgotten branch of philosophy: morality.
While the nature-oriented eugenics movement sought to eliminate what it deemed defects, our nature-oriented movement often holds that if something is natural, it cannot be a defect. This is the “God doesn’t make mistakes” argument, the implication being that if something is inborn, it cannot be wrong. And the greatest danger here isn’t that this is used to justify homosexuality — or even that it could be used to justify pedophilia — but that it could literally justify anything branded “innate.”
First note that whether we believe our world is naturally flawed or demonically fallen, it’s plain we aren’t born perfect. Spina bifida, cleft palates, and Down syndrome attest to this in the physical realm, and the only reason there hasn’t been a powerful movement to normalize such things is that people generally don’t find being deformed or mentally compromised a turn-on. But few things feel better than satisfying sexual desire, and you can’t easily satisfy what is stigmatized — ergo the innateness-equals-legitimacy argument. Consider, however, that the same social scientists claiming that homosexuality, and now pedophilia, is inborn, also tell us sociopaths are born and not made. Now, question: If in addition it’s determined that homicidal feelings are innate, would it be moral for a person of such nature to kill?
The lesson here?
Genetics doesn’t determine morality.
Whether or not feelings are disordered — and whether their corresponding behaviors are moral — has nothing at all to do with whether those feelings were bred not by despotic abuse but the dark workings of DNA. Saying otherwise is to discard morality and replace it with biological determinism. And no idea is more destructive to civilization. No idea should be more quickly rejected by civilized men.
Unfortunately, civilized men are in increasingly short supply, especially among the Left, which seems remarkably untroubled by pedophilia. How can I say this? Well, just observe leftists’ telling contradictions — and what they refuse to tell. If pedophilia were anything but a convenient hammer they use when reporting incessantly on hated targets such as the Catholic Church, the New York Times and Los Angeles Times would not have run articles legitimizing it. The 61 biggest California newspapers would not have published nearly 2,000 articles on the church scandal during the first half of 2002 but, during the same period, only four on the public-school sex scandal, which a government-sponsored Hofstra University study found is 100 times the magnitude of the church scandal and is still ongoing. And the Left would hold pedophile Alfred Kinsey in contempt and reject his fraudulent work; instead, they generally defend him to this day. Hollywood even gave us the film Kinsey (2004), which heroicized the deviant as a maverick pushing back the frontiers of a “repressed” society’s ignorance.
Most significant, however, is the philosophical corruption. Whenever the Left seeks to justify homosexuality or anything else, it invariably peddles moral relativism, the notion that right and wrong are determined by man and therefore change based on time and place. But what this really implies is that right and wrong, morality, don’t exist; only human preference does. Thus, when leftists say “You can’t judge this or that because everything is a matter of perspective,” “this or that” truly fits because you can just fill in the blank. Relativism is a package deal with the Devil: Once accepting that moral boundaries are illusory, the sky — or, I should say, Hades — is the limit. All we are then left with is occultist Aleister Crowley’s formulation, “Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law.”
So how will the Left further legitimize pedophilia? As the ancient Greeks proved, relativism isn’t even necessary. The idea that sexuality has a specific and limited conjugal context is a Judeo-Christian one. And post-Christian America is gradually accepting the notion that consensual sex, whatever the stripe, hurts no one. It’s just pleasure like eating ice cream, you see, except that sexual exploration is far more important. And children have a right to it, to sexual self-determination, to not be placed in a stifling straitjacket woven of outdated Puritan morality. Why, Barack Obama himself has said that having sex education in kindergarten is the “right thing to do.”
The past is a picture of futures man inevitably will paint again, and ancient Greece, and perhaps beyond, is where our cultural trajectory takes us. But there is good news — that is also bad news. Cultural trajectories can change via the explosion of civilizational realignment, and, to paraphrase economist Herbert Stein, “If something can’t go on, it won’t.” Until then, however, the planet of man will continue hurtling away from morality and sanity at light speed, on its journey toward that black hole of civilizations past.
This article is an example of the exclusive content that's only available by subscribing to our print magazine. Twice a month get in-depth features covering the political gamut: education, candidate profiles, immigration, healthcare, foreign policy, guns, etc. Digital as well as print options are available!