I know its like shooting fish in a barrel, but sometimes Bill O'Reilly sticks his glass jaw out so far I just can't resist, as he comments on James Dobson's declaration that the culture war was being lost:
All over the USA, secular progressives are on the move promoting gay marriage, legalized drugs and unfettered abortion, and attacking almost all judgments on personal behavior.
One thing we can always count on when Bill O'Reilly describes SPs is a gross exaggeration of their views. Nowhere near "almost all" judgements on personal behavior are being attacked. The three judgements from the 10 Commandments that actually are relevant to our legal system (murder, lying and theft) are still held strong, as are those against rape, incest, child molestation, vandalism, being chronically late, and most any other values one cares to name.
No, the only judgements against personal behavior under attack are those based on particular religious views, and those particularly out of touch with the rest of the world and with the science. O'Reilly can't deal with these arguments honestly of course, so he pretends the objections are something they aren't.
And nowhere is the movement more intense than in the nation's most liberal state: Vermont.
The legislature in the Green Mountain State recently voted to legalize gay marriage, overriding the veto of Gov. Jim Douglas. Vermont is the first state to actually legislate in favor of homosexual nuptials, as Massachusetts, Connecticut and Iowa all had gay marriage imposed on the citizenry by judges.
One would think O'Reilly would cheer the Vermont action, since it came from elected officials rather than being "imposed" on us by unelected judges. It is worth noting that every ruling from judges is imposed on the citizenry: that's their job. People like O'Reilly only complain about that when the ruling doesn't go in their favor.
It is worth noting that Vermont is one of the few states that voted down "Jessica's Law," the tough mandatory-prison-sentence legislation against child sexual predators. An investigation into Vermont's criminal justice apparatus reveals the state embraces "restorative justice," whereby criminals often receive "holistic" treatment as part of their sentence for even heinous crimes like child rape. The goal is not so much to punish the offender, but to "restore" him or her to their rightful place in society. That is a secular-progressive hallmark.
The idea of restorative justice is to "repair the harm caused or revealed by criminal behaviour", and given that we house 25% of the world's prison population, it is hardly a radical notion. If a man has a brain tumor which causes him to act violently, surely even the staunchest conservative would favor removing the tumor over simply adding another prisoner to our overcrowded system. Yes, it's a hallmark of secular people to attempt to fix the root of a problem rather than only paying attention to the symptoms. This stands in stark contrast to the social conservative hallmark exhibited by O'Reilly, where the limitations and costs on our system are ignored, and thoughtful analysis is casually dismissed in favor of tired bromides like "get tough on crime" and "save the children".
While Vermont is coddling child predators, it is also sending a message to kids: Hey, you can do pretty much whatever you want. Somewhat incredibly, the Vermont senate has passed a bill decriminalizing consensual "sexting." That is the process where children send sexual pictures of themselves to other children using cell phones or computers. The proposed Vermont law says that children ages 13 to 18 will be allowed to do that, but not to distribute the photos to more than one person or to an adult.
It takes a mind like Bill O'Reilly's to interpret allowing ONE new behavior as "you can do whatever you want". And in a sense, its not even new: children have always been allowed to do many things with each other that they are not allowed to do (or be done with) with adults, including various forms of harmless sexual play. What makes this different? Prude O'Reilly considers exploring one's sexuality "dopey".
Supporters of the sexting law say it's necessary so that teenagers will not be prosecuted as sexual offenders and have their lives ruined. There is some validity to that as dopey kids do dopey things. However, the sane solution would be to categorize sexting as a misdemeanor breach of the peace, thus sending a message that it is unacceptable for kids to send other kids sexual images. But secular progressives are loath to make that judgment.
We aren't loath to make it you dishonest hack. We simply make a different judgement than you. Ah yes, those silly dopey kids learning about themselves should be kept out of prison. How kind. One wonders from his tortured reasoning whether O'Reilly would support this if he considered sexting a wise move. But more importantly, why should we send a message that exchanging sexual images is unacceptable? In typical social conservative style, O'Reilly leaves the crucial point of contention assumed, just like those who oppose gay marriage and porn do. Where is the justification for the oppression of these children and their natural growth into sexual beings? O'Reilly provides not one shred of an answer, and instead goes on irrelevant tangents:
Remember, these are the same people who believe a girl has the right to an abortion without telling her parents. So if a kid can undergo a major life-altering operation (especially for the fetus), why should it be a big deal to do a little sexting?
There's your non sequitor of the week.
With a liberal federal government and media, there is little opposition being voiced to what is happening in Vermont and other secular-progressive enclaves. Culture war issues have been forced to the back room by the awful economy, and the S-Ps are taking full advantage. If American children are legally allowed to send explicit pictures of themselves to other kids, then say goodbye to traditional boundaries of behavior.
The slippery slope is here.
It's no slippery slope, it's a new era of more rational principles when it comes to our sexuality. Thousand year old noodlings written by goat herders simply aren't sufficient any more (as the continued failings of abstinence-only programs attests). Our sexuality is part of who we are, and there is nothing wrong with exploring that part of us in a responsible way. Yes, Bill, say goodbye to irrational, body-hating boundaries of behavior. But don't worry: allowing people to own dildos isn't going to lead to allowing people to steal them. We aren't changing all the old standards, just the stupid ones.