John Stang – News Editor
The old slogan for the social conservative voter at one time was “Guns, God, and Gays,” the three big “G’s” that could be used to lure voters into the voting booth on Election Day.Â So far, the Values Voters have not been out on the campaign trail spewing the typical message of a Utopian paradise where all people attend church on Sunday and families live like the Cleavers.Â That was until last weekend in Washington D.C. when the Values Voters Summit took place, which is like the Woodstock for social conservatives.
Â The event was sponsored by the Family Research Council and a whole host of right wing organizations. Speakers ranged from former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney to Delaware’s surprise Republican candidate Christine O’Donnell. Of course, most of the speeches were geared toward pleasing the base, but the new spurious correlations that came out of this pseudo-science convention were two major reasons for the downfall of the economy.
Â The first was that of continued sexual promiscuity and the breakup of the American family.Â The second was the country moving away from worshipping God. Â Now, these theories or ideas are not new, but before they start to pick up steam it might be a good idea to debunk them by using a simple Google search.Â
Â Let’s start with the newest star of the show, Christine O’Donnell who, besides dabbling in witchcraft on a date once, was once involved in an MTV campaign against masturbation. Her argument echoed those of most social crusaders who will often claim that playing with yourself leads to lusting only for yourself and not with another person.Â In O’Donnell’s words it is a “selfish act.”Â Oh yeah, Yahweh also gets angry!
Â Interestingly, masturbating between the ages of 20 and 50 can actually lead to lowering a person’s risk for prostate cancer, by 40 %. According to a study published in the British Journal of Urology International by an Australian research team in 2003. So it might be impure in the eyes of the Lord, but it could save your life.
Â Continuing down pseudo-science lane, one finds the argument often made, particularly by the Family Research Council, that teens having sex lowers grades.Â That is true, if you are selective.Â A study by the American Sociological Association in summer 2009 found that teens who have sex in serious relationships can find “emotional support in their sex partners, reducing their anxiety and stress levels in life and in school.”Â The study concludes that teens who are in committed relationships and have sex do not have lower grades than those who are not having sex.Â It is also important to note that teens who have casual sex with different partners could see lower grades, so there is some room for argument there.
Â Another typical myth perpetrated by certain groups is that homosexual relationships are problematic for children, for the economy, and really anything else they can blame it on.Â This summer, Proposition 8, which banned gay marriage in California, was overturned by Judge Vaughn Walker.Â The decision showed that the claims about homosexual relationships perpetrated by the many social conservative groups are false, medically and sociologically.Â
Â Judge Walker stated in his opinion, “Moral disapproval alone is an improper basis on which to deny rights to gay men and lesbians. The evidence shows conclusively that Proposition 8 enacts, without reason, a private moral view that same-sex couples are inferior to opposite-sex couples. Because Proposition 8 disadvantages gays and lesbians without any rational justification, Proposition 8 violates the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.”
Â Finally, the newest argument being trotted about is that bringing God back into society will restore the economic structure of this nation.Â Glenn Beck and others have hopped on this bandwagon.Â This claim has also been disproven.
Â An article in the Journal of Religion and Society Â published in 2005 notes, “In general, higher rates of belief in and worship of a creator correlate with higher rates of homicide, juvenile and early adult mortality, STD infection rates, teen pregnancy, and abortion in the prosperous democracies.Â The most theistic prosperous democracy, the U.S., is exceptional.” The article continued, “The United States is almost always the most dysfunctional of the developed democracies, sometimes spectacularly so, and almost always scores poorly. The view of the U.S. as a â€˜shining city on the hill’ to the rest of the world is falsified when it comes to basic measures of societal health.”
Â The article dictates that secular countries in Europe have stronger government safety nets, making people feel safer and not turn to a higher power.
Â Now, I do not write this to be spiteful towards religion or to praise the free love movement; I just think that it is important that we explore whether the merit of these ideas are really there or not.Â Social conservatives are right on one thing, the U.S. must have a stable structure or it will not last, but believing that all these “facts” are necessary for a good society is a bit delusional.
To read more commentary by John Stang check out his blog called “Power Walk” at http://wwwstangblog.blogspot.com (no dot after the www). Â His opinions do not reflect those of the Brackety-Ack.