Those of you who received and read my monthly letter from July may remember that I said the Supreme Court ruling that legalized same-sex marriage had vast implications beyond the issue itself. It was, in fact, about everything else. The focal point was actually about winning the culture war with one fell swoop. It also constituted a devastating broadside against the Christian faith.
Let me explain what I meant. I have said for more than 30 years that members of the gay and lesbian movement didn’t really want to marry in the traditional sense. Why would they choose to burden themselves with financial constraints and troublesome legalities, such as alimony and divorce courts? That was never the objective. What motivated many within the homosexual community was a plan to gain a foothold within the institution of the family in order to destroy it. Then, all of the benefits of traditional marriage would be granted without the entanglements that have accompanied it historically. That is what I have believed from the earliest days of the movement.
Well, on August 14th, 2015, a commentary written by Matt Barber appeared at barbwire.com that laid out the unvarnished truth. Read very carefully and you will understand the real meaning of this battle, which we have now tragically lost. You’ll see quotes from gay activists at the end of the commentary that leave nothing to speculation. You’ll also see a statement about me and the perspective I have long espoused. Barber writes:
It’s never fun to be proven right when warning of some impending wrong. Many in the pro-family movement have long stressed that the cultural Marxist left’s belligerent push for the judicial fiction that is “gay marriage” was never about gaining “equal access” to this biologically exclusive male-female institution, as they profess, but, rather, is, and has always been, about control.
While there are many layers to unfold, the almost instant explosion in government-sanctioned, anti-Christian extremism on display post Obergefell v. Hodges, confirms the poisonous three-fold agenda that underlies the “social justice” mob’s flowery “marriage equality” propaganda. That is: 1) the ultimate destruction of marriage, 2) forced affirmation of sexual deviancy under penalty of law, and 3) the eventual criminalization of Christianity.
Here’s the bottom line: Homosexual activists don’t want the white picket fence; they want to burn down the white picket fence. The endgame is not to achieve so-called “marriage equality,” but, rather, to render marriage relatively meaningless.
Masha Gessen, a lesbian journalist, activist and author, expressly admitted this fact in a 2012 interview with ABC Radio: “It’s a no-brainer that [homosexuals] should have the right to marry,” she said. “But I also think equally that it’s a no-brainer that the institution of marriage should not exist . . . Fighting for gay marriage generally involves lying about what we are going to do with marriage when we get there – because we lie that the institution of marriage is not going to change, and that is a lie.”
Homosexual activist and pornographer, Clinton Fein, echoes Gessen’s candid sentiments: “Demand the institution [of marriage] and then wreck it,” he once wrote. “James Dobson was right about our evil intentions,” he quipped. “We just plan to be quicker than he thought.”
The goal is to water down marriage until marriage is pointless. And as evidenced by the burgeoning legal push for polygamous and incestuous “marriages” – even for the “right” to “marry” a robot – sexual anarchists are well on their way to achieving this goal.1
Barber’s chilling prediction makes it clear that the Supreme Court decision (Obergefell v. Hodges) is not an end in itself. It is the beginning – an open door to the entire gay and lesbian agenda coveted and lusted after since the 1960s or before.
Understanding the real motives of the movement helps us comprehend why the culture war has heated up and is being fought now on a thousand fronts. It also explains why Christian foot soldiers are losing almost every encounter. Let’s consider one such arena where our children are most at risk. Parents, beware!
Have you wondered why the effort to reinterpret gender has become so urgent, especially within the public schools? Reporter Todd Starnes explained this obsession in an article published by FoxNews.com.
One of the nation’s largest public school systems is preparing to include gender identity to its classroom curriculum—the idea that there is no such thing as 100 percent boys or 100 percent girls. Fairfax County Public Schools released a report recommending changes to their family life curriculum for grades 7 through 12. The plan calls for teaching seventh graders about transgenderism and tenth graders about the concept that sexuality is a broader spectrum. By the tenth grade, they will be taught that one’s sexuality “develops throughout a lifetime.”2
Starnes editorializes, “It sure smells like unadulterated sex indoctrination,” and says, “parents are freaking out.”
Peter Sprigg, of the Family Research Council, said this of the curriculum:
The larger picture is this is really an attack on nature itself – the created order. Human beings are created male and female. But the current transgender ideology goes way beyond that. They’re telling us you can be both genders, you can be no gender, [and] you can be a gender that you make up for yourself. And we’re supposed to affirm all of it.3
Other school districts are following a similar program. Planned Parenthood and Acalanes High School in Lafayette, California, are collaborating on their own version of gender revisionism. Their staff is using gingerbread-man-like diagrams of transgender expression, asking students if they are ready for sex.
The handout uses a depiction of the holiday cookie and storybook character to show students they can identify in their minds as a “woman, man, two-spirit, genderqueer, or genderless.” They can also express themselves sexually as “butch, femme, androgynous, gender neutral, or hyper-masculine,” and present their biological sex as “male, female, intersex, female self ID, or male self ID.”4
Consider the meaning of gender revisionism for a moment. It comes right out of the gay and lesbian playbook, by which children can be enticed to change their way of thinking about sexual identity. They are sitting ducks for adults who are in authority over them. More to the point, this curriculum is tailor-made to promote transgenderism as the “T” in LGBT.
What is alarming is that the notion of fluid sexual identity is not only racing though public schools. It is also finding expression in the wider culture since the Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage. It has unleashed an avalanche of change.
For example, the State of California passed a bill that removed the words, “husband and wife,” from marriage laws. They will now be referred to as “spouse,” because anything related to traditional marriage is considered “outdated and biased.” The bill was recently signed by Governor Jerry Brown.5
Both California and Tennessee have changed the nomenclature in official documents. Mother and Father have become Parent 1 and Parent 2. Protests by parents in Tennessee created such a furor that the decision was reversed.6 California has dug in. 7
Sexual orientation in the U.K. has taken its toll. Half of young people there say they are not 100% heterosexual. 8
An article published in theaustralian.com is titled, “Transgender children: what’s behind the spike in numbers?” The author implies that parents should consider developing transgender characteristics as a goal to be achieved. 9
Bloomberg Business carried an article this summer titled, “The End of Boys and Girls: These Companies Are Going to Change How Your Kids Dress.” 10
NPR’s lead article in November 2014, reads, “For These Millennials, Gender Norms Have Gone Out of Style.” 11
The Wall Street Journal published a commentary on September 14, 2014, titled, “Heather Has Two Genders.” One of the main characters says, “I have a girl brain but a boy body.” The author of the commentary wrote, “It is not a wholly new thing for a transgender person to appear in children’s books, but soon they will abound.” 12 No doubt!
Gender revisionism is showing up elsewhere. You’ve probably read that Target Stores have de-genderized their stock. Now the toys they sell are “unisex.” Target is also de-genderizing products such as bedding, home decor, home entertainment and more. Speaking personally, I will not patronize a company that doesn’t recognize masculinity and femininity.
Let me tell you why I oppose this movement and why I consider it dangerous to the family and potentially devastating to children. That will take us back 40 years to the time when gender revisionism swept the nation. I wrote about it in my books, Bringing Up Boys and Bringing Up Girls, as follows.
It all started in the 1960s, when a small band of radical feminists began insisting that males and females were identical except for their reproductive apparatus, and that any uniqueness in temperament or behavior resulted from patriarchal cultural biases. It was a foolish concept that lacked any scientific support, except that which was flawed and politically motivated. Nevertheless, the campaign penetrated the entire culture. Suddenly, professors and professionals who should have known better began nodding in agreement. No doubt about it, the radicals said, males and females were redundant.
Parents, they claimed, had been wrong about their kids for at least five thousand years. The media ran with the notion and the word unisex found its way into the language of the enlightened. Anyone who challenged the new dogma, as I did in a 1975 book titled, What Wives Wish Their Husbands Knew about Women, was branded as sexist or something worse.
The feminist movement then took a new and dangerous turn. Its leaders began trying to redesign the way children were being raised. Television talk-show host, Phil Donahue, and dozens of wanna-bes told parents day after day that their daughters were victims of terrible sexist bias and that their sons should be raised more like girls. There was great urgency to their message. “Things had to change immediately,” they said.
Donahue’s feminist girlfriend and later wife, Marlo Thomas, coauthored a best-selling book at about the same time titled, Free to Be You and Me, which the publishers described as, “the first real guide to nonsexist child rearing.” It urged boys to play with dolls and tea sets and told them they could be anything they wanted to be, including: [no kidding!] “grandmas and mommies.” The book featured dozens of poems and stories about role reversals, such as a mother nailing shingles on the roof, building new shelves in the family room, and working with cement. Meanwhile, father was in the kitchen making breakfast. Every effort was made to teach kids that dads made great moms and mothers were pretty tough dudes.
The book sold several million copies. And the gender revision movement had only just begun. Germaine Greer, author of The Female Eunuch, was even more extreme. She said the traditional family had “castrated women.” She believed mothers should be less nurturing of their daughters because to treat them gently and kindly would reinforce sexual stereotypes and make them more “dependent” and feminine. Greer also insisted that children are better off being raised by institutions rather than parents. It is difficult to believe today that her book offering those and similarly outrageous views also soared to the top of all the best-seller lists. That illustrates just how culturally dominant radical feminism was at that time.
Perhaps the most influential of the early feminists was Gloria Steinem, founder of the National Organization for Women and editor of Ms. magazine. Here is a sampling of her perspective on marriage and child rearing:
We’ve had a lot of people in this country who have had the courage to raise their daughters more like their sons. Which is great because it means they’re more equal. . . . But there are many fewer people who have had the courage to raise their sons more like their daughters. And that’s what needs to be done.
We need to stop raising boys to think that they need to prove their masculinity by being controlling or by not showing emotion or by not being little girls. You can ask [boys] . . . “What if you were a little girl?” They get very upset at the very idea they might be this inferior thing. They’ve already got this idea that in order to be boys they have to be superior to girls and that’s the problem. [Marriage is] not an equal partnership. I mean, you lose your name, your credit rating, your legal residence, and socially, you’re treated as if his identity were yours. I can’t imagine being married. If everybody has to get married, then clearly it is a prison, not a choice.” (Steinem married in 2000.) All women are supposed to want children. But I could never drum up any feelings of regret.
Think for a moment about the above quotes from Thomas, Steinem, Greer, and the other early feminists. Most of them were never married, didn’t like children, and deeply resented men, yet they advised millions of women about how to raise their children and, especially, how to produce healthy boys. There is no evidence that these feministas ever had any significant experience with children of either sex. Isn’t it interesting that the media (to my knowledge) never homed in on that incongruity? And isn’t it sad that these women were allowed to twist and warp the attitudes of a generation of kids?
Well, the unisex movement prevailed until the late 1980s when it fell victim, at last, to medical technology. The development of noninvasive techniques, such as MRIs and PET scans, allowed physicians and physiologists to examine the functioning of the human brain in much greater detail. What they found totally destroyed the assertions of feminists. Men’s and women’s brains looked very distinct when examined in a laboratory. Under proper stimulation, they “lit up” in different areas, revealing unique neurological processes. It turns out that male and female brains are “hardwired” differently, which, along with hormonal factors, accounts for behavioral and attitudinal characteristics associated traditionally with masculinity and femininity. It was these sexual benchmarks that feminists attempted to suppress or discredit, but they failed.
Still, you have to admire their ambition. They tried to redesign half of the human family in a single generation. Unfortunately, the ideas that were spawned in the seventies and perpetuated in a different form today are deeply ingrained in the culture, even though they have never made sense. Child-rearing practices have been forever changed. Many parents, for example, are reluctant or ill equipped to teach their boys how they are different from girls or what their masculinity really means. There is also a new source of confusion emanating from the powerful gay and lesbian agenda. Its propagandists are teaching a revolutionary view of sexuality called “gender feminism,” which insists that sex assignment is irrelevant. Genetics can be simply overridden. What matters is the “gender” selected for us by parents when we are babies, or the sex role we choose for ourselves later in life.
Mary Brown Parlee articulated this perspective in Psychology Today. “The sex ‘assigned’ to a baby at birth is as much a social decision as a recognition of biological fact.” Another feminist writer expressed it like this: “Although many people think that men and women are the natural expression of a genetic blueprint, gender is a product of human thought and culture, a social construction that creates the ‘true nature’ of all individuals.” Therefore, if we protect children from social and religious conditioning, people will be free to move into and out of existing gender roles according to their preferences. Taking that concept to its illogical conclusion, the feminists and homosexual activists want to dissolve the traditional roles of mothers and fathers and, in time, eliminate such terms as wife, husband, son, daughter, sister, brother, manhood, womanhood, boy, girl, masculine, and feminine. These references to sexual identity are being replaced with gender-neutral terms, such as significant other, spouse, parent, child, and sibling.13
I wrote those words in 2002, and yet here we are dealing again with the return of gay, lesbian and feminist propagandists. Unfortunately, “They’re BAAACK.”
Clearly, there are serious implications here for mothers and fathers. I urge you to protect your boys and girls from those who would seek to confuse their sexuality. Protect the masculinity and femininity of your children from political and social pressures that will bear down on them. Buffer them from a culture that has gone over the cliff.
It is also important for us as adults to understand our own sexual identities. If we don’t know who we are, our kids will be doubly confused about who they are. Any uncertainty, any ambiguity in that assignment must be seen as damaging not only to our sons and daughters but also to the long-term stability of society itself.
Finally, I urge you to base your teachings about sexuality on the Scriptures, which tell us, “God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them” (Genesis 1:27). Jesus, who was the first Jewish leader to give dignity and status to women, said, “Haven’t you read . . . that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female,’” and, “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh” (Matthew 19:4-5).
That is the divine plan. It leaves no doubt that the Creator made not one sex but two, each beautifully crafted to “fit with” and meet the needs of the other. Any effort to teach children differently is certain to produce unrest in the soul of a child.
That is my message for September, when school children are reentering the classroom. This is the fifth letter I have written to you since May, when our culture began to splinter. It started with the attack on the institution of family and has gone haywire ever since. Those of us who hold to conservative Christian faith must work diligently and with passion to defend the things we believe. America needs all the help and prayers it can get at this time of turmoil.
Together, we can fend off the assaults from political correctness.
Family Talk survived the summer, thanks to the generosity of many of you. But September is here, and our needs continue. Thank you so much for being there for us.
James C. Dobson, Ph.D.
President and Founder
1 - http://barbwire.com/2015/08/16/the-gay-marriage-gauntlet-time-to-choose/
2 - http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2015/05/15/call-it-gender-fluidity-schools-to-teach-kids-there-s-no-such-thing-as-boys-or-girls.html
3 - http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2015/05/15/call-it-gender-fluidity-schools-to-teach-kids-there-s-no-such-thing-as-boys-or-girls.html?intcmp=latestnews
4 - http://www.christianpost.com/news/planned-parenthood-distributes-genderbread-person-sex-ed-leaflet-at-school-teaches-students-they-can-be- genderqueer-genderless-two-spirit-131115/
5 - http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2014/07/07/california-bill-replacing-words-husband-wife-in-marriage-law-signed-by-gov/
6 - http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2015/08/18/tennessee-courts-replace-mother-and-father-with-parent-1-parent-2.html
7 - http://allenbwest.com/2015/08/target-banning-gender-toys-look-what-california-wants-to-do-next/
8 - http:// www.ibtimes.co.uk/sexual-orientation-uk-half-young-people-say-they-are-not-100-heterosexual-1515690
9 - http://www.theaustralian.com.au/tablet-t3/tablet-t3/transgender-children-whats-behind-the-spike-in-numbers/story-fnm89pgn-1227445900272
10 - http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2015-07-14/gender-neutral-kids-clothing-startups
11 - http://www.npr.org/2014/11/30/363345372/for-these-millennials-gender-norms-have-gone-out-of-style
12 - http://www.wsj.com/article_email/meghan-cox-gurdon-heather-has-two-genders-1410728850-lMyQjAxMTA1MDEwMzExNDMyWj
13 - James C. Dobson, Bringing Up Boys (Carol Stream, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, 2001), 13-17.
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