Thursday, December 24, 2009

Real men wear the pants ... and keep them zipped!

 “Once upon a time, men wore the pants, and wore them well. Women rarely had to open doors and little old ladies never crossed the street alone. Men took charge because that’s what they did. But somewhere along the way, the world decided it no longer needed men. Disco by disco, latte by foamy non-fat latte, men were stripped of their khakis and left stranded on the road between boyhood and androgyny. But today, there are questions our genderless society has no answers for. The world sits idly by as cities crumble, children misbehave and those little old ladies remain on one side of the street. For the first time since bad guys, we need heroes. We need grownups. We need men to put down the plastic fork, step away from the salad bar and untie the world from the tracks of complacency. It’s time to get your hands dirty. It’s time to answer the call of manhood. It’s time to wear the pants.”

So runs the copy of Dockers’ new “Man-ifesto” ad campaign that’s caused a bit of an uproar among the talking heads. Some praise it as refurbishing the image of “noble masculinity”, bringing it forward not as a threat to women’s rights but as a “valuable and enriching quality”. Others damn Levi Strauss for “waxing romantic for the days of submissive ladies and alpha males” … although there’s nothing in the ad about women being submissive (unless having a door opened for you makes you a servant, which it does in the looking-glass world of second-wave feminist theory).

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Of fake Catholic organizations

 Back in March, I asked if it was possible for someone to be both pro-choice and Catholic, and answered “yes and no”. Technically, a person doesn’t stop being a Catholic unless and until s/he formally apostatizes, either by joining another church or by abandoning worship altogether. (Even then, a person may remain very much a Catholic in the way his/her imagination interprets symbol and story.) In such a functionally crippled sense, a person can be a “pro-choice Catholic”, although the two concepts linked together create an oxymoron.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Bringing gay porn into our children's schools

I am a hypocrite.

How so?

The purpose of OTA is not self-revelation. I’m not St. Augustine; I’m not even Odd Thomas. However, I can’t discuss the following breaking news without publicly confessing that I am a porn addict and have been for some years. I don’t say this with any pride; I say it with deep shame.

Now, I invite you to read Gateway Pundit’s blog in the First Things website. (I warn you, first: If you’re easily offended, or if graphic descriptions of gay sex disturb you, it’s probably best to take my word for it.) What Jim Hoft, the author, cites from are eleven books on a list of over 100 listed by the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN), a group founded and formerly presided over by Pres. Obama’s “safe school czar” Kevin Jennings, as materials supposedly meant to raise the self-esteem of young people struggling with homosexual urges, as well as to raise awareness and tolerance among straight kids. The books are specifically marketed to teachers to use as required classroom assignments, although students can order them directly. The citations come with scans of the pages in question, so there’s no issue of “you made this up”.