Tuesday, November 20, 2018
A privileged class. . .
Whatever privilege was once associated with married (and with children), that is not the case today. It is true that government and other institutions did foster a special place for the family but that was because it was understood that marriage and children were good for America. It was less attached to objective values than the desire to see people to take care of their spouses and families to produce children needed for the ever expanding economic need for workers. In any case, families were once considered better for society as a whole than singles. It was not a religious judgment but it was once a common conclusion and not without evidence. No more.
More than 3.8 million babies were born in the U.S. last year, but the birth rate drop was the largest one-year decline since 2010. The drop continues a decline but the consequences of the decline and how it has sped up recently remain to be seen. The impact of this will be felt on a whole variety of institutions and not simply the economy. A family living in a split level, with kids and pets behind a white picket fence with a station wagon in the driveway is more than nostalgia -- it is ancient history to most folks today. Just Google fertility rate and you will see articles in conservative journals and in the most liberal media as well.
So, if husbands, wives, and children are no longer a privileged class, is there another group that has taken up their role as a favored group? Gay, lesbian, and transgenders certainly seem to have become the privileged class in America today. No one would even think of trying to produce a successful movie or TV series without a significant gay, lesbian, or transgender character. All across the media spectrum, gay, lesbian, and transgender have become an essential ingredient in the ever sacred goal of diversity. Watch any gay pride parade and you will see homosexuality flaunted in all its most elaborate extremes and yet the class reserves its role as a protected group that should be immune from all criticism. Couple this with the fact that the numbers of exclusive homosexuals remains very small (3-4% at most with transgenders being a significantly smaller percentage in comparison to even this group) and you see what I mean.
So what does it all mean? I wish I knew. It is certainly true that gay, lesbian, and transgendered Americans have moved quickly from an oppressed super minority to a tolerated super minority to a favored class but still a super minority. At the same time, Christians have seen some of the teflon wear off and criticisms seem to stick more now than ever. Furthermore, there is more than a super minority of people ready to label Christian opposition to the gay, lesbian, and transgendered lifestyle hate speech not to be tolerated.
At any rate, I am getting a little tired of the old saw that gay, lesbian, and transgender suffer oppression. As I see it, nobody from the Christian side is saying anything about restraining the flamboyance of life and the provocative speech of this group but the GLBTQ side is very ready to muzzle Christians who refuse to celebrate the GLBTQ sexual identity. Such power can only be exercised by a group which has become a favored group and a privileged class.