Really, JCPenney’s?

Somehow I missed the Mother’s Day hoopla. But the latest salvo in the war in marriage comes from JCPenney’s. Hardest hit: my grandmother.

Via Life Site News, a look at the idyllic Father’s Day, when you have a two-for-one special!

After commemorating Mother’s Day with an ad featuring two lesbians, JCPenney is releasing a Father’s Day ad depicting two gay men and their children.

The recent ad, published in their June catalog, states that a father is a “swim coach, tent maker, best friend, bike fixer and hug giver – all rolled into one. Or two.

Below the picture of a smiling homosexual couple playing with a little boy and girl, the ad reads: “Real-life dads, Todd Koch and Cooper Smith with their children Claire and Mason.”

Real-life dads. Wow. Why escape reality with models when the real thing can be shoved into unsuspecting hands? I used to love poring over my mother’s catalogs as a girl. And now legions of kids who do will be exposed to something that’s not inevitable as some would like us to believe. Since, you know, it has been voted down in over 30 states, including California.

Liberals are cooing over JCPenney’s stand. Let ’em. They won’t shop there, and the customer base it has will erode quickly.


Oh history, inevitability and same sex marriage

A very useful reminder from Rich Lowry:


History is littered with the wreckage of causes pronounced inevitable by all right-thinking people. The failed Equal Rights Amendment looked inevitable when it passed Congress in 1972 and immediately 30 states ratified it. Opposition to abortion that was supposed to inevitably wither away is as robust as ever. The forces favoring gun control seemed unstoppably on the march when Congress passed the Brady Bill and the assault-weapons ban in the 1990s, but there are more protections for gun rights now than two decades ago.

Gay marriage’s inevitability hasn’t been evident to the voters in 31 states who have written into their constitutions that marriage is between a man and a woman. The latest is North Carolina, where 61 percent of voters embraced the traditional definition of marriage in a referendum. North Carolina isn’t Mississippi. President Obama won North Carolina in 2008, and Democrats are holding their convention there. Nation-wide, no referendum simply upholding traditional marriage has ever lost, and even in Maine, voters in 2009 reversed a gay-marriage law passed by the legislature

Don’t steal his thunder: why Obama finally came out of the closet

Of course it was the ego.

I was tied up yesterday after reading news in the morning. Even then, I wasn’t surprised the Prez flip-flopped–oh, excuse me, evolved– his position on gay marriage. He just came out of the closet about what he advocated in 1996.  With liberals weeping in their coffee Wednesday morning after the election results, Obama needed to fire up that base. And he did, make no mistake. What I find interesting is this snippet from Politico:

Senior administration officials admit that Biden’s comment was, indeed, the catalyst for Obama to make his historic announcement weeks earlier than planned. But Biden’s remarks on “Meet the Press” deeply annoyed Obama’s team, people close to the situation tell POLITICO, because it aggrandized his role at the expense of Obama’s yeoman efforts on behalf of the community and pushed up the timing of a sensitive announcement they had hoped to break — at a time and place of their own choosing — in the weeks leading up to the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte this fall. Nor did it tickle anyone, from Obama on down, that Biden — who backed the Defense of Marriage Act while serving in the Senate in the 1990s — seemed to be getting more credit in the LGBT community than a president who has actually taken steps to repeal the Clinton-era law that defined marriage as something that could only take place between a man and a woman. And it chafed Obama’s team that Biden had, at times, privately argued for the president to hold off on his support of marriage equality to avoid a backlash among Catholic voters in battleground states such as Ohio and Pennsylvania, according to two officials familiar with those discussions.

Emphasis my own. Normally I don’t put much stock in anything from Politico, but in this case, the ego clash rings true. How dare you steal my thunder.  After all, those brave soldiers fight on my behalf. Indeed.

UPDATE: Linked at Temple of MUT. Thanks!

Oh, the tangled web we weave: another study suggests birth control skews a woman’s ability to find a good mate

Another study on how hormonal birth control skews women’s wiring. Via CNN:

A recent study shows that women with lower testosterone levels – typically caused by the use of hormone-based oral contraceptives like the pill – are more attracted to men who also have low testosterone levels.

Previous studies have shown that the less testosterone a man has, the less likely he is to cheat, the more supportive he is, and the better he is at providing for his family. Sounds good, right?

Not quite. Previous studies have also shown that most women are historically more sexually attracted to higher testosterone levels. And the mothers in the study who eventually went off birth control post-wedding reported less sexual contentment than other women; they found their husbands less attractive and less sexually exciting once they went off the pill.

Whoops. That doesn’t sound like a recipe for happily ever after, eh?

When a woman uses hormonal birth control containing estrogen, she decreases her levels of available testosterone. And while women have much less testosterone in their systems than men – women’s bodies contain about 10% the amount of testosterone men do – what they do have helps fuel sexual desire, fantasy and the ability to become naturally lubricated in response to arousal.

So it makes sense that when a woman’s testosterone levels are diminished even further by something like the pill, she might be left feeling blasé about sex: hence her potential attraction to a low-testosterone male.

So it may not be as much the issue of going off birth control as it going on it in the first place. Sexual health expert Dr. Madeleine Castellanos cautions women to think carefully about their choice of contraceptive: “Some of these side effects are so serious that I now urge young women to consider just using condoms and leaving the birth control pills behind.”

Emphasis my own. Maybe Sandra Fluke should be thankful the pill is too expensive, no?

And what a warning this is:

Dr. Roberts says women who met their partner while taking hormonal birth control should consider switching to another method several months in advance of tying the knot in order to assess whether their feelings for their partner will change or stay the same.

If a drug has the potential to skew your perceptions of reality–so much so that the man you’ve picked as a potential mate might not be the best mate–it stands to reason that it might have other long-term health effects. But don’t tell the feminists: after all, it’s not about your ability to settle down with one man, it’s about asserting your reproductive freedom to hook up endlessly without “suffering consequences” or some such nonsense, and, more recently, not even having to pay for it yourself.

Sign of the times: Divorce Bling

Why wait to marry yourself years later and far away? Just go on out and buy your very own “divorce ring” at a jeweler near you.

bouquet divorce ring

This 18k gold-plated (why splurge for the real deal?) ring from Boticca features a bridal bouquet stuffed into the skull of a dead bird.

“Mourning is not just about dead people,” explains Gisele Ganne, the ring’s designer. “It is also about dead relationships and decaying marriages.”

Continuing the dead bird theme, here’s another which can be used to literally hit back that mean ol’ ex

brass knuckles divorce ri …

If you can’t bear the thought of giving up your diamonds, here’s a polished version sans any dead animals:

dagger divorce ring

It still gets the message across, no?

You can find these and more at Yahoo, including a tiny coffin to lay to rest your martial rings. Does this stuff sell? Cynical me says yes. There wouldn’t be as much variety if there weren’t demand.

Will conservatives stand their (coffee) ground(s) and Dump Starbucks?

I don’t like their burnt, over-caffinated coffee myself (though I will profess a fondness of the decaf Via). But the National Organization for Marriage has taken on corporate giant Starbucks over its support for gay marriage. From the press release via Memeorandum:

The National Organization for Marriage (NOM), America’s largest group dedicated to preserving traditional marriage and the faith communities that sustain it, today announced it will lead an international “Dump Starbucks” protest of Starbucks Coffee Company to give voice to consumers around the world who support preserving marriage as the union of one man and one woman.  Customers are invited to visit immediately to take action.

“Unlike our opponents, we do not target whole companies for the actions of an individual business executive in that company,” said Brian Brown, NOM’s president. “But Starbucks has taken a corporate position in support of redefining marriage for all of society. We will not tolerate an international company attempting to force its misguided values on citizens. The majority of Americans and virtually every consumer in some countries in which Starbucks operates believe that marriage is between one man and one woman. They will not be pleased to learn that their money is being used to advance gay marriage in society.”

The new protest campaign was announced after the annual Starbucks shareholders meeting today in Seattle, where NOM spokesmen queried the board on its new policies promoting gay marriage and demanded protection against discrimination for employees, vendors and customers who disagree.

“We respect the important role of businesses in providing goods, services and jobs, and that people of diverse moral views build great companies working together,” Brown said. “But Starbucks has corporately, as an organization, endorsed and helped pass gay marriage in the state of Washington. Its executive vice president of partner resources has stated that gay marriage “is aligned with Starbucks business practices and upholds our belief in the equal treatment of partners. It is core to who we are and what we value as a company.” Corporations should not take sides in a culture war that pits a company against half the American people, and nearly all its consumers in some international markets.”

This should go over well in the Mid-east, no? And what an intriguing reversal this is: small conservative non-profit announcing boycott of overbearing, liberal corporate behemoth? Oh, how times change.

From the website:

A portion of every cup of coffee purchased at a Starbucks anywhere in the world goes to fund this corporate assault on marriage.

It was so much easier waking up to Folgers in your cup.

Was there a mirror at the altar? Bride marries herself

Well, why not, right? Since marriage means nothing to most folks anyway, why not marry yourself? Via Shine:

Here comes the single bride. Last week, Nadine Schweigert married herself in a symbolic wedding ceremony. The 36-year-old divorced mom of three wore blue satin and clutched a bouquet of white roses as she walked down the aisle before a gathering of 45 friends and family members in Fargo, North Dakota.

She vowed to “to enjoy inhabiting my own life and to relish a lifelong love affair with my beautiful self,” reports Fargo’s InForum newspaper . After the ring was exchanged with the bride and her inner-groom, guests were encouraged to “blow kisses at the world,” and later, eat cake.

Schweigert, who followed the ceremony with a solo honeymoon in New Orleans, claims the wedding was her way of showing the world she’s learned to love and accept herself as a woman flying solo.
“I was waiting for someone to come along and make me happy,” she told reporter Tammy Swift . “At some point, a friend said, ‘Why do you need someone to marry you to be happy? Marry yourself.'”

Piper Weiss, an editor of Shine adds:

I believe everyone has the right to marry, regardless of sexual preference. For some people being alone is what feels most natural. Shouldn’t they too be entitled to tax breaks? Don’t they get a moment in the spotlight, the chance to rationalize a way-too-expensive dress, the two weeks off from work unquestioned, the ridiculous kitchen appliances they’d never have bought for themselves? It’s time we did away with the stigma of ‘old maids’ and the belief that you’re not really complete without a partner.

Ah, yes. The right to marry. For tax breaks, big dresses, vacations and appliances. Cause that’s what it’s all about, babe. It’s discrimination to say otherwise.

Even Politifact is forced to admit Rick Santorum is right in saying over 40% of American children are born out of wedlock; can we admit that maybe, just maybe our insistence as a culture to focus on marriage as a right or a means to have a big, fluffy party might not be the right one? Because traditional marriage is about, you know, having kids?

Schweiger, by the way, has three, one of whom was mortified by her marriage to herself.

H/t: HA headlines

UPDATE: linked by Pundette as a Recommended Read. Thanks!

“Apparently I’ve got a thing with numbers lately. 720. That’s how many days it’s been since he left this earth. That’s how many days I’ve survived widowhood.”

So writes Mrs. P on the second anniversary of her husband, Cpl. Jonathan Daniel Porto’s, combat death in Afghanistan. I wrote then:

Blogress Mrs. P lost her beloved husband, soul mate, best friend, and father to her infant daughter, Cpl Jonathan Daniel Porto, in Afghanistan last week.

From one military wife to another: I am so very sorry.  I had a difficult time explaining to the toddler on my lap why I was crying while reading your post.

“Mommy crying Mommy owie?” she asked, brow wrinkled with concern.

Yes, baby, my heart hurts.

Thank you for the support, encouragement, and love you gave your husband–and our country–by allowing him to warrior while you held the fort at home.  It’s not easy.   My thoughts and prayers are with you, your baby girl, and your beloved husband.

Semper Fi, Cpl Porto.

Mrs. P writes:

Thank God for that little girl who made me survive through those early days. I had no choice, I had to take care of my little girl, his little girl, our little girl.
I had to survive. And so, I did. I have. Two years later, I’m still here.


Because our love was so strong, it has carried me through. On days like this, Jonny, I think of you. I think of the way you loved me, and I know it’s not so bad. I had that love, I still have that love. So, to my biggest support (even if you are the cause of all this, ya turd) thank you for your love. Thank you because I know you make sure I feel it from where you are. Thank you for loving me. And thank you, thank you for choosing me to be your wife, thank you for choosing me to be the mother of your beautiful child. I’d never change being with you, even if I couldn’t change the ending, you showed me what true love is and I will always love you for the rest of my years on this earth and beyond. I know you hear me, I know you feel me. Know that I miss you, I love you, and you are my true love.
And with that, I am off to bed to be rested to spend a day at the zoo with our beautiful daughter tomorrow.
Remember to hug your loved ones. Tell them you love them and how much they mean to you. Life is short, appreciate it.

So true.

My prayers were with you then, are with you now. As a military wife with a decade on you, it hurt me even more that you and Jonny are so young. I taught high schoolers who are your age now. I’m so proud of you for thriving, Mrs. P. Semper Fi.

H/t once again to Legal Insurrection.

Is premarital sex today less “evil” than it used to be?

Walter Russell Mead says yes. He writes:

The core truth is that premarital sex is less evil today than it used to be.  It remains, as moral theologians say, wrong in itself, we Christians believe, and that is a quality that does not change.  But premarital sex is less of a sin against other people than it used to be.

It’s an intriguing premise, no? That premarital sex isn’t as damaging to others now than it has been historically. What’s to blame? Ah, the almighty Pill that helped separate fertility from sex–with a healthy dose of antibiotics on the side.

More Mead:

In the old days, for example, before contraception, every act of intercourse outside marriage carried a substantial possibility of ending in pregnancy.  For women, the consequences of pregnancy out of wedlock were life shattering: disgrace, the loss of any hope of a good marriage, economic and social marginalization.  It was very foolish and wicked for young girls to place themselves and their families at risk of all this for a moments’ pleasure; it was much worse for young men to attempt to persuade and cajole girls they did not plan to marry into sex.  Young men who behaved in this way attracted the deserved moral censure of the community, and parents were vigilant to protect their daughters from unscrupulous seducers.

Premarital sex under these circumstances was not just a moral crime against God’s law; it was a selfish act of personal gratification that endangered the well being and happiness of whole families.

If we add to that the devastating consequences of sexually transmitted diseases in the era before antibiotics made them treatable, premarital sex becomes an even more dubious phenomenon.  Insanity, death, sterility, defective offspring: unchastity brought all these consequences in its wake.  The casual seducer who infected a young woman with syphilis might be condemning her, her unborn children and her future husband to madness and death.

He’s right. As a result of the devastating consequences, parents cared enough to warn their children against the dangers of premarital sex. No more. It’s seen as a right of passage. Um, beware too many late-night hookups, dear. You might never learn to properly commit yourself to multiple partners later.

This helps to explain the diminished concern that parents and educators feel about the 88 percent.  It does not mean that a society in which marriage steadily weakens, abortion is commonplace, and millions of children grow up without a father in the home is a healthy place.  But it explains why many parents in particular are more concerned with their children’s grades than with their sexual activities in college and why tuition-paying parents no longer demand that their daughters be kept in sex-segregated dorms with curfews and parietals.

Mead concludes that more is as stake beyond our collective morality–it’s the very idea of life centered around family at risk of becoming endangered.

Read the rest.

P.S. Where is Stacy? With “Christians Are Still Having Sex” as a tantalizing headline, I expected The Other McCain to be hot on the trail.

UPDATE: linked as a “Recommended Read” by Pundette. Thanks!

What feminism hath wrought, part 9,897

Would you put this on your kid? Not so much.

Kate Bolick recalls her childhood and her mother’s emerging feminism:

I was her first and only recruit, marching off to third grade in tiny green or blue T-shirts declaring: A Woman Without a Man Is Like a Fish Without a Bicycle, or: A Woman’s Place Is in the House—and the Senate, and bellowing along to Gloria Steinem & Co.’s feminist-minded children’s album, Free to Be … You and Me (released the same year Title IX was passed, also the year of my birth). Marlo Thomas and Alan Alda’s retelling of “Atalanta,” the ancient Greek myth about a fleet-footed princess who longs to travel the world before finding her prince, became the theme song of my life. Once, in high school, driving home from a family vacation, my mother turned to my boyfriend and me cuddling in the backseat and said, “Isn’t it time you two started seeing other people?” She adored Brian—he was invited on family vacations! But my future was to be one of limitless possibilities, where getting married was something I’d do when I was ready, to a man who was in every way my equal, and she didn’t want me to get tied down just yet.

Is it surprising that Bolick has found herself–at age 39–single among a shrinking pool of men? She speaks of this as a “brave new world,” one in which her ex-lover’s fiancée suggested Bolick tag along to help the ex-lover pick out his wedding suit. I’m just not that hip and with it, y’all.

 In 1969, when my 25-year-old mother, a college-educated high-school teacher, married a handsome lawyer-to-be, most women her age were doing more or less the same thing. By the time she was in her mid-30s, she was raising two small children and struggling to find a satisfying career. She’d never had sex with anyone but my father. Could she have even envisioned herself on a shopping excursion with an ex-lover, never mind one who was getting married while she remained alone? And the ex-lover’s fiancée being so generous and open-minded as to suggest the shopping trip to begin with?

What my mother could envision was a future in which I made my own choices. I don’t think either of us could have predicted what happens when you multiply that sense of agency by an entire generation.

Agency? Or misdirection? The trashing of marriage as an institution has cultural ramifications. None good. That’s why feminists and liberals pursued that line of thinking. Free sex is so much better than, um, monogamy or stability. Squares! Why should children be born in wedlock? 40 percent of children are born to single mothers now. All are more likely to be poor and to struggle in school. But who cares? Big brother will be there, always.

H/t: Instapundit.

Linked by Pundette as a “Recommended Read.” Thanks!