Hide Your Pets

yale-bulldogYale University was founded by conservative congregational ministers in the early 18th century. For those who haven’t been looking much has changed at Yale since its founding. You can catch up a bit via William F. Buckely’s Jr’s 1951 classic, God and Man at Yale. It’s available in paper and on Kindle. He’s gone but he lives figuratively in print and on Youtube (in Firing Line episodes). One of the ways that Yale has changed is that it now hosts a sex week and this year they offered to students a talk by a “sexologist” who claims to have a PhD in the field.  The Yale Daily News article (HT: Katherine Timpf) story leads with masochism and degenerates thence by noting that 3% of the respondents to a survey reported participating in bestiality.

The point of this post is not simply outrage at “what’s happened to Yale.” It’s to illustrate the ongoing war against creational boundaries. Universities are meant to be places for the free exchange of ideas but increasingly the only thing that cannot be discussed within the ivy-covered walls is Christian theism, which is being systematically excluded from universities (the latest is a college in FL) because it challenges the dominant anti-theistic culture. As Peter Berger recently noted, late modern secularism is really just cover for the sexual revolution. Ironically, the result is the end of genuine liberalism (toleration of a variety of viewpoints) on campus. If everything goes the only thing that can’t be tolerated is that which seeks to establish a limit. This takes us back to Buckley who, in 1951, was merely asking that Christianity be respected at Yale. Could anyone tell, in 1951, that in 2013 Yale would be hosting “sex week” and defending bestiality? Before the reader accuses me of jumping to conclusions, read the comments in the Yale Daily piece linked above. Some readers are shocked that anyone is shocked that pedophilia and bestiality are considered abnormal.

The story reports,

During a discussion Saturday afternoon…roughly 40 students had to reconsider their idea of “normal” in sex when asked to take anonymous surveys that yielded surprising results. Students often do not realize the difference between normative—being in the middle of the bell curve for certain behaviors — and normal, which is a judgment call, [the alleged expert] said, adding that what is common is not necessarily good just as what is deviant is not necessarily bad.

Notice how “normal” is defined, not by nature or by design but by will and behavior. If enough people do something then, according to the story, it is normal. It’s morality by Bell Curve. Of course, I guess that neither the author of the article nor the “sexologist” interviewed consistently thinks that the morality of plagiarism is  determined by a Bell Curve. I guess that Cynthia Hua would be more than irritated if I claimed her article as my own and it’s clear (from her blog) that the “sexologist” has a morality, it’s simply entirely subjective and Narcissistic.

As I keep saying, it’s not a slippery slope if it’s really happening. More to the point, there is an obvious need to to re-establish a creational notion of boundaries. Without them civil society is impossible. Behind that a more fundamental need is the regenerating work of the Holy Spirit. Even Yale is not beyond the power of God!

The other remarkable thing, from an educational and academic perspective, about Yale hosting this event is how utterly stupid it is. Of all the things on which to spend a week in 2013, why sex? Perhaps that’s why attendance was rather sparse? What internet-savvy Yale undergraduate student doesn’t know more about sex than any so-called “sexologist”? The really shocking thing to discuss for a week at Yale would be the “Greats” of the Western literary canon. A seminar on Augustine, Anselm, or Aquinas—maybe even William Ames!—now that would be shocking, counter-cultural and fitting for an institution of higher learning.

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  1. Perhaps you should do some research before you accuse someone of not actually having credentials, that they actually do. Don’t forget when you accuse someone you make an a…….

    Also, you should invest in a better editor since there are some issues with this great piece of brain-busting work. Sarcasm noted.

    • Dear John,

      I don’t ordinarily post anonymous comments, as you doubtless read before you wrote. Nevertheless, I’m allowing this one in hope that you will be able to tell us exactly whence the learned sexologist earned her degrees? Her website did not say where she earned her masters and it indicated that her PhD was still in progress but did not say where she was studying. I don’t doubt that sex is a legitimate field of study but I do doubt the legitimacy of “sexology.”

      Thanks for the encouragement to proof the piece. You’re welcome to donate to the HB so perhaps I can hire an editor!

  2. Notice how “normal” is defined, not by nature or by design but by will and behavior. If enough people do something then, according to the story, it is normal

    Actually, the bell curve defined “normative”, which was distinguished from “normal”. I’m not sure I got from that quote what the definition of “normal” was supposed to be, but for “normative”, my usual understanding is establishing or enforcing a standard, so if the bell curve of behavior is normative, that’s unhelpfully circular (or maybe that’s the point?)

    • Exactly. I should have been clearer. The article merges normal and normative. One is a statistical fact and the other a judgment but they converge here. The implication I drew is that the author thinks statistics (sociology) defines moral norms.

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