James Shott / June 2, 2015

Important Bedrock Fundamentals of the American Culture Are Dying

Liberals/progressives may be celebrating the results of a new Gallup poll. The culture upon which America was founded and which allowed it to thrive for nearly 200 years has been seriously weakened over the last few decades. Social strictures are falling by the wayside, as responsible behavior takes a back seat to personal pleasure and convenience in some important areas.

When asked to describe themselves on social issues, the Gallup poll of more than a thousand participants reflected the following:

  • 5 percent are very conservative
  • 26 percent are conservative in general 
  • 33 percent are moderate
  • 21 percent are liberal
  • 10 percent are very liberal
  • 4 percent can’t decide

Conservatives, moderates and liberals are virtually equally represented, and that is the first time since 1999 that conservatives have not outnumbered liberals.

The growth of Americans who self-describe themselves as social liberals parallels the transformation from a society where nearly every child was born into a family with a mother and a father into a formless mess where millions of children have a mother and a male biological parent, but no father in the home, where men commonly have multiple past and present sexual partners and offspring, but no wives or children.

The poll showed that a majority increasingly cares little for preserving the stability of the nuclear family, or of marriage before parenthood, with 61 percent saying having a baby outside of marriage is acceptable, up from 45 percent in 2002 and 54 percent in 2012.

Gallup says, “Nearly every major demographic or attitudinal subgroup has shown a significant increase since 2004 in their belief that out-of-wedlock births are morally acceptable.” The exception is Americans whose views on social issues are conservative. Their views on out-of-wedlock births “have changed little over the past 14 years. Between 2002 and 2004, an average of 35 percent of social conservatives said having a baby outside of marriage was morally acceptable. Currently, 38 percent hold this view.”

This development has a substantial negative impact, Gallup says, because “babies born to unmarried parents are much more likely to grow up in poverty than those born to married parents.” The report goes on to say “a growing body of research indicates that … children in two-parent households tend to have better academic and emotional outcomes later in life than those born in single-parent households.”

Gallup also reports the following changes from 2001 to 2015:

  • The rate of approval of sex between unmarried men and women rose from 53 percent to 68 percent, while approval of divorce rose from 59 percent to 71 percent.
  • The proportion of people approving abortion rose to 50 percent for the first time, with pro-lifers constituting only 44 percent. At the same time, those approving of the death penalty for the most vicious criminals dropped from 63 percent to 60 percent.
  • One fairly positive finding is that while there are high levels of approval for out-of-wedlock sex and divorce, only a relative few approve of married people having affairs, although the number did rise from 7 percent to 8 percent.

Accompanying the discarding of past culturally stabilizing standards of behavior is the rise of acute hypersensitivity, a condition where the most important activity is that of searching diligently to find something to be offended by.

A metal sculpture on a university campus is the subject of much wailing and gnashing of teeth among feminists after a woman visiting the University of the Incarnate Word in San Antonio saw the sculpture and snapped a photo of it. The sculpture outraged the woman and her female friend, and the friend tweeted the photo, setting loose pandemonium across the land.

The offending sculpture, titled “Friends,” shows a female student sitting on one end of a bench with a book on her lap, and looking up at a male student standing at the other end of the bench with one foot resting on the seat of the bench.

While normal folks see this as an inoffensive rendering of common friendly student interaction on campus, these two women saw something sinister and deserving of outrage. What was really going on, you see, was “mansplaining,” an offense rivaling murder, to them.

“Mansplaining” is when a man explains something to a woman in a condescending or patronizing manner. It is apparently never appropriate for a man to speak to a woman when she is sitting and he is standing. Either they both must be sitting or standing, or the man may be sitting while the woman stands, thereby eliminating the male superior position.

Being offended is a natural part of life, not a reason to get special treatment. This hypersensitivity takes our attention off really important matters, like the slowest recovery in a century and the 93 million Americans forced out of the workforce, the growing number of Americans driven to poverty by liberal policies, a foreign policy that has weakened the nation in the eyes of the world, and illegals entering the country by the millions, creating a substantial threat to the nation’s stability and security.

James Shott is a columnist for the Bluefield Daily Telegraph, and publishes his columns on several Websites, including his own, Observations.

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