In a Facebook exchange, some liberal friends, they passed this link along, of the "14 Craziest Things Tea Party Candidates Believe."
The article was penned by the Dartmouth educated Gus Lubin. If this article doesn't pretty much give up Gus's politics, his Ivy League education would be a clue, as would his following list on Twitter. If you're following Frank Rich, Thomas Friedman, Paul Krugman, and your only people on the right are Sarah Palin, you're not looking for balance, you're looking for confirmation of your own left-wing ideology and for something interesting to be posted by Palin.
Given that, this article is not surprising. I don't read Gus's work. I am sure it's fabulous, in it's self-absorbed, Liberal-self-love type of way (that's called foreshadowing), but, this is vapid. That is not going to stop me from taking on each of these 14 statements, and try to prove why they're not batshit crazy, and demonstrate a nutty liberal statement in return for each of them. I'll start with number one on their list, because it involves something all liberals enjoy - Sex with the one they love.
- Christine O'Donnell "It is not enough to be abstinent with other people, YOU ALSO HAVE TO BE ABSTINENT ALONE. The Bible says that lust in your heart is committing adultery, so you can't masturbate without lust."
O'Donnell said this in a 1996 MTV documentary, "Sex in the '90's" where she was pushing her abstinence agenda, and masturbation was a part of that. Central to the issue is Matthew 5:28, "You have heard that it was said, ‘Do not commit adultery.’ But I tell you that anyone who has looked a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart.” This was clearly the verse former president Jimmy Carter was referring to in his 1976 Playboy interview where he admitted to committing "adultery in my heart many times."
Thinking people would largely agree that O'Donnell's on pretty solid ground here in her statement in that most self-love (particularly among men) is focused on some object of desire (and not usually a car). And Carter hits the right note that it's really about what's in the heart. For him, if he looked at a woman with lust in his heart, he felt he had committed adultery. If I was rating this, I'd say the statement by O'Donnell is "Mostly True," because I think you could argue that if the object of your desire was your spouse, that's probably not adultery. For info, in her video, Christine frowns on this, as she thinks it would detract from the relationship because it makes the other in the relationship less necessary. Some men might find that attitude very endearing, some might find it annoying. I shall stay agnostic.
One thing O'Donnell doesn't hit in this quote is the issue of masturbation and sin.
An argument can be made both for and against masturbation as a sin. A pretty good, fair take on the religious aspects of masturbation can be found at About.com's Christian Teens section. Regardless of the technicality of whether it's a sin or not, most people would agree that the objectification of women that is most commonly associated with males and masturbation is generally not a good thing, that the use of pornography and addiction that often results (in males) is destructive to relationships, and that for those with the willpower and ability to reject that which that detracts from their central relationships (with their spouse and their God above all) comes great personal satisfaction and rewards - and, I'd just guess (not copping to anything here) - an improved relationship with the significant other. I'm just sayin'.
My bottom line on this is - if you're a Christian struggling with this issue - read your Bible, pray, and like so many things, this boils down to your personal relationship with God. Like so many gray areas, there are places where we clearly cross a line into gray. The O'Donnell's of the world (and many of your pastors) would suggest staying far off that line. But, we're sinners and most of us will enter that area and cross it. If we were perfect, there would be no need for a Savior.
- I quoted the Carter Playboy interview above, but, I don't find Carter to be wrong, either, just as I don't find anything wrong with O'Donnell's statements. Sure, the secular Left, who practices the religion of Government-love, finds this focus on a pure relationship among (married) loving couples old-fashioned and silly, but, no less a Leftist than Jimmy Carter shared pretty much the same view, so, this really isn't a Left-Right issue, it's a cultural one.
So, I'll use this goody from Nancy Pelosi on unemployment benefits:
"It creates jobs faster than almost any other initiative you can name."Huh?