Today’s issue of depreciating childhood dovetails perfectly with my previous installment on infantilizing adults: both are reflecting a loss of the sense of maturity and responsibility in our Western culture. For instance, today every newborn is burdened with a four to six figure number of debt depending on his or her whereabouts ( cf. David Willets; “The Pinch – How the Baby Boomers took their Children’s Future-and why they should give it back”, Atlantic Books London: 2010, p.259, 269). Now the first dramatic example of instrumentalizing childhood was the Bohemian version of the Dreyfus affair. In Prague it was the Jewish cobbler Leopold Hilsener who was falsely accused of ritual murder. A little Christian girl called Anezka Hruzova had been found dead on the 1.4.1899 in Polna. And it was the first Czech president after gaining independence in 1921, Professor T.G. Masaryk, who made is name with the revision of the court indictment finally exonerating Hilsener. Nevertheless since then the West is drifting towards a gradual and not merely symbolical - think of child rape and “pedophilia”- reversal of the Abrahamic abolition of child sacrifice.
Now let’s ask a few questions: Who afforded homosexuals the privilege to be addressed as gay by the rest of us like royals? Or: if fathers are supposed to be gay by definition, what is left for their children? What kind of sacrifices children are expected to make for same-sex parents? Children, Sir Elton John deplored to his merit, raised by gay couples have to make do without the devotion of a loving mother. Right to the point, for anyone who has grown up close to homosexual adolescents, knows that we used to call them spoiled “mothers boys”. Ironically this might be very bad news indeed if future gays are supposed to be raised without mothers. Could the homosexual avant-garde become extinct within a few generations after gay marriage has gone mainstream? After all some kind of trepidation must be behind the hard-nosed implementation of homosexual education from cradle to grave in most EU countries
Surely growing up without a mother in a homosexual household is an unfathomable disadvantage since there is strong evidence that only women have a natural capability of unselfish love, essential for raising children. It is for this reason that gay parenting is set to become an unprecedented social experiment with unknown outcome. Nobody can possibly know for sure the unintended consequences - despite phony liberal social science studies to the contrary (Nelson Lund: “A social experiment without science behind it”, WSJ). Over at the Weekly Standard the editors are pointing out that neither benefits nor risks are backed by any “science” since there are simply no samples available, large enough for statistical significance.
Time will tell. But why, for heaven’s sake, would anybody with his right mind take such risks for our society? The only reason that comes to mind is that same-sex couples might on average be “greener” than straight ones because of their prohibitive costs of having and raising children - benefiting in turn our earths “carbon footprint”. Not that I would seriously buy into that. Yet with regards to the risks we know a lot more, specifically about the dismal effect of absent fathers in families run by single mothers. These dysfunctional families have a track record of well above average rates of depression, suicide attempts, educational failure and even increased criminal records with their offspring. The lack of a mother might be expected to elicit even more dramatic effects, particularly enhanced levels of violence. For it is common sense that the weakening of parental authority increases the level of violence in families with a strong tendency to be transferred to the next generation.
Now late Pope Benedict XVI, defending traditional marriage in his last Christmas address, referred the Chief Rabbi of Paris Gilles Bernheim. He is the author of a brilliant paper focusing on the dangers of same-sex parenting. Bernheim’s paper “Homosexual Marriage, Parenting and Adoption” was translated into English immediately after the Pope’s mentioning and attracted considerable international attention. Bernheim believes “that it is a matter of the greatest importance to make clear the true implications of the negation of sexual difference” and that the argument of equality in favor of same-sex marriage does not stand up to scrutiny.
He does not adduce the biblical prohibition of homosexuality in Leviticus because the issue for him is only homosexual parenting and the well-being of children according. He tells us: “What is at stake is the risk of irreversibly scrambling genealogies, as well as legal and social statuses (the child-as-subject becoming child-as-object) and identities— a confusion that would be harmful to society as a whole and that would lose sight of the general interest in seeking the advantage of a tiny minority.” With this in mind the Chief Rabbi points to the absurdity of heterosexual couples who reject marriage demonstrating alongside homosexual activists for the introduction of same sex marriage. The only reasonable explanation for this political solidarity is that both aim at the abolition of traditional marriage.
The rabbi then confronts the spurious claim that homosexuals could be loving parents as much as heterosexuals. For this completely misses the point, reducing the “parental bond to its affective and educative aspects”, overlooking that “the parent–child bond is a psychological vector of fundamental importance for the child’s sense of identity…For the child establishes his (her) own identity only by a process of differentiation, which presupposes that he (she) knows whom he (she) resembles. Thus he (she) needs to know that he (she) issues from the love and the union between a man, his (her) father, and a woman, his (her) mother, thanks to the sexual difference between them. Even adopted children know that they originate from the love and the desire of their parents, even when these are not their biological parents.”
Thus same sex parenting lacks the stimulus based on parental difference to develop the child’s identity and the reassurance of recognizing a place in its genealogy. The generational chain alone guarantees each individual a place in the world in which he or she lives knowing where he or she came from. The categorical error lies in the concept of homosexual parenting as constructed upon gender or the sexuality of two individuals instead of actual parental sex creating offspring. Thus homosexual parenting is a fiction: “The term “parent” is not neutral; it involves sexual difference. To accept the term “homosexual parenting” is to strip the word “parent” of its intrinsic bodily, biological, and fleshly meaning.” There is no right to a child for children are not objects of rights but their subjects, another categorical error of same-sex advocacy. The fallacy of instrumentalization or the disregard of the child’s personality and needs as already present in the Pro-Choice abortion stance. Yet it develops its full traumatic potential only in gay parenting: “This absence allows adults demanding rights to avoid asking about the rights of the child, what the child might need, and whether the child might prefer having a father and mother instead of two parents of the same sex. This is a case where our carelessness borders on cynicism. The right of the child is radically different from the right to the child. The former right is fundamental. It consists in particular in giving the child a family in which he (she) will have the best chance to have the best life.”
Yet it gets worse with homosexual adoption, neglecting the vulnerability that is involved, for same sex adoption thus risks aggravating the “trauma of the abandoned child, for the generational chain would be doubly broken: first in the reality of the child’s abandonment, and second, symbolically, in the fact of the homosexuality of the adoptive parents. Do we have the right to ask a child who has already been wounded by his past to adapt to the affective situation of his parents, a situation that is very different at once from that of the great majority of other children and from what the child aspires to rediscover? Is it the adopted child’s responsibility to adapt to the affective life choices of his or her parents?”
The unintended consequence of imposing gender equality on everyone is that people keep looking inside for difference – reaching into the abyss of instincts and loneliness. The result will be probably more private violence. The irony here is that having dispensed of religion as exalted inwardness people in search of guidance end up with lowering replacements. Tocqueville once held against Rousseau: „In ages of equality…the feelings of each man are turned to himself alone. It is in ages of inequality that public spirit runs high, for only by transforming society can each man transform his own personal relations“(Ph. Rieff “The Triumph of the Therapeutic,” 1976, p.58). Once egalitarian individualism has sapped its virtues, democracy breaks the chain of coherence that held the members of the community together.
On a different note it is important to recognize that with the popular LGBT movement the transgressive spirit of modern disruptive revolutions makes an unwelcome return. Just as previous revolutions launched attacks in their particular way against the church (French Revolution), the nation (Russian Revolution) or the Jewish foundation of civil society (Nazi-Revolution) the sexual revolution starting in 1968 is bound to globalize what the Nazi’s started but could not finish: the destruction of the Judeo-Christian civilization based on the family as we know it.
However the transgressive impulses that would become modern LGBT rage first emerged during the fin-de-siècle decadence with a mix of feminism, homosexuality, anarchism and anti-Semitism. It is no surprise that the lowering impulses emanating from unleashed sexual and violent instincts at the close of the romantic era collided with the oldest codes of human civilizations which is Jewish Law - hence anti-Semitism. Trilling observed that this sensualist turn was reflected in the lowering of the meaning of the word pleasure to “a strictly physical sense” in the Oxford English Dictionary at the time. By contrast James Joyce (Molly in Ulysses), Boris Pasternak (Lara in Dr Zhivago) and William Butler Yeat’s Maud, Trilling tells us, “were among the last devotees of the European cult of Woman…” That is why the emergence of suffragettes is matched by women losing their privileged position of attracting admiration and the longing for pleasure. The object of male desire turned to “innocent youth” (cf. Keats Lamia and his dialectics of pleasure, see Trilling:”Beyond Culture”, London: 1955, p.65). Hence the lockstep rise of homosexuality and pedophilia was epitomized with Oscar Wilde’s “Dorian Grey” – the man who never gets old.
The Victorians could not make up their mind whether children were angels or monsters. Yet Freud and Kafka tackled this problem. They were in this sense the last prophets of the Enlightenment. Their works mark a major Rousseau-an pivot towards the youth cult depreciating maturity and age wisdom. By mimicking the innocence of children Kafka expanded the Rousseau-an vision of the “noble savage” to children: the fatal enlightened prejudice that humans are innocent in general and society is to blame for any evil. Kafka thus spoke of children as the ideal reformers. Freud would theorize about formative early childhood rendering adulthood as cast into predetermined Greek tragedy. Thus Kafka and Freud shared the folly of German historicism and idealism by collapsing any longue durée or traditional view in a new myth of immediacy weakening the power of institutions. The other side of this coin was that Freud, following German idealism, in 1897 declared confessions of female rape victims as (childhood) fantasies, denying their reality. Previously he had understood those abuses as caused by seduction of children by grown-ups as we understand them today.
This Freudian switch to the unconscious amounted to a quiet but sweeping rehabilitation of male rapists of the fin-de-siècle decadence leading up to the First World War. Interwar existentialism was another attempt to reclaim the innocence of childhood by grown-ups, just living for the moment. Eventually the 1968 adoration of spontaneity and pedophiles of the Jimmy Savile format is just another extension. Today the dialectic between infantilizing and paternalistic big government is a self-enforcing circuit, weakening the “ego” by strengthening the “id” and “super-ego” in the manner of divide et impera of old.
It was Fjodor Dostoyevsky who in his influential 1864 Notes from Underground first sensed this transgressive turn in European culture, propelled by abundant materialism. His first person account of a miserable clerk, who hates all purposeful work or drudging away just for “specious goods of pleasure” and who rejects sacrificing his human dignity and freedom. Dostoyevsky’s was a polemic response to the utopian but acquisitive novel “What is to be done” by Nikolai Chernyshevski, that later inspired Lenin’ eponymous work of 1902 that kindled the first revolutionary disorder of 1905. This unnamed clerk as anti-Hero is the ancestor of a contemporary still popular tribe of outcasts devoted to alternative lifestyle. He is the prototype of the antagonistic bohemian type that over the last two centuries emerged equally enthusiastic from the left as from the right radical fringes such as the failed artist Adolf Hitler. Hatred of the bourgeoisie is the lifeblood of modern extremism and unified shortly in 1939 even Hitler and Stalin into war allies against the bourgeois West.
The list of anti-bourgeois activist is endless and a few examples may suffice: Jean Jacques Rousseau, Karl Marx, Friedrich Nietzsche, Richard Wagner, Oscar Wilde, George Lukasz, Wilhelm Reich, Martin Heidegger, Hannah Arendt, Herbert Marcuse, the Black Panthers, Rudi Dutschke and, more recently, Danny Cohn-Bendit (Green MEP) and Judith Butler (University of Berkeley Philosopher) - the latter being intellectual grandchildren of the Nazi philosopher Martin Heidegger and his mistress Hannah Arendt. Whereas Heidegger was a philanderer, Cohn-Bendit joined the student revolt of 1968, later working in a Frankfurt/Main Kindergarten as a confessing pedophile – a clientele that belonged to the founders of the German Green Party. Judith Butler, a radical chic self-hating Jewess, represents the international queer community and the BDS movement fighting the state of Israel.
From an actual film, titled “Hannah Arendt”, by the German director Margarethe von Trotta you may grasp how postmodern anti-Semitism of the liberal persuasion emerged from its hard-right wing Nazi predecessor. The post-WW II existentialist philosopher Hannah Arendt was fascinated not only by her lover Martin Heidegger but also by the dissimulating Nazi clerk of the Holocaust Adolf Eichmann who’s 1961 trial in Jerusalem she was commissioned to report for the “New Yorker” magazine. Heidegger’s philosophical existentialism was the expanded version and culmination of Germany’s historicism and it’s infatuation with “kairos” (Greek for the moment) - the closest thing to a fundamental rejection of the meta-historical Jewish law reflecting immutable human nature. This ideological conflict is at the heart of Heidegger’s lifelong refusal of an apology to the victims of the Holocaust. After all his philosophy had been the leaven of violent activism in the 1930ies re-staged in the 1968 student revolution.
The key here is Heidegger’s concept of parousia which denotes spontaneous action or the secular presence of the holy redeemer or still more remotely the second coming of Christ. In the periods of transition as in the 1920ies and 1960ies this concept was shared by radical right and left wing groups springing from an anti-authoritarian impulse against their father’s war generation - with commanding right extremism after WW I and commanding left extremism after WW II. This reflects the deeper truth that hatred of the middle class or bourgeoisie unites left and right radicals, bohemians and petit bourgeois. The concept has been perfectly expressed by Franz Kafka in fin-de-siècle Prague. As a schoolboy Franz used to be accompanied by the family cook on his way to German primary school, which was not far away from the family villa near the old Town Hall of Prague. The cook bullied unruly Franz as “little Ravachol”, after the nom-de-guerre of the notorious anarchist Francois Königstein who was guillotined in 1892.
Anarchism has been widespread at the time - with roughly thousand reported attempts of assassination in Europe and 500 in America in 1892 alone – reflecting the growing rancor of the ruffled socialist crowds. Kafka early on read most of the anarchists such as Proudhon, Stirner, Bakunin, Kropotkin and also Leo Tolstoy. He even attended anarchist circles at “Zum Kanonenkreuz” in Prague in 1910, a formidable contrast to his boring job as clerk with the Bohemian labor accident insurance. Kafka was pretty much driven by the left prejudice that society is always evil and thus became familiar with the likes of Erich Mühsam, Arthur Holitscher and the Viennese anarchist Rudolf Grossman. Falling short of joining in anarchist action, the dream of a great rebellion had settled deep in his imagination.
The popularity of Kafka as the foremost novelist of the 20th century rests for a good measure on his lifelong antagonism to his father Hermann, a wealthy business man in whole sale lingerie but he also, contributing to Kafka’s paranoia, served as . With the famous letter to his father Kafka set the tone for the central issue of the coming totalitarian century featuring unprecedented dictators and galore male perpetrators. It was Theodore W. Adorno who in his “Dialectic of the Enlightenment”, written in 1944 with Max Horkheimer in the Californian exile, put the authoritarian personality at the center of the Third Reich. All the same for Kafka his father was a God-like, all powerful authority, representing the epicenter of all repressions the son had to endure. This is perfectly epitomized in the following quote from the famous letter to his father: “Sometimes I imagine the map of the world spread out flat and you stretched out diagonally across it. And what I feel then is that only those territories come into question for my life that either are not covered by you or are not within your reach. And, in keeping with the conception that I have of your magnitude, these are not many and not very comforting territories, and above all marriage is not among them.”
It was Philip Rieff who observed that Adorno, just like adolescent Kafka, is liable of generalizations not borne out by the facts when he identifies the authoritarian head of the petit bourgeoisie family as the main culprit of totalitarianism that ended with the Holocaust. Both geniuses are guilty of reducing the whole of civilizational repression to a family affair. However it served perfectly as the postwar screenplay for the anti-authoritarian revolt that continued with the sexual revolution which is still with us. And since homosexuality according to psychoanalysis stems from the unresolved conflict between son and father it follows that a wave of “coming out” was to be expected as a result of the war experience.
It might be quite appropriate to conclude that the gender reductionism of the Frankfurt School actually propelled the student revolt. And with last year’s bestowal to Judith Butler of the Theodore Adorno - Prize the present same-sex revolt in sync with the BDS movement against Israel has been catalyzed again. In a similar fashion the anti-authoritarian revolt of 1968 accomplished its march through the institutions by marginalizing the father and elevating the mother. The best explanation for both is offered by Philip Rieff’s first sociological law, applicable to all public life, which says “there are no aggressions except as transgressions”.
In the same-sex campaign of our day returns the suppressed father with more than a whiff of authoritarianism that marks the implementation of same-sex policies within Western society: the combination of a repressive political order with a permissive moral order. Only in this way we may speak of soft totalitarianism that marks LGBT and the greens as well (cf. Jonah Goldberg “Liberal Fascism”, 2007). In addition our traditional interdictory system of moral restraint is just as much lowered as the social cost for supporting and medically facilitating same-sex families compared to traditional ones is increased. This can only accelerate the breakdown of our overstretched welfare systems in the West. It definitely sends the wrong signal and it might well increase the risk of dictatorship in a Europe that is already beginning to disintegrate under the burden of the financial crisis.
Already the European bureaucrats seem to resort to this panacea of political repression with moral slackness towards ascending elites such as the LGBT crowd. The penchant for the bohemian has always been a feature of major turning points in Western history that between them shared a disgust for the bourgeoisie: the French Revolution of Robespierre, Lenin’s Russian revolutions of 1905 and 1917, Nazi-Berlin of 1934 with Ernst Röhm’s proletarian-homosexual revolt and also at the beginning and the end of the fascist experiment in Fiume 1920 and Salo 1944, orchestrated by the Italian Röhm, Gabriele D’Annunzio serving his duce Mussolini.
The openly homosexual late Italian film director Pierre Paolo Pasolini made this the motive of his film “The 120 Days of Sodom” of 1975 with echoes to the eponymous enlightenment work of Marquis de Sade. It shows sadomasochistic orgies coalescing with political despotism in the Republic of Salo on the Garda Lake in 1944, the last refuge of Mussolini. D’Annunzio had a lesbian lover and wrote obscene prose, the sweeteners that in turn called for Mussolini brandishing the cane. All of this gives us a fair measure of the true modernity not only of the communists, but also of the fascists and Nazis. They are still “sexy” and looking back we can see why. The female types were very popular indeed with feminists in the 1970ies as Susan Sontag has demonstrated in her essay “Fascinating Fascism. For more than a decade the late Sontag had been the star of the post-1968 intellectual New York after being married to Philip Rieff for a decade in the 1950ies.
The dynamics of Western triumphalism heated up in the decadence of fin-de-siècle and exploded in two World Wars are revealing in terms of the sexual imagination. In 1789 as in the 1920ies and 30ies it was ripe with sadomasochism, which is basically the lowering of sexual pleasure to pain of any kind confirming the close link between liberated sex and violence. Thus it has been historically evident that in homosexual sodomy pain usually commands love and not the other way round. This feature raises serious doubts over the concept of homosexuals parenting. That much we have learned about the experience of sodomy from the theorizing and practicing sadomasochist Michel Foucault.
Turning the screw a bit further are those shocking KZ porno’s which are just another sexual augmentation as for instance shown in the movie “The Night Porter” with Charlotte Rampling’s erotic submission to her Nazi tormentor. All this explains why in postwar Germany and beyond we saw a self-destructive gay turn, born out of its predecessor, the collectivist Nazi death cult - or in other words: the last triumph of Ernst Röhm. The post-war homosexual death cult was detectable in the plunging of the gay community into the horror of an AIDS epidemic despite all attempts to respect privacy and protect them against spreading the infection. After a first shock with a sense of repentance most gay people ignored the warnings and preventive measures as far as I can tell from personal experience. I headed an institute in the 1980ies and 90ies dedicated to HIV prevention in Hamburg.
Since the late nineteenth century Germany has been leading the West in terms of secularization with the first homosexual think tank being established by Magnus Hirschfield in Berlin before the turn of the century, when German was still the lingua franca of the scientific community. The artistic cliques of Berlin, Vienna and Munich had just unleashed the first shot of the sexual revolution, which - interrupted by two World Wars except for the roaring twenties in Berlin - gathered full steam with the student revolt of 1968. We seem to have reached the pinnacle today with the victorious same-sex marriage campaign all over the Anglo-sphere, which rings the death knell for conservatives of the Edmund Burke persuasion. Any significance of his “Reflections on the Revolution in France” or of natural law and English common sense for that matter is being vanishing under the final blow of the combined forces of radical NGO advocacy and authoritarian EU bureaucracy.
A hint of the tribulations ahead of us might be taken from the insolence of the “gay”-label monopoly. Quietly indulged by the rest of us without any controversy as far as I am aware, the homosexual community has successfully engineered gaiety - or in proper Gramscian terms: has accomplished cultural hegemony for their politically extremely efficient sodomy networks – probably the strongest version of nepotism in modern Western political history. It has undermined the church first, followed by the media, the universities, the military and now government. With literally no opposition to speak of anymore in academic and media elites this miracle might be explained by manipulated gay victimology: the dominant mainstream account of the persecution of homosexuals by the Nazis, putting them next to the Jews and Gypsies.
This narrative is at best misleading if not outright offensive. For the Jews and Gypsies, by contrast to the homosexual network behind Ernst Röhm, could never have challenged Hitler’s leadership. According to Wikipedia Röhm and Hitler were so close and modern that they addressed each other as du (the German intimate pronoun), the only top Nazi that Hitler addressed as such. In turn, Röhm was the only Nazi who dared address Hitler as "Adolf," rather than "mein Führer”, “My leader”). For the time being Hitler’s person is still unpopular but all positive attributes of his Nazi celebrity are alive and kicking: sexual escapism (Hermann Göring's cross-dressing), smoking bans, the colonoscopy fad, health fetishism, vegetarianism, Asian medicine, animal worship, nuclear power-phobia and last not least anti-Semitism.
In contrast to the presently unassailable gays, the Jews and Israel, with the Holocaust in living memory, are again anything but unassailable. Rather they are increasingly becoming targeted by anti-Semites in Europe. The situation begins to resemble the 1880ies when anti-Semitism first got traction in Europe. Experience holds: when the mores are loosening the Jews ought to take care and start packing. They are doing this right now by the ten-thousands in France and Scandinavia. Jews in continental Europe are advised not to risk their life by publicly displaying their religious credentials. It is not difficult to imagine what the next worldwide export from advanced secular Germany will be. First of all we will certainly see gay lord majors in Western big cities as we already have in Germany’s Berlin and Hamburg among others. And I reckon the German fin-de-siècle invention of nudism will be spreading around the still remotely puritan Anglo sphere. And then triple marriages and what have you will follow.
And this is how the almost unassailable LGBT machine succeeds: You won’t see meaningful controversy in the mainstream media on same-sex marriage, just appeasement as with the Nazi transgressions. The homosexual presumption of being nothing but gay results in putting themselves in the pole position of the pleasure seeking crowds of the sexual revolution, proudly displayed with their spiritual militancy in the vulgar “gay pride” parading in the West and beyond. Exalted gays, still relying on the image of anti-heroes are taking exception to the quotidian human drudgery that Dostoyevsky’s clerk despised - insinuating in childish manner to the rest of us “I have more life than you”. With this they are already attracting heterosexuals curious to share the experience of Berlin darkrooms.
The term “gay” emerged first in England at the close of the 19th century. It was remarkable for lacking any semblance of restraint and has set the homosexuals on a slippery slope. Hence in the 1920ies Berlin was somehow the European capital of debauchery where the urban bohemians flocked. And history, not remembered, tends to repeat itself. Berlin today is again becoming the world hub for sex tourism, proud particularly of it’s more than two dozens of “dark rooms”, an Eldorado of transgressive gay culture. Berlin’s prestigious but also slightly vulgar national newspaper “Die Welt” recently published a book review on the new “Knigge for dark rooms”. The original baron Adolph Knigge wrote a venerable book on what was considered good manners of gentlemen in the 18th century. It is s fair measure of the lowering of Berlin’s cultural reputation to compare the old “Knigge” with the new, a book on codes for transgressive sex addicts.
Whereas in the 1990ies I could still discuss anything with my homosexual friends, today this seems to be impossible in Germany and most of Europe. Meanwhile anyone is excluded from polite society who dares to oppose same sex marriage even if in favor of civic unions. The public climate has turned Orwellian and as a result the whole West all of a sudden miraculously is on the verge of submitting to the pressure of gay advocacy – something unimaginable a decade ago. Homosexuals presently are commanding the public imagination in the West. They are the newest market, kindling the “animal spirits” of otherwise exhausted and overstuffed consumers. It serves as a marginal cultural addition – something new a fad that may pass. Certainly ushering in new markets the gay “wedding culture” offers new consumption opportunities. Homosexuals are also track blazers to other lowering subcultures in Western society opening up opportunities of direct-marketing to prison populations.
For this newest Berlin hype people hop on a plane for a weekend trip as far away as Montreal or Tel Aviv. In Israel the gay pride parades in particular amount to what Philip Rieff called an “assault upon the enabling human gaiety, and its dignity: upon the high life in sacred order, and the necessary dread of ascending in it (Rieff, Feeling intellect, p. 363)”. Despite the stunning and sweeping success of gay campaigning in all segments of our society, gay advocacy does not show any sign of content or gratitude. “Every trespass increases the probability of yet another trespass. The ‘domino theory’ of morality is correct. I think”. (Philip Rieff: The Feeling Intellect, Sentences, University of Chicago Press: 1990, p.368) This is why despite all what has been granted to the LGBT radicals, we still have to put up with offending metropolitan gay-pride parades even in the Holy City of Jerusalem.
Interestingly Tel Aviv and Beirut, with the odd war and terrorist assaults between them, are today competing for international gay tourism which, given that gays earn and spend more than heterosexuals, seems to be very lucrative. With the fading of religion, in Europe much faster than in America, the lowering of the interdictory rules has made progress to the point where it splits in non-binding relative “values”, subject to variable individual choices. We know from history what might happens next: the proverbial strong man will emerge and will enforce those accidental values with brutal power, smashing whatever is left of gaiety to smithereens. The inability of post-modern elites to defend our interdictory culture and moral demand system with indisputable limits is dangerous because it threatens our freedom.
Plato knew a thing about this:
„The goddess of limit, my dear Philebus, seeing insolence and all manner of wickedness breaking loose from all limit in point of pleasure and self-indulgence, established the limit of law and order, of limited being; and you say this restraint was the death of pleasure: I say it was the saving of it.” (Philebus, 26c.)
What gay advocacy has in common with previous revolutionary upheavals, apart from living for the moment, is that it doesn’t seem to respect any limits, buttressing their fondness of transgression for its own sake. Kafka’s story on the metamorphosis of Gregor Samsa is about the terror we feel in the presence of the seemingly inexorable progression of a lowering in sacred order, similar to modern movies with humans beings attacked by insects or monsters – all of which represent a lower order. After the gay abolition of restraint comes inevitably the abyss of pain. If you read de Sade and most of the transgressive literature of the 19th century up to Huysmans you will find this kind of terror and pain: the manna of same sex experiences. The main purpose of post-War gay advocacy has been to remove any interdicts or restraint on pleasure posed by religion or precious traditional custom and habit. What we learn from Plato about gay culture is this: not elevating but lowering of limits is the true death of gaiety.
One more remarkable difference between the decadence of old compared to the present. The pioneering bohemians in the 19th century cherished transgressions but still appreciated those limits they attempted to trespass (cf. George Bataille). Today’s LGBT advocacy groups put up endless fights to remove even the remotest barriers between what used to be polite society or bourgeois culture and the remainder of underground freaks or gender subcultures. Same-sex marriage is a case in point for the very reason that it aims at leveling any differences with heterosexuals if only to commit adultery and promiscuity with a good conscience. It has to be said that the passion of homosexual eroticism is not love but pain. With gays, Trilling notes in “Beyond Culture” (New York: Harcourt 1963, p.57-87), authority of pleasure is thought in pain, achieved through cultivation of lowering violence. Trilling shows in abundance how any interdictory rules were invariably and constantly denounced as “bourgeois” or “repressive” in the most influential literary enterprises.
To be fair, modern heterosexual spirituality is equally fundamentally Rousseau-an as can be observed in TV junk such as “Big Brother” or “Jungle Camp”. It is caught up with instincts, mad for holy fools and fond of the sordid and the disgusting rather than the pleasing and noble. This perverse fundamentalism of cherishing any lowering experience has long captivated the liberal imagination. Liberals don’t realize the paradox that any transgressive mode is an ultimate longing for limiting authority. It is a nostalgic search of the sacred order. Yet alas! Liberal prophets such as Wilhelm Reich, Theodore W. Adorno, Herbert Marcuse and Michel Foucault have succeeded in triumphant lowering and demoralization of Western institutions such as nation, church, military and family, first targeted by Sigmund Freud as repressive modern institutions. But Freud in contrast to his successors at least acknowledged the imperative of repression for any civilization. Yet to no avail. The postmodern prophets of the anti-authoritarian persuasion pressed for ever more lowering of discipline which then has been marketed as alternative life-style.
Freud’s most serious flaw was to reduce the fundamental question of sacred order to the parent question, framing it in his deceptively accessible therapeutic arrangements. But meta-psychologically he obscured the universal status of the question of moral vertical order. It was for this very reason that the death of Satan was far more consequential than the death of God. For the sense of sinful transgression or of lowering or raising moral standards has been completely lost. It has generated an aesthetic without evil as happened with the cult of liberal honesty and the modern therapeutic arrangement. This is why even serious transgressions such as rape and child abused are not anymore recognized as evil. This is the essence of LGBT culture.
The successful abolition of evil has blindfolded the straight public into indulging the destruction of their still sacramental concept of marriage. Everything is on the same level in this world of “comic ugliness and lustered nothingness” (Wallace Stevens “Esthetique du Mal”, in Collected Poems, New York: Alfred Knopf, 1976, 313-26). The dynamics of homosexual emancipation, as with female emancipation before, is under the spell of Freud’s “primary process”: never to be satisfied, for its endless nostalgia for “the place in which to be is not enough to be” (ibid Stevens). Thus don’t fool yourself into believing after sanctioning same-sex marriage the trouble will be over. Far from it the LGBT machine will go on. We will probably see demands for the abolition of incest or the normalization of pedophilia and lots more debasement.
It is an interesting observation that homosexuals emerged in the bourgeois culture in the 19th century as connoisseurs of the arts, gourmets and highbrow intellectuals not publicly living out their sexual orientation. What was irritating some is the combination of aesthetics refinement with at times profane even brutal sexuality. This is famously also a feature of the emerging modern art in fin-de-siècle Europe.
As we have seen in 1968: the apostles of anti-culture invited violence as emancipatory means and pathetic indiscipline: ”Under such shifting conditions, all justifications exposed as ideologies, the discipline necessary for collective existence must become more entirely outward than ever before in our history.” This externalization or “coming out” is unsustainable for the reasons mentioned above and may collapse sooner or later. At some point heterosexuals might not be able to cope with the double whopper of transgression and aggression. Philip Rieff argues: scientists produce new facts but gay orgiasts produce new experiences. This will be the modern dialectic between progressive technologists like the contraceptive pill or fertility and insemination doctors on one side and regressive sensualists of the LGBT persuasion on the other. As a result we will get more disoriented science and less moral guidance rooted in a culture of religious interdicts. This dynamic has already overwhelmed the universities which are meant to protect our culture.
"If a past has no authority, then it is dead, however expensive its artifacts. There can be no culture without living authority, right and proper demands superior to competing immediacies, not reducible to nor identical with power, which is the successful assertion of one's own immediacy over another's."
Power grabs and assertion of immediacies are the one thing that LGBT advocacy understands. It reflects the intricate dynamics between transgression and aggression which was anticipated by the Roman emperor Hadrian, one of the supreme monsters of Jewish history, as Simon Sebag Montefiori tells us in his monumental new biography of Jerusalem: “In 130 C.E., the emperor visited Jerusalem, accompanied by his young lover Antinous, and decided to abolish the city, even down to its very name. He ordered a new city to be built on the site of the old one, to be named Aelia Capitolina, after his own family and Jupiter Capitolinus (the god most associated with the empire), and he banned circumcision, the sign of God’s covenant with the Jews, on pain of death” (Phoenix, London 2012, p.160). The same significance accrues to the abolition of traditional marriage and the construction of a new same-sex Jupiter cult. Lord Carey, the former Archbishop of Canterbury, has put it succinctly “Marriage precedes both the state and the church, and neither of these institutions have the right to redefine it in such a fundamental way.”