Sunday, February 09, 2014

Deriving Christianity

Kay Hymowitz has an article in the NYT detailing how single motherhood hurts kids. I had some snarky fun at her expense on Twitter.

I picked Catholic Boy Scout, @catholicscoutz, because he was the most ludicrous person I could think of to knock back a bottle of Jack Daniels and finish off a case of Schlitz. Having said that, the point remains. These thumbsucking policy wonkathons examining massive data sets just seem like so much time wasting. It's a bunch of Ivy League wieners sitting around their faculty lounges, coming to the shocking conclusion that married parent families are superior when we've known this for 2000 years.

The sociologists are gradually deriving partial Christianity from hopelessly tangled and incomplete data sets.

Whatever they come up with, it will be insufficient to substantially change things for the reasons I laid out yesterday. The policy wonks offer up evidence of Christian truth, but leave out its transcendent nature. They tell the young woman who is being seduced by her boyfriend, "You are 37% more likely to end up in poverty. Don't do it!" When formulated that way, it makes the counterargument trivial. "You don't understand. (Jamal, Joey, Jose) isn't like that. We're different. Our love is real!"

If you're prone to making bad life decisions or if you're just in a particularly weak moment, policy wonks have no power of persuasion at all. Policy wonkiness combined with faith is considerably stronger. "You are 37% more likely to end up in poverty. Plus, God says it's a sin. Don't do it!" Faith provides the deeper, emotional roadblock to bad decisions. The girl's reply of "Our love is real!" is easily countered by what we redneck Christians teach our kids - "If the boy's love for you is real, he'll wait. Someone who loves you won't help you sin." We put the boy's love to God's test.

Having surrendered to the secular world, the sociologists don't do that at all. They've got the mechanics of Christianity, but none of its power.

Good luck with that.


Jedi Master Ivyan said...

Wow! It's almost like God knew what he was doing when he told mankind to keep their pants on! ;)

K T Cat said...

That's just crazy talk!