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Beyond the Brave New World
by Thomas A. Droleskey
January 26, 2001

This is being written in California, where I am conducting my adult-education courses in Santa Clara, Pebble Beach, and Atascadero. Although I had an amazing set of adventures en route out here via a van given to me last July by Dr. and Mrs. Paul Wolpert of Sioux City, I will save a recitation of those adventures for another column. However, I have not had to face any of the blackouts or brownouts that have plagued parts of California in the past few weeks. Although I am a New Yorker to the very core of my being, there is important work for me to do on the road, and I am very grateful to the Scholz Family Foundation for underwriting my adult-education programs (and the work of my newsletter, Christ or Chaos).

After the conclusion of the Wanderer Forum in Carmel on January 14, I saw quite a sad sight as I returned to the hotel in Dublin that served as my headquarters for the first two weeks of my stay in the Golden State. A long line of toddlers was crossing Dublin Boulevard, supervised by several women. It was obvious that the children were pre-schoolers who had been placed into a day-care program. Some of them looked really lost. If one wants to know the root of a great many of the problems of the young today, look no further than to the fact that children — who desperately need to know they are loved by their parents — are shuffled off to the care of strangers for the better part of their young lives.

Think about it: a child could be placed in a day-care program as early as 6:30 or 7 in the morning and not be reunited with his mother or father until ten or eleven hours later, giving him only a few hours with his parents before he must be put to bed. That would have a tremendously deleterious impact upon a child’s development. Our Lord did not spend time as a Child in Nazareth simply to wait until He embarked upon His Public Ministry. He was teaching us that each person in the family has a role that is appropriate to the mission he or she has in that family (a father, a mother, a child, a brother, a sister). The Holy Family of Jesus, Mary, and Joseph is the model for all families, bar none.

Children need the presence of a manly but loving father who is seen as the natural breadwinner of the family. They need the presence of a loving but firm mother who understands that the most important “empowerment” she can realize is the one she received from the vocation of motherhood. A mother has the power to shape little souls for good or for ill. A mother who models herself after the Mother of God will make endless sacrifices to train her children to be saints, to help them love God through His true Church above all other things. Her physical presence in the home during the day is essential to a child’s spiritual well-being and development. And it is essential for her husband to understand that while he is the breadwinner of the family, his presence is vital for the formation of the young souls brought into the world as the natural fruit of the couple’s married love. He is not to be engaged in all manner of extracurricular activities with the “boys” after work. His place is at home with his children, teaching them formally with their instruction (as befits the responsibility of parents as the principal educators of their children) and informally by the example he sets as head of the household.

As we know, there has been a concerted effort over the course of the last hundred years to destabilize the family. It began during the Industrial Revolution, when children were forced to work at hard manual labor in order to help support their families. It included the creation of public schools by Masonically controlled state legislatures in the 1830s and 1840s as an attempt to undermine the natural-law right of parents to be recognized as their children’s principal educators. The push for “liberalized” divorce laws in the latter part of the nineteenth century also was part of that effort. That push — when coupled with the propaganda promoting contraception in the 1920s and 1930s — greatly advanced the destabilization effort, introducing children to the wonderful world of step-parents and step-siblings and half-siblings. Indeed, the situation is so confusing today that some children feel entirely lost as a result of having had a succession of stepfathers and stepmothers and siblings whose exact relationship to themselves sometimes defied their grasp.

Feminism has played its own insidious role in that turn of events, convincing many women that they do not have any inherent worth or dignity unless they take their place in the work world with careers. As I have noted on many other occasions, women are fully competent to do the same sort of intellectual tasks associated with men (and many of them do such tasks far better than men). However, God has so ordered the world that He expects women in their childbearing years who are married and have children to be at home with their children. (That is so in most instances; there are careers, such as nursing and other related fields, that may not necessarily conflict with the overriding duties of motherhood). However, the fact that many women believe they must work has placed them in competition with men for high-paying positions, forcing many mothers who want to stay at home to educate and care for their children to find jobs to help supplement their family’s income. Thus, day-care centers and programs have arisen as a means of providing care for children that should be provided to them in their own homes by their own mothers.

Obviously, there are instances today when it is not possible for mothers to stay at home. Women who have chosen life over death for their unborn children conceived out of wedlock have to provide for themselves and their progeny. Other women have been abandoned by their faithless spouses, who have decided to start new families with others (the logical fruit of contraception and divorce; those two evils feed into and off one another). Still others have been widowed and have not been provided the means by their late husbands to care for their families. My discussion of the importance of mothers to be at home with their children is in no way meant to cast any aspersions upon those women who are in extraordinary personal circumstances.

In many instances, however, many mothers want to work simply to be “fulfilled,” not understanding that the most fulfilled woman in history was our Lady, who was full of grace from the first moment of her own conception in her mother’s womb. The atomistic individualism that is such a big part of the feminist movement has rejected a mother’s loving self-sacrifices in imitation of the Mother of God, who is the model of all legitimate femininity, and instead has emphasized a narcissistic notion of career fulfillment as a necessary part of a woman’s psychological well-being. The Devil wants women to abandon their children in order to be “fulfilled” in a career outside of the home. He wants children to be subject to the ideological brainwashing that is the bane of almost all day-care centers, which stress the deification of the environment, “tolerance” of “divergent” lifestyles, and the promotion of leftist political agendas.

Indeed, the desire for “fulfillment” outside the home is what gave even greater impetus to the acceptance and practice of contraception by married couples. When one tries to fool with one’s own physical nature, however, there are dire consequences. Women who have postponed child-bearing (or spaced out such child-bearing) using various contraceptive devices and pills are increasingly finding themselves unable to bear children at all. The artificial prevention of conception has thus led many women to seek the artificial conception of children by means of in vitro fertilization, surrogate motherhood (whether through in vitro fertilization, the use of donor eggs and sperms, or other practices so evil and insidious that they will not be mentioned here). An entire Orwellian industry has arisen to feed the demand for babies on demand: the fertility clinic.

No woman has a right to a child. Even a loving couple who have been wedded together in the bond of a valid sacramental marriage in the Catholic Church do not have a right to children. Children are bestowed upon a couple as the natural fruit of their married love, but they are sent as God sees fit to send them. Those couples who are faced with infertility can devote themselves more fully to the promotion of the Faith (as was the case with Dietrich and Alice von Hildebrand) or they can adopt children, providing children not of their own generation the home and the love that they need. My own mother, who died 19 years ago this March 18, was put up for adoption shortly after her birth in 1921. And while she did not have the happiest of circumstances with her adoptive father, the vaudevillian Sioux Indian Chieftain William Red Fox, she nevertheless had a home. Infertility is not a curse. A cross, perhaps; but not a curse. No one has the right to choose to use immoral means to conceive a child, no matter how desperately a child is desired.

In 1987, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith issued a statement on this matter. Titled Donum Vitae (The Gift of Life), the document stressed the simple teaching of the natural law that a child has the right to be conceived within the context of faithful, monogamous married love. A child has the right to a stable home, one where he is surrounded by the love of his parents, who understand they have the obligation to prepare each of their children to spend an unending Easter Sunday of glory in Paradise. The proliferation of various methods and practices for producing children in test tubes and petri dishes outside the womb has created a situation where children are being robbed of that right.

The irony of all of this is really inescapable: children must be “planned” as objects that will fit neatly into a couple’s lifestyle and career decisions. Naturally, the children can be disposed of in the local abortuary if they do not fit, or, if they are permitted to be born, they can be shunted off to the day-care center and given some occasional attention. But just as children must be planned carefully to conform to materialistic and hedonistic agendas, it is now the case that single women, divorced women, women seeking to make some quick money, and women who practice lesbianism can “order” children on demand by artificial conception. George Orwell and Aldous Huxley had a lot of natural insights about where the path of scientism and evolutionism and socialism was taking mankind.

An entirely new field of law is emerging and being embraced by attorneys, many of whom are on the prowl for new and inventive ways to make money from the moral degradation rampant in our society: fertility law, which is becoming a branch of family law (along with custody law, paternity law, etc.).

For example, take the case in the United Kingdom of the child who was conceived artificially and advertised for adoption on the Internet. Several people have now come forth to claim the child as their own: the people who paid for the adoption; the people who donated the egg and the sperm; and the woman who actually bore the child in her womb after he had been conceived in the laboratory of the fertility clinic. This case is so complicated that even the usual suspects in the world of feminism and positivism and relativism don’t know who has “rights” to the child in question. Alas, that is the nub: the Devil wants complexity to replace the simplicity of God and His laws. It is much too simple to believe that a child should be conceived as the natural fruit of human conjugal love in a valid sacramental marriage. Oh, no, we are much too sophisticated for that, aren’t we? The Devil wants a simple thing such as the conception and rearing of a child to become as complicated as possible, so complicated that people lose sight of the intrinsic evil of the methods used to conceive a child artificially.

There is a direct connection between little children being led like cattle across Dublin Boulevard in Dublin, California, and the transatlantic legal battle over custody of a child artificially conceived. For a world that views it as normal and good to transfer the responsibility of child-rearing to strangers will see no problem with a child’s being conceived and put up for sale to the highest bidder. When we lose sight of the fact that a child bears with his immortal soul the Divine impress, then it is easy to consider him an object to be shunted off to others or planned carefully in the laboratory.

Many bishops in Europe have forcefully denounced the increasingly draconian measures that are undermining the family and the sanctity of marital relations — and subjecting scores more of children to unhappy and unstable lives. It is time for the bishops of the United States to stop issuing silly pastoral letters about arcane subjects and concentrate on the real evils taking place in universities and hospitals and clinics within their very dioceses.

May our Lady, who is our Life, our Sweetness, and our Hope, pray for us that we may be ever vigilant in defending the roles proper to each member of a family — and in assuring that motherhood is revered as the vocation that fulfills a woman in the likeness of Mary of Nazareth herself.

This column is distributed by the Griffin Internet Syndicate.
Copyright © 2001. All rights reserved.

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