Thursday, July 31, 2008

Androgeny is on the Ballot in Maryland

I have been saying for some time that one of the goals of the Life-Style Left is to create a completely androgynous society. A certain style of Marxist-Feminists have seen gender as a completely suspect category. A significant subset of homosexual activists agree with that.
Now, there is a ballot measure in Montgomery County, Maryland that supports this interpretation. The county passed a law outlawing all references to gender in any part of the county code. A citizens group place a measure on the ballot to overturn this law. Their opponents? Homosexual activists.
After the Montgomery County Board voted to render the citizens of their county legally androgynous by removing all references to gender from the county code, Maryland Citizens for Responsible Government began a petition drive to get the measure on the November ballot. Homosexual activists with Equality Maryland sued, trying to keep the people from voting.

In this article I had given the gay rights activists the benefit of the doubt. I made no claim one way or another about whether they intended to create a completely de-gendered society. I still believe there are many sensible gay people who do not want that outcome. But I now think it is clear that a completely de-gendered society will be the outcome, whether anyone wants it or not.
And plainly, some people in Maryland do want this outcome. I feel vindicated.

The Power of the Powerless and the Lavender Curtain

One of the most troubling aspects of the same sex marriage debate is the complete capitulation of corporate America. Large companies are falling over themselves in an effort to outdo each other in accommodating gay rights. A Is this because they all agree 100% with every aspect of the gay agenda? I doubt it. The troubles of San Diego’s Manchester Grand Hyatt suggest that there is more going on than a handful of people with signs in front of the hotel. The Public Utility company, PG&E, has donated money to an anti-Prop 8 group, and is lining up other businesses to fight the amendment.

The donation from the utility, and the formation of the business council, represents a shift from the last time that the question of gay marriage was on the ballot, in 2000. Back then, many businesses stayed on the sidelines.
Analysts said businesses may be more willing to get involved this time because they have more gay and lesbian employees who are out and in positions of power…

That is what worried me: gays in a position of power, using it to intimidate people into supporting their agenda. In the short run, each business believes that acquiescing is in their interests. The gay lobby gives them bad press if they hold out. They pressure their target behind the scenes, with money, with threats of cutting off other business relationships. If the business surrenders, the Lavender Mafia can make all those problems go away.

This blog is available to anyone who has been harassed by the gay lobby or other agents of political correctness. Send me your story. Try to keep it brief and to the point.

I am inspired to do this by the success of Czech dissident Vaclav Havel in fomenting the Velvet Revolution. His famous essay, “The Power of the Powerless,” is credited with helping to bring down the Soviet domination of Eastern Europe. The allegory of the greengrocer encouraged his fellow dissidents in the Soviet bloc to stop cooperating with the regime. In spite of my request to “keep it brief,”I ask your indulgence for a not-so-brief summary of Havel’s argument.
The manager of a fruit-and-vegetable shop places in his window, among the onions and carrots, the slogan: "Workers of the world, unite!" Why does he do it? What is he trying to communicate to the world? Is he genuinely enthusiastic about the idea of unity among the workers of the world? Is his enthusiasm so great that he feels an irrepressible impulse to acquaint the public with his ideals? Has he really given more than a moment's thought to how such a unification might occur and what it would mean?

Is PG&E’s enthusiasm for same sex marriage so great that they feel an irrepressible impulse to acquaint the public with this ideal? Would not the business of the public utility, which is, after all, a monopoly, go on without this expression of solidarity with gay people? Have the owners of the public utility really given more than a moment’s thought to what same sex marriage would mean? Vaclav Havel again:

I think it can safely be assumed that the overwhelming majority of shopkeepers never think about the slogans they put in their windows, nor do they use them to express their real opinions. That poster was delivered to our greengrocer from the enterprise headquarters along with the onions and carrots. He put them all into the window simply because it has been done that way for years, because everyone does it, and because that is the way it has to be. If he were to refuse, there could be trouble. He could be reproached for not having the proper decoration in his window; someone might even accuse him of disloyalty. He does it because these things must be done if one is to get along in life. It is one of the thousands of details that guarantee him a relatively tranquil life "in harmony with society," as they say.
Obviously the greengrocer . . . does not put the slogan in his window from any personal desire to acquaint the public with the ideal it expresses. This, of course, does not mean that his action has no motive or significance at all, or that the slogan communicates nothing to anyone. The slogan is really a sign, and as such it contains a subliminal but very definite message. Verbally, it might be expressed this way: "I, the greengrocer XY, live here and I know what I must do. I behave in the manner expected of me. I can be depended upon and am beyond reproach. I am obedient and therefore I have the right to be left in peace."

Our California businesses that support Equality California evidently expect to be left in peace. They behave in the manner expected of them. But what is the price they pay? Vaclav Havel’s genius is that he revealed to the greengrocers behind the Iron Curtain the price they paid.

Let us take note: if the greengrocer had been instructed to display the slogan "I am afraid and therefore unquestioningly obedient;' he would not be nearly as indifferent to its semantics, even though the statement would reflect the truth. The greengrocer would be embarrassed and ashamed to put such an unequivocal statement of his own degradation in the shop window, and quite naturally so, for he is a human being and thus has a sense of his own dignity. To overcome this complication, his expression of loyalty must take the form of a sign which, at least on its textual surface, indicates a level of disinterested conviction. It must allow the greengrocer to say, "What's wrong with the workers of the world uniting?"

What is wrong with same sex couples getting married? They love each other.

Thus the sign helps the greengrocer to conceal from himself the low foundations of his obedience, at the same time concealing the low foundations of power. It hides them behind the facade of something high. And that something is ideology. …The… system touches people at every step, but it does so with its ideological gloves on. This is why life in the system is so thoroughly permeated with hypocrisy and lies: government by bureaucracy is called popular government; the working class is enslaved in the name of the working class; the complete degradation of the individual is presented as his ultimate liberation; depriving people of information is called making it available; the use of power to manipulate is called the public control of power, and the arbitrary abuse of power is called observing the legal code; the repression of culture is called its development; the expansion of imperial influence is presented as support for the oppressed; the lack of free expression becomes the highest form of freedom; farcical elections become the highest form of democracy; banning independent thought becomes the most scientific of world views; military occupation becomes fraternal assistance. Because the regime is captive to its own lies, it must falsify everything. It falsifies the past. It falsifies the present, and it falsifies the future. It falsifies statistics. It pretends not to possess an omnipotent and unprincipled police apparatus. It pretends to respect human rights. It pretends to persecute no one. It pretends to fear nothing. It pretends to pretend nothing.

Human rights commissions suppress freedom of speech. Thought control takes place under the guise of prosecution for hate crimes. Private property rights are abrogated to accommodate the “privacy” rights of the newest and most powerful protected class. The democratic process is protected by bypassing people’s right to vote.

A Lavender Curtain is falling across America. Fair-minded Americans want gay people to be treated with dignity. But they don’t want to be pushed around. People are being quietly and not so quietly bullied by gay millionaires who don’t want the American people to ever have the opportunity to vote on the meaning of marriage. Institutions of civil society are being intimidated about pursuing their missions, for fear of running afoul of a high profile lawsuit, followed by a financial shake-down. Ordinary people are losing their rights to educate their children as they see fit.

Am I being hysterical? I don’t think so. Gays and lesbians are no more than 3% of the population. Their influence is all out of proportion to their numbers. But there is reason for hope.

Let us now imagine that one day something in our greengrocer snaps and he stops putting up the slogans merely to ingratiate himself. He stops voting in elections he knows are a farce. He begins to say what he really thinks at political meetings. And he even finds the strength in himself to express solidarity with those whom his conscience commands him to support. In this revolt the greengrocer steps out of living within the lie. He rejects the ritual and breaks the rules of the game. He discovers once more his suppressed identity and dignity. He gives his freedom a concrete significance. His revolt is an attempt to live within the truth. . . .

We know how the revolt of all the hypothetical greengrocers ended. Those thousands of individuals who stopped living the lie produced the Velvet Revolution. The Czech Republic, and the other countries of the former Soviet bloc obtained their independence without ever firing a shot. They just started living within the truth. They discovered that they were not alone. And they prevailed.
As I said earlier, this blog is available to anyone who has been harassed by the gay lobby or other agents of political correctness. Send me your story. I’ll review it before posting it. Try to keep it brief.
You are not alone.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Even More on Humanae Vitae

One more thought: The Pill was supposed to deliver us from every manner of trouble by separating sex from reproduction. We now have sex without babies and babies without sex. In the end, the culture of contraception has separated men and women from each other.

More on Humanae Vitae

I posted about Mary Eberstadt's article on Pope Paul IV's birth control encyclical, Humane Vitae (Of Human Life) earlier. I have been thinking about Paul's prediction that artificial birth control would sour relations between the sexes. Now, I have to say, in advance, that my training is in economics. One of the first things you learn in economics is that the best test of a theory is its predictive power. Sounding reasonable at the outset isn't enough. Having "realistic" assumptions isn't enough. The real test of a theory is whether the predictions of the theory are falsified or verified by events.

By that standard, Paul VI should get a Nobel Prize. The enthusiasts who predicted that birth control would usher in an era of "every child a wanted child," look pretty silly in retrospect. Paul VI had a superior theory of the human condition.

In any case, here is what Mary Eberstadt has to say about his prediction that contraception would damage relationships between men and women.

Perhaps the most mocked of Humanae Vitae's predictions was its claim that separating sex from procreation would deform relations between the sexes and "open wide the way for marital infidelity and a general lowering of moral standards." Today, when advertisements for sex scream from every billboard and webpage, and every teen idol is sooner or later revealed topless or worse online, some might wonder what further proof could possibly be offered.

But to leave matters there would be to miss something important. The critical point is, one might say, not so much the proof as the pudding it's in. And it would be hard to get more ironic than having these particular predictions of Humanae Vitae vindicated by perhaps the most unlikely—to say nothing of unwilling—witness of all: modern feminism….

Consider just what we have been told by the endless books on the topic over the years. If feminists married and had children, they lamented it. If they failed to marry or have children, they lamented that, too. If they worked outside the home and also tended their children, they complained about how hard that was. If they worked outside the home and didn't tend their children, they excoriated anyone who thought they should. And running through all this literature is a more or less constant invective about the unreliability and disrespect of men. …

Beneath all the pathos, the subtext remains the same: Woman's chief adversary is Unreliable Man, who does not understand her sexual and romantic needs and who walks off time and again at the first sashay of a younger thing. What are all these but the generic cries of a woman who thinks that men are "disregarding her physical and emotional equilibrium" and "no longer considering her as his partner whom he should surround with care and affection"?...

That there is no auxiliary literature of grievance for men—who, for the most part, just don't seem to feel they have as much to grieve about in this new world order—is something else that Humanae Vitae and a few other retrograde types saw coming in the wake of the revolution. As the saying goes, and as many people did not stop to ask at the time, cui bono? Forty years later, the evidence is in. As Archbishop Charles J. Chaput of Denver observed on Humanae Vitae's thirtieth anniversary in 1998, "Contraception has released males—to a historically unprecedented degree—from responsibility for their sexual aggression." Will any feminist who by 2008 disagrees with that statement please stand up?

I'm not exactly a feminist. And I don't exactly disagree with Archbishop Chaput. But I do think that there is a grievance literature for men: the dispossessed fathers that I and Steven Baskerville have written about. Ironically, these are the men who are doing what they ought to be doing. They are trying to be good husbands and fathers, but have been kicked out of their family's lives. These men, are, for all practical purposes, invisible in our society. (My website has a page called The Reluctantly Divorced. I call them the Unknown Soldiers of the Culture Wars.) They are dismissed by some, even in the Fatherhood Movement, who call them "Mad Dads."

There is something seriously wrong when the most aggrieved people in society are those who are trying to be responsible parents and spouses.

Tempest in a Teapot

The San Diego Union Tribune posted an editorial on its front page yesterday: "Will gays' boycott turn the tables?" The article is notable for having no facts, but many opinions. The headline suggests that this boycott will somehow change the outcome of the election on Prop 8. Or maybe the headline just means that gays are doing boycotts just as their Christian opponents have done. In any case, gay rights groups are protested the fact that Doug Manchester, owner of the Manchester Grand Hyatt, gave money to get the marriage amendment on the ballot. I wrote about that protest when it was first announced.

Here are some facts that would be relevant: is the boycott still going on? The photo on the front page, prominently displaying the rainbow flag, has a caption " gay rights activists gathered at the Manchester Grand Hotel earlier this month." The boycott opened last Friday, July 18th, the first day of the Gay Pride celebration weekend, with a lot of fanfare. Is anyone still out in front of the Hyatt? The story and the photo together suggest that there is, but the article doesn't explicitly say that. I haven't been downtown and can't verify.
The boycott organizers have their own website: Californians Against Hate and offered the prospect of thousands of Gay Pride partiers showing up to join the boycott of the hotel. A bunch of us Marriage Supporters went down that Friday to form a counter-demonstration. Despite the fact that we had one day's notice, we had nearly as many people on the street as they did.

Here is another fact that would be good to know: what was the occupancy of the Hotel during the night of the boycott? We heard the place was booked solid, including Christians from across the country who booked rooms they didn't need, just to spend money at the Manchester Hyatt. Is the hotel still full? Has the boycott had any effect on business? Our intrepid reported doesn't tell us, even though he quotes No on Prop 8 supporters who claim that it has been effective.

And take a look at the photo: see all those red shirts? Those are the union members who helped organize the boycott. The article doesn't mention them until the very bottom of the story, and has only this to say:

Both Manchester and (openly gay Hyatt Marketing Manager, Kelly) Commerford contend that Unite Local 30, which is co-sponsoring the boycott, is using the same-sex marriage issue to pursue its real agenda of trying to unionize Manchester's two hotels.

(Activist Fred) Karger said there is nothing unusual about the alliance – unions and gay rights organizations frequently have worked together to end discrimination.

True enough, that groups work together. But there is something slightly disingenuous about claiming vast support for a boycott when about half the protesters are paid union members, and when the other side has no trouble getting regular people to take the day off from work to stage a counter-protest. And, the word on the street is that the union is financing the Californians Against Hate effort, which might explain their website-for-a- day.

My own opinion, for what it is worth, is that consumer boycotts are seldom effective. And this particular boycott may just backfire. California businesses may decide to draw the line at marriage, if they realize that they too, could have protesters on their doorstep. Defeating Proposition 8 will not be the final demand of the gay lobby. Count on it.

Southern California residents may be interested in this:

California Marriage Amendment Fundraiser
Protect Marriage
Yes on Proposition 8
Roger Hedgecock, Master of Ceremonies

Saturday, August 16, 2008
3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
$100.00 per person
(Hors d'oeuvres and Cocktails)

Bishop Salvatore J. Cordileone, Auxiliary Bishop of the Diocese of San Diego

Brian Brown, Executive Director of the National Organization
for Marriage

Ron Prentice, Chairman of

Special Guests: 
Duncan D. Hunter, Candidate for U.S. Congress
Philip Thalheimer, Candidate for San Diego City Council
Michael Crimmins, Candidate for U.S. Congress
Please R.S.V.P. to Brian Brown at
No Later Than August 8, 2008.  Space is Limited
Websites: and

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Mama Mia! A Girl Needs a Papa!

My friend David Benkof sent me this commentary about the new ABBA movie:

Gay men flocked to see Mamma Mia! this past weekend, drawn by the show-tune jukebox musical, the openly gay character played by Colin Firth, and the gay icon Christine Baranski in a stunning supporting role. That's not to mention Meryl Streep, who was simply fabulous. But how many gay viewers actually noticed the most important and socially relevant theme of the musical, which is that girls who grow up without a father feel like there's something missing? Sophie, the bride who invites three possible Dads to her wedding, isn't just curious about who provided half of her DNA. She's aching for the missing father she never had as a child and an adolescent, and she wants him to celebrate her wedding. The father role could have been filled by someone other than her biological father, but not even the butchest lesbian would have sufficed. Why can't gay people look at Mamma Mia!, tap their toes, sing along, and realize that whatever kind of equality we ask for, we need to respect that whenever possible, children need both a mother and a father?

I have noticed that Hollywood very often presents stories that are not politically correct.
"Juno" comes to mind as another example. When Hollywood wants to tell a good story, some of the political correctness has to go out the window, because it just isn't believable! It is not credible to think that a young girl would be completely indifferent about the identity of her father, or of whether she even has a father. I agree with David that it would be refreshing if gay people re-evaluated their political priorities. It would also be refreshing if the highly visible Hollywood types who promote the sexual revolution in so many ways, actually watched their own movies long enough to see that the sexual revolution hasn't made people happy.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

More on Men's Fertility Decline with Age

The Irish Times reports that the chances of miscarriage increases with the man's age.
A new study presented last week at the annual meeting of the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology in Barcelona found that miscarriage rates increased significantly when the man was older than 35, and that pregnancy rates dropped when the man was older than 40. The study was based on more than 12,000 couples attending a fertility clinic in Paris....

Prof Sheena Lewis, who is a scientist at the Regional Fertility Centre at the Royal Victoria Hospital in Belfast, said there was a growing trend of people leaving it later to have children when their careers were established, and of people trying to start second families later in life. She said the clinic was seeing an increasing number of men in their 40s and 50s who wanted to have children, often in a second relationship....

She said there were now quite a number of studies showing that as a man ages, the likelihood of his sperm being damaged increases. "A sperm is a very specialised little cell - it is just DNA with a tail and it has one single function, to get the DNA to the egg to fertilise it. In order to do that, the cell gets rid of everything but DNA, so it gets rid of repair mechanisms that you find in other cells. So if it gets damaged it can't repair itself."

She said that after fertilisation, the DNA damage of the sperm becomes part of the genetic make-up of the embryo. "If a poor sperm fertilises an egg, and even if you get a pregnancy, there is quite often a miscarriage," Prof Lewis said.

Read the whole article.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

The Vindication of Humanae vitae at Age 40

The controversial "birth control" encyclical, Humanae Vitae, "Of Human Life," has held up better than its critics expected. That is the message of this long and rewarding article by Mary Eberstadt at First Things.

Full Disclosure Notice: Mary Eberstadt is my friend.

Shameless Self Promotion: One of the talks on my Smart Sex Series CD set is called, "How Science Shows the Church has Been Right Along."

Anyhow, Mary goes through and shows that every one of Pope Paul VI's predictions about the moral and social consequences of contraception has come to pass. But one of my favorite parts of the article addresses the question of WHY the opposition to HV was so intense, when the negative consequences weren't really that hard to foresee:

It is less than coincidental that the high-mindedness of saving the planet dovetailed perfectly with a more self-interested outcome, the freer pursuit of sexuality via the Pill. Dissenting Catholics had special reasons to stress the "science of overpopulation," and so they did. In the name of a higher morality, their argument went, birth control could be defended as the lesser of two evils (a position argued by the dissenter Charles Curran, among others)….

She gives considerable attention to the new book Fatal Misconceptions:

so discredited has the overpopulation science become that this year Columbia University historian Matthew Connelly could publish Fatal Misconception: The Struggle to Control World Population and garner a starred review in Publishers Weekly—all in service of what is probably the single best demolition of the population arguments that some hoped would undermine church teaching. This is all the more satisfying a ratification because Connelly is so conscientious in establishing his own personal antagonism toward the Catholic Church (at one point asserting without even a footnote that natural family planning "still fails most couples who try it").

Fatal Misconception is decisive proof that the spectacle of overpopulation, which was used to browbeat the Vatican in the name of science, was a grotesque error all along. First, Connelly argues, the population-control movement was wrong as a matter of fact: "The two strongest claims population controllers make for their long-term historical contribution" are "that they raised Asia out of poverty and helped keep our planet habitable." Both of these, he demonstrates, are false.

Even more devastating is Connelly's demolition of the claim to moral high ground that the overpopulation alarmists made. For population science was not only failing to help people, Connelly argues, but also actively harming some of them—and in a way that summoned some of the baser episodes of recent historical memory:

The great tragedy of population control, the fatal misconception, was to think that one could know other people's interests better than they knew it themselves. . . . The essence of population control, whether it targeted migrants, the "unfit," or families that seemed either too big or too small, was to make rules for other people without having to answer to them. It appealed to people with power because, with the spread of emancipatory movements, it began to appear easier and more profitable to control populations than to control territory. That is why opponents were essentially correct in viewing it as another chapter in the unfinished business of imperialism.

The forty years since Humanae Vitae appeared have also vindicated the encyclical's fear that governments would use the new contraceptive technology coercively. The outstanding example, of course, is the Chinese government's long-running "one-child policy," replete with forced abortions, public trackings of menstrual cycles, family flight, increased female infanticide, sterilization, and other assaults too numerous even to begin cataloguing here—in fact, so numerous that they are now widely, if often grudgingly, acknowledged as wrongs even by international human-rights bureaucracies. Lesser-known examples include the Indian government's foray into coercive use of contraception in the "emergency" of 1976 and 1977, and the Indonesian government's practice in the 1970s and 1980s of the bullying implantation of IUDs and Norplant.

Should governments come to "regard this as necessary," Humanae Vitae warned, "they may even impose their use on everyone." As with the unintended affirmation by social science, will anyone within the ranks of the population revisionists now give credit where credit is due?

Read it all here.

A toast to Open Debate

My article on the attempted boycott of the Manchester Grand Hyatt in San Diego is here. The heart of the argument is:

Sometimes, unfortunately, children do not get to have a relationship with both parents, due to death or divorce. But everyone recognizes these situations as regrettable tragedies. Now, for the very first time since the Babylonian Empire, a government has declared that it has no responsibility to support the child's right to affiliation with both parents. The Supreme Court of California says that adults have the constitutional right to make a lifetime plan that a child shall never have a relationship with one of his genetic parents. Maybe Douglas Manchester has a problem with that. …

For many of us, gay marriage isn't a referendum on gay people. It is about the meaning of marriage. Advocates of marriage as a union of a man and a woman do not hate gay people. Rather, the millions of Americans who pull the lever in favor of marriage are saying children need a mother and father. The gay community is boycotting the Manchester Grand Hyatt, because Douglas Manchester has given the people of California the opportunity to express what they believe.

As for me, I believe I'll have a drink at the Top of the Hyatt. When you visit San Diego, as millions of people do, I hope you will go to the Top of the Hyatt too. You can take in the gorgeous views, and raise a glass to Douglas Manchester.

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Just What the World Needs…

Low-cost, in-vitro fertilization for African women, according to the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology. A spokesman for the group, Willem Ombelet, pointed out that "Infertility is taboo in Africa." The story led with this un-sourced comment that, "women are sometimes ostracized as witches or social outcasts if they cannot have children."

Unnamed experts helpfully explained:

Millions of dollars go into family planning projects and condom distribution to prevent pregnancies in Africa, but experts said that more than 30 percent of women on the continent are unable to have children. An estimated 80 million people in developing countries are infertile worldwide.

Does this seem passing strange to anyone else? Is it really true that 30% of African women are infertile? The only person I can think of who might think so, or have an explanation, is my friend Steve Mosher, over at the Population Research Institute. His book Population Control: Real Costs, Illusory Benefits shows that 1. Many women in third world countries have been sterilized by their own governments and 2. Many women are sterile because of infections that are side effects of population control programs.

So now, what sounds like a private company wants to go to Africa to "help" the women by marketing new, untried, cheap processes on them.

At a media briefing yesterday at the society's annual conference in Barcelona, Ombelet said he and colleagues were deciding where to test the new procedure. A small number of women already have been treated in Khartoum, Sudan, and other projects are expected to start soon in South Africa and Tanzania.

The cheap version of IVF costs less than $200.

How to Win Friends and Influence People. Not!


Now You Tell Us, continued

I turned the previous post by that name into a full-fledged article, over on townhall. Stuff in the townhall article that wasn't in my original post:
The experts don’t seem to consider a major alternative: we could encourage teenagers to take sex and child-bearing seriously. Our culture actively promotes sex as a recreational activity. We come up with more aggressive and intrusive forms of contraception, because we can’t bring ourselves to tell teenagers that they should take sex seriously.

We seem to be unwilling to face the fact that contraception itself contributes to the problem of not taking sex seriously. Contraception allows people to get involved in relationships that can’t possibly sustain a pregnancy. We then call the resulting pregnancy “unintended,” a mechanical problem requiring a technical solution. After all, we are not supposed to be “judgmental” or “moralistic” about sex.

But there really is something wrong with purely recreational sex with someone that would be a disaster to be a parent with. We are using the other person as an object that gives us pleasure. We are not seeing our sex partner as the potential parent of our child, which they are, even if we don’t “intend” it. We are not giving ourselves completely to the other person. We are holding ourselves back, even as we expect sexual satisfaction from them. We have created a culture of “use and be used,” instead of “love and be loved.” The fact that the other person agrees to be used doesn’t make it ok.

Of course, the other fun thing at townhall is reading the comments, of let us say, varying quality.