Suicide in Slow Motion

COMMENTARY: Western society’s rejection of the natural comes from a rejection of the supernatural.

George Gilder, shown speaking at a 2021 Bitcoin conference in New York, in 1973 wrote 'Sexual Suicide,' which argued that America was committing suicide because it has severed sexual intercourse from love and procreation.
George Gilder, shown speaking at a 2021 Bitcoin conference in New York, in 1973 wrote 'Sexual Suicide,' which argued that America was committing suicide because it has severed sexual intercourse from love and procreation. (photo: Eugene Gologursky / Getty Images for CoinGeek)

In his 1946 book Preface to Religion, Venerable Fulton Sheen stated that “America’s greatest enemy is not from without, but from within, and that enemy is hate: hatred of races, peoples, classes and religion. If America ever dies, it will be not through conquest but suicide.”

Political solutions are ineffective because “they leave our hearts unchanged,” Venerable Fulton said.

From all indications, that hatred has intensified on each of the levels to which the archbishop refers.

In his 1973 book, Sexual Suicide, George Gilder argues that America is committing suicide because it has severed sexual intercourse from love and procreation. 

“Sex is,” he writes, “the life force — and cohesive impulse — of a people, and their very character will be deeply affected by how sexuality is managed, sublimated, expressed, denied, and propagated. When sex is devalued, propagandized, and deformed, as it is at present, the quality of our lives declines and our social fabric deteriorates.”

Accordingly, unless sex and procreation are linked together, at least symbolically and psychologically, intercourse becomes, Gilder reasons, “a kind of aimless copulation having little to do with the deeper currents of sexuality and love that carry a community into the future.”

Together, Archbishop Sheen and Gilder have located the roots of this tendency toward slow-motion suicide, respectively, in a rejection of the supernatural and a rejection of the natural. God created two sexes. He did not create a sexless human being, or a variety of different sexes. God created them male and female. 

According to Margaret Mead, “If any human society — large or small, simple or complex, based on the most rudimentary hunting and fishing, or on the whole elaborate interchange of manufactured products — is to survive, it must have a pattern of social life that comes to terms with the differences between the sexes.”

In the present world, hatred and a denial of the differences between the sexes have merged to create formidable divisions within U.S. society. Yusra Khogali, a co-founder of Black Lives Matter, has remarked, “White ppl [people] are recessive genetic defects. This is factual,” and that “white ppl need white supremacy as a mechanism to protect their survival as a people because all they can do is produce themselves.” Earlier this year, in front of the U.S. consulate, she shouted into a microphone, “Justin Trudeau is a white supremacist terrorist.”

Wendy Ashby is a school-board trustee for Catholic schools in Waterloo, Ontario. She has gone on record stating, “The most dangerous creature on the planet is the White Christian Male. They’re [sic] a threat to anyone who is not them.” Naomi Washingon-Leapheart is an adjunct professor of theology at Villanova University. She is a Black lesbian “LGBTQ” activist in support of “the end of white Christian America.”

These three people — who have a clear animus against people who are white simply because they are white — hold positions of authority. They are not randomly selected individuals whom educators do not take seriously. They are in positions to influence students and intensify the twin problems of hatred and an unnatural approach to human sexuality. They are making their contributions, no doubt without realizing it, to the further erosion of American society and toward America’s moral demise.

In Shakespeare’s Macbeth, Lady Macbeth’s doctor reflects on the greed that destroyed both her and her husband’s lives. His words should be taken to heart by Americans who occupy influential positions in society: “... unnatural deeds do breed unnatural trouble: Infected minds to their deaf pillows will discharge their secrets. More needs she the divine than the physician. God, God forgive us all.”

The doctor reflects in a state of helplessness. He understands all too well that neither medicine nor politics could solve the problems that brought down Macbeth and his wife. In King Lear, Shakespeare reminds us once again that bad actions will inevitably produce bad results: “The gods are just and of our pleasant vices make instruments to plague us.”

The will of God and the order of nature cannot be mocked without creating dire results. It has become widespread, having the blessing of political correctness in high places, that a person has a right to do whatever he pleases without repercussions. Gender changes, including dangerous surgical procedures for children, have brought about violent clashes between critics and defenders of gender change. The new sin is in being “transphobic.” “LGBTQ” flags are waving on Catholic campuses. Pregnancy centers that honor and assist women who choose life are being vandalized, along with hundreds of Catholic churches.

Those who begged for tolerance, once they have their way, become violently intolerant of their beneficiaries. Foul becomes fair, as Shakespeare’s witches proclaim, while fair becomes foul. It is not a question of giving in to the dissidents, but arming them. Speaking out against immorality now constitutes hate speech. Those who repudiate God and try to turn human sexuality into a mere plaything — or, worse, a political statement — will not abide dialogue.

Were Archbishop Sheen and Gilder prophetic? Or were they simply observant? The malady is being played out in front of our eyes. And Christ has a word for the wise: 

“But blessed are your eyes, because they see; and your ears, because they hear. For truly I say to you that many prophets and righteous people longed to see what you see, and did not see it, and to hear what you hear, and did not hear it” (Matthew 13:16-17).