Changing Structure of Families
I am right wing and a social conservative, but unlike most other social conservatives, I realize that we are not living in 1954 any longer.
The definition of “family” has changed over the decades.
Divorce rates are high. A lot of people are either choosing not to marry or want to marry but are unable to find a partner. People are marrying later in life when and if they do marry. Some married couples are choosing not to have children.
Instead of dealing with the situation as it stands and meeting people where they are, many of my fellow so cons, the Baptists, evangelicals and fundamentalists, choose to gripe and moan about the times being different.
They keep arguing for the 1954 understanding of “the family,” which is a man married to a woman with a child.
Jesus Christ and the New Testament taught that getting married and having a kid are optional, not mandatory, and that remaining single and celibate and childfree / childless are perfectly respectable choices (Jesus never married and never had a kid).
But this isn’t good enough for so cons and Baptists, evangelicals, and fundamentalists. They will gripe and complain about the dissolution of the “traditional family” but at the same time, they seem blind to the fact that the understanding and expression of “family” has changed, or they just refuse to deal with it.
The title “Focus on the family,” a Christian group that remains obsessed with pushing a 1950s ideal of what “family” is, is a bit of a misnomer: what they mean is that they focus on the NUCLEAR, TRADITIONAL 1950s AMERICAN family.
All this adulation of the traditional family means Christians don’t stop to help the divorced, the never married, the childless, the widowed, and so they push people away from Christianity itself, or from church attendance.
For any newbies to the blog: I acknowledge that the Bible and God regard homosexuality as sinful.
I don’t have a problem with the pasta guy in the article not wanting to depict homosexuality as normal and healthy in any commercials for his pasta company.
Pasta Guy has a right to hold and express that view if he so chooses, but merely holding or giving voice to a differing opinion is not even acceptable to the militant, hate- filled homosexuals and their equally rabid hetero supporters.
One aspect of this story that really bothers me here is that the guy was crucified for simply having and voicing an opinion that runs contrary to the PC crowd that has turned homosexuality into a sacred cow.
While I do not agree with homosexuality (and hence also am not on board with the concept of ‘homosexual families’), I do feel that the Christian tendency to idolize the 1950s model of family needlessly excludes the never married, the widows, childless couples, the divorced, as well as Christian homosexuals who are trying to remain celibate.
A lot of conservative, American Christians refuse to deal with things as they are, that people no longer marry by age 25 and pop out two kids. They would prefer to just either go into denial or complaint mode.
(Link): The Evolution of Family
- Oct. 1, 2013
by Billy Hallowell
Recent comments by Guido Barilla, chairman of Barilla Group, a brand known for its pasta products, have sparked international calls for a boycott. At the center of the debate are statements the businessman made about homosexuality during a radio interview last Wednesday.
The company subsequently put out a statement to temper anger, but to no avail. Barilla has now also released a video featuring the chairman apologizing and pledging to meet with groups who were offended by his comments. In the clip Barilla said that the situation has left him both “depressed and saddened.”
“Through my entire life, I’ve always respected every person I’ve met, including gays and their families without any distinction,” he said in the short video. “I’ve never discriminated against anyone.”
In addition to offering a personal defense, Barilla also pledged to learn more about the debate surrounding homosexuality and same-sex relationships.
“It is clear that I have a lot to learn about the lively debate concerning the evolution of the family,” the businessman continued. “In the coming weeks, I pledge to meet representatives of the groups that best represent the evolution of the family including those who have been offended by my words.”
These comments are a major departure from the views he espoused last week.
“I would never do [a commercial] with a homosexual family, not for lack of respect but because we don’t agree with them,” he told Radio 24, according to Reuters. “Ours is a classic family where the woman plays a fundamental role.”
In the same interview (read it here, but you’ll need to translate it from Italian), Barilla said he also opposes gay adoption but is in favor of legalizing same-sex marriage (it’s currently not legal in Italy, as Reuters notes).
Last Thursday — just one day later — in an effort to clarify and apologize, the company put out a release, noting that a woman’s role is essential to the family and that this was the point Barilla was trying to make. Here’s the full text that was posted on the Barilla Group website:
- With reference to remarks made yesterday to an Italian radio program, I apologize if my words have generated controversy or misunderstanding, or if they hurt someone’s sensitivity.
For clarity, I would like to point out that:
– I have the utmost respect for anyone, without distinction of any kind.
– I have the utmost respect for gay people and for everyone’s right to express themselves.
– I’ve also said — and I would like to reiterate — that I respect gay marriages.
– In its advertising, Barilla represents the family – because it’s what welcomes everyone.
The latest video apology is likely part of an effort to temper bad press and to stem international calls for a boycott.
It’s unclear what next steps Barilla will take and what the meetings he has pledged to hold will encompass. But in an interview with USA Today, GLAAD, a gay-rights group, spoke out on the matter, offering up one of the solutions that the organization believes could help the situation.
The group’s Vice President Rich Ferraro suggested that Barilla Group provide financial assistance to gay and lesbian organizations in Italy, where the company is based.
“I think the public backlash shows that homophobia is bad for business today because we’re living in a world where LGBT people are respected and accepted,” said the gay rights activist. “That wasn’t the case five years ago.”
- Guido Barilla, chairman of the Barilla pasta company, went on the Italian radio show “La Zanzara” and proclaimed, “I would never do an advert with a homosexual family…. If the gays don’t’ like it they can go and eat another brand,” reported The Independent UK.
He went on to say, “For us the concept of the sacred family remains one of the fundamental values of the company.” And he didn’t stop before moving on to gay adoption. “I have no respect for adoption by gay families because this concerns a person who is not able to choose,” said Barilla.
Barilla’s remarks sparked an outcry from gay rights groups in Italy and America, including Equality Italia, who has launched a full boycott of every Barilla product. Aureilo Mancuso, chairman of Equality Italia, released a statement on the website, which included the Twitter hash tag boicottabarilla.
(Link): Pasta Maker in Boiling Water Over Comments on Gays
Related posts this blog:
(Link): Good Grief! Five Million Dollar Family Idoltary on Display: Focus on the Family Launches $5 Million Project Targeting Family Breakdown, Social Ills – Please, when you say you support marriage, be honest about what you REALLY mean