Why the John Edwards Story Matters
It matters because it highlights, first of all, a key cause of the poverty Sen. Edwards once commendably made a central aspect of his presidential campaign. Numberless children wake up in grinding poverty because their fathers are “deadbeat dads” just like (if the story is true) Edwards, just without the means to secretly transfer funds for child support.
In admitting the affair, Edwards tells us he fell due to his narcissism. He started to see himself as “special,” and exempt from the boundaries of marriage and fatherhood. Of course he did. So does the impoverished teenage boy who skips town when his girlfriend sees two pink lines. So does the middle-aged mid-level success story who offers $300 to his paramour to “put it all behind us.”
Playboy magazine may not have the readership or the influence it once enjoyed, but the sexual philosophy championed by its founder, Hugh Hefner, flourishes, more and more, it seems, and its dismal legacy will be with us much longer. Hefner's philosophy could be summed up in a quote by our own former prime minister, Pierre Trudeau, that, "...the state has no business in the bedrooms of the nation." Put simply, sexual activity between two consenting adults is no one's business but those two (or I suppose, more) adults. And unfortunately, this sense of sexual entitlement is filtering down to younger and younger ages. Our children are becoming exposed more and more to ideas that portray all kinds of sexual activity as harmless fun and even a right.
But the notion that one can have one's fun and then move on has had, and will continue to have, disastrous consequences. Because too often, those consenting adults (or teens) are not really the only ones involved. Aside from the fact that there may be a wronged wife or husband in an adulterous affair, there is often a third party, an entirely innocent one, who may become involved -- a child.
Children born out of wedlock almost invariably become the responsibility of the mother to raise. And unfortunately, in too many cases, this condemns them to a life of poverty. Single parents do not normally earn as much as would be available in a two-parent family, child support (if there is any) notwithstanding. It is more difficult for a young single mother to continue her education, thereby further limiting her earning potential.
Moral guidelines were given to us by God, and they were given us for a reason. Even when some of the leading Bible figures (Abraham and David, just to name two) departed from them, there were long lasting consequences. And following them today would eliminate a lot of heartache, both on the personal level and for society as a whole.
But will we learn? Somehow I doubt it
h/t: Mere Comments