607. Gathering together (XV)
Updated: May 18
A new trend in the abortion debate has been for the pro-abortion side to hold up placards that say “I wish my mom aborted me!”—the sentiment reflects a general trend, given intellectual heft by the philosopher David Benatar, that says it is better never to have been born. Conservatives meet these placards with much tsk-tsk. The placards are unfelt and are the equivalent to the kid at the back of class who wears sunglasses, lounges back in his chair, and has an unlit Gauloise on his lips. “I’m too cool…for school. Gym class blows. This sucks,” he says.
The protesters are actually all too comfortable with their lives, so comfortable they have to pretend they hate to be alive—they are too cool…for life; personally, I think if we took them and threw them into one of those big storm drains you find in LA, when it is in full spate, we would find that they very much like life—and would struggle very hard to keep it. So these signs represent narcissism—and, perhaps, a reflection that the “pro-life” camp is itself deeply uncool.
Then again, nobody really likes pro-life people either—and quite rightly. They engage in the cheapest emotional manipulation: “But what about the bwabeees. The silent scream! How cwan uw kwill the wittle bwabees.” When I see this cheap manipulation—actually quintessentially leftist—I just want to say: “Kill them. Abort them. Abort them all. I don’t care.” And, in fact, the “I wish my mom aborted me” school is partly a reaction to the equally phoney manipulation in the pro-life camp—the reality being that nobody cares that much about babies.
Similarly, I see self-proclaimed traditionalists who complain that our current sexual situation stems from an over-sexualised society. They complain that a semi-Grecian 90s CK ad leads to contemporary CK ads that feature a pregnant so-called man. The Grecian CK ads are not really sexual, although a sculptured male body probably arouses queers and women—the main targets for fashion ads (if it were possible I would wear the same pair of trousers forever, occasionally women press new clothes on me and I wear them). No, the Grecian CK ads are beautiful or erotic, yet they are not really pornographic—and you know the difference, you know it when you see it. Only hysterical Puritans think Greek statues are “obscene”. Can you be sexually aroused by them? Yes. However, is that their primary purpose? No—and you know that from the way they are posed...“It’s all in the hips, dear. The hips.”
The traditionalist game is about power through guilt and shame—and they play this game because it is easy. The hard game: reintroduce marriage as it was in the 1800s; make abortion a decision for men alone; and ban pornography. Concrete, actionable proposals—masculine. Yet, in fact, what traditionalists want to do is moan about “sexualisation” because the left will not come for you if you do that; they might laugh at you, but they will leave you alone—it is safe to play Sunday School moralist with a tsk-tsk here and a tsk-tsk there. Stand up and advocate real marriage and you will face howls and screams much louder than Brexit or Trump. No, much more preferable to tut-tut about attractive models in CK ads and claim that today’s problems came about because people are not sufficiently ashamed about sex; no, they should be ashamed about being white, being straight, being European…Indeed, what is shame—is it healthy?
Western sexuality is screwed because the left learned in the 1960s that sexual minorities could replace the old working class, by then too rich to care about the left’s revolutionary rhetoric. Abortion is legal because it destroys male power—as with divorce, a woman can hold an abortion over a man at a whim. “You don’t own me.” The point is to destroy private property, the family being a man’s property and means to transmit wealth down the generations.