As the Catechism, along with solid human reason, have it, men and women are different. But they are also complementary, each with their particular ‘genius’. As such, their roles in the various societies we form should overlap, but they should also be distinct. Since the most fundamental, and most perfect, society is the family, every other society should in some way model the family. The more disordered and warped this gets, the worse off we all will be. As the family goes, said Pope John Paul II, so goes society. And the converse is true as well.
Two articles struck me of late. The first is an intriguing piece in First Things, (the author goes by what seems an unpronounceable pseudonym)on the notion of the ‘longhouse’ – used here analogously, describing what happens to a culture that is governed primarily by the maternal instinct of women. Motherhood is good, indeed very good, but all things in moderation and in their own place. The ‘longhouse’, as the author posits, implies over-mothering, the coddling of a dark, closed, cramped environment, with an overemphasis on safety, caution, risk avoidance, complaisance, what might be called ‘why-can’t-we-all-just-get-along-ness’. This gets even worse when it is imposed on all with the full coercive power of the state. Then we get the uber-mothering with full-on aggression and violence. Stay safe, or I’ll beat you into submission.
For proper balance, societies require mothering and safety – but also, especially in the face of great evil – courage, forthrightness, self-reliance, willingness to fight and, even more so, to die.
The reader may make up his own mind. X-Y, Venus-Mars, male-female, husband-wife. We all need balance, harmony, complementarity, in the right order, under God.
The second is a related piece on the recent near-simultaneous resignations of two leaders, Jacinta Adern of New Zealand and Nicola Sturgeon of Scotland, both of them amongst the most extreme Covidian zealots, all for lockdowns, mass-coerced ‘vaxxing’, closed borders – the whole lot, with not much in way of balance and harmony. They are also, by the bye, all for the insanity of transgenderism and many of the other evils of our era – under the gas-lit rubric of ‘compassion’ – with Ms. Sturgeon getting flummoxed on public television trying to justify allowing a doubly-convicted male rapist into a female prison after he identified, yes, as a woman.
As the author concludes, the two leaders had their day when their policies could be decreed by fiat, and police batons, in a climate of hysterical fear or imposed and brutally censored consensus; but they are now seen by too many as errant, if not outright evil, nonsense, when exposed to the full light of truth.
We may conclude with the first author’s exhortation:
Still, we must resist the soft authoritarianism of the Longhouse’s weepy moralism. We must not succumb to hysterical pleas for more safety, more consensus, more sensitivity. Ennobling work awaits us. But we must first recognize the Longhouse for what it is and be willing to leave its false comforts behind.