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About Our Epidemic of Sexual Aggression

The current revelations of an epidemic of sexually aggressive behaviors (SAB) against women, particularly by men in the media over many decades, has led to calls to address this highly prevalent “disease” in our culture.

Peggy Noonan, however, has boldly identified its spiritual origins in the Wall Street Journal:

An aging Catholic priest suggested to a friend that all this was inevitable.  “Contraception degenerates men,” he said, as does abortion.  Once you separate sex from its seriousness, once you separate it from its life-changing, life-giving potential, men will come to see it as just another want, a desire like any other.  Once they think that, then they’ll see sexual violations as less serious, less charged, less full of weight.  They’ll be more able to rationalize.  It’s only petty theft, a pack of chewing gum on the counter, and I took it. 

The crisis provides an opportunity to acknowledge the full extent of SAB and, especially, its enablement by the culture, families, and schools because of the failure to take seriously the dangers and harm of using persons as sexual objects.

This crisis is not limited to adult males.  The troubling reality is that this epidemic is prevalent in adult females, as well as in singles and in adolescents of both sexes.

A recent clinical experience with an adolescent male demonstrates this reality.  When he refused the request of a female high school classmate to have sex, she responded with the hostile, insulting comment that he must be homosexual.  This was followed that night by a telephone call from her irate mother to his mother, claiming that he was harming her daughter’s self-esteem and her right to have good sexual relationships.

Another example: a college freshman told her mother that the only reason she refused to date anyone in the Catholic high school she attended was because the males expected sex on the first and all following dates.

Read more at CERC

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