Its interesting how the modern Left has acclimatized itself to the moral, cultural, and intellectual degeneration its ideas and social theories have wrought over the last forty years. Equally interesting is the manner in which it brands those who have not, like the prehistoric woolly rhinoceros, grown the thick hide and fur necessary to fully protect themselves from the cold, arid winds of selfism that have blown across the most intimate and central human relationships since those revolutionary years of the late sixties, as “reactionaries”, “prudes” and as, in some sense, “fascist.”
Such acclimatization has created, over time, a kind of alternate intellectual and moral reality from within which the Left peers out at the world and sometimes invites us to enter. Many readers will remember the old television show, Tales From the Darkside, in which there is a world or sphere of existence known as the “dark side,” a world understood to be like a mirror image of normative reality, but which is a place “unseen by most, an underworld, a place that is just as real, but not as brightly lit…” The Left presents us with many points of entry into this “dark side,” not the least of which are the changes it has wrought in our culture regarding our most essential human relationships.
Just as the mass exodus of manufacturing industries from America to foreign lands is considered a manifestation of “corporate greed”, having nothing to do with the severe anti-business, anti-wealth creation environment created by the American political class, and just as the sudden increase in homelessness in the eighties was laid at the feet of the “decade of greed,” and not the leftist inspired deinstitutionalization movement that removed many thousands of mentally ill people from institutional care, so within the Left’s alternative reality, the vast social pathologies spawned by the “sexual revolution” are either explained away ideologically or, when it is thought explanations are no longer necessary, celebrated.
A major article at the new Huffington Post divorce page, “Huffpost Divorce,” invites us embrace a new attitude and a new industry that has formed around this attitude. The attitude in question is to take one’s divorce very much as one took one’s initial wedding; as a time of festive celebration in which family and friends participate in the formal initiation of the fundamental relationship at the heart of community and civilization itself. In this case, however, the merrymaking is focused on the dissolution of the married state.
The new industry that has arisen around the wonderful world of divorce is what the article terms “the divorce industrial complex,” which serves the celebratory needs of Americans on their way to the liberation and self fulfillment to be found in untying the knot.
Welcome to the marriage Dark Side at the Huffington Post, where the purveyors of divorce gear and accessories cry, as if in some grim revision of Oliver, “There must be someone who will buy.”
Social radicalism meets capitalist greed? Well certainly! If multimillionaire director Oliver Stone can make films like Wall Street Money Never Sleeps, then leftists can certainly profit from the very social pathologies their ideologies have spawned. Planning a “divorce party?” If you are, then each page of the article presents you with a useful, and usefully symbolic accessory for your “anti-wedding.”
On one page you can obtain a divorce ring with “a gap in the center (symbolizing separation).” On another you can create an endearing record of your failed relationship utilizing the services of a divorce photographer. Of course, “There’s no better way to congratulate someone” undergoing a divorce than to send him or her a divorce card. It does seem that our cultural Morlocks have thought of everything that might be required once the cult of the self that they themselves once fomented and aggressively promoted in terms of “liberation” and “self fulfillment” comes home to roost as a widespread inability to stay married (anyone can “cohabit,” of course, and have a sexual “relationship.” Our concern here is of a higher order).
As before mentioned regarding the Huffpo divorce page, the really striking thing about the general attitude there is the sense of utter resignation to the phenomena of large rates of divorce and family breakdown. As the opening paragraph states:
Now that divorce has become a fact of life–a milestone in its own right?–perhaps it was inevitable that it, too, would adopt the commercial trappings that have come to define modern nuptials
A milestone? Divorce, you see, like teen sexual activity, drug usage, extramarital affairs, indulgence in pornography etc., and any number of behaviors or pursuits that are salient factors in the breakdown and dissolution of the family is, within the classic environmental determinist template of the Left, conceived of as something within our cultural environment that just happens to us. Like plate tectonics, times change, and human beings are carried along by those changes like leaves and twigs down a flowing societal river.
How many of us, and in particular, future generations, can really ever find “happiness ever after” in a world of prenups, divorce rings, and the frivolous celebration of the destruction of the fundamental unit of civil society?
Welcome to the “Left.” Welcome to the dark side.