Orange is the New . . . WHAT, exactly?

Eventually we are going to have to deal with this, you know!

I’m not talking about global warming, or the earth’s diminishing supply of fossil fuels. And I am not referring to overpopulation, the reemerging fear of potential nuclear conflict, or a myriad of other topics over which we obsess nowadays.

But I am talking about erosion. Or at least a type of erosion.

Folks were reeling weeks ago over Brock Turner’s rape of a young woman, his conviction, and subsequent “soft” sentence (six months in prison). The young woman’s intimate multi-page description of the assault has engendered a public outcry on her behalf and fueled an angry response directed at the criminal justice system.

But wait just a minute . . . .

What are we so upset about?

The young man SAID he made a mistake under the influence of alcohol, and that his victim did the same. What more can we want from him?

Increasingly, our social duplicity is starting to show.

A couple of years ago I wrote an unpublished page in response to the news of Apple‘s CEO, Tim Cook, and his “coming out.” In it I opted for adding a new letter to the LGBT community acronym; this was long before Q came into common use, of course. I was opting for adding the letter A to the acronym, resulting in LGBTA.

The A was supposed to stand for adulterer. And I think I can make a pretty fair case that one is “wired” for that sexual tendency, and finds it “natural” to them. [BTW, no, I don’t think this is going to catch on, so don’t be looking for it in printed materials, or in newscasts any time in the next millennium or so].

I mention that only because the laws in the countries of this globe on which we reside reflect the moral fiber and basic understanding of what is acceptable and unacceptable in our world. That almost goes without saying.

Almost.

But erosion changes things, doesn’t it?

Sometimes the changes are good, we think. Sometimes we release unfair and unjust rules in order to replace them with a new found idea of what is good and right and just. Is it possible, however, that sometimes we release the wrong things, and replace them with rules and concepts that undermine the very soil upon which we stand?

Weeks ago, a small hole in my yard caught my attention as I mowed. I assumed it was a hole made by a ground squirrel or something like that, but as I poked at it the ground surrounding it began to cave in. Finally I had a hole in the dirt that could easily turn or break an ankle. I filled it in and covered it to indicate the danger.

I know there are various points of view and strong passionate opinions about the subject matter in question. And my intent in this blog entry is not to bog down in that mire. Rather, my intent is simply to ask you to consider how things have changed with regard to one social rule: adultery.

Once punishable by death in certain countries it is now not even against the law in Europe, or most of Latin America. And where it is still on the books in the United States the execution of a penalty for it is almost nonexistent. Why is that?

Truthfully, our society no longer tends to see adultery as a very wrong thing. In fact, we are so accustomed to it that we often celebrate it in our entertainment, and we fumigate any residual negatives about it by adding the unquestioned component of “love” into the mix.

My point is this: we can react passionately to the injustice of the rape of a young woman and at the same time accept the sometimes cavalier attitude of the adulterer, defending his/her actions as understandable. [Some would even go far as to say the rape was understandable, too, in light of the alcohol abuse].

Our sexual moorings are in transition, aren’t they? And who is to say how much slack can be allowed in our moral rope before we hang ourselves; before the proverbial ground we are standing on caves in under us and we collapse much to our chagrin?

We are the “frog in the kettle,” (thank you, George Barna) slowly being warmed to a murderous boil, unaware of our coming demise, basking in the freedom of love, acceptance of new ideas and moral codes, and the pride and assurance that comes from being so well informed.

We have been delivered from the burdensome chains of antiquated morality, and have now evolved into a society that is progressive, up-to-date, and not held down by the defunct mores of the misty past. Aren’t you glad?

Orange may indeed be the new black. And it takes no rocket scientist to see that the colors of the jumpsuits are not all that is “new.”

Do you like the change?

Well, buckle up!

It is time to pay the piper.

About ivanbenson

I am a singer, guitar player, writer, story teller, voice over talent, and heart attack survivor in the Atlanta, Georgia area.
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8 Responses to Orange is the New . . . WHAT, exactly?

  1. Monica says:

    Excellent! Well developed and your thinking cuts thru all the lies that our culture is adopting and swallowing. Thanks for sharing!

  2. Bob says:

    Hi Ivan,

    I always enjoy your blogs. They’re always well-written and thought-provoking. I also usually agree with you, but I take exception with much of what you wrote today.

    You said you opted for adding the letter A to the acronym, resulting in LGBTA because an adulterer is “wired” for that sexual tendency, and finds it “natural” to them. While it may be true that some people are more likely to be tempted to be unfaithful, it is still their choice. In contrast, I know many gays including my brother. I assure you I’ve never met one who chose to be gay any more than either of us chose to be straight. Adding that letter A to the LGBT acronym suggests an equivalence that doesn’t exist.

    You also wrote “And where it is still on the books in the United States the execution of a penalty for it is almost nonexistent. Why is that?” I believe the answer is that adultery is a moral issue–not a criminal one. While some people believe our laws are based on the Ten Commandments and want them posted on court houses or government buildings, that never was the case. The only laws in common with the commandments are 6. You shall not murder, 8. You shall not steal, and as you point out in the past 7. You shall not commit adultery. You could also argue that 9. You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor narrowly applies relative to perjury.

    Lastly, you wrote “My point is this: we can react passionately to the injustice of the rape of a young woman and at the same time accept the sometimes cavalier attitude of the adulterer, defending his/her actions as understandable. [Some would even go far as to say the rape was understandable, too, in light of the alcohol abuse].” Are you suggesting that sexual assault, which is often violent and by definition non-consenting, is morally equivalent to adultery? While not victimless, adultery is committed by mutually consenting adults. I’m certainly not defending adultery, but would you want to live in a country ruled by the Christian equivalent of Sharia law? Do you want to live in a country where one group’s moral views are imposed on everyone?

    Regards,

    Bob

    • ivanbenson says:

      Always a pleasure to hear from you and read the erudite comments you make. Thanks so much! We may never agree on this, but . . . let me respond to your words.

      I believe that there is choice for both the adulterer and the homosexual. I may not choose to be “straight,” or “gay,” but I certainly choose whether or not to satisfy my sexual tendencies as a straight or gay person. Proclivity has never determined right or wrong actions.

      As to whether or not there should be “laws” that govern morality, I would say that is what many laws are all about. Criminality is not separate from moral codes; rather, it is an expression of what a given society has deemed “wrong.” It may seem that laws against speeding have no moral underpinnings, but I suspect that even those kinds of laws can be traced back to some moral position about the sanctity of life.

      I would not equate rape and adultery for the reasons you mentioned. However, my point is simply that moral erosion is occurring. Mutual consent to do “wrong” does not legitimize the deed. Every recovering alcoholic eventually discovers that his/her actions had ramifications far beyond his/her individual self.

      Would I want to be under some group’s imposed moral views? Is there another option? There will always be a dominant moral view that determines a nation’s laws, etc., will there not? I just hope it’s a decent one.

  3. Marta says:

    Super good Ivam. Well stated.

  4. Suzanne Doublestein says:

    Thanks for encouraging us all to think through these difficult times – love you!

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