Gather round, my children. Perhaps I should have explained this before Charlottesville and Berkeley, though I never thought you would hear me.
Years ago you read this poem. You said you didn’t understand it, but really you were just having too much fun in those days to pay it much attention:
Turning and turning in the widening gyre
The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.
Orthodox. Faithful. Free.
Sign up to get Crisis articles delivered to your inbox daily
Surely some revelation is at hand
Now, in your bewilderment, you understand. I see you listening keenly for a falconer, or at least some explanation. So I mean for you to know what has unfolded while you still have time to push back against the forces that surround you. I need to tell you about the Sexual Revolution.
Oh gracious, that?! I’m sure you want to say that you know all about the Sexual Revolution, and such questions make me sound old. Perhaps you think you’re way ahead of me; you may even be ready to tell me the Sexual Revolution is a bad thing. Oh, it’s fine if you think it a bad thing, but—and I mean this with the deepest affection—you have no idea what you’re talking about.
I sense that you think the “Sexual Revolution” is what your MacBook dictionary says it is:
the liberalization of established social and moral attitudes toward sex, particularly that occurring in western countries during the 1960s, as the women’s liberation movement and developments in contraception instigated greater experimentation with sex, especially outside of marriage.
The particulars of the story listed above did occur (i.e., our attitudes toward sex did liberalize in the 1960s; the modern women’s liberation movement did get rolling about that time; contraception, and the rest). But your MacBook dictionary means for you to believe that the Sexual Revolution is a sociological term ascribed to certain historical events after the fact. This is not true.
I do not deny that the en masse practice of sexual permissiveness bloomed in the late 1960s and 1970s and continues today. And your Apple dictionary is correct when it says that this permissiveness and its consequences were in part technology-driven.
But the “Sexual Revolution” was not coined to describe something that happened in the past. It was planned and written by a man decades before any of these particulars took place. The plan continues to play out today just as its designer said it would. It has made much progress, and it is far from over.
Let me be blunt: you’ve been played for idiots. Idios, in the original Greek, means an independent agent, belonging to oneself. That is how I mean it. The designer of the Sexual Revolution believed you’d go so far to sacrifice your own families for sexual autonomy (most of you aren’t even married yet, but you’ve severed yourselves from what your ancestors handed down, a process of cutting begun by your grandfathers).
The term sexual revolution, my dear children, was invented by a man named Wilhelm Reich in the 1920s. Wilhelm Reich was born in Austria-Hungary in 1897. Raised to be an atheist, he developed sexual addictions as a child. Later, he joined Sigmund Freud’s clinic as a physician, after which he became a disciple of Karl Marx and joined the Communist Party in 1922. He referred to himself as a “Freudo-Marxist,” believing his utopic dream of a Marxist world order would require nothing short of a sexual revolution.
Karl Marx taught that the “first requisite for the happiness of the people is the abolition of religion,” which in Europe and Russia meant Judaism and Christianity. Reich believed that his sexual revolution would eradicate the Jewish and Christian faith. Pay attention closely now, it is necessary to connect the dots.
Wilhelm Reich understood that religious faith is sustained and passed down through the natural family. And so he concluded that the natural family must be dethroned, disrupted, and ultimately redefined to cut off this contagion of faith. Fatherless homes aren’t church-going homes, which is why the officially atheist Soviet Union abolished the term “illegitimate children” as one of its first decrees, followed by the streamlining of Russian divorce laws.
But Reich knew the brute forces of the Soviet government would never work in Europe and America. There, he said, the family would have to destroy itself from within. And so he formulated a plan to do just that. And once his plan was underway, Reich said, no power on earth would be able to stop it.
Reich correctly surmised that the way to knock the props out from underneath the American family would be to condition Western man to see contraception, fornication, adultery, pornography, sodomy, etc. as perfectly normal and not unhealthy things. And he saw sex education in schools as the best way to “divest parents of their moral authority.” The late Italian philosopher Augusto Del Noce described Reich’s book The Sexual Revolution as “the Mein Kampf of permissivism.”
Reich knew that a sexually permissive nation would be an increasingly fatherless nation, and fatherless children don’t go to church. In 1929, the American illegitimacy rate hovered around 3 percent. Today it is 40 percent overall. Church attendance for adults who grew up in a household with a father who attended church every week is 72 percent; church attendance for adults who did not have a church-attending father is 2-4 percent.
I know you are troubled by what you see happening around you, such as the rioting in Charlottesville and Berkeley and Middlebury. What I’m writing to you about today might seem like a secondary concern. But look closer. How many rioters grew up following their fathers into church every week? To talk about these rioters as representing “two sides” is nonsense. This is the army of sexual autonomy, free from the falconer, the idios who believes only in himself. This is the Sexual Revolution, nothing more, nothing less.
You must put on your armor. Find a parish with its footers sunk deep in the church of our fathers, and go. Go now! There you will hear the falconer.