Throughout the West debate we have talked much about the contributions of the world (Hefner) and the flesh (concupiscence) to our difficulties in dealing with issues of purity, but we seem to have overlooked a very important player in all this: Big Red. Funny that.
Actually not everyone has overlooked it. Animadversions (content warning) has posted an excellent observation on Fr. Brian Van Hove’s blog that could possibly change the way many look at this question.
Though West’s desire to carry out what Hefner began presumes far better intentions than Hefner deserves, West is not totally off the mark if he means to overcome prudishness and unworthy shame. But the danger lies in stripping us of the inhibitions and sublimations that occasionally protect us from harm. Insofar as he and Hefner recommend to us more “exposure” both are misguided. Between the beautiful and the demonic there is no clinically neutral middle. Our sexuality is anything but “harmless.”
I must say that 6 months ago I had NO idea about all of the controversy surrounding TOB. Since I saw it on EWTN, I figured this was completely orthodox teaching and accepted within the Church. So, if nothing else, I’ve learned a great lesson in that alone. Never assume!
It took me awhile to figure out who Big Red was (I think I’ve been forced to watch too many Clifford shows) … then finally I had the big Duhhhh come over me. oy
Perhaps Michael Warsaw should spend a few hours reading this discussion on MaryVictrix.
If someone has his contact info (something better than email@example.com) they should politely reach out to him. Preferably someone who wears a habit or collar.
I am grateful for this discussion really. For it has been able to put language around what I have always felt uncomfortable with all these years… and that is so called “Catholic Chastity Ed”. I have also made some nice friends in the discussion.