Tag Archives: family values

The Economics Of Living Single

In a few past posts, I have pointed out the biases that pop culture, the church, and society in general have towards the nuclear family. Today it struck me that this is part of the problem, with my own critique as well. Why have not extended families and older traditions going back to pre-Reformation Era been lifted up? Perhaps that is a post for another day. I still have to do some research on it, which would require me to read up on an era I have little tp zero-interest in, the Middle Ages. No disrespect, just not invested in that era right now.

The real concrete impact of what theologians call the idol of the family is in the way that singles are discriminated against economically, starting, but not limited to unjust federal government tax policies. In the United States, over 1,000 laws “provide overt legal or financial benefits to married couples. Marital privileging marginalizes the 50 percent of Americans who are single. The U.S. government is the main perpetrator, but private companies follow its lead.” The High Price Of Being Single In America by Lisa Arnold & Christina Campbell in the Atlantic. From the article linked: “In 2010, our single woman earning $40,000 paid $6,181. Her married peer paid more than a thousand dollars less: $5,162. The contrast became more dramatic as our subjects’ incomes increased: our single woman earning $80,000 paid $16,125, whereas her married counterpart paid almost four thousand dollars less per year. (The numbers for 2011 were similar: our marrieds paid $963 and $3,875 less”

And Social Security?: “If a single person dies without children, her money will—must—go into the system to be provided to whomever needs it most, which is good because that was the original intent of Social Security. However, if a married person dies, the money can be routed back to her family. This is good for the married person, but fails to account for the important people in singles’ lives.”

From housing to insurance policies, singles are discriminated against. It is odd that one group of people is asking for marital rights in this country, but no one talks about the economic rights of single people, on EITHER side of the aisle. While there may be benefits in terms of freedom and vocational choice for singles, say like in the Academy, I don’t think a person can speak up for the oppressed in the United States context without talking about singleness and the privilege of married persons.

#DoctorWho: The Angels Take Manhattan

River Song (Doctor Who)

River Song (Doctor Who) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“Just you wait til my husband gets home.” -River Song

“Together, or not at all. It’s called marriage.”-Amy Pond

I just wanted to share a few words about tonight’s episode, the mid-season finale of Doctor Who. It was a send off for Rory and Amy Pond. The family, the Doctor, River, Amy, and Rory are trapped in Manhattan, trying to avoid  Weeping Angels.  What makes Doctor Who so special is that it’s a blend of family friendly humor, horror and science fiction all rolled into one master piece.

Lately, I have found myself critical of the show, seeing the criticism that a few of my peers have levied against Doctor Who.  Doctor Who has been transformed from a show about (in my view), an awkward college professor teaching his students about history to a journey in cultural studies, and for the 11th Doctor, it’s more like the Doctor + family.  Besides issues of race [color-blindness]  and gender, one of these criticisms is that Doctor Who has started to carry this “everyone should have a family; no one should be alone” mantra. Much like the backers of the (fake) Gospel of Jesus’ (fake) Wife) who wanted to ‘ship Jesus, being human is defined as being together with a significant other. Single persons are once more excluded, from a secular show too! The theme of family and normalcy is valued in our culture, and the media is the teacher of this value, so much so that singleness and individuality becomes marginalized.

 

Amy Pond, from Doctor Who

Amy Pond, from Doctor Who (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

For example, take River Song, and her  mother, Amy Pond, their identities are based on their relationship to men. For River, it is being Doctor Who’s wife, and for Amy, it’s being Rory’s wife. Yet the feelings really are not that mutual when it comes to the men.  The question I have is, why does being in a relationship have to be all that important at all? Are people who are not ‘shipped up (by choice) somehow less human? I have my doubts about that. So while I do enjoy Doctor Who, I do understand why there are those who do not. And that’s okay. I like it, and I can criticize it.

Just can’t help it. Well, maybe I can.

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The Ron Paulinization of Sarah Palin, part 2

Another Example

A domestic policy issue that came up in recent months was Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell and how it was enforced.
Basically, same-gendered loving persons were kicked out of the military if outed. I just never understood why this policy was necessary. I’d prefer that Christians have to take loyalty oaths before joining the military service. Yes, I am serious.

First Ron Paul:

Favors traditional marriage between man and a woman.

Voted in favor of repealing DADT. In 1993, he voted in favor of it because, well, it was the 90s, and our politicians didn’t know what they were doing on any level. Democrats or Republicans. DADT was considered the “middle” way, you know, the radical center.

Now, Sarah Palin:

Like Ron Paul, holds to the traditional definition of marriage. But because she is “not going to be out there judging individuals, sitting in a seat of judgment telling what they can and can’t do, should and should not do,” she took the liberty position on Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.

The appropriate position that Paul and Palin have taken is to see the traditional marriage argument and inclusion in our military as two separate issues, and I would agree: marriage is pre-existent to the polis (the nation-state), the military is an establishment post-polis, (the nation-state).