She Blinded Me With ... Science? Or, "How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Hate the Gays."

I am a Washington Redskins fan. I have been since I was 8 years old. That right there ought to tell you something about my devotion to a cause. I was there when the heavily-favored Redskins got tromped by the Oakland Raiders in the Superbowl (as a 10-year-old, that was the first true crisis of faith I ever experienced). Through thick and thin, I have backed the ‘Skins—even when the Pats beat them 52-7. Many of my friends feel the same way about their given sports team, be it the Green Bay Packers or the Boston Red Sox--they may be doing well now, but both have had their share of setbacks. (How my wife managed to write her sermon and yell for the Sox at the same time last Saturday night, I’ll never know, but it was a great sermon!)

If only we Americans stood by our moral values as firmly as we do our favorite teams. As a recent report from Christian News Wire tells us, we Yankee sheep are more prone to back the winning horse than the ethical horse.

This opinion piece is a real, well, piece of work: Love Isn’t Enough: 5 Reasons Why Same-Sex Marriage Will Harm Children. Normally I wouldn’t give any credence to such a clearly biased opinion piece, but after checking on the source, and reading her other writings, I have concluded that it is only a matter of time before we see this woman on Fox News, being touted by Rick Sanchez as an “expert.” Another in a long line of people who are to scared or stupid to say what they really think, so they take a position they believe to be held by the majority of society.

The author, Dr. Trayce L. Hansen, makes only one point I agree with—at least halfway: “Men and women bring diversity to parenting; each makes unique contributions that can't be replicated by the other.” I have never tried breastfeeding my son—I just don’t think my man-boobs are up to it. I’m quite happy to leave that one to my wife.

My wife and I do bring diversity to parenting—but that diversity has less to do with the difference in our gender than it has to do with the difference in our personalities. We problem-solve differently, we come from different families, and we have different backgrounds.

Dr. Hansen tries to separate mother and father based on the type of love each is uniquely capable of showing. A mother’s love is “unconditional-leaning,” while a father’s love is “conditional-leaning.” Dr. Hansen fails to explain these new terms, but I’m guessing that the “conditional” loving father is the type who screams at his kid during soccer games; the type who only remembers to show affection on those rare occasions when his son makes him proud. A mother’s “unconditional-leaning” love, on the other hand, means that she will probably stare at her lap while her husband screams at her son, and later hold him in private, trying to explain that “Dad didn’t really mean to scare/scream at/hit you.” (She also loves her husband so unconditionally that she wouldn’t dare to challenge his parenting decisions.)

Dr. Hansen’s view of parenting is pretty narrow, and it fails to stand up to even the most casual application to the real world. Most halfway-functional fathers deeply love their children, and would take exception to that love being labeled as conditional. Most mothers (at least the ones I have met in the course of 5 years of youth ministry) would also agree that Dr. Hansen’s attempt to categorize parental love is laughable. The vast majority of mothers and fathers love their children, and that love is beyond measure or condition.

So, if Dr. Hansen is unable to describe heterosexual marriage, how can she claim to be an authority on same-sex relationships?

Let’s consider the source: “Dr.” Hansen likes to play on topics that provoke an emotional or hormonal response: Andrea Yates, 9/11, child-molesting priests, gay marriage, and incest. And, yup, she takes the stand that would do a neoconservative proud. Hansen continues to prove that psychology is indeed a soft science. She begins each of her arguments from a supposition she never attempts to back up. Homosexuality is an undesirable choice. The Catholic priesthood harbors a large number of homosexual predators, and there is a conspiracy to force journalists to cover this up with misleading language. Feminists are bad.

Here’s my favorite:

After nearly one year of reflection, most Americans, including President George W. Bush, still see the events of September 11, 2001 in stark, black-and-white terms. This widely shared viewpoint is that America was unjustifiably attacked that day by evil, worldly forces, or as the president declared, by “evil-doers.” This simple—not simplistic—type of thinking is morally and psychologically healthy and lays the foundation for an appropriate response. Unfortunately, the majority’s perspective is not shared by all.

A stark, black-and-white worldview was also shared by the Jihadists who piloted the airplanes on that day. A morally, psychologically healthy worldview, Dr. Hansen? How would you respond to an American soldier in Baghdad who has had to learn the painful lesson that not every Iraqi is your enemy, and not every American is your friend? How would you diagnose someone who has seen the shades of grey in the world?

Dr. Hansen goes on to state that anyone who dissents from the President must logically deny that evil exists in the world:

The answer is that these dissenters, rather than viewing evil as the end result of moral choice and free will, as most Americans do, deny that it even exists.

Pacifism, on the other hand, is “morally and psychologically problematic.” To quote Marge Simpson, “I don’t even know where to begin telling you what’s wrong with that.”

I’ve stopped rambling and come to the point: Dr. Hansen is ill. Perhaps she needs to find a colleague—one who attended a strong university, and not a DeVry-equivalent—and spend some time on the couch. She has chosen her radical right-wing viewpoints not because she believes in them, but because she is siding with the majority. I can just hear Caiaphas singing to Judas, “You’ve backed the right horse!” Dr. Hansen takes specious argument to an art form.

Why am I even bothering to talk about this hack? Because she is exhibiting behavior common to some Americans who wish to claim they are in the majority. Go to msnbc.com and read some of the comments on the “What do You Think?” section. You can find the Trayce Hansen’s of the world there, too. They spout hateful, racist, bigoted messages, and have screen names like, “I_LOVE_AMERICA,” or “GOD_BLESS_OUR_TROOPS.” Implying, of course, if you disagree with their hatemongering, then you must hate America, and you must hope that God does not bless our troops. Dr. Hansen might have found a school willing to sell her a PhD, but it only makes her a slightly more highbrow “AMERICA_RULZ!”

SO, if you read through Dr. Hansen's website, here is her recommendation for being a mature, mentally healthy adult: Hate feminists, gays, and pacifists; Love whatever is popular.

In short, here is Dr. Trayce Hansen’s prescription for psychological health:

Vote Neoconservative!

1 comment:

Doorman-Priest said...

She spells her name Trayce.

That one fact tells you all you need to know about her.