Our Catholic Answer to the
Sexual Suicide of America
by Fr. John A. Hardon, S.J.
Surely the last title for a conference sponsored by Eternal Life would
be sexual suicide. Yet that is exactly what we are addressing ourselves to.
The language may sound strange but the idea behind the language is part of modern
society, which desperately needs to be liberated from the demonic lies by which
it is now enslaved. There will be three parts to our conference. We will
first ask ourselves what is sexual suicide, then comes the harder question which
we will save for last: how we Catholics are to convert a nation, like our own,
from the madness of its self-inflicted sexual suicide and restore to our people
some semblance of moral sanity.
What is Sexual Suicide?
The expression sexual suicide is more than the title of a widely read book
first published in 1973. It is a two word description of the chaos introduced
into one once civilized country after another, including our beloved United
Rather than define sexual suicide, let us describe it as understood by those
who recognize its terrifying implications.
- Sexual suicide is sexual liberation that has created a society hostile to
the family and the institution of marriage. It is a society that fails to recognize
the natural order of the male and female gender.
- Sexual suicide is the ultimate destination of feminism: female inferiority
and familiarity and familial disintegration under the auspices of the sexual
- Sexual suicide is the pollution of a culture by false ideas and misused
technology. The result is an erosion of love and family that reduces sex to
a form of sexual message.
Similarly, therefore, sexual suicide is the wide spread virus of radical feminism
that has penetrated the culture of so many Western nations.
It began with the false premise that the family is a form of male domination.
Domineering men, masculine gender, invented the family in order to control the
so-called weaker sex. Sexual suicide is masked under the name of womens liberation.
It pretends to restore to women the rights they have over men.
As might be expected, the principle flaw of most of the literature of womens
liberation is its gross under estimation of the real power of women.
What are we saying? We are denying the basic principle of womens liberation.
Invented by Karl Marx, it was widely promoted by Lenin, who introduced communism
into the western world. According to Marx, there is no progress without conflict.
The deepest conflict is not between the rich and the poor or the capitalist
and labor. It is, for Marx, the conflict between the man and the women. The
great dream of Marx was to promote conflict between the two genders and thus
provide for the progress of human society. Among the nations that have been
deeply affected by this demonic lie, the United States stands as a world leader.
We began this section by asking ourselves what is sexual suicide? We answer
that sexual suicide is the false philosophy of Karl Marx, which claims that
the family is a creation of men who want to control women. Women must coincidentally
rebel against this domination and assert their right to independence of masculine
Why Sexual Suicide?
Let us examine what is happening in our society today: mutual love between
a monogamous male and female has been replaced with liberated sex.
Love in its form of blissful monogamy seems increasingly elusive, and sex as
a way to obtain physical pleasure is increasingly available as the supreme human
pleasure crucial to our mental health, and is a matter of human right. Society
sees no need to deprive these pleasures to those who failed to find a life-long
partner. The same rationale also made homosexuality and pornography acceptable
in our society.
The physical mental and psychological consequences caused by this sexual freedom
are seen as a health issue where treatment is expected from the health care
and scientific community. As an ultimate solution, we seek a break between
sexual intercourse and reproduction.
The feminists, homosexuals, and pornographers as a group are united in their
desire to divorce sexual activity from procreation. The Catholic Church is
the only major institution resisting this effort.
This group gains the financial support of the major foundations for scientific
The research objective is beyond the sea for better contraceptions. They
seek to eliminate the biological, psychological and symbolic tie between intercourse
and childbirth. They foresee a time when artificial means may be employed for
human reproduction. Sex, in the long term, is only for physical pleasure.
************** NOTE *************
******* NO MENTION OF WIDESPREAD ABORTION *******
They seem to be unaware that the breakdown of procreation and sexual instincts
will ultimately undermine all forms of sexual pleasure.
However, we already see the change in behavioral pattern in men and women that
is causing suicidal disintegration. When sex is no longer associated with the
affirmation of a durable relationship, the natural male sexual instinct is un-moderated
and the male will gravitate towards a series of sexual conquests of the next
available female. The incentive to commitment is lost.
The man will emerge as sexually impulsive and an opportunistic hedonist who
pursues pornography, drugs, and crime. Women are faced with a cruel dilemma,
they can either respond to the increasing abdication of men from civilized social
and sexual pattern by playing both key roles of job commitment and familial
responsibility, or they can choose career alone without the prospect of a family,
or they subject themselves to male sexual impulse, abandoning their procreative
horizons and attempt to enjoy themselves with whoever is around.
This is already evident in the state of marriages today - a high rate of divorce
and increasing number of fatherless families. Even more tragic are the poor
in the ghetto where a state sponsored fatherless child rearing system is in
place. We see an increasing crime rate, illegitimate children and the abuse
of women and children, which no amount of social spending can resolve.
We must conclude that sex, love between the spouses, love for children, and
the family unit are indispensably integrated:
Marriage is not simply a ratification of an existing love. It is the conversion
of that love into a biological and social continuity surpassing any two individuals.
The very essence of such continuity is children.
There are inequalities between the genders but they are complimentary to each
other, and the ultimate power lies with the woman who teaches the man to become
a full member of the family as a social entity.
These inequities, pertaining to the core of marriage, can only be overcome
by diminishing the woman and her maternal sexuality, reducing her to the lowest
form of male eroticism, leaving her a man without the male physiology: a veritable
We are on the road to sexual suicide because our acceptance of sex liberation
further causes us to accept certain social anomalies as a result of sexual liberation.
This includes the concept of open marriage that all responsibilities are split
equally between the spouses; the high rate of divorce; the large number of fatherless
children in broken homes, and women forced to compete in the job market while
retaining family responsibilities. Not understanding the cause of these anomalies
will cause us as a society to seek solutions that would put us further down
the slippery slope of sexual suicide.
How to Stop Sexual Suicide
There is only one remedy for sexual suicide. It is the reverse of its cause.
At root, the cause of sexual suicide is the rejection of the basic moral principles
taught by Christ and proclaimed by Christianity for two thousand years.
Sexual pleasure is not an end in itself. Its divinely ordained
purpose is to foster the procreation of children and to sustain the mutual selfless
love of husband and wife. If you separate sexual pleasure from this two-fold
purpose, you are opening the door to what we are now calling sexual suicide.
We get some idea of how deeply infected otherwise professed Catholics have
become with the mania of sexual indulgence from what happened when Pope Paul
VI published Humane Vitae in 1968. One conference of bishops after another
stood in judgment of the Vicar of Christ. Fully one half of the Churchs hierarchy
decided that the Popes teaching was out of date. The grounds for rejecting
the Churchs Magesterium were the familiar ones, appealing to each persons
subjective conscience. This is what Pope John Paul II identified as the core
problem in the modern world.
He answers the question, what is one basic error among those who are exalting
human freedom? His answer is a devastating appraisal of the modern world,
which has redefined the meaning of human freedom. The Pope declares that the
most basic moral error in the world today divorces human freedom from dependence
on God. It is frankly atheistic. Each persons conscience is given the status
of a supreme tribunal of moral judgment.
Here the subjective conscience becomes ruler in moral matters apart from the
mind and will of God.
What happened to conscience? The Vicar of Christ declares that conscience
then becomes the final judge for each person of what is right or wrong, independent
of the objective laws of god. Does this mean that we do not have any true
freedom? Ironically many who exalt human freedom at the expense of obedience
to Gods laws are the very ones who deny human freedom altogether. This is
not surprising when you realize that true freedom resides in the human will.
Anyone who denies this freedom actually denies that we are ever truly free in
anything we choose to do.
Sexual suicide has introduced the culture of death in the
modern world. The most terrifying symptom of this culture is its massive murder
of millions of unborn children, which is now fully legalized in most of the
nations of our day. Once again Pope John Paul II raises the question what
is the most devastating form of this conspiracy against life? His answer is
clear. It is the spread of abortion.
Enormous sums of money are being invested to produce pharmaceutical products
to ensure the killing of unborn children in their mothers wombs. So true
is this that scientific research seems to be exclusively preoccupied with developing
weapons of death against innocent children awaiting birth.
Our closing question at this conference is how sexual suicide can be
over come. It can be over come only by a re-Christianization of society. This
re-Christianization is not as obvious as may seem. The wide spread sexual
self-destruction so prevalent in once Christian countries is the result of millions
abandoning their Christian faith. What happened? The result was inevitable.
Marriage as a life long union of one man and one woman became a relic of past
history. The family as a loving community of father, mother and children became
a relic of a forgotten age.
Women as devoted wives and mothers were mesmerized into becoming feminist leaders
in the liberation from domination by an alleged male patriarchy. Children
as the precious treasure whom husband and wife loved to bring into this world
as the preparation for the eternal home to which families are destined became
a burden which the state took into protective custody. The aged who were respected
for their wisdom and rich experience became a liability.
All these monumental changes in society took place for the most obvious reasons.
There can be no authentic family life, no true marital commitment, no loving
propagation of children, no selfless care of the aged and the infirmed, except
where there are believers in Jesus Christ who live up to their faith. We should
have no illusions about the price that we Catholics have to pay to re-Christianize
a widely de-Christianized society. So many forces are at work in the world
to separate and divide the family in the name of individuality. The exaltation
of individuality is camouflaged as personality.
Only a deep faith in Jesus Christ and trust in his power can make the humanly
impossible divinely possible with the help of his grace. Selfishness, as the
saints tell us, is cunning.
It pushes and insinuates itself into everything, while making us believe it
is not there at all. This is the root cause of sexual suicide and its consequent
break down of family life in so many materially over-developed countries in
our day. Only the God who became a child and lived on earth as a member of
a family could have inspired the selfless love that brought the Christian family
into being. This same Jesus, we are confident, will reform the Christian family
where it has weakened and even bring it back, where need be.
After all, has that not been the story ever since Good Friday
and Easter Sunday? The Church, we may say, has died many times and risen again
for the best of reasons. Her founder is God, who was crucified and rose from
the dead. The future of the Christian family is most promising, but only
for those who really believe that Christianity is the religion of civilization.
Copyright © 1998 Inter Mirifica