BIG ELF IS WATCHING YOU

Have you ever been in prison?

 

been behind bars

 

 

Wait – never mind that question.

Have you heard of The Elf on the Shelf?

You probably have.

Seeing though Christmas was just last month and all.

Still, if you haven‘t or you just don‘t give a damn about Christmas, it’s this guy:

 

elf on the shelf

 

The Elf on the Shelf is not a new thing. It’s been around for awhile.

The point (or if we want to get philosophical, the telos) of the Elf on the Shelf is simple: as anyone with even a basic knowledge of the philosophy of gift giving according to Santa Claus knows, children are taught by their parents that the number and quantity of Christmas gifts necessarily depends on them behaving like “good little boys and girls”.

But every parent is also well aware of the fact that the natural disposition of children (think: Hobbes’ state of nature) makes it nearly impossible for children to behave like rational, autonomously legislating human beings at all times.

This can interfere with a child’s plans for ultimate Christmas morning gift getting.

 

THE INEVITABLE GIFT FOR EVERY CHILD WHO PREFERS HEDONISM OVER KANT

THE INEVITABLE GIFT FOR EVERY CHILD WHO PREFERS HEDONISM OVER KANT

 

 

So, if a parent wants their child to receive gifts from St. Nick, a parent has to guarantee that their precious bundle of joy remains a good boy or girl, even when there is no threat of physical punishment.

 

 HOW GOOD ARE WE IF OUR COMPLIANCE IS COERCED, ANYWAY?

HOW GOOD ARE WE IF OUR COMPLIANCE IS COERCED, ANYWAY?

 

The threat of injury to one’s buttocks is usually enough to thwart all but the worst of bad children.

Here’s where the Elf on the Shelf comes in…..

 

believe in santa

 

 

If you haven’t noticed, it seems that Santa’s little recon-minded helper has been around much more than usual.
You can blame the crimson-clad imp’s ubiquitousness on the internet.

The problem that some folks have with the Elf on the Shelf isn’t the debate over matters of taste or even about accusations that the Elf is just another example of the over-commercialization of Christmas.

 

elf on the shelf dick in a box

 

 

That’s not a problem at all.
However, you can say that the problem with the Elf on the Shelf is something a little more, well… ominous.

The problem with the Elf on the Shelf, some say, is that the damn thing is everywhere.

A simple Google image search for “elf on the shelf” will yield you humorous (and slightly risqué) Elf on the Shelf photos like this:

 

elf on the shelf with barbies

 
elf on the shelf shave

 
elf on the shelf is bad

 

Pretty funny images, right?

Alright, I know. They’re not.

But bear with me a bit, will ya?

 

Now, there are those who think that the Elf on the Shelf is an annoying as hell harmless prank. Still, there are those that believe that the “harmless” holiday pranks associated with the Elf on the Shelf hides a deeper, sinister purpose.

 

harmless

 

 

You see, instead of associating the Elf on the Shelf with humorous images like this:

 

 

elf on the shelf spells reddum

 

We should associate the Elf on the Shelf with images like this:

 

IS THAT DR. PHIL?

IS THAT DR. PHIL?

 

Or rather, an image like this:

 

elf on the shelf big brother

 

Besides being just plain creepy, non-fans of the “harmless” Elf on the Shelf argue that the Elf’s purpose isn’t to be just a harmless Christmas prank that parents play on their children to make their children behave before the holidays.

Nope.

 

 

 

giphy

 

 

The truth about the Elf on the Shelf is the Elf a tool of the police state.

A red-suited Trojan horse of the total surveillance society.

I’m not joking about this.

 
WATCH:

 

 

 

 

 

If you couldn’t stop laughing at this latest conspiracy theory long enough to watch didn’t watch the video, the gist of the Elf on the Shelf is Big Brother theory/argument goes like this: The Elf is always watching. It gets children used to the idea of being under constant surveillance. Because the parent moves the elf to various locations to keep the child off guard, the child doesn’t know when the elf is watching, so a child will act as if the elf is always watching. The child behaves in lieu of physical punishment.

The Elf’s surreptitiousness is the key to successfully modifying a child’s behavior.

 

creepy elf

 

 

 

Dr. Laura Pinto writes:

Children who participate in play with the Elf on the Shelf doll have to contend with rules at all times during the day… they must accept that the doll watches them at all times with the purpose of reporting to Santa Claus.

 

The ultimate purpose of the Elf on the Shelf is indoctrination.

Behavior modification.

 

 

elf on the shelf i'm watching you

 

Ok, I think we can all agree that the Elf on the Shelf is annoying, if not a full-blown exercise in ultimate creepiness.

 

 

elf on the shelf says children are fun toys

 

But why am I bringing this up, you say? Christmas was last year.

And what exactly does the Elf on the Shelf have to do with philosophy?

Well, would you believe that the bad idea of surreptitious surveillance of people to force- I mean, encourage good behavior was cooked up by a philosopher?

 

Oh. You would, huh?

 

LOOK CLOSELY: THIS PHILOSOPHER IS JUST ABOUT TO TELL SOME PEOPLE A BAD IDEA

LOOK CLOSELY: THIS PHILOSOPHER IS JUST ABOUT TO TELL SOME PEOPLE A BAD IDEA

 

 

The philosopher I’m talking about is Jeremy Bentham.

The idea is the panopticon.

 

DON’T BLAME THE ELF ON THE SHELF. BLAME THIS GUY

DON’T BLAME THE ELF ON THE SHELF. BLAME THIS GUY

 

 

The word panopticon was coined by the English philosopher Jeremy Bentham (1748-1832). The word is derived from the Greek words pan (all) and opticon (seeing).

Bentham’s panopticon is a building where every part of the building is visible from a central point.

Like this:

 

 

panopticon

 

 

Bentham created the panopticon with the intention of reforming the English prison system and to end unnecessary suffering (pain) of incarcerated individuals while also creating a method of fostering good behavior among the prison population.

 

Because, as Bentham reasoned, when everybody behaves, people are happier.

 

 OBVIOUSLY DENIZENS OF BENTHAM’S PANOPTICON

OBVIOUSLY DENIZENS OF BENTHAM’S PANOPTICON

 

In a panopticon prison, a single guard can watch all the inmates at one time.

But here’s the thing: humans lack the kind of God-like omnipotence required to watch all things simultaneously – it is impossible for a single human to observe all things all at once. The point of the panopticon isn’t actually to watch everyone at one time. The point is to convince the prisoners that they are always being watched. The prisoners don’t know they’re being watched or not. According to Bentham, this uncertainty will lead them to act as if they are being watched.

 

Bentham wrote:

A building circular… The prisoners in their cells, occupying the circumference – The officers in the centre. By blinds and other contrivances, the Inspectors consealed… from the observation of the prisoners: hence the sentiment of a sort of omnipresence – The whole circuit reviewable with a little, or… without any, change of place. One station in the inspection part affording the most perfect view of every cell. (Proposal for a New and Less Expensive mode of Employing and Reforming Convicts, 1798)

Bentham aimed to achieve moral reformation “all by a simple idea of architecture!”

 

Pretty nifty, eh?

IF YOU WANT TO KNOW SOMETHING REALLY CREEPY - JEREMY BENTHAM’S PRESERVED BODY IS ON DISPLAY AT UNIVERSITY COLLEGE LONDON, WHERE IT HAS BEEN ON DISPLAY SINCE 1850. ……BENTHAM DIED IN 1832.

IF YOU WANT TO KNOW SOMETHING REALLY CREEPY – JEREMY BENTHAM’S PRESERVED BODY IS ON DISPLAY AT UNIVERSITY COLLEGE LONDON, WHERE IT HAS BEEN ON DISPLAY SINCE 1850.
……BENTHAM DIED IN 1832.

 

 

The panopticon is a form of mind control.

 

Behavior modification.

Sound like anyone we know?

 

NSA on the shelf

 
So, really, there is little difference between this:

 

 

elf on the shelf with tony montana

 

And this:

 

 

LOS ANGELES’ TWIN TOWERS JAIL, LIKE MANY PRISONS WORLDWIDE, WAS DESIGNED BASED ON BENTAM’S PANOPTICON

LOS ANGELES’ TWIN TOWERS JAIL, LIKE MANY PRISONS WORLDWIDE, WAS DESIGNED BASED ON BENTAM’S PANOPTICON

 

 
The late philosopher Michel Foucault used the word panopticon as a warning of a future where people are under constant surveillance. When we think of a surveillance society, we’re used to thinking of this kind of society in terms of things like this:

 

 

surveillance camera

 

and this:

 

 

MQ-1 Predator

 

 

or this:

 

nineteen eighty-four viewscreen

 

 

The thing is, a real, society-wide panopticon won’t be anything like what Bentham or maybe even Foucault thought it would be.

 

 

THIS IS A PICTURE OF MICHEL FOUCAULT, BY THE WAY

THIS IS A PICTURE OF MICHEL FOUCAULT, BY THE WAY

 

Perhaps Bentham and Foucault are only kind of correct.

 

There’s no doubt that cameras are everywhere.

 

 

UNFORTUNATELY CAMERAS ARE EVERYWHERE

UNFORTUNATELY CAMERAS ARE EVERYWHERE

 

And there are legitimate concerns about surveillance – especially government surveillance of people not in prison.

 

But, Big Brother won’t be an Orwellian telescreen and highly unlikely we’ll be housed somewhere in one of Bentham’s circular buildings where the guards watch us all the time.

 

 

DON’T ANYONE SAY FEMA CAMP

DON’T ANYONE SAY FEMA CAMP

 

 

It seems that, in the end, the panopticon will be in the form of a harmless holiday visitor.

 

A little fella who looks like this:

 

 

elf on the shelf is watching

 

 
And you can blame a philosopher for that.

 

 

 

 

 

 
* If you’re feeling that you absolutely must read what Bentham wrote about the panopticon, click on this link.
http://oll.libertyfund.org/titles/1925

 

* And if you’re in the mood to be extra creeped out, here’s some info on Bentham’s body.
ENJOY!
http://www.slate.com/blogs/atlas_obscura/2013/10/23/jeremy_bentham_died_in_1850_but_he_s_still_sitting_in_a_hallway_at_this.html

 

 

 

Sources:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/12/18/elf-on-the-shelf-foucault_n_6343674.html

 

Descartes Would Have Done the Maury Povich Show (Metaphysics vs. METAPHYSICS)

I finally figured out something.

After many years of soul searching and asking other people, I finally figured out why philosophy isn’t popular. Why no one ever mentions the name Immanuel Kant or says the words “virtue ethics”, even when the conversation is about deontology or virtue ethics.

Or why contemporary philosophers like Peter Singer and Slavoj Žižek are relegated to occasional appearances on NPR.

Or why Cornel West is identified as a social critic and not a philosopher. And why, when anyone discusses matters of religion, they turn to guys like Rick Warren and not to philosophers like Peter van Inwagen.

There’s a reason why the only metaphysics ever spoken about is ghost hunting and talking to the dead.

That kind of metaphysics gets its own TV show.

 

 

paranormal TV show

 

 

What I discovered is this: nobody talks to philosophers or talks philosophy because nobody likes philosophy.

It’s all pie-in-the-sky navel gazing and talking about nothing.

 

 

IF YOU SAY YOU'RE INTO PHILOSOPHY CHANCES ARE PEOPLE WILL THINK YOU'RE TALKING ABOUT SKIN CARE PRODUCTS.

IF YOU SAY YOU’RE INTO PHILOSOPHY CHANCES ARE PEOPLE WILL THINK YOU’RE TALKING ABOUT SKIN CARE PRODUCTS.

 

 

More people follow the life philosophy and ethics of Donald Trump than they follow the life philosophy and ethics of Aristotle.

That’s why this metaphysician

 

james van praagh

 

 

Sells more books than this metaphysician

 

peter van inwagen

 

 

If you told the average person you’re into metaphysics, it’s more likely that they’d think you’re into Sylvia Browne or that you’ve mastered The Secret. There’s a real problem for your field of interest when you mention the word “philosophy” and people think you’re talking about the Laws of Attraction.

If I had to put money on it, I’d bet the reason why small “m” metaphysics is more popular than capital “M” metaphysics (that is, philosophical metaphysics) has to do with the fact that when you practice small m metaphysics, you’re supposed to get things.

Practitioners of The Secret call these things “abundance”.

Mike Dooley, who is featured in The Secret, says “Thoughts become things”. According to Dooley, it’s not just that what we think influences how we perceive reality, what we think actually affects the world around us. That is to say, our thoughts can become real things in the real world. We can actualize our desires for a good job, a good home, stable, and substantive relationships with our significant others. And, we can manifest abundance.

That means lots of money.

You see, if you practice small “m” metaphysics, it can make you very rich.

I wouldn’t claim that Rhonda Byrne is infinitely more knowledgeable than Socrates or Immanuel Kant, or that James van Praagh’s Talking to Heaven is a better philosophical guide than Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics. it’s just that subscribing to one philosophy is potentially more financial rewarding than the other.

It’s as simple as that.

Think of it: small “m” metaphysics tells us that we can attract things like money and happiness simply by thinking about it. On the other hand, Aristotle’s brand of happiness, eudemonia, or “flourishing”, doesn’t even require that a person be emotionally happy.

According to Aristotle, even a dead man can be happy.

In fact, according to John Stuart Mill, we should prefer to be a dissatisfied Socrates than want to be a satisfied pig.

If how our lives end is any indication of how fulfilling one’s life is (financially or otherwise), one can make an argument that being a philosopher positively sucks.

  • Socrates was condemned to death and forced to drink hemlock.
  • Isocrates starved to death.
  • Hypatia was killed by a mob of Christians.
  • Seneca was ordered to cut his own throat.
  • Descartes died from the common cold.
  • Richard Montague was beaten to death.
  • Jacques Derrida died of pancreatic cancer.
  • Leibniz died of arthritis and gout (I had no idea either one of those conditions was fatal)
  • Camus died in a car accident.
  • Foucault died from complications from AIDS.

…. It’s been rumored that Nietzsche died of syphilis.

I’d bet that none of those philosophers were blessed with “abundance”, either.

Deepak Chopra is worth an estimated 80 million dollars.

And, unlike Descartes, Deepak Chopra was on the Oprah Winfrey Show.

 

 

 
Sources:
http://www.celebritynetworth.com/richest-celebrities/deepak-chopra-net-worth

What’s the Philosophically Correct Thing for A Philosopher to Say About Jesus On His Birthday?

 

byzantine jesus It’s Christmas Eve and approximately 2.1 billion of the inhabitants of the planet earth will be celebrating the birth of their Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

I am not one of them.

Still, I think I should probably say something about philosophy and Christmas.

A few years ago, President George W. Bush said that his favorite philosopher is Jesus. Some reporter asked who his favorite philosopher is and he answered the question. I’m not a fan of the former president but I appreciated that he answered the question honestly.

I remember there was some to-do about what the president said.

Stuff like he shouldn’t have named a religious figure

And that Jesus wasn’t a philosopher.

Sure Jesus was.

How is “Blessed are they who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied” not philosophical?

You see, even though I’m an atheist (actually I’m an apatheist, but who’s being technical?) I’m not one of those atheist types who gets all furious-faced and bent out of shape any time someone mentions Jesus Christ, Christianity, or Christmas. I’m not offended when someone tells me “Merry Christmas”. I’m not all that bothered by Nativity displays in public places. And I think it’s entirely appropriate to mention that Jesus is the “reason for the season”.

That’s because he is, you know.

Despite my beliefs this is not how I spend Christmas

Despite my beliefs this is not how I spend Christmas

It’s no secret that philosophers are notoriously atheistic. There are plenty of non-believing-in-the-existence-of-an-all-powerful-creator philosophers to choose from. A.J. Ayer, Colin McGinn, Julian Baginni, Rudolf Carnap, Jean-Paul Sartre, Michel Foucault, Michael Martin, John Searle, Simone de Beauvoir, Friedrich Nietzsche, Arthur Schopenhauer, Albert Camus, J.L. Mackie, Bernard Williams, David Chalmers, Noam Chomsky, Daniel Dennett, Baron d’Holbach, Bertrand Russell, Ayn Rand, Kai Nielsen, James Rachels, George Santayana – Just to name a few.

All philosophers. All atheists.

The belief about philosophers and God goes that philosophers are all about reason and logical arguments, and that most philosophers believe that believing in a great, big God up in the sky that no one actually sees or hears isn’t exactly reasonable or logical.

Even when we name philosophers who do believe in God no one really ever mentions
Jesus.

All Descartes wanted to do is prove that God exists. I don’t recall him saying anything about Jesus – at least not anything about his philosophy.

I actually think Jesus is a philosopher. And a pretty good one at that.

Need I remind you, I don’t believe in God and I’m willing to admit this.

I think this is actually a picture of Barry Gibb. Maybe Harrison Ford with a beard.

I think this is actually a picture of Barry Gibb. Maybe Harrison Ford with a beard.

I know that some believers out there might take the fact that I’ve considered Jesus a philosopher at all as a sign that my sensus divinitatis is working, which, of course, means that Plantinga is right.

That is exactly what I don’t want to admit during the holidays.

But I really do think that Jesus is a pretty good philosopher.

Now wait, my atheist friends – I’m not talking about Christianity. I’m not advocating following the word of Jesus as a religion or even that anyone should praise, worship, or follow the words of Jesus at all (although if you want to, the Bible makes it pretty easy to do, since everything he said is written in red).

So what makes Jesus a philosopher, you ask?

I know this may be weird for all of you atheist philosophers out there, but if we think of what philosophers do; that philosophers think, write, and, well, philosophize about matters concerning ethics, metaphysics, and epistemology, there’s no reason (other than personal bias) to exclude Jesus from the ranks of philosophers.

And don’t say Jesus isn’t a philosopher because he didn’t write anything down.

Neither did Socrates.

If you’re still not convinced, let me give you a sample of what I’m talking about:

Jesus the ethicist:

A good person produces good deeds from a good heart, and an evil person produces evil deeds from an evil heart. Whatever is in your heart determines what you say (Luke 6:45)

Love your neighbor as yourself (Mark 12:31)

Love your enemies. Do good to those who hurt you. Pray for happiness of those who curse you. Pray for those who hurt you. (Luke 6:27-28)

Jesus the metaphysician:

With God all things are possible (Matthew 19:26)

God is a spirit… (John 4:24)

I am the way and the truth and the life. (John 16:6)

Jesus the epistemologist:

Your father knows exactly what you need even before you ask him. (Matthew 6:8)

It’s fairly obvious that Jesus was (or is it is?) a philosopher. But here’s the cool thing: if you follow Jesus, you will be rewarded with an eternity in Heaven.

Can Saul Kripke promise you that?

Jesus looks a little like Kris Kristopherson in this picture, don’t you think?

Jesus looks a little like Kris Kristopherson in this picture, don’t you think? …Or Alan Rickman…

Getting into Heaven is awesome enough to persuade anyone (unless you’re Richard Dawkins or Daniel Dennett) to give a philosophical read of Jesus a try. But when you read the philosophy of Jesus it’s really no wonder that Jesus’ philosophy, even 2500 years after his birth, is more popular than any other philosopher.

That’s probably because unlike most professional philosophers, when you read Jesus’ philosophy you can actually understand it. And it’s a cinch to follow.

That’s two things no one will never say about Immanuel Kant.

It’s no surprise that this philosopher…
sunday school jesus

is more popular than this philosopher

and this philosopher writes about Jesus.

and this philosopher writes about Jesus.

And that’s the way it should be, isn’t it?

 

I think only me and President Bush would agree to that.

So, from this hell-bound atheist to my fellow philosophers and citizens of planet earth, I wish you a MERRY CHRISTMAS!

ENJOY A LITTLE CHRISTMAS MUSIC

 

NOTE:
My list of atheist philosophers may include an agnostic or two. As I recall Sir Bertrand Russell was an agnostic, not an atheist.

Same-sex Chickens

If you ask me, I think people are entirely too focused on sex.

Philosophers are no exception. There’s an entire field of philosophy devoted to the study of human sexuality: it’s called philosophy of sexuality.  Philosophers of sexuality explore topics such as contraception, celibacy, marriage, adultery, casual sex, prostitution, homosexuality, masturbation, rape, sexual harassment, sadomasochism, pornography, bestiality, and pedophilia.

That’s quite a list.

Studying sexuality, philosophically or otherwise, wouldn’t be such a bad idea if not for the fact that people seem to be obsessed not with their own sex lives, but with what other people do behind closed doors.

… especially if the people those people are having sex with are the same sex.

Culturally speaking, we’re kind of hung up on homosexuals and homosexuality.

That could be because when some people think about gay people, they think of people like this:


Instead of this:


Just watch an episode of the 700 Club. You’d be smashed if you took a shot of tequila every time someone says the words “gay agenda”.

Pat Robertson wants you to buy a shitty chicken sandwich and waffle fries to prove you aren’t a part of the gay agenda

Although the term ‘homosexuality’ is fairly new (it was coined in the 19th century German psychologist, Karoly Maria Benkert), philosophers have written about the subject of sexuality and homosexuality since the ancient Greek philosophers, in works such as Plato’s Symposium and Plutarch’s Erotikos. In Plutarch’s work, “the noble lover of beauty engages in love” without regard for the gender of the lover of and the object of beauty. Contemporary philosophers have also participated in the discussion, adding to theories on human sexuality, including queer theory.

Every philosophy student knows that Plato was gay. But Plato wasn’t (or isn’t) the only well-known gay (or lesbian) philosopher. Sir Francis Bacon, Alan Turing, Ludwig Wittgenstein, Claudia Card, Michel Foucault, and Judith Butler, are well-known gay (or lesbian) philosophers (Aristotle, Socrates, Erasmus, Zeno of Elea, Niccolo Machiavelli, Immanuel Kant, Søren Kierkegaard, Voltaire, Arthur Schopenhauer, George Santayana, Simone de Beauvoir, and Henry David Thoreau are all suspected of being  gay or lesbian). It’s strange, given that gay and lesbian philosophers have been a part of philosophical thought, that philosophy hasn’t always been so gay friendly.

….Not that this is shocking, considering how the rest of the world and all of history has thought of homosexuality.

Historically, individuals accused of being gay or lesbian were regarded as socially dangerous and disruptive to the natural order. Religious and civil leaders thought homosexuality was so dangerous that sexual contact between individuals of the same gender was a crime punishable by death (or at the very least arrest and/or public humiliation).

I know I am using the word “was”. But I am well aware that in many parts of the world homosexuality (or even suspected homosexuality) is a crime punishable by torture, imprisonment, or death. Of course, when we make the claim that homosexuality is dangerous, we are assigning a moral judgment on a particular or general (set of) sexual act(s).

The judgment is that the act is either immoral, unnatural, or both.

According to St. Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274) and the biblical view on sex, sexual acts other than acts done for the purpose of procreation were not only immoral, but also unnatural, for any sexual act that did not result in procreation was an act done against the will of God.  Sex, according to Aquinas (and religion in general) is strictly male/female done only for the purpose of reproduction. One need only to look to the natural world for confirmation of naturalness of heterosexuality and the unnaturalness of homosexuality.

And since God made nature, obviously God intended to make all reproductive sex between male and female.

Aquinas says you can have all the gay sex you want… if this is how you want to spend eternity

This is totally off the topic, but the “look at what other animals do” was also used to justify treating women like inferior beings, owning slaves, and dominating other people in general.

Although Aquinas, St. Augustine (and theologians in general) argue that homosexual relations are immoral and every homosexual is doomed to an eternity of hellfire, ancient philosophers held a different point of view. In ancient Greece, homosexual acts between individuals were not only common but same-sex relations were immoral, only if the sex was between individuals of equal social stature. Citizens of ancient Greece were allowed to engage in homosexual activity, but only if one of the participants was in no danger of losing respect.

You see, the Greeks believed that in a sexual act, one person is dominant while the other is passive. To be passive would be to equate one’s self with the status of a woman, child, or slave.

The funny thing is, after the ancient Greeks, philosophers are pretty mum on the matter.

Well, not all of them.

Objectivist philosopher Ayn Rand not only considered homosexuality immoral, but also wrote in her book The New Left  (1971), that homosexuals “hideous” and wanted “special privileges” from the government (a charge Rand made against the poor as well), but that  homosexuality, which Rand regarded as contradictory to natural sex roles, was

…so repulsive a set of premises from so loathsome a sense of life that an accurate commentary would require the kind of language I do not like to see in print.

BTW:  The prevailing philosophical view on sex tends to focus on the morality of sexuality and sex acts in general rather than specific views on heterosexuality or homosexuality. For instance, the German philosopher Immanuel Kant states that sexual desire is immoral in that sexual lust inevitably leads individuals to engage in all sorts of moral naughtiness. Moral naughtiness, including consensual sex between adults, Kant argues, is disruptive to civilization. According to Kant, sex is okay only if we do not violate the Categorical Imperative. Kant writes:

The sole condition on which we are free to make use of our sexual desires depends upon the right to dispose over the person as a whole – over the welfare and happiness and generally over all the circumstances of that person…each of them undertaking to surrender the whole of their person to the other with a complete right to disposal over it.

One can only suspect that Kant would find homosexual sex extremely dangerous.

Of course the argument that homosexuality is morally (or even physically) harmful to society was made before modern science demonstrated that homosexual behavior is common not only among humans, but in many animal species as well.

Evolutionary biologists theorize that homosexuality in humans is the result of mutually beneficial behavior; that engaging in non-procreative sexual behavior contributes to the overall stability, cohesion, and well-being of society (homosexual sex, like heterosexual sex, may serve to enforce social bonds between individuals). Likewise, contemporary philosophers such as Bertrand Russell and Michel Foucault (whose theory of postsexualism aimed to go beyond the assigned sexual boundaries in our culture), argued that our moral apprehensions with any sexuality were due to fear rather than an actual societal threat. Bertrand Russell writes:

Certain forms of sex which do not lead to children are at present punished by the criminal law: this is purely superstitious, since the matter is one which affects no one except the parties directly concerned…  Moral rules ought not to be such as to make instinctive happiness impossible.

Still… as a philosopher, I’d like to think that Bertrand Russell has the power to convince each of us that there’s absolutely nothing to fear when a couple of guys (or ladies) choose to have sex. But, I know no matter how well argued any philosopher puts his argument, we won’t be getting over our obsession with the gay agenda anytime soon.


You may now take a shot.