Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Sex Robots & Brothels: Well, Why Not?

My latest FemCatholic article is a primer on sex robots.

(I know, I know, surely I have better things to do with my time than research robot brothels.)

Initially, I was curious why the Houston City Council -- the same city council that unanimously supported "the bathroom bill" three years ago -- worked so hard to keep a robot brothel out of Houston. It didn't seem like a big deal to me.

Better than an actual brothel, right? No victims, right? Maybe a deterrent from crimes against actual people?*

The try-before-you-buy sex robot showroom would set up along a row of pre-existing strip clubs in a city that, proudly and historically, doesn't care about zoning anyway.

As I considered all of this, I kept returning to the question of how Catholic sexual ethics fit into American society as a whole. On that, I'm still pondering and open to others' thoughts.

Below are several caveats that are related but not included in the article:

1) Given our current sexual abuse scandal in which Church leadership historically protected perpetrators over victims, it's difficult, especially for non-Catholics, to take Catholic teaching on sexual ethics seriously.

2) There are good people and good families who do not follow my very Catholic belie
fs about human sexuality.

3) The United States is not a theocracy (nor should it be), and personal practice of Catholic sexual ethics are best protected by a separation of church and state.

4) Catholic sexual ethics should not be legislated except in cases when one per
son's freedoms negatively affect another's free choice (i.e. human trafficking, domestic violence, pedophilia, child pornography, forced sterilization, etc.).

As a socially-traditional Catholic woman who fulfills nearly every stereotype of that identifier, it usually takes me some time and creative thinking to understand the latest sexual fads. Sex robots, unsurprisingly, were no exception.

You can read my thoughts on that over at FemCatholic.

*Links in the article respond to these questions.

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Life's Companion: A Reflection on 10 Years of Marriage

An immersive six-month course on all things marriage-household-and-family led by Christopher West himself could not have prepared us for the past 10 years.

It has been nuts.

Five homes. Five kids. Five cars (nursed through various stages of decline and death, always unexpectedly).

One giant faux leather sectional that has only fit properly in one of those five homes but that we refuse to part with because it is like a child to us.

Two dogs, one cat, an outdoor opossum, and two off-site hermit crabs.

Ten thousand family photos in which every person is smiling except one.

One year of life that we can't even remember -- just empty files in our brains. (It's probably a coincidence that it's the same year the twins were born.)

So many jobs -- I stopped counting at eleven.

One kidney stone, five ER trips, one adenoidectomy, one tonsillectomy, three myringotomies, one tympanoplasty, one laser eye surgery, one craniosynostosis repair, one kid with braces, two kids with asthma, and to date, zero stitches. KNOCK. ON. WOOD.

One pocket door installation that nearly destroyed our marriage -- but didn't -- and now makes us think we're DIY-invincible.

Four parishes, all of which were in the middle of new building fundraising campaigns.

Miraculously, one set of dishware that will apparently be with us until the end of time. 

What a life. What a life's companion. 

Excerpt from "The Jeweler's Shop"
By Karol Wojtyla 

We were just walking on the right side of the market square
when Andrew turned around and said,
”Do you want to be my life’s companion?”

That’s what he said.
He didn’t say: do you want to be my wife, but: my life’s companion. 

What he intended to say must have been thought over.
He said it looking ahead, as if afraid to read in my eyes,
and at the same time as if to signify that
in front of us was a road whose end could not be seen --
there was, or at least, could be, if I replied “Yes” to his question.