Cultural Marxism: ‘Love Wins’ vs. Human Nature

The article I’ve excerpted here could have been just as easily filed under the Information War section, in that — if more Americans were to hear the arguments put forth in this piece by Ralph Hancock, well, there would certainly be a lot less ignorance out there. He makes so many good points — and fair use prevents me from excerpting too many of them. I highly recommend that everyone read through Hancock’s entire article.

A couple more notes. I’ve altered the title of the piece so it will show up on this page. Hancock does not use the phrase Cultural Marxism but he does touch on the concept — and the last excerpt only introduces his discussion of the Karl Marx-like view of human nature that dominate the cultural leftwing today. Lastly, I’ve bolded only a few sentences — it would’ve been very easy to highlight many more.

Public Discourse, a publication worth subscribing to, gives an introductory sentence or two before their articles, and here was the one for Hancock’s post:

There remain two views on the question of marriage, but they keep talking past each other. One holds that “love wins”—so one shouldn’t stand in the way of love. The other respects the anthropological truth about marriage.

Three excerpts:

For many of us who defend what I will call the anthropological view of marriage, the most troubling feature of the reigning confusion is the fact that so many friends and loved ones not only disagree with us, but find it impossible that any intelligent person—in this day and age, at least—would object to granting the “right” to “marry” to two people who “love” each other. Opposition must be rooted in irrational animus, and so a slogan has emerged: “Love wins.” What could be wrong with that?

The anthropological and the love-wins views talk past each other because one side is interested in human nature and its implications, in permanent features of the human condition as taught by both reason and revelation, and the other side—well, not so much.

* * * * *

[T]he slogan “Love wins” bespeaks a definite triumphalism, rooted in the conviction that the opposing view has always been baseless. “Love wins”—that’s all there is to it. No nice and reasonable person would stand against “love.” Why oppose “progress,” unless you’re motivated by “bigotry”?

* * * * *

In order to identify Christian charity with the “all you need is love” mentality, one’s warm emotions must be impeded neither by definite, non-negotiable religious covenant nor by belief in a permanent human nature. But from the anthropological point of view, to show love to a person requires respecting that person as he or she is. The content of love depends on truths of revelation and nature.

As with the love-wins view, this has implications for the citizen as well as the lover. For the anthropological view, love is not just about romance, nor is it about affirming others’ desires. It might require telling the loved one something he or she doesn’t want to hear—about consequences, or about repentance, for example.

* * * * *

The love-wins view cannot even see the point of this authority, because it does not believe we need to pay any attention to “the laws of nature and Nature’s God.” We no longer need a guiding political philosophy or theology, for these concern only supposed permanent features of the human condition with their limits, constraints, and consequences.

There have been very learned and acute (if not wise) thinkers who argued that humanity’s natural limits could be overcome. Karl Marx envisioned a world beyond morality and politics that would combine absolute individual freedom with the perfect satisfaction of collective humanity. […] For Marx, [John Stuart] Mill and [John] Dewey, “human nature” was a fiction created by human history, and now human history can dispose of this fiction. We humans are masters of nature.

Our progressive believers in “love” are disciples of Marx and Mill and Dewey, whether they know it or not. They don’t need to know it because, living in a world in which the burdens of law and morality have become so light, it seems obvious that we can just do without them.

This article is worth reading more than once, and occasionally revisiting, like so many excellent articles are that sum up critical the things that everyone should have learned in school but few do.

Not surprisingly, the author, Ralph Hancock teaches political philosophy. You can find the article at the Public Discourse website under this title: Talking Past Each Other: “Love Wins” vs. Human Nature.

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