…and I don’t mean the California-based greaseburger chain, either. Apparently, we Westerners aren’t doing enough bonking, and according to the New York Post, this means The End Of Civilization As We Know It.
This should be a golden age for sex — if not the swinging-from-the-chandelier kind, then at least the regular, reliable fun type. The economy is booming, and America, and the world, are safer than ever. Young people can find willing mates just by swiping on their phones.
It’s a cushy, luxurious time. So why aren’t we naked and rolling around in bed to celebrate?
As always, I’m going to start off by asking the usual questions: how do we know that people are having less sex — given that when asked about their sex lives, most people lie like Clintons anyway — and if we are making fewer beasts-with-two-backs, so what?
But let’s grant the writer’s hypothesis as truthful, and explore the issue.
The the Usual Suspects can be trotted out: Internet porn, Netflix, Tinder, Fecesbook followings, constant checking of phones et cetera, et cetera, et cetera. In other words, Westerners are finding things to do with their spare time other than to have sex. There may be some truth to all of this: Chinese peasants seem to have no problem procreating (within State-mandated limits, of course), nor do Nigerian tribesmen or Indian farmers. In fact, go to any Third World area where there is no electricity and people are breeding like rabbits. But as the article later suggests, it’s not all about reproduction:
A sexless society is a dying one, and not only for the obvious reason that sex produces babies to replenish the population.
Sex serves as a bonding agent between people in relationships, and when they stop having it, or have it a lot less, that affects the kind of connections they are forming. That loss of intimacy is a big problem.
Here’s my theory about all this. It’s not one thing that’s causing this problem, it’s a multitude of things, and the arrival of mass entertainment as explained above is just one of them.
The danger to (Western) civilization is not a lack of shagging, but said civilization’s decades-long undermining by academia and other counter-culture hippies. This is coupled with the wholesale immigration of hordes of people who (if the population growth stats are to be believed) do not have a no-bonking issue — rather, the reverse — but who have few if any ties to said Western civilization. So the culture is being undermined, and replaced with one that is more, shall we say, primitive. (Go on: challenge that statement: I dare you.) In a hundred years’ time, when all vestiges of Anglo-Saxon / Judeo-Christian culture have disappeared and the United States looks and behaves more like, well, Central America, there will be no articles written about how sex is disappearing, I guarantee you.
As for the “sex-as-bonding” hypothesis, when we as a society have an easy-come-easy-go [sic] attitude towards relationships (including marriage, through no-fault divorce), commitment does not and cannot take place with only sex as the bonding agent. Here’s where I can easily point a finger at today’s hook-up culture, made all the easier by applications such as Tinder; if sex is seen as pure recreation long before a couple is married, its value as a bonding agent has been irreparably undermined.
Another problem: find me a young married couple today (not living on a farm) where only one of the couple is working. I’ll save you the trouble: you won’t. The plain fact is that even without the feministical Career-Girl Have-It-All-Baby influence, it is no longer easy, or even possible, to have a single wage-earner support a family — and I’m not talking about wealthy Wall Street financiers’ families (who typically don’t have large families anyway); I’m talking about ordinary folk, to whom having more than one or two children means financial catastrophe unless both partners are working (and sometimes, even then). When both partners are working their asses off, and have easy access to entertainment through their cell phones, it’s no great leap to understand why sex takes a back seat. Add to that the fact that when a couple does finally have young children and / or babies, sex falls off a cliff, as any fule kno.
Let’s also address the other great issue: people aren’t going to want to procreate (which is the primal instinct which drives the desire for sex) when the future is unknown, or uncertain. I defy you again to find me any group of young people who have not experienced a layoff, or a company shutting down or being merged out of existence, or having a career suddenly disappear when their function is replaced by automation or foreign-based workers. Once again, I’ll save you the trouble: you won’t, because everyone under the age of forty has had one of the above happen to them, and probably more than once withal.
I also know that the Welfare State makes it easy for single parents to have multiple children, but I would argue that the Welfare State is not a feature of Western civilization, even though that’s where it’s most often found. (Imagine, for example, the Founding Fathers seeing some modern urban ghetto, and their likely reaction upon learning how that lifestyle is subsidized, and you’ll get my point.)
I have no solution to this because as far as I can see, there is none. At best, if a solution does exist, it’s going to be a.) incredibly difficult and time-consuming to implement, and b.) so unpopular (for a variety of reasons) that its chances of success are infinitesimally small.
I have no idea, for example, how to lower the cost of living to, say, 1950s-era levels where a family of four can live in a reasonably-modest dwelling, own one or two inexpensive cars, have enough to eat, and afford to give the kids a decent education — all on one salary, at a stable place of employment. In order to get there, we’d have to make drastic changes to our national way of life, changes that I’m pretty sure that nobody would want to make. I also have no clue how to instill the values of long-term commitment (from, say the early 1900s) into a generation which would resist that change mightily. Those kinds of changes might make common sense if the goal were to improve our current society’s laissez-faire / “whatever” attitude to, well, just about everything, but I just don’t see the Me-me-me Generation wanting to turn back the clock. Good grief, most of them can’t tell time on a dial clock anyway, so what are the chances?
But should we somehow reach that state, I can guarantee that everyone would be having sex, and a lot of it.
The generation which produced the Baby Boom is all the historical evidence I need.