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The Very Unfunny Truth Bill Cosby has Taught Us

Bill-Cosby

Published at The Stream

It seems very likely that Bill Cosby is not the kind of man we thought he was. While he hasn’t been convicted of a crime, and perhaps never will be, there is a growing mountain of accusations, and now sworn court testimony, that reveal a pattern of grave and disgusting abuses on his part against women.

More than anything, this makes me very sad. I have been a Cosby fan for decades. I’ll say it — I love Bill Cosby. At least the public, creative Bill Cosby I’ve known all my life.

As a kid, I remember marveling to myself that Cosby made me laugh and care so much about some cartoon kid named Fat Albert.

I still remember the commercials he made for Jell-O Pudding Pops. The pudding pops were yummy, but Cosby’s charming antics made them just plain awesome. It was the treat to have back then.

I can’t count how many times I listened to his Noah’s Ark routine. We had the LP version (yep, a record player!), and my entire family would stop whatever else they were doing when they heard it playing, and come sit down and laugh. We’d laugh, and laugh, and cry, and hold our aching stomachs, and howl with delight. It was the funniest thing I’d ever heard. In fact, it still is.

Even without the benefit of seeing his hilarious facial expressions, we enjoyed cheek-hurting laughter time and time again. “Noah!” “How long can you tread water? Hahahaha!”

And his parenting routines? Classic. I still remember the one about him feeding his kids chocolate cake for breakfast, patting himself on the back for his ingenious insight: Eggs! And milk! In the chocolate cake!

Not until I became a mother did I fully appreciate the wisdom and accuracy of his repertoire of parenting jokes. Remember when he and his wife brought home their first child, a daughter, and they marveled at the adorable little poopy diapers she made? “Then one day, God put odor in the poo-poo…” It’s true!

And who can forget Little Tiny Hairs? Simply hilarious.

Cosby’s humor was unique and rare even 40 years ago. It’s practically unheard of today. It was classy, intelligent, clever, truly creative, and clean. He didn’t rely on profanity or R-rated (or worse), crass, derogatory, or sexually explicit material.

He was incredibly funny without ever assaulting my ears or my innocence.

And yes, I know how very ironic that statement is now. That’s why it makes me so very sad. A brilliant and happy legacy is now forever tarnished and left in ruins. A man with rare talent, beloved by so many for so many years, now will be remembered as a lecher and possibly a rapist.

I wish it weren’t so because I would have loved to share Cosby’s humor with my own children. Mostly, I wish it weren’t so because my heart aches for the women he has hurt, especially his wife. It seems clear that if nothing else, he’s guilty of serial adultery.

We are in dire need of learning the lesson his wreckage has to teach us about ourselves and our self-indulgent, debauched culture.

He was a master on the comedy stage; a slave to his own passions in real life, and those passions weren’t impressed by his accomplishments or his fame. They just took him down.

It may be unfashionable these days to speak of virtue, and positively appalling to speak of chastity, but such are precisely the remedies that would have saved Cosby’s life and legacy. They’ll save us, too, if we’re smart.

It’s a simple as this: work continually toward self-mastery and be happy, or live as a slave to destructive passions and be miserable and hurt other people. That truth runs completely counter to the directive of our culture, but with such a stunning exhibit of the culture’s handiwork, let’s have a good look at it, shall we?

What’s the key to self-mastery? Virtue.

“Human virtues are firm attitudes, stable dispositions, habitual perfections of intellect and will that govern our actions, order our passions, and guide our conduct according to reason and faith. They make possible ease, self-mastery, and joy in leading a morally good life. The virtuous man is he who freely practices the good. The moral virtues are acquired by human effort. They are the fruit and seed of morally good acts; they dispose all the powers of the human being for communion with divine love.” (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1804)

Which virtue in particular will help us learn self-mastery? Chastity.

“Chastity includes an apprenticeship in self-mastery which is a training in human freedom. The alternative is clear: either man governs his passions and finds peace, or he lets himself be dominated by them and becomes unhappy. “Man’s dignity therefore requires him to act out of conscious and free choice, as moved and drawn in a personal way from within, and not by blind impulses in himself or by mere external constraint. Man gains such dignity when, ridding himself of all slavery to the passions, he presses forward to his goal by freely choosing what is good and, by his diligence and skill, effectively secures for himself the means suited to this end.” (CCC 2339)

“The virtue of chastity comes under the cardinal virtue of temperance, which seeks to permeate the passions and appetites of the senses with reason.” (CCC 2341)
“Self-mastery is a long and exacting work. One can never consider it acquired once and for all. It presupposes renewed effort at all stages of life.” (CCC 2342)

It’s a terrible shame that Bill Cosby’s remarkable genius was sullied by destructive passions. But the point is, the potential for such disaster is not outside our doors, not just out there in the fallen world, but within our own selves. No one is immune to temptation or struggle in this life.

Still, each one of us is charged with the task of mastering those passions which will otherwise destroy us and those around us. The good news is that we’ve been given the means to do it. Pray for supernatural strength and practice virtue, particularly chastity, every day. Flee from the devil, resist temptation, and if you fail, don’t give up the long and exacting work of self-mastery. Start again. Exercise freedom properly, and choose what is good and honorable. We each have everything to gain if we do, and everything to lose if we don’t.

 
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Posted by on July 8, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

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Ashley Judd Video Mocks Abortion, Rick Santorum: Women of Virtue Need to Raise the Standard

at Catholic Online


The juvenile and malicious video featuring Ashley Judd on the FunnyorDie website (“Rick Santorum Aborts Presidential Campaign”) immediately brought to mind my favorite quote from Archbishop Fulton Sheen:

“To a great extent the level of any civilization is the level of its womanhood. When a man loves a woman, he has to become worthy of her. The higher her virtue, the more her character, the more devoted she is to truth, justice, goodness, the more a man has to aspire to be worthy of her. The history of civilization could actually be written in terms of the level of its women.”

O, how the lovely have fallen, and what a grotesque crop they’ve sown. Indeed, what passes for womanhood in our society today is nothing but a cheap, crass knock-off of the original; a crude and sloppy hack painting being sold as the masterpiece. The modern-day “feminist” woman foolishly champions faithlessness, promiscuity, contraception, and abortion and she degrades herself in the process. This latest evidence of just how far women have sunk is not only sad, but alarming.

The stars of the “choice” universe have gone way, way beyond their worn-out euphemisms and are now embracing shameless mockery. Ashley Judd and crew have made themselves a little video (how clever and funny they are!) that mocks the act of killing babies in the womb. They mock the violence of stopping the heartbeat of a child. Ha ha ha ha!! What a hilarious analogy they’ve drawn by comparing an abortion to Rick Santorum’s suspended Presidential campaign, if you’re someone who finds dead babies and wounded mothers hilarious. Apparently they do.

Babies are meaningless, doncha know. What matters is insulting and smearing the name of a faithful husband and father who happens to believe that every human life is sacred and deserving of protection. He’s a man, and worse, a conservative, Catholic man; therefore, he has no right to any opinion or belief about the legalized baby killing we call “reproductive freedom.” In fact, men have no say whatsoever unless they’re going to pipe up in favor of exterminating babies.

So this is what we’ve come to? This is the present and future of “feminism” in America? Women openly mocking the deaths of their own children; deaths fought long and hard for; deaths campaigned and paid for; deaths celebrated as “freedom” and “rights” for women? I’d say that’s officially the bottom, folks. There’s nowhere lower to sink. That’s as pathetic and wicked as it gets.

So now that we’ve seen the bottom, it’s time to work our way up. Women own this mess, and we must be the ones to correct it, through the mercy and power of God. We have a vile legacy behind us. It’s rooted deeply in the psyche and hearts of our entire culture. Women opened the door and welcomed the enemy inside because he called himself freedom and “choice” and we were stupid and selfish enough to believe it. Now the equilibrium of our society will never, ever be restored until women get serious about raising the level of womanhood in our culture again.

Not only are men the enemy, but children are commodities now. We manufacture them, buy them, sell them, store them in freezers, discard them if we don’t want them, and donate them for scientific study. We do all this because in our minds we own them. They are not persons to us, but property. They are merely “potential” that only will be realized if we so choose. Forget God – we hold the power of life and death in our hands now.

Our children are slaves to our wishes, and when they inconvenience us or disrupt our plans, we kill them and congratulate ourselves for our prudence. Perhaps we go on and on about how difficult the “choice” was for us, but ultimately, we kill them anyway because it was “the right thing to do.”

Yes, oh yes, nobody does delusion better than modern women. Mourning abortion is forbidden; denouncing or avoiding abortion is a betrayal of the collective; abortion “only when absolutely necessary” is wimpy and embarrassing; celebrating abortion, finding humor in abortion, adoring abortion – now that’s what “feminists” do these days! Look how far we’ve come! We don’t need to question or agonize over the “choice” to kill our babies – it’s a good thing. God help us.

I just recently saw the movie “Courageous” and that powerful final scene is still stuck in my head. As Adam Mitchell asked the men in his church that morning, I have to ask a similar question:

Where are you, women of virtue?

Where are the women who will not declare war on their own bodies? Where are the women who will not execute their own babies? Where are the women who will not throw away their purity? Where are the women who will not settle for men who abandon them? Where are the women who will exemplify the unique strengths of femininity, rather than remaking themselves into men?

Where are the women who will confront the lie that says women don’t need men? Where are the women who will model chastity, grace, gentleness, modesty, humility, self-control, and love?

Who will teach our daughters that they are more than a sexy body? Who will teach our daughters that their worth is not in their pretty face? Who will teach our daughters that happiness is not found in promiscuous sex? Who will teach our daughters that purity is not a restrictive idea from the past, but the shield that protects them and provides for their future?

I will.

Who will teach our daughters that a real man treasures a woman, gives his life for her, never violates her dignity, keeps his promises, is honorable in all his actions, and a man other than this is not worthy of her?
Who will teach our daughters that motherhood is not an oppressive burden, but a holy and rewarding vocation?
Who will teach our daughters that the child in the womb is not a parasite or an intruder but a human being whom no one has the “right” to kill?

I will.

Who will show our daughters the strength and blessing found in obeying God’s laws? By God’s grace, I will.
Who will live in stark contrast to the culture that says sex is power, men are the enemy, abortion is freedom, and purity is antiquated nonsense? By God’s grace, I will.

Who will teach them not to despise their virginity? Who will teach them that sex does not equal love? Who will teach them that beauty is fleeting and charm deceptive, but a woman who fears the Lord will be praised? By God’s grace, I will.

Who will teach them to guard their hearts by using their heads? I will.
Who will teach them how to say “No” to momentary pleasure and “Yes” to wisdom and self-control? I will.
Who will teach them that even the best career will never surpass the significance of the vocation of motherhood? I will.

Who will show them what a balanced and harmonious partnership with a man looks like? I will.
Who will teach them to recognize and respect the differences between men and women? I will.
Who will show them the joy and fulfillment of giving themselves completely in marriage to one man? I will.
Who will tell them that freedom is found only on a narrow road and only in self-giving, not self-seeking? I will.

What about you?

Where are you, women of virtue? I know you’re out there, but you’ve got to come out of the shadows. You’ve got to stop being embarrassed by virtue, no matter who laughs or scoffs. You can’t wait for other women to lead the way. You’ve got to be louder than the voices that mock the ongoing massacre of babies in the name of “freedom.” You’ve got to be courageous enough to live a counter-cultural womanhood that testifies to Life.

The history of our civilization is being written right now by women. The abortion zealots have written too many chapters in violence and death.  It’s time for women of virtue to start rewriting the story.

 
7 Comments

Posted by on April 27, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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