The media are all in an uproar about the scandals surrounding the case of Jeffrey Epstein, the New York financier charged with sex trafficking and conspiracy. His alleged crimes rival those attributed to disgraced Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein. The case appears to confirm the suspicions of feminists everywhere that the #MeToo era is far from over.
The scandal reportedly involves dozens of women. And yet, like Mr. Weinstein before him, Mr. Epstein pleaded “not guilty” when appearing at the New York City federal court.
His plea is consistent with a mindset that recognizes no sexual mores. To his mind, he has done nothing wrong. His whole life is defined by his sexual dissoluteness. He acknowledges no rules save that of his gratification.
Those Things Deemed Consensual
The crimes of Mr. Epstein are facilitated by a culture in which the social structures that once defined standards of right and wrong have disappeared. The walls of propriety, chastity and modesty have long been breached. The bulwark of marriage that protects the union of the sexes is in shambles. The age of restraint is over; anything is allowed.
Thus, Mr. Epstein threw himself into a promiscuous lifestyle, typical of the jet-set celebrity world he frequented. He even has his own fantasy island in the Caribbean, which is supposedly the scene of some of his misadventures.
However, these immoral relationships are the backdrop, not the object of the present investigations. Indeed, countless men and women engage in similar promiscuous lifestyles like that of Mr. Epstein without a second thought. Contraception and abortion make sure there are no unintended consequences.
Relationships between the sexes have degenerated to a state in which everything is permitted as long as acts between both parties are deemed consensual.
The Natural Consequences of Unbridled Passions
Mr. Epstein’s alleged crimes involve charges that some of his relationships might not have been legally consensual. The scandals center on only those cases from the early 2000s that might have involved underage girls, below the age of consent. He violated one of the last taboos in sexual matters, which is the exploitation of minors.
However, such actions are the natural consequence of unbridled passions, which accept no restraints. Once moral laws are discarded, there is nothing to stop people from taking things to their most extreme consequences. Shallow relationships without commitments will lead to exploitation. The disappearance of propriety will naturally banish the fear of shame and disgrace. In such a society, the #MeToo abuse will never be resolved, since what governs these relationships is the brutality of the unbridled passions.
When desire is what determines the value of acts, something is only improper when forced upon someone, especially those at a disadvantage. All else is allowed.
A Drastic Contrast
The case of Mr. Epstein is a moral problem that will not be solved by criminal investigations, necessary though they may be. In today’s Epsteinized society, many more such figures lurk in the dark shadows of depravity.
A moral regeneration is the only real way to stop the #MeToo scandals from occurring. There needs to be a return to restraints and propriety that are important barriers to avoid the occasions when abuse might take place. Above all, there needs to be a return to those enduring relationships of love, affection and respect that Christianity brought to humanity.
Such attitudes are possible, although they take great courage. The case of Jeffrey Epstein contrasts drastically with that of Mississippi State Rep. Robert Foster, who is running for governor of The Magnolia State.
He recently created a minor media uproar by insisting upon a consensual relationship that enraged those who approve of every other consensual act.
When a female reporter asked to accompany him on a campaign trip which would require hours alone with her, Rep. Foster, a married man, declined. He said that he would only consent if she would bring along a male colleague to safeguard both parties from any misrepresentation or perception of impropriety.
A View Informed by Christian Faith and Marriage
Feminists should praise the attitude of Rep. Foster since it takes away all possibility of a #MeToo situation from happening. It makes virtually impossible any abuse of power. However, the female reporter denounced the move as “sexist” since it does not give a woman equal access to the candidate. Media mercilessly ridiculed Mr. Foster for his commitment to his wife.
The congressman said that his Christian faith and marriage were among the reasons for his action. Such measures reinforce a most sublime consensual agreement, that of marriage, in which each spouse consents to give oneself exclusively to the other. Rep. Foster explained:
“I’m a married man, and I made a vow to my wife, and part of the agreement that we’ve also made throughout our marriage is that we would not be alone with someone of the opposite sex throughout our marriage, and that is a vow that I have with my wife.”
Enough of a sinful society where nothing is sacred and enduring! It only gives rise to depravity, abuse, division and resentment. Real relationships based on Christian morals and propriety will provide the way to the social harmony that is so needed today.