The Gospel and the Gender Wars
Lewis Grizzard, the famous Atlanta newspaper columnist, wrote frequently of his ill-fated marriages, divorces, and remarriages. Eventually, he said he was going to give up on marriage altogether, that there wouldn’t be another Mrs. Grizzard. “I’m just going to find a woman who hates me and buy her a house,” he quipped. Grizzard’s lament elicited laughter, despite the obvious tragedy of his relational life, because it rang true to an American culture increasingly rife with gender wars. The universal tensions between men and women sometimes show up in their most innocuous form in jokes from women about men who fail to clean up after themselves around the house, or from men about women who can’t remember to keep their cell phones turned on. But the gender tensions run into much darker territory.
The divorce culture around us is the most obvious sign of men and women in conflict with one another, as marriages are ripped asunder and the custody of children fought over in law courts in virtually every major city on the planet. Even beyond that, many reverberations of the sexual revolution are built on self-protecting mechanisms for men and women who, at best, don’t trust one another and, at worst, want to exploit one another. Divorce courts and abortion clinics, porn sites and chick flicks— these all reveal men and women who, far from merging into some sort of unisex utopia, find it impossible to give themselves fully to the other.
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