Take a Chance, It's Worth It?

You've probably noticed the new, eye-catching red posters popping up all over campus just in time for Valentine's Day. The ones with speech bubbles encouraging us to #takeachance on a person who asks you out on a date, because "people are worth it." You may have wondered which student club was responsible for these and what they're all about. So did I. In my four years here, I'd never heard of the Love & Fidelity Network until yesterday, when a friend (let's call her Angie) sent a picture of one of these posters to a group chat. Several others added pictures of the different posters from the campaign. See the full collection below.

In all but one of these posters, a guy is asking a girl out, as if that's the only way relationships begin. This traditional (outdated) point of view is problematic for a few reasons. Angie pointed out that this campaign is "patronizing and it makes problematic assumptions about sexual orientation, gender roles, consent, and autonomy." Another friend pointed out that Notre Dame is a Catholic institution, and as such probably won't ever be willing to genuinely address issues of sexual orientation or gender roles. My experience here leads me to agree with her, but that's another article for another time. These posters prompted me to do a quick Google search on the Love & Fidelity Network, to see what exactly their goal is. Their mission, according to their website, is as follows:

The Love and Fidelity Network believes that the flourishing of society depends on healthy family lives and stable marriages to provide the next generation with sound moral instruction and character development.  Furthermore, we believe that stable marriages and families, and the moral character they cultivate, are best supported by a commitment to the integrity of sex and to the healthy sexual attitudes and behaviors that honor that integrity.

These values are often either forgotten or attacked at today’s universities, where casual, “anything goes” attitudes about sexuality and relationships reign.  It is crucial that young men and women in college – our next generation of parents and leaders – learn the realities of the sexual culture around them and how they can embrace a healthier and more responsible way of living out their sexuality and preparing for their own future marriages and families.

Nice and fluffy, but let's go a little deeper, shall we? This is from their FAQ page:

What are the consequences of redefining marriage?

Redefining marriage hurts children. Research shows how children suffer from the absence of a mother or father, whether from unwed childbearing or divorce. Mothers and fathers have important and distinct roles to play in their children’s lives. Redefining marriage renders either the mother or the father as disposable, and shifts attention away from the child’s wellbeing, favoring the emotions of adults over the needs of children. Redefining marriage also has two significant consequences. As children suffer from a weakening marriage culture, welfare programs will grow and government will intervene more in families. Redefining marriage also jeopardizes the religious liberty of those individuals, businesses, and programs that hold more traditional views on the family.

Needless to say, YIKES. I continued my research and found that while the Love & Fidelity Network isn't a recognized club on campus, SCOP (Students for Child-Oriented Policy) is, and they're the ones plastering this nonsense around. You may know them for their anti-porn week.

And that's not all!

Marriage as a capstone vs marriage as a foundation: Today, marriage is often postponed for the sake of other priorities such as higher education, professional advancement, and economic stability. There is the belief that it is irresponsible to “marry young” and risk distracting oneself from other important goals.... Biological clock: It can be hard to hear, but time is not on women’s side with the delayed age of marriage. One’s twenties remain the ideal biological time for having children, and since children do best when raised by their married mother and father, one could argue that the twenties remain the ideal age for marriage as well. Reproductive technologies and family planning programs exist to help couples (young and old) achieve pregnancy, but many are expensive or go against the consciences and beliefs of men and women. Those whose life goals include getting married and having children would do best to get serious about marriage sooner rather than later.

So, this Valentine's Day, not only should you go on a date with anyone who asks (as long as they're of the opposite gender, of course), but you also should keep in mind the fact that your ovaries are quickly deteriorating! Since I've only got 8 years left to make shit happen, I guess I'd better #takeachance and go on that date tomorrow. After all, a girl's gotta eat!


Sources: 1, 2

Images: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6