Loose women should stay in the home, where they belong

As noted back here, Lindsey Graham is about acting on principles, while Jim DeMint is about posturing on them. And now, he’s posturing on loose women. Personally, I’d rather see the loose women posturing, but we don’t always get what we want. This has The Slatest positively chortling upon reading the Spartanburg paper:

It’s almost enough to make you hope for an Alvin Greene upset: The Spartanberg Herald-Journalreports that Sen. Jim DeMint, a South Carolina Republican, recently reaffirmed his belief that certain categories of people aren’t fit for the nation’s classrooms, including gays, lesbians, and unmarried women who are living in sin. DeMint was speaking at the “Greater Freedom Rally” at First Baptist North Spartanburg when he made the remarks, which rehashed comments he first made in 2004. TheHerald-Journal characterized his statement thusly: “DeMint said if someone is openly homosexual, they shouldn’t be teaching in the classroom, and he holds the same position on an unmarried woman who’s sleeping with her boyfriend—she shouldn’t be in the classroom.” No word on what areas of public life men who sleep with their girlfriends should be barred from. Steve Benen is a little troubledby the fact that DeMint “is not just some random right-wing voice —he’s a prominent U.S. senator, a kingmaker in GOP primaries.” Josh Dorner points out that “two political action committees controlled by DeMint—MINT PAC and the Senate Conservatives Fund—are spending millions of dollars to elect GOP candidates from coast-to-coast.” Benen thinks this would be a fine time to find out how “the Junior DeMints” feel about gays and loose women. “It’d be interesting to know if they’d be willing to put some distance between themselves and their far-right hero,” he says. “Of course, there’s always the possibility that these folks agree with DeMint, and with a month to go before the election, that’d be good to know, too.”

Now, let me say I take a back seat to no one in longing for traditional values. I think I would have been at home in the Victorian era, I really do. As long as I was in the social class that had indoor plumbing. And I believe firmly that the best environment for kids is a stable, loving home headed by a mother and a father, married to each other. That’s a value worth standing up for, and it is NOT outlandish or comical for anyone to wish that the role models influencing our children also model that value.

But this is NOT the Victorian era. And DeMint’s chances of imposing Victorian values upon society are slim. He is also speaking of things that should be (if one has a conservative view of the purview of the federal government) outside his scope of legitimate action. And what this illustrates to me is his penchant for striking a pose in favor of a value, with neither any hope or realistic prospects of advancing the cause. Rather, he uses the value to draw a line between himself and his detractors, not in the hope of getting anything done, but in order to gain electoral advantage.

And this is problematic.

27 thoughts on “Loose women should stay in the home, where they belong

  1. jfx

    I’m pretty sure this was just DeMint having a “senior moment” and getting his rallies mixed up. The anti-gay, anti-sex, scarlet letter speech was probably intended for the “Lesser Freedom Rally”. Totally different vibe. Oopsie!

    But he does have a point. The quality of teaching and learning in the classroom is obviously directly related to the teacher’s sexual orientation and/or fornicative activity, which should be a matter of public record and vigorous governmental scrutiny. Wouldn’t it be great if there were a government website where parents could log on and research their child’s teacher’s history of interpersonal and sexual relationships? http://www.demintsaveourchildren.gov

    Jim DeMint: Moral Visionary

  2. GloryB

    Ok, now we all wish for better times. But I have to say this for Mr. DeMint: I would like for politicians to be honest. I would like for politicians to leave their personal beliefs at home. I would like for politicians to have the same retirement system and live on Medicare as ordinary voters do. I would like for politicians to not judge others, just do their job.
    We all wish for things, Mr. DeMint. I really wish that you are voted out.

  3. Richard

    DeMint objects to a woman who’s sleeping with her boyfriend being in the classroom. But, he hasn’t objected to men who are sleeping with their girlfriend being Governor, Congressman or Senator. Is the difference gender, economic status or membership in The Fellowship?

  4. James H

    And how else can Senator DeMint embarrass us. This is just another reminder of how backwards this “elected” official is.

  5. KP

    What most infuriated me about DeMint’s comment when I first heard it in 2004 was that as The Slatest says, DeMint makes no mention of unmarried men who sleep with their girlfriends. I don’t think it’s an accident, either. He was asked at the time whether his rules ought also apply to men, and he never directly answered.

  6. bud

    I agree mostly with Brad’s assessment. But what troubles me is how that type of 18th century thinking has pervaded our political discourse. And it’s not just DeMint.

    I disagree that DeMint is only in it for political advantage. I really do think he believes this stuff. How could you fake this kind of backwards thinking?

  7. Phillip

    I’ve always wondered what “traditional” values means. Every era, every society, has constantly redefined that in relation to the societal changes it was facing in the present. Here’s another look at those Victorian values:


    Your key phrase above was “if one has a conservative view of the purview of the federal government.” And of course, DeMint is not at all a true conservative in that sense: he’s a believer in BIG government when it comes to using its powers to enforce his preferred religious/social value system.

    Alvin Greene has been indicted on a felony charge for “disseminating, procuring or promoting obscenity.” Jim DeMint disseminates obscenity every time he opens his mouth. In my view, they’re just about equally morally unfit to be a United States Senator.

    The only good news in all of this is that, despite the likelihood of big GOP gains in November, that party still faces a long-term civil war between the fiscal conservatives and the social conservatives. If the GOP becomes inhospitable for a socially moderate fiscal conservative, that can only relegate it to permanent minority status, and thus bode well for a generally moderate-leaning-progressive policy for the US in the years ahead. Or one can hope, anyway.

  8. Greg Jones

    I disagree. First of all, remember who is audience was. You don’t speak to a group and tell them you disagree with their core principles. You tell them you think like them, especially if you do.
    Also give the electorate some credit; they want someone to represent them who thinks like them, even if they know that realistically many of their core values CANNOT be forced on the population (by legislative action).
    Brad, and I know this is an extreme example, would you rather vote for a Catholic or an atheist if most everything else about them was the same?

  9. Juan Caruso

    Granted, DeMint has joined the cast of suspicious career politicians, Brad.

    Buried in the story are legitimate questions he raises, however.

    The Dirty little secrets that mainstream media will not, so far, even discuss:

    How can public schools produce professionals (lawyers, pysicians, etc.) and be so ineffective for the 40-50% who do not graduate highschool?

    Teachers often tell us parents make the crucial difference. That is half the story; the other half is that in a high percentage of cases, the lawyers, doctors and professionals had teachers for moms. The teachers’ homeschooling and role-modeling is hardly ever mentioned. It does confirm, however, that role models are important to children’s education.

    Staistics are starting to accumulate on the gender preferences of children of gay couples. Lo and behold, will children raised in gay households have a proclivity for gay lifestyles? Will school children exposed to ‘loose women’ teachers develope greater proclivities for promiscuity?

    A few university statiticians know the answer to the cildren of gay parents question, and teachers know the answer to the promiscuous lifestyles question. Sooner or latter, someone is going to confess.

  10. Kathryn Fenner

    Juan is absolutely right about the impact of parental, especially maternal education. It’s no big secret–lots of research has been done and even disseminated in the mainstream media. The problem is: how best do we help the kids who do not have parental advantages?

    What the heck is a “gay lifestyle”? I know what a homosexual orientation is–and it’s biological.

    What about the promiscuity of the married people–the statistics show incredible numbers of adulterers?

  11. Mark Stewart

    So I guess DeMint is down with pedophiles in the schools as long as they are heterosexual males? Nice, Jim.

    The guy has a wife and daughters. Obviously his family has not been a moderating influence on his gonzo character. That’s sad for them.

    But I’m happy for him because as he continues to draw these lines in the sand he gets closer and closer to boxing himself into an irrelevant corner. That day can’t come soon enough for this state.

  12. Doug Ross


    “The problem is: how best do we help the kids who do not have parental advantages?”

    We can’t. No amount of spending will correct it except for very limited cases.

    I take that back. We could correct it by making the kids wards of the state and removing them from the homes completely.

  13. Lynn

    I wonder how Sen. DeMint feels about gambling, oops, I mean gaming in Vegas? I’ve heard rumors for years that he is a Vegas high roller with all the privileges that provides. Maybe it is more than just a friendly poker game at the C Street fellowship.

  14. Kathryn Fenner

    I believe we could do the same sort of thing they do with Housing First, which takes the hard core homeless and puts them in apartments and gives them serious social worker care, and keeps them out of emergency rooms. It’s expensive, but a lot cheaper than the emergency room.

    Same goes for our children. A life is a terrible thing to waste.

  15. Maude Lebowski

    Was it unmarried sexually active women he mentioned or unwed mothers? For some reason I remember it being the latter.

  16. Maude Lebowski

    I just found it on CNN.com:

    “Speaking at a church rally in Spartanburg, South Carolina, DeMint told attendees people quietly told him he should not back down from a position he took in 2004 that openly gay individuals and single mothers who are involved in a sexual relationship should not be allowed to teach. He did not weigh in on whether unwed men should be allowed to teach.”

    So sexually active unwed women can teach as long as they don’t have children.

  17. Herbie

    So, two dads is better than none, right? What about two moms? Seems Demint’s position would fall on the side of two dads, as opposed to two moms–them being not married to a man. Total mysogenist Repuglicant view,
    in my opinion.

  18. Tom Fillinger

    The comments are all governed by the absence of the perspective that Truth is absolute. It is not ‘the victorian age’ or the modern era that detemines right and wrong. As per usual Mr. Warthen shows himself to be a simple pragmatist while claiminig to be a Christian theist. You can’t have it both ways.

  19. Doug Ross


    It’s all about spending tax dollars collected from citizens effectively. Throwing good money after bad is not good stewardship. There are limits to what can be done to resolve the issues related to culture and society.

  20. Brad

    Throw good money after bad? I did no such thing. I’ll have you know that…

    Wait… we’re still talking about the loose women, right?

  21. Libb

    “…if one has a conservative view of the purview of the federal government.” -Brad

    I agree w/ Phillip that DeMint is not a true conservative and let’s be a little more specific about his “preferred religious/social value system”. Ole Jimbo is a pretty high ranking C Streeter, which means he’s pledged allegiance to The Family’s agenda of creating a God-led government both here and abroad. Democracy fused with fundamentalism, that’s their quest. He really hasn’t represented SC for quite sometime now. And by all appearances, nothing’s gonna change this election go-round, just pitiful.

  22. Norm Ivey

    And does the quality of the teaching these people are doing in the classroom matter? Or is DeMint only concerned about that part of their lives that is none of his d**n business?

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