The tyranny of the libido

The sex drive is a powerful natural force. Reasonably directed in proper context, it is a tremendous gift and blessing. Unrestrained, it can inflict great damage. In recent decades we have learned just how terrifyingly destructive the “liberated” libido can be.

At the advent of America, and for the centuries that followed, our collective libidos were largely restrained by religious convictions and common cultural mores. The general social consensus, influenced by religion and history, was that sex was best experienced and enjoyed in the committed union of one man and one woman. There were some exceptions to this rule, but it was largely understood and accepted that breaking the rules did not serve the common good and would have negative consequences—both personally and culturally.

The sexual revolution beginning in the 1960’s was truly revolutionary. It initiated a process of radical transformation of our views concerning our sex drives. Sex became uncoupled from transcendent purposes serving the common good, including fidelity, marriage, and child rearing. It began to be viewed primarily as a means of self-stimulation, self-fulfillment, and self-actualization. This movement can perhaps be best summarized by the mantra, “If it feels good, do it!”

In the decades since, the American libido has become progressively unchained from prior boundaries and increasingly exalted as an American demi-god, to be idolized, worshipped, and obeyed—at all costs. We have even given unrestrained lust the cool-sounding name of “sexual liberty.” In 1992, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy paid homage to this American idol in Planned Parenthood v. Casey, where the majority cowardly reaffirmed Roe v. Wade. Kennedy wrote, “At the heart of liberty is the right to define one’s own concept of existence, of meaning, of the universe, and of the mystery of human life.”

God is dead! Long live the libido! Consequently, unrestrained sexual expression has been ceded a central and prominent place in our popular culture and, increasingly, even in our laws.

Yet the dark consequences of our “liberation” and bondage to self-worship are truly staggering. They are starkly displayed in the growth of pornography, sex addiction, sex outside of marriage, unintended pregnancies, abortion on demand, the macabre sale of baby body parts, no-fault divorce, the diminution of marriage and family, the decriminalization of sodomy, the inappropriate association of the LGBT movement with the black civil rights narrative (i.e. discrimination), and finally, now, same-sex “marriage.” These developments have been culturally destructive and have also profoundly and negatively impacted the biblical fidelity of the body of Christ.

And, as the tyrant libido has ascended its lecherous throne, rather strangely, truth, represented by objective biology and transcendent normative ethics, is now diminished, targeted as public enemy number one of this sexual new world order. Propaganda has replaced truth and common sense. We can have sex with whomever we wish whenever we wish. We can now “be” whatever gender we “feel” that we are (Bruce Jenner).  We can marry whomever we wish. Truth has been turned on its head. What was good is now evil; what was once evil is now good.

The result is that the individual’s libido must now be given first priority, preference, and prominence at all costs. Sex is indeed a cruel master. Any notion that the libido is a benevolent dictator is undermined by its intolerantly harsh treatment of religious dissenters. In fact, this state of moral anarchy has resulted in growing legal anarchy. This nonsense has now been enshrined in “law” as the U.S. Supreme Court has created a new constitutional right to same-sex marriage and as state after state hauls more conscientious objecting Christian bakers, photographers and florists into court informing them that their religious liberty means nothing and can be easily balanced away on the scales of injustice. If you are not on board with the increasingly radical sexual revolution, you are tarred as a bigot, worthy of being run out of business.

Thus, we have tragically confused libertinism with true liberty. The revolution many foolishly believed would set us free has actually harassed and enslaved us. And our cruel tyrant now bitterly oppresses us and mocks us in our chains. Again we are reminded that natural law is baked into God’s universe. History reminds us that no great empire has survived the tyranny of the libido. You can believe with all of your heart that you can break the rules, defy gravity and fly; but gravity rules and will kick your butt every time. The same is true of moral laws. Virtue results in a thriving culture and promotes the common good. Immorality leads to darker places.

Someday, hopefully very soon, we will wake up from the hazy stupor and slumber of our collective 60’s hangover and realize that our purported sexual liberation has actually resulted in our enslavement. It promised freedom but has delivered pain, death, destruction and bondage. But until then, if we are painfully honest with ourselves, we must admit that we have sacrificed what is good and true—life, religious liberty, and the pursuit of authentic happiness—on the pagan altar of unchecked sexual liberty. The tyranny of the libido is crushing everything in its path and is destroying our God-given freedoms. I mourn the loss, do you?

To our great shame, we have sold our birthright for a bowl of sex. Our founders would be stunned that our God-given inalienable First Amendment rights are being so casually traded in favor of our unrestrained deified fleshly appetites. They sacrificed and fought for many things, but one thing they were clearly not fighting for is the intolerant tyranny of unrestrained lust. May we repent with tears and may God save the United States of America!

Dean Broyles


— by Dean R. Broyles, Esq.

Broyles is a constitutional attorney serving as the President of The National Center For Law & Policy (NCLP), an organization fighting to promote and defend religious freedom. Copyright© The National Center For Law & Policy. Reprinted with permission.

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