A true story, as told to Vishal Mangalwadi by a bloke sharing a car on the way to the airport:

It was not too long ago, my wife stood looking straight into my eyes and saying, “I want to have sex with another guy, what’s wrong with that?”

I looked at my wife, tears streaming down my eyes.

I couldn’t say a word to her – to her question, because every word she was saying, I had taught her.

I grew up as a Christian. However, I rejected everything my parents and church had taught, in favour of what my college, university, Hollywood, and the media taught. I chose to believe what my culture taught, because my professors were a lot more intelligent than my pastors and Sunday School teachers. I believed them.

My wife said she had a right to the pursuit of happiness. Who was I to deny her her right? Would I be guilty of authoritarian, arbitrary rules if I said “thou shall not commit adultery”? I had taught her that it was not the word of God, there is no such thing as sin, there is no word from God, so now, when she wanted to pursue her happiness, I couldn’t say anything except shed tears.

My marriage collapsed into a costly divorce. We lost our house, she lost her health insurance (which was dependent on my job). To make matters worse, the guy she was living with did not want to marry her, but the court demanded my children had to spend x number of days with her.

My daughter woke up hysterical one morning after having a dream that mummy had pushed her boyfriend down a cliff and killed him.

I don’t understand and don’t know how to interpret the dream, but my wife is in slavery. She cannot leave the guy because she will have no place to stay.

In pursuing her pleasure, she has ended up like the prodigal son.

What is the pursuit of happiness? What is an inalienable right? Is the pursuit of pleasure the pursuit of happiness, or is it really the pursuit of unhappiness?

What is the problem?

I leave it to you to judge whether this is merely a tear-jerker, an abstract academic political discussion, or something that might one day deeply involve your children and grandchildren, your pensions and homes and healthcare.

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