How Not to Fix the Homeless Problem

How Not to Fix the Homeless Problem

Reading Time: 8 minutes

Above image by Leroy Skalstad from Pixabay

The Facts

Let’s look at the facts; the primary cause of homelessness is NOT a housing problem, but a drug problem and a mental illness problem. Yet California politics, driven primarily by progressives and the left, continue to spend money on this crisis as if it is a housing problem. According to the California UCLA policy Lab, approximately 3/4 of all homeless have a mental illness, drug addiction, or both.((Christopher Rufo. “What Do We Do About the Homeless?” Online video clip. Youtube. PragerU. 5 July 2021. Web. 28 March 2023.))

To help solve this problem, Governor Newsom wants to build 1,200 tiny homes for the homeless. Building tiny homes for the homeless population in California will only help the unsheltered population; it will do absolutely nothing to help solve the homeless population in California. There is a difference.

Senator Brian Jones of California said, “This is just another band-aid on a crisis that is out of control in California. We know that throwing money at this problem does not work. California has already spent $20 billion over the last five years on homelessness and the crisis has only gotten worse…”1

Senator Jones is correct; according to Cal Matters, a non-profit covering state news, the sheltered homeless has gone from 42,000 in 2019 to 57,000 in 2022. But the unsheltered homeless has gone from 108,000 in 2019 to 117,000 in 2022.((Tobias, Manuela. “California homeless population grew by 22,000 over pandemic.” Cal Matters, calmatters.org, 6 October 2022, https://calmatters.org/housing/2022/10/california-homeless-crisis-latinos/))

Some History

Former Mayor of San Francisco, now Governor of California Gavin Newsom promised to solve homelessness in S.F. Promises are cheap in politics, and most politicians are not held accountable for broken promises. The L.A. Times reported, “Just months after taking office as mayor, Newsom pledged to end chronic homelessness within 10 years — a promise that didn’t pan out. The politician has defended setting the goal, contending that the danger is not in ‘setting our aim too high and falling short, but in setting our aim too low, and achieving our mark…'”2

Now Newsom, as Governor of California, has promised to reduce the homeless population in California by 15%.((Fox News. “Newsom roasted for latest $30M plan to address homelessness.” Online video clip. YouTube. YouTube, Web. 17 March 2023. 26 March 2023.)) I can’t help but wonder if he is applying the same mindset he did years before as mayor of San Francisco. Fifteen percent is significantly lower than the original 100%. So will he call it a success if he manages to reduce the homeless population by a mere 1%? Frankly, his claim of reducing the homeless population by any % is laughable because it is only going to get worse. Homelessness is a human problem, not a housing problem, and focusing on providing more homes for the homeless does not work. 

The Cicero Institute researches and investigates public policies for the good of society. They encourage transparency, accountability and assess policies (conservative or liberal) that don’t work. They reported, “Several cities and states show the failure of the Housing First approach. San Francisco has built enough permanent housing to house every single chronically homeless individual in the city back in 2011. Yet instead of ‘ending homelessness,’ as then Mayor Gavin Newsom had promised, homelessness increased substantially until the city became an international byword for the homelessness crisis.”((Glock, Judge. “Housing First is a Failure.” Cicero Institute, ciceroinstitute.org, 13 January 2022, https://ciceroinstitute.org/research/housing-first-is-a-failure/))

Other Examples

The state of Arizona has built thousands of homes since 2010 in an effort to end homelessness. In fact, they built enough to house every single homeless person when they began the project, but the number of homeless has increased by 50%.((Glock, Judge. “Housing First is a Failure.” Cicero Institute, ciceroinstitute.org, 13 January 2022, https://ciceroinstitute.org/research/housing-first-is-a-failure/)) Why? Because the homeless will flock to the areas that provide the most permissive environment. Cities like San Francisco have made living there attractive to the homeless, so they naturally move there.

A clearly visible example of this is under Venice Boulevard in Southern California, where you find the border between Los Angeles and Culver City. On the L.A. side, you will find hundreds of tents, shacks, and temporary structures, but the Culver City side is vacant. Can you guess which side has laws against and enforces public camping and drug use and which side turns a blind eye to drug use and homeless encampments? 

Atlanta, a blue city with progressive policies, has completely failed to deal with their homeless population. In the spring of 2022, “…nearly 100 advocates piled into a Senate committee hearing to demand that the legislature stop debate on any new ideas to get the homeless off the streets and into services. Instead, their only prescription was for more money for the same failed policies.”3

No Requirements, No Responsibility

The homeless move to cities that permit their lifestyles, which can be seen all along West Coast. Half of the homeless population in Seattle has moved there in recent years due to the city’s permissive policies.((Christopher Rufo. “What Do We Do About the Homeless?” Online video clip. Youtube. PragerU. 5 July 2021. Web. 28 March 2023.))

Housing First will never work because it ignores the root of the problem, addictions and mental illness. “A recent UCLA study found that more than 75% of this population have a serious mental illness, and 75% have a substance abuse problem, and the majority have both. These individuals are reluctant to accept assistance without mandates and requirements, and a house without such mandates will not encourage use of these services.”((Glock, Judge. “Housing First is a Failure.” Cicero Institute, ciceroinstitute.org, 13 January 2022, https://ciceroinstitute.org/research/housing-first-is-a-failure/))

In fact, if we could wave a magic wand or snap our fingers with the Infinity Stones and instantly provide housing for the homeless, in just a few short years, most of those homes would be uninhabitable. 

The current mayor of San Francisco, London Breed, has learned many of the current housing projects have fallen into complete disrepair. How can we expect those who suffer from mental illness or drug addictions to maintain their homes, apartments, or rooms provided for them if they can’t even care for themselves? Yet she and the rest of her progressive cohorts continue spending money on more housing. “Since entering office, Breed has focused her attention and resources on buying and creating new housing for people currently living on the streets, with more than 3,000 new units opened or under contract since 2018. At the same time, though, The Chronicle found her administration has long neglected the thousands of people languishing in dilapidated hotels.”((Thadani, Trisha. Palomino, Joaquin. “S.F. Mayor Breed promised $5 million to fix crumbling homeless housing. Nothing has been spent so far.” San Francisco Chronicle, 7 February 2023, https://www.sfchronicle.com/sf/article/homeless-housing-sro-breed-17767837.php. 28 March 2023))

California has 30% of the entire U.S. homeless population and the progressive policies of recent years have done nothing to reduce this crisis, nor will they. That is if their goal is to make life as easy for the homeless as possible. Instead, the goal should be to help the homeless.

Not Enough Homes, Too Many Guns

I think of the recent school shooting in Nashville and the call by President Biden for more gun control. School shootings were almost non-existent in the 1900s, and gun ownership per capita was higher 50 years ago. 

The California I grew up in has completely changed, much like the city of Fresno. When I was a boy, I would ride my bike all over the Fresno area with little concern for my safety. Yes, that was partly because teens are often clueless. But now teens know there are areas where they would not ride their bike, let alone walk in, even if you offered to pay them. 

I can remember as a teen, racking our shotguns and rifles on the back window of our trucks when we went hunting just outside the city limits. These guns were visible to everyone and a common sight in the 1970s. Guns were accessible to teens who acquired their hunting licenses and could carry them in their vehicles. Our handguns had to be unloaded but placed on the front dash of the truck. 

I had never heard of a mass school shooting when I was growing up. For years now, gun laws have become more restrictive, but we have these mass shootings every year, often at schools or other locations full of soft targets. Guns are the problem? Biden thinks so, and many democratic legislators. Then explain to me why all these red-neck towns throughout America did not experience mass shootings when I was a kid. Guns or gun ownership are not the cause of these mass shootings. It is, at root, a cultural problem, a sin problem. Romans 1:28-32

Newsom remains committed to Housing First; he failed to seize the opportunity to get addicts into recovery. Instead, he and other California leaders gave away free hotel rooms without asking for anything in return. “They’ve missed so many opportunities.” Vicki Westbrook suggests instead of giving them alcohol and all the clean drug paraphernalia, why not offer them drug treatment groups, and case managers?((Shellenberger, Michael. “It’s a Leadership Problem.” San Fran-sicko, Harper Collins Publishers 2021, pgs240-241)) 

Helping The Local Homeless

The best local news I heard this year was Tuolumne County’s decision ‘not’ to purchase the Columbia Inn Motel on Parrotts Ferry Road for 1.65 million. They would have turned it into temporary housing for the homeless.((MacLean, Alex. “Tuolumne Country abandons play to buy Columbia Inn for homeless housing.” 24 February 2023. https://www.uniondemocrat.com/news/article_b5a87f46-b4b0-11ed-906e-7723690ac67d.html. 28 March 2023)) Some of our Supervisors don’t get it. Have they driven to the provided housing in San Francisco and looked at the costs? So the question is, what will they do with the 1.65 million? Use is for housing which will never offer a return on our investment, or will they use it to help individuals step out of the homeless culture of drugs and mental illness? 

But it is not over; our local Supervisor Brian Campbell said, “He believes that the county should purchase smaller properties throughout the county to provide such housing, as opposed to a single place, both for the people who would benefit and for the surrounding community.((MacLean, Alex. “Tuolumne Country abandons play to buy Columbia Inn for homeless housing.” 24 February 2023. https://www.uniondemocrat.com/news/article_b5a87f46-b4b0-11ed-906e-7723690ac67d.html. 28 March 2023)) If our supervisors think providing housing for the homeless is the answer, we will go the way of San Francisco, following Gavin Newsom as he continues his song, leading us away from the root of the problem.

The late Democratic senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan recognized this years ago. He said, “The central conservative truth is that it is culture, not politics, that determines the success of a society. The central liberal truth is that politics can change a culture and save itself from itself.”4

Culture is downstream of religion, and politics is downstream of culture, and when you look at California’s politics, you can see where the foul waters of the stream are coming from. California is essentially a secular state, and the progressive leftist policies reek of entitlement, addictions, narcissism, dependency, and enabling policies that are detrimental to a society that requires responsibility, accountability, and consequences for poor choices and behavior. 

Creative Commons License
How Not to Fix the Homeless Problem by James William Glazier is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

  1. Fox News. “Newsom roasted for latest $30M plan to address homelessness.” Online video clip. YouTube. YouTube, Web. 17 March 2023. 26 March 2023. []
  2. Smith, Dakota. “Gavin Newsom’s approach to fixing homelessness in San Francisco outraged activists. And he’s proud of it.” Los Angels Times, L.A. 23 October 2018, https://www.latimes.com/politics/la-pol-ca-gavin-newsom-homelessness-san-francisco-20181023-story.html. 19 March 2023 []
  3. Meyer, Jared. “Trump Is Right About Homelessness.” Forbes, forbes.com, 27 July 2022, https://www.forbes.com/sites/jaredmeyer/2022/07/27/trump-is-right-about-homelessness/?sh=3bb169ce487a []
  4. Quoted in Joe Klein, “Daniel Patrick Moynihan Was Often Right,” New York Times, 15 May 2021. []

Christians and Smoking Pot

Reading Time: 8 minutes

Have read quite a bit in the past week on the topic of legalizing marijuana and have come to a some conclusions I will share.
1. Within a short time, marijuana will be legal as a recreational drug in California.
2. Pastors who use Romans 13:1-7 (believers must submit to the laws of their government if they do not conflict with Scripture) as an out, will no longer have that option.
3. There is a significant difference of intention between having a drink, and smoking a joint.
4. When I picture Jesus having a relaxing time with his apostles, I could see him having some wine, bread, and meat. I can’t picture him having some hits, bread, and meat.

I will grant that number 4 is probably influenced by personal life experiences, the fact that I am no longer 25, and my generally conservative world views. But, I will also give you reasons I have come the conclusion that recreational use of marijuana is not a path you want to head down.

I remember as a young man playing games with a circle of friends who were all smoking weed. I would often find it amusing how they would have these long lapses of awareness. Just staring off at nothing, and then having a fit of laughter. Not hysterical mind you, but rather relaxed chuckling as if they were in on a joke that I was clueless about. Over a period of several months, I too began to smoke pot and noticed the effects first hand. Two things stand out in my memory, at least from what I can clearly recall. One was the lost sense of time. I would often be surprised by the amount time that had passed while hanging out with my friends and we were high. Many times I would look at the clock and an hour or two had passed, while I thought it was only a matter of 15 or 20 minutes.

The other was a chess game I played in my head. I used to play chess every week and was a pretty decent player. I could plan 3 or 4 moves ahead and would generally win more games than I lost. I remember walking home late one night after having smoked some weed and then playing a game of chess in my head. I was amazed how I was able to plan 6, 8 or even 10 moves ahead, both sides mind you. Remember, this was a game I was playing in my head. I remember thinking that I would have to play some time while I was stoned, and that I would cream some of the best chess players around. Next morning I recalled the game in my head during the walk home. Try as I might I could not recall all those moves, not even a small fraction of them. It was then, I realized, first hand, that what I thought was an enhanced, awe-inspiring state of mind, was actually a drugged stupor that had an illusion of brilliance.

What is your reason for smoking a joint? What is your reason for having a beer? Everyone who has a beer does not have the intention of getting drunk, but everyone who is smoking a joint has the intention of getting high. Is it just semantics when we discuss the difference between having a beer to relax, and having a joint to get high, (a form of relaxation)? I don’t think so. I have had beer with pizza over the years many times without any intention of getting drunk. In fact, the last time I intentionally drank to get drunk was over 25 years ago at a bachelor party. Every time I smoked a joint, it was my intention to get high.

THC is the molecule of tetrahydrocannabinol, or the main mind-altering ingredient found in the Cannabis plant. It works by activating the reward system and releases dopamine, like most abused drugs do. If you read my last blog post, Sex is Better with Drugs, you learned something about dopamine.

THC also interferes with the communication between neurons within the brain. Science has been researching new drugs that will have the medicinal properties of medical marijuana, but reduce the addictive traits. Some research is looking at the brain’s natural cannabinoid system to treat chronic pain, obesity and some mental health conditions. I personally believe that some may have legitimate medical reasons for smoking marijuana, but it is something that should not be flaunted or bragged about.

Women who are pregnant certainly should not use marijuana. Research has shown that women who used marijuana had babies that had different responses to visual stimuli compared to babies whose mothers did not use marijuana. Also, these babies has increased tremulous (shaking or trembling), and a higher pitched cry. In school, children who were exposed to marijuana in the home were more likely to have lower memory and problem solving skills coupled with short attention spans. 1

If you just taste a beer, your brain will release dopamine in your brain. And this is before you can even detect any blood alcohol levels. It is also no surprise that those with a history of family alcoholism had much greater dopamine levels after just tasting a beer. If you smoke marijuana, you will also release dopamine, which is the drug that research links to addiction. Dopamine is the feel good drug, and influences the following functions: Sleep, Mood, Attention, Memory, Cognition, Motivation, and Voluntary movement. 2 It also gives feelings of pleasure and satisfaction. Our brains naturally produce dopamine during intimate moments, but now we have discovered other ways of artificially producing dopamine, namely drugs.

Gail Harrison, a friend at church, shared in a Facebook thread that someone once told her, “When my dad comes home and has a beer after work, he isn’t drinking to become high. When you smoke a joint, that is your purpose.” This ran right beside my train of thought when considering the differences between having a beer and having a joint. If I have a beer or glass of wine once or twice a year, it is never with the intent of entering an altered state of mind. Someone may say they smoke marijuana without the intent of getting high, but I would not believe it. What else would be the purpose of having a joint?

map

In October of 2013, Gallup took a poll that showed for the first time American’s are in favor of legalizing marijuana, with a jump of ten percent in just twelve months. Washington and Colorado have become the first states to legalize the use of marijuana. Back in 1969, only 12% of the population favored the use of marijuana. The same poll showed the views of marijuana by age, and nearly 70% of 18-29 year old’s favor the legalizing of marijuana, but those at 65+ is at 45%. Based on the poll trends, it will not be long before other states follow suit and eventually the federal government, especially when you consider the potential tax revenues. “In August of 2013 Deputy Attorney General James Cole announced the Justice Department would not challenge the legality of Colorado’s and Washington’s new laws legalizing marijuana.” 3

In 2012, Pat Robertson said in an interview with the New York Times, “I really believe we should treat marijuana the way we treat beverage alcohol, I’ve never used marijuana and I don’t intend to, but it’s just one of those things that I think: this war on drugs just hasn’t succeeded.” 4

I don’t agree; just because a government deems something legal does not make it moral. Abortion is legal, but it is anything but moral. It will not be long before smoking pot as a recreational drug in California will be legal, but Christians everywhere will have to consider the moral side to this issue.

Mark Driscoll, who is head of a mega church in Washington State, wrote in an online booklet titled, Puff or Pass, concerning the use of marijuana “…as a pastor I have noticed that people tend to stop maturing when they start self-medicating. Everyone has very tough seasons in life, but by persevering through them we have an opportunity to mature and grow as people. Those who self-medicate with drugs and/or alcohol, (as well as other things), often thwart maturity as they escape the tough seasons of life rather than face them.”5

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) 10,288 people died in drunk driving crashes in 2010.6

According to Mothers Against Drunk Drivers, in 2011, 226 children were killed in drunk driving crashes. 7

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), over 1.4 million drivers were arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol or narcotics. 8

I can’t help but wonder if 20 years from now we will be reading about statistics concerning deaths and marijuana use? No, not to the scale of alcohol. No, I don’t think the sky is falling, or that we will become a population of drugged out fools who spend all their spare time smoking pot. But I do think two things about this trend. It shows rather plainly the direction our nation is heading, and that future generations will pay the price for this unhealthy direction of self medicating and a desire to escape the realities of life. Sadly, those that already have drug addictions in their family may already have the biological tendency for addiction, and instead of being told to avoid drugs, our culture tells them not to worry.

Second, I would ask if even just one death, or one addiction was caused by the legalization of marijuana, would it be worth it? Where does our indignant sense of, “If it feels good do it” halt and take a look at the cost of such freedom. Is the price of lives lost, or ruined, worth the seemingly inherent freedoms we give ourselves? I sometimes wonder which is a lesser of two evils, a government that takes our freedoms to keep us from harming ourselves and secure its own magnate, or a people who vote themselves freedoms at the price of national and private welfare.

What a fallen world we are living in. These issues and others bring to light what a great need individuals have for Christ and how people and nations have fallen away from the one and only true hope for humanity. It is obvious we are incapable of saving ourselves as we vote in freedoms that remind me of an eight year old voting on when he gets sweets, if he has to do homework, chores, or can play video games.

*In just the time I spent writing this article this past week, I heard the news that Alaska is going to put on the ballot a bill to legalize marijuana. Voters in Alaska approved medical use in 1998 and pro activists have spent that time changing the attitudes for the next step. If it passes, Alaska will be the third state to legalize marijuana. After that activists will target Oregon, and then work to get legalization on the ballots in 2016 for several other states, including California. Efforts like these don’t come without some push back. On Tuesday, January 7th 2014 Fresno County supervisors banned the growing of medical marijuana with a vote of 5-0 and is said to be the first county in California to ban the growing of medicinal marijuana.

1 Remind the people to be subject to rulers and authorities, to be obedient, to be ready to do whatever is good, 2 to slander no one, to be peaceable and considerate, and always to be gentle toward everyone.
3 At one time we too were foolish, disobedient, deceived and enslaved by all kinds of passions and pleasures. We lived in malice and envy, being hated and hating one another. 4 But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, 5 he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, 6 whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, 7 so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life. 8 This is a trustworthy saying. And I want you to stress these things, so that those who have trusted in God may be careful to devote themselves to doing what is good. These things are excellent and profitable for everyone. -Titus 3:1-8 (NIV)

 

Sources:

1. Volkow, Nora D. MD “Marijuana’s Lasting Effects on the Brain.” Drugabuse.gov. National Institute on Drug Abuse, September 2012. Web. 6 January. 2014.
2. Pedersen, Tracy. “Just a Taste of Beer Releases Dopamine.” Psychcentral.com. Psych Central Learn. Share. Grow, 20 April 2013. Web. 5 January. 2014.
3. Swift, Art. “For First Time, Americans Favor Legalizing Marijuana.”Gallup.com. Gallup Politics. 22 October 22. Web. 4 January. 2014.
4. McKinely, Jessie. “Pat Robertson Says Marijuana Use Should be Legal” Nytimes.com. New York Times. 7 March 2012. Web. 4 January. 2014.
5. Driscoll, Mark. “Puff or Pass: Should Christians Smoke Pot or Not?” theresurgence.com. Resurgence. 2012. 5 January. 2014
6. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. “Drunk Driving Fatalities-National Statistics.” Centurycouncil.org. The Century Council. 2011. 3 January. 2014.
7. O’Malley, L.D. “Statistics” madd.org. Mothers Against Drunk Driving. FARS data 2013. 5 January. 2014
8. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “Impaired Driving: Get the Facts” cdc.gov. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 17 April. 2013. 6 January. 2014.

 

Other Links:
http://www.livescience.com/24553-what-is-thc.html
http://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/marijuana-abuse/how-does-marijuana-use-affect-your-brain-body
http://www.brainfacts.org/about-neuroscience/ask-an-expert/articles/2013/how-does-marijuana-affect-brain-function/
http://www.promises.com/articles/abused-drugs/marijuana-your-brain/
http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/govbeat/wp/2014/01/08/alaskans-likely-to-vote-on-marijuana-legalization-this-summer/
http://www.fresnobee.com/2014/01/07/3702201/fresno-county-supervisors-ban.html

Sex Is Better With Drugs

Reading Time: 6 minutes

Some of you may be shocked, but this is a fact confirmed by science in recent years. Not only is sex better with drugs, some drugs will increase the desire for sex, the permanence of the relationship, and the desire to care for their children. Where can you get these drugs? It is really quite easy. In fact, you don’t even have to go to a pharmacist, you can find these in any common household. The three drugs I will focus on are dopamine, oxytocin, and vasopressin. All three are found in our brain and are produced when an individual is aroused.

You may have heard of the drug dopamine. It is the ‘feel good’ chemical that creates a feeling of excitement or satisfaction when we take a risk. Dopamine can reward us for driving fast, earning an A on a difficult test, taking a ride on a rollercoaster, rescuing a drowning dog in a pond, (something I did once), or having sex.

What is important to point out is that dopamine has no governor. It rewards us regardless of the action. Imagine that you ask your young child to take out the trash, something he has not done before. If he does, you give him a nickel. If he doesn’t, you give him a nickel. Either way, the child is rewarded for doing something new and exciting. One is rewarded for doing what was requested of him and experiencing something new, the other is rewarded for disobeying the parent. The child is rewarded in either case. Dopamine rewards no matter the moral consequences of the action.

Joe McIlhaney and Freda McKissic Bush in their book “Hooked” puts it this way, “Dopamine is values-neutral. This important point must be stressed. Dopamine will reward for healthy and life-enhancing excitement, but it will also send the reward signal for exhilarating but unhealthy and destructive behavior. Examples of excitement that dopamine rewards can include the use of nonprescriptive drugs, nonmarital sexual involvement, excessive drinking, dangerous thrill-seeking, and so on…To reproduce the good feeling, they seek to repeat the behavior. Their desire for the good feeling can overwhelm their accurately calculating the risk behavior, or for that matter, even worrying about it, if they do consider the risk.” 1 It should come as no surprise that sex is one of the strongest activities that produces dopamine, and this is especially true for teens.

prefrontal

What is significant about dopamine is that it peaks in the adolescent years and continues to increase in one particular part of the brain called the prefrontal cortex. This is the final portion of the brain to reach mature development and is responsible for making wise, rational, logical, mature decisions in life.

Oxytocin is the second chemical I mentioned above, and can be found in both sexes, but has a much greater influence with females. One example is when a woman is breast feeding, her brain is flooded with oxytocin. Oxytocin creates bonding and trust with another person. When a women breastfeeds, she reinforces her feelings for her child and is willing to sacrifice her own needs for the needs of her own child. The more she breastfeeds, the more oxytocin is produced, which creates a greater bonding between a mother and her children.

Oxytocin is also produced during meaningful touching or hugging, skin to skin contact, (even holding hands), and of course during sex. Oxytocin creates a bonding or connectedness between a woman and her partner that stimulates her with a desire to be with that person again and again. McIlhaney and Bush wrote, “The important thing to recognize is that the desire to connect is not just an emotional feeling. Bonding is real and almost like the adhesive effect of glue-a powerful connection that cannot be undone without great emotional pain. Real brain chemicals act on real brain cells, causing those brain cells to bind individuals together.” 2

Many of us can imagine, and may have seen, the infatuations of a young girl on a particular boy or man. The simple affections of a hand on a shoulder, a lengthy embrace, or intimate touching produces oxytocin in females. As significant as the bonding it creates, oxytocin also produces trust in a woman. A young girl or woman who is bonding to a man or boy also begins to trust him. If she is considering being intimate with him, the feeling of trust oxytocin produces is significant because the female will trust he will:
-Care for her and not use her as a sex object.
-Put her needs above his needs.
-Be faithful to her and not be intimate with other women.
-Take care of her and their baby should she become pregnant.

You can see how some friends, parents, or caring adults can see the truth of a situation between a young man or woman, and she is unable, or unwilling, to listen to advice on how best to proceed with a relationship. It should come as no surprise that 80 percent of unwed fathers don’t marry the teen mother of their baby. 3 I personally have seen this with several former students and their broken relationships. It is also a trend as casual sex is taking our culture by storm. In the 1960’s, 68% of all twenty somethings were married. In 2008, only 26% were married, due in large part to cohabitation. 4

Oxytocin, just like dopamine, is another values-neutral chemical the brain produces. It does not consider boys or men who are just using girls or women as sex objects. Girls who engage in premarital sex fall victim to the effects of oxytocin. They desire the bonding and connectedness while feeling safe and secure because of the trust it produces, while the intentions of the male may be far from honorable.

Finally, there is vasopressin, which also has a bonding effect, but with the male to his mate and his offspring. This chemical is probably the prime cause of men becoming emotionally attached to women who they are intimate with. It may also explain why some men return time and time again to a woman who is insulting, degrading, or emotionally abusive. When a man has sex with a woman, his brain is flooded with vasopressin, and creates the bonding he may feel toward her.

When men move from sex partner to sex partner, they damage their ability to develop long term relationships. McIlhaney and Bush put it this way, “The inability to bond after multiple liaisons is almost like tape that loses its stickyness after being applied and removed multiple times.” 5 Just like dopamine and oxytocin, vasopressin is values-neutral. The male brain flows with vasopressin when having sex with one partner or several over a period of months and years, but unlike becoming ‘attached’ to one partner, the male will lose his ability to bond with someone when he has multiple sexual relationships.

Can people who have multiple partners find someone and enjoy a lasting, life long, healthy relationship? Of course, but my point in this post is that our teens and twenty somethings can fall victim to drug abuse and not even know it. Former president Bill Clinton may define sex as intercourse, but studies on brain activities show that sex is, “Sexual activity is any intimate contact between two individuals that involves arousal, stimulation, and/or a response by at least one of the two partners.” 6

I would tell my former students just because you are not having intercourse, does not mean you are not having sex. Sex comes in many forms, and they all produce powerful drugs that affect your ability to think clearly, rationally, and consider future consequences to your actions. These drugs are so powerful you may even ignore warning signs about an abusive relationship, or the advice of loved ones who have your best interest at heart. And to those that are engaging in sex outside of marriage, like it or not, you are likely to fall into a statistic that will place you in poverty income levels, multiple unsatisfactory relationships, and chronic depression.

The purpose of eating is not for pleasure, it is for survival. Those that eat for strictly for pleasure damage their bodies and are often grossly over weight. The purpose of sex is not for pleasure, it is for procreation. Those that have sex outside the design of marriage damage their relationships and their lives. These drugs were designed for a purpose, and that purpose is for permanent, life-enhancing, procreating relationships.

The world will tell you that when you feel you are ready, you should have sex. The world will tell you that as long as you use condoms, or other birth control methods, you are safe to have sex. The world will tell you that it is your business, and so long as no one gets hurt, it is alright. The world will tell you that as long as it is between two consenting adults, no harm is done. Science facts and Scripture tells us otherwise.

1 Corinthians 7:1-5 Now for the matters you wrote about: It is good for a man not to marry. 2 But since there is so much immorality, each man should have his own wife, and each woman her own husband. 3 The husband should fulfill his marital duty to his wife, and likewise the wife to her husband. 4 The wife’s body does not belong to her alone but also to her husband. In the same way, the husband’s body does not belong to him alone but also to his wife. 5 Do not deprive each other except by mutual consent and for a time, so that you may devote yourselves to prayer. Then come together again so that Satan will not tempt you because of your lack of self-control.

Sources:

1. McIlhaney, Joe S. Bush, Freda M. Hooked New Science On How Casual Sex is Affecting Our Children. Chicago: Northfield Publishing, 2008. Print
2. Ibid.
3. Maynard, R.A. Kids Having Kids. New York: Robin Hood Foundation, 1996. Print
4. PewResearch Social & Demographic Trends. “The Decline of Marriage And Rise of New Families. PewResearchCenter, 18 Nov. 2010. Web. 1/1/2014
5. Ibid
6. Ibid

*I highly recommend the book Hooked for parents of adolescent children, or teens.

Pin It on Pinterest