Thursday, June 5, 2008

When is Public Display of Affection Inappropriate

You may have not read about it, but two women at a Mariners game in Seattle were asked to stop kissing because it was making fans feel uncomfortable. Now there is a firestorm of accusations all centered around poor homosexuals who can't help but be what they are. The real issue is being completely missed. The issue is public displays of affection (pda).

I don't care what your sexual orientation is when it comes to PDA. There is a proper way to show affection in public and an improper way, but it is understandable how this issue has been completely missed. I mean all you have to do is go down to Kingman Highschool during the five minutes when kids are switching classes and observe. Excessive PDA is rampant and no one is doing anything about it including teachers. So the issue for many isn't that it is PDA but that it is homosexuality, and I admit that as a Christian this is a huge concern for me as well but none of this would be an issue if propriety was still practiced.

Someone once committed to me about a couple of teens who were overly affectionate "If that is what they are doing in front of everyone imagine what they are doing when they are alone." I would rather not imagine that, but they made a great point. Parents, I am asking that you teach your teens what is proper and what is not proper when it comes to PDA. I'm kind of old fashion and understand that what I might say is proper and not proper may differ, but if we allow our teens to kiss in public and have their hands in places that are close to being improper I think we are sending a message that we don't care and they shouldn't either.

My own feelings go like this. First, like Mike said last night "If you can't see yourself marrying the person then get out of the relationship." Dating (or Courdating as Mike puts it, ask your teens) is preemptive of marriage. Second, treat each other with the respect each other deserves. No one deserves to be handled like a lollipop unless they are married. People are not an means to an end. Start treating each other like God treats us, as infinitely valuable beings created in His image. Third, treat all people with the level of respect they deserve. No one needs to see bedroom antics out in the open. An appropriate measure of affection ensures that there is love, but an inappropriate measure shows their is not respect. A kiss (peck), a hug, holding hands is all we need to see.

It begins with those of us who are parents. We need to set the example and teach our children what is proper and what is not proper when it comes to public displays of affection. Don't allow your child to grow up seeing people as just a means to fulfill personal pleasure. Help them see everyone, including a future spouse, that they are created by God in His image with infinite value, and they needed to be treated as God treats us. I just can't see God making out with anyone in public.

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