Family values is owned by the right wing, but before you jump all over the idea that this is media manipulation, ask yourself - what does a liberal family look like? How does maintain stability and situate itself in a community? Where are the economic, political, and cultural anchors? It's pretty clear where the right sees the family, a man and woman in the suburbs who belong to a church and rely on their church community to provide social and cultural ballast. Negotiations among family members take place through a scripted doctrine, thereby avoiding messy and incoherent situations. The kids are disciplined through corporal and spiritual guidance and punishment, sent off to college, and marry young to anchor themselves.
In following a model like this, the right-wing conquers the three problems of modernity - Where is the community? Where do you get answers and services to common family problems? How do you manage an increasingly chaotic world with complex choices through a source you trust? Church, church, and church. The right-wing has an incredibly well-developped library of life-guides, newsmagazines, and child-rearing manuals. When in doubt, the family should pray. Avoid controversy by going along with your colleagues. Stay away from politics by voting Republican. Relate to the rest of the world through the police, the army, and gated communities/long commutes. Take away alternative lifestyles through ghettos and restrictive government policies.
So how is the liberal family put together?
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