What does ABC News think is so bad about Speaker Johnson bringing his daughter to a “purity ball” back in 2015?

The news outlet published a piece on Wednesday in which it “unearthed” a German TV news segment – all the way back from eight years ago – profiling the speaker and his daughter’s attendance at the ball.

Describing the ball, ABC News says, “At a typical event, fathers and their teenage daughters dress in formal ball attire for a night that involves dinner and dancing and culminates with the daughter signing a pledge to her father to abstain from dating and to remain sexually abstinent until marriage.”

According to the media outlet, the ball is a “controversial formal dance event, popular among some conservative Christians.”

Now, ABC News surely doesn’t have a problem with father-daughter dances in general. So, what makes the purity ball “controversial?”

Apparently, its focus on sexual abstinence until marriage.

But sexual purity is not a radical belief – at least not for Christians or many other people.

Christians believe that premarital sex is wrong and children should be raised by their married mother and father.

Some may see these beliefs as “outdated.” But premarital sex is wrong, not solely because of a religious belief in the spiritual significance of the sexual act, but because it unites two people in a wholly unique and important way.

The sexual act creates children. And children do best when they are raised by a married mom and dad.

As the Daily Citizen has previously noted, “The married mother/father family is even more powerful today in providing essential goods to children than ever before.” Married moms and dads also report the highest levels of happiness over their unmarried and childless peers – and it’s not even close.

In this way, sexual abstinence before marriage is not simply a moral and religious value – it’s an ethic rooted in the fundamental nature of human beings as male and female. It recognizes the sexual complementarity of men and women, who can join together to create new life (which they are then responsible for), and it promotes the good of men, women and their children.

Here’s another point to consider. As the Daily Citizen has previously pointed out, our cultural elites often “talk left but live right.”

In a 2020 study, Brad Wilcox and Wendy Wang of the Institute for Family Studies found that California – yes, ultraliberal California – “has a larger share of intact families than the rest of the United States.”

Surprisingly, “Three neighborhoods in the heart of Hollywood have a near 0% single parenthood rate” and “forty other California neighborhoods, which include some of the most elite and liberal, are composed almost entirely of two-parent families.”

In this way, there’s an immense divide between what liberal elites say they value – inclusion, family diversity, acceptance of nontraditional morality – and what they prefer in their personal lives. As we reported,

When Californians were asked about their public beliefs, 85% of those with a college degree agreed that family diversity, “where kids grow up in different kinds of families today,” should be celebrated. 69% of those without a college education agreed.

When respondents were asked about their personal attitudes, the majority flipped their answers. Almost 70% of those with a college degree agreed, “It’s very important for me, personally, to be married before having my children.”

So, maybe sexual abstinence before marriage is not such a radical position after all. In fact, it provides liberal elites with the family planning that they say they desire.

ABC News most likely intended the piece to place Speaker Johnson in a poor light, with the outlet explaining the “unearthed segment is the latest example of Johnson’s deeply held views.”

But what are Johnson’s deeply held views?

Sexual abstinence before marriage is important, and married parenthood is a good thing.

They’re views that promote human flourishing and the good of men, women and children. That hardly seems radical at all.

In fact, rather than hitting Speaker Johnson over his “deeply held” views, perhaps ABC News should give the speaker credit for being what our nation is in desperate need of: a good dad.

If you’re a young adult looking for resources on relationships, adulthood or faith, you can check out Focus on the Family’s Boundless ministry here.

Related articles and resources:


When Dating and Politics Don’t Mix

Has Cancel Culture Influenced How You Date?

Marriage and Family Improves Happiness Far More Than a Pay Raise

No, Young Adults, Marriage Has Not ‘Outlived Its Usefulness’

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