A couple of weeks ago I spent a few days with a friend Bill he lives in a small country town. He has been living with Jane his schoolteacher girlfriend for almost 10 years now, they live a contented modest life. One afternoon we were having a couple of beers when he said something that made me reflect on the mental framework in which we do our thinking. My brother is a mature adult and lives his life in a manner that he chooses. He (like many others) does not like wearing a bicycle helmet and refuses to use one . Recently his girlfriend was called for an informal 'chat' with the principal of the school. It seems that the principal had seen Bill on his bike without a helmet. The principal said that this was wrong and that he was a poor example to the local children and that she should make him wear a helmet.
I could imagine the principal calling in Jane 30 years ago for a similar 'chat' except that in those days the subject would have been her 'living in sin' and no thought would have been given to bicycle riding. The point is that once to ride without a helmet would have been normal but it would be an extremely poor example to the children for a role model (yes, once teachers were role models) to live as a couple without getting married. Now the living together is fine but it's terrible that he rides without a helmet!
The point is that all of us generally do our thinking within the confines of what is and isn't socially acceptable at the time. We need to realise that just because a particular attitude is accepted as a 'truth' at the time, does not mean that it is a 'truth' or ever was or will be a 'truth'. We need to examine our attitudes to what we think of as rights and wrongs. Is what we think and do a product of the social and political mores of the time, or are they based on a definite philosophy of the rights and obligations of individuals? I personally believe that each adult (and I define adults as being over 21 years) has the right to live their life as they please as long as they do no harm to others. It took me a long time to get to this point but I believe that it is the only valid way for us to live in a secular society. It also includes the right for me to amuse myself by laughing at the way others choose to live their lives, and laughing out loud in public and print at what I perceive to be funny. They can do the same to me as long as they do not force their beliefs or rules on me.
You could say 'I laugh at two or more men who choose to cohabit and keep a cocker spaniel, but I will defend to the death their right to do so!'