Tag Archives: culture wars

I Think I Need an Exorcism, and You Probably Do Too… Part 1

christmas-journeyFaceBook is admittedly a strange land. Is it not? And it has been clear for quite some while that we don’t really know how to dwell there as our best human selves. Even so, in the past few weeks I have noticed something in myself and in others that has lead me to an admittedly bizarre but entirely sincere conclusion: I may be in need of an exorcism, and it is very probable you might need one too. Continue reading

Shouting at the Bishop: Why agreeing to disagree is not a Christian response to the culture wars.

Chess bishop 1000.jpg

Chess bishop 1000.jpg (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A few years ago I found myself protesting a certain national politician’s photo-op tour of a shelter for people who had been displaced to my city by hurricane Katrina.   This particular visit seemed a little more self-serving and crass than usual, so much so that it had folks from all-kinds of political persuasions hrumphing a bit.  I was certainly hrumphing. In fact, not that this was the first time, but I made have made a weeeee bit of a scene.   Well, actually I am quite sure I did as I received a pretty direct smack down from the Bishop in the very next diocese-wide newsletter.   Continue reading

An Incensed Pacifist and the story of the Chickens

Another guest post today from Tarah Van De Wiele, an amazing theologian and Biblical scholar living as an ex-pat in England.  You can read more about her and her adventures and her adventures living outside the U.S. at ever popular blog: 2 People, 2 Dogs & 10 Bags.

 I am a pacifist. But historically I am an incensed one.

This is why it has finally become dire that I expend the energy built up inside me from the endless culture wars that inform our language, plague our dinner tables, and crawl across the TV screen like some bug you can’t seem to swat away. Are you pro or anti? Red or blue? Straight or gay? Black or white? Male or female? Enough. Al. Ready.

Chickens

Chickens (Photo credit: Allie’s.Dad)

The latest culture war sparked by a certain chicken restaurant completely caught me off guard. I spent an entire day stalking the web for pictures of people fighting in the war. After a few hours I managed to succumb to the purest form of rage available to an incensed pacifist, and began to brainstorm what smart but highly insulting sign I would distribute, what post I would send viral, what boycott I would demand. And the only question by 4 in the afternoon was not if I should curse but HOW MUCH.

And then the chickens showed up. Continue reading

Taxes, Caesar and Living Like Hobbits: Jesus’ take on the Culture Wars.

Here is a guest post in our series on the culture wars from a friend, one time fellow barista, and former student of mine, Fr. Matt Boulter. More about Matt can be found at his blog: Religiocity.

In about the year 6 AD in ancient Palestine, with winds of revolution blowing in the air, a Jewish militant called Judas of Galileerose up in defiance of the oppressive Roman government, at that time brutally plaguing the Jewish people. In his revolutionary zeal Judas does three things:

Judas the Galilean image from Universität Wien

  1. Rids the Temple of Gentiles by force.
  2. Preaches for people to forsake Caesar in favor of hi view of the Kingdom of God.
  3. Calls Jews to refuse to pay some taxes to Caesar.

Shortly after his anti-Imperial mutiny, Judas was summarily attacked, captured, and executed. His revolutionary followers, thus, disbanded and went home. Fast-forward the story about a quarter century, when we encounter one Jesus of Nazareth who does some very similar, and yet entirely different things. Continue reading

Bumper Stickers Don’t Change Hearts, and Other Reasons the Culture Wars are Hurting Everyone.

Bumper sticker car parked in Santa Cruz, Calif...

Bumper sticker car parked in Santa Cruz, California. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

What good are bumper stickers?   So far in my life I have never seen anyone pull the car over and say to the passenger, “You know what? You CAN’T hug the world with nuclear arms, can you?” or, “I just visualized world peace and it was awesome.”

They are not really arguments, let alone compelling ones.  Bumper stickers don’t really change people’s lives.  Nevertheless it is nearly impossible to go anywhere for a short drive in just about any town and not see the simple black “W,” a Shepherd Fairey, “Hope”  illustration of Obama, a name followed by a “2012,” or a pithy statement about how just such-and-such a position makes the most obvious moral sense or that ridicules the opposition.   So I’ve been wondering, if these little traveling slogans don’t really change things, why do they keep showing up everywhere, and more importantly, what are they really trying to tell me?  Continue reading