James Leroy Wilson's blog

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Don't Blame Britney and Miley

This is my latest at the Partial Observer. Excerpt:
By 1997, some Christians decided to boycott Disney because Disney - which was never anything remotely like a Christian company - started to give out same-sex partner benefits to their gay employees. If your business employs large numbers of animators, make-up artists, costume designers, and dancers, this sounds like a sensible business decision. The new generation of Christians, however, demanded "wholesome" entertainment from a "wholesome" company, when their grandparents would have warned that seeking "entertainment" was itself the problem. The very fact that a Christian boycott of Disney was called for was proof-positive that the Old Time Religion had died and the boycott could never work. The real problem was not Disney, but the fact that conservative Christians watched Disney videos and vacationed at DisneyWorld. The problem was not the symptoms of sex, violence, or profanity in the movies, but the disease that Christians caught when they had fallen into the hypnotic trap of mass media and pop culture. They would watch the same television shows as everyone else and, perhaps to a lesser extent, the same movies. They would watch the same sports and the same news programs. They would be swayed to want something they didn't need through advertising. They would be presented with a narrow range of choices in the ballot box, and be told this was "freedom" and "democracy."

Had the old-time Christians been as vehemently against radio, records, and television as they were against cards, alcohol, and shows, conservative Christianity may actually have become a counter-cultural movement today, rather than a whiny, paranoid subculture within the mainstream culture that it has become.