Posts Tagged ‘Media’
Posted on July 3, 2013 at 12.37 am
Thanks to Red Alert Politics for featuring me in this year’s 30 Under 30 list!
Posted on April 5, 2013 at 2.56 pm
Q. I am wondering how you think the republican party can fight the mass media on their anti church moves? Although I believe in science the Church is a pedestal from which many derive principles. — worstthatcouldhappen, from tumblr.
A. Here’s the thing: I don’t think it’s the job of the Republican Party to defend the church. And I’m not super interested in somehow fighting the “mass media” (an increasingly difficulty to define term in the internet age) because it says stuff we don’t like about the church.
Let’s start with the first point: Church and politics in many ways should not mix. Should our politics be informed by and congruent with our trust in Christ? Unquestionably.
But the church is not a political movement (remember, his “kingdom is not of this world”), and the very last thing I want to see happen is for the church to be wrapped up in or confused with or championed by any political party. It’s damaging to both sides, but especially to the mission and reputation of the church.
Kingdom people are called to pledge their allegiance to God alone, not to any nation, government, political party or ideology. Because Kingdom people are under the rule of God alone, they are not under any other rule. Kingdom people are thus called to be “anarchists” (meaning without [“an”] human authority [“archy”]). Not only this, but the main task of Kingdom people is to keep the Kingdom “holy” — meaning “set apart,” “separate” and “consecrated.” We are to take great care to live lives that are set apart from the ideals, values and methods of the world’s politics.
Now, on to the question of the mass media and stopping attacks on the church. My best suggestion: Let’s be more Christ-like.
Until the kingdom Jesus started with his death and resurrection is fully realized, there will always be people, both in and out of the media, who disagree with and even actively dislike Christianity. The Great Commission is designed to change this, of course, but realistically in our lifetimes this segment of the population is not going away.
When asked by The Barna Group what words or phrases best describe Christianity, the top response among Americans ages 16-29 was “antihomosexual.” For a staggering 91 percent of non-Christians, this was the first word that came to their mind when asked about the Christian faith. The same was true for 80 percent of young churchgoers. (The next most common negative images? : “judgmental,” “hypocritical,” and “too involved in politics.”)
This question reminds me a lot of the discussion over how to get more women to be libertarians. Many people take the position that there’s something wrong with women; I suggest that we libertarians instead work on improving our own pitch (and manners).
So how can the church go about changing our own behavior? Most simply, we should above all prioritize loving God and loving people. Practically, I think this looks like the church doing a lot less politics and a lot less being afraid of people who aren’t or don’t like us—and a lot more focusing on how to serve any and everyone.
And while this might have the pleasant side effect of making more people in the media like us, more important, it’s the main thing we’re supposed to be doing as Christians:
Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.[…] God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them. This is how love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment: In this world we are like Jesus.
There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love. (I John 4:8, 16b-18)
I too think the church is invaluable; that’s exactly why I don’t want to see her battling off the media with the support of the GOP. We’re called to wash feet, not wage political war.
And if it doesn’t work? Well, people said worse things about Jesus.
Posted on February 17, 2013 at 9.48 pm
This past weekend, I was honored to be included in a panel discussion at ISFLC 2013 which was moderated by Nena Bartlett and also featured Cathy Reisenwitz and Julie Borowski. The panel was titled, “Girls! Girls! Girls!: Marketing Libertarianism to Women,” and the prepared version of my comments can be found below. Video of the whole panel should be posted on Cathy’s YouTube panel soon!
Question 1: Are there barriers to entry for women in the Liberty Movement? If so, what are they? If not, is there an issue with the current gender balance?
Are there barriers to entry for women in the liberty movement? I think for many of us, the self-evident answer seems to be a qualified yes. These barriers certainly aren’t formal—there aren’t any liberty organizations turning away women at the door—but it would be difficult to deny that there’s a gender imbalance. At this very conference, among the attendees and especially the roster of speakers, men are by far the majority.
Now, we libertarians have a lot of opinions that we love to share, but the subject of why most libertarians aren’t women has received comparatively little attention until the last few years—and the attention the question has gotten is, to my mind, typically not helpful.
Like some conservatives, some libertarians make the case that women are naturally more inclined to lean left—usually it’s some combo of their apparent greater desire to fit in or the maternal instinct feeding a love of social programs. Some go so far as to say that women make their political decisions according to their feelings, not logic (like men), and indeed women “are natural socialists.”
We could have a very lengthy discussion about whether or not there is truth in these claims and, if so, if such habits of behavior are truly innate or if they’re simply the product of social conditioning.
I’m not interested in having that discussion—and I don’t think the liberty movement as such needs to do so either. Let psychologists and sociologists figure out those details.
For my purposes here, suffice it to say that I’m not in that camp. This analysis strikes me as off-putting at best—not to mention, it’s an ironically sweeping collectivization coming from supposedly individualist libertarians. It’s perhaps also noteworthy that this panel isn’t discussing whether men are too difficult to reach with the message of liberty because they’re “naturally” inclined to aggression and war.
But I digress. Rather than talk about differences between the sexes, the suggestion I’d like to make is that even if the most extreme of these claims about women are true—if women are by nature mandated by their emotion-addled brains to focus only on pragmatic, often collective ways to take care of others—that should not be a barrier to equal representation of women within the liberty movement.
If it is a barrier, then we, not women at large, are the ones doing something wrong.
The onus remains on the liberty movement to get women into the fold.
In short: This is a marketing problem.