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Blog // Thoughts
November 3, 2004

Concession and Contemplation

In an hour or so, Senator John Kerry will concede defeat in a speech at Faneuil Hall in Boston. I’m not happy to say that I predicted on this Weblog that George W. Bush would retain the presidency, but there it is. Certainly the press will clearly focus in the coming weeks and months on […]

In an hour or so, Senator John Kerry will concede defeat in a speech at Faneuil Hall in Boston. I’m not happy to say that I predicted on this Weblog that George W. Bush would retain the presidency, but there it is. Certainly the press will clearly focus in the coming weeks and months on the role that Evangelical Christians and the groups that lead them played in this election, together with the issues they saw as important.

One thing this election result clearly does is define a set of priorities or concerns that Christian thinkers should contemplate. I believe that the powerful public relations engine that drove the Bush campaign to victory will be emboldended to escalate the culture wars in the US over at least the next two years, if not the whole of the next presidency. This is not just an issue for those involved with the US, but also outside the US, because I believe that we will see this political agenda exported through denominational and mission agencies over the coming years.

Starting this Friday, and for the following three Fridays after that I will be posting on this Weblog a series of short articles on the key issues that Christian thinkers will need to reflect upon over this time in our history.

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7
Responses
Toni 18 years ago

Lets try again

CMF is not a good place to go at the moment. I have effectively closed my account there for the time being, and done my best to remove all links back to me from the site. I see no point in talking, because any attempt at discussion ends with me being seen as a ‘Bush hater’ and european liberal commie who cannot understand America.

Time to move on.

f 18 years ago

The Christian Musician’s Forum is, sadly quite reprsentative of a certain section of the US Christian population and is now out of control. Of course, this is exhasherbated by the recent election result, but the attitude is not new at all.

Toni 18 years ago

I’ve not actually burnt my bridges publicly with the Christian Masterrace forum, but I’ve detached to a considerable degree (changed email address to a nonsense address etc). However something keeps burning away in me about it. Scarily, I’ve even wondered a couple of times if they could be right, although I have no doubt really. I don’t know if it’s the pain of rejecting brother’s fellowship, the pain of personal rejection or a need to go back and balance the books a little. Maybe even bring Jesus back into a madness inspired by a few key individuals.

What’s your thoughts? Should I return or just leave them to wallow deeper in their own mess?

f 18 years ago

You have to do what feels right to your conscience. Disunion between believers does and should feel painful. Certainly there is a growing divide between evangelical Christianity in the US and in the rest of the world (check out the latest edition of Sojourners).

As for the CMF; well I have felt an inclintion to try and reach out over that divide. However, there is only so much one can take of being called a baby-killing/pro-gay/euro-socialist/anti-God/liberal. I will probably write a blog entry about this in the coming weeks, but I think the forum-style environment can work against healing an ideological divide. This is because people see one aspect of what someone says, for example concern for the poor, then construct a whole ideology around that. That leaves people reduced to ciphers and only those who parrot the dominant ideology can remain in the discourse. Anyone else gets shouted down.

Toni 18 years ago

Well I did go back, and seemed to elicit a certain amount of grace. There was a bit of hedging, but not too bad. I don’t feel it’s enough for a turnaround yet, but others have obviously felt the same way, because of the threads that have started.

Something I hadn’t realised before is how inferior Americans feel, and how that makes them behave the way they do. There have been little hints all along, but it never really solidified. I’m sure that’s why they export thier culture, operate agressively in this format and upset everyone else. Apart from Germans (from which a lot of American culture was derived) I’ve never come across a race so focussed on certifying performance. Everything seems to be role by qualification, rather than ability.

f 18 years ago

Well, I had a look at the CMF today and saw the following quote, from one of the forum admistrators.

Your comment about inferiority is interesting. I don’t think it applies universally, but certainly resentment is a potent feeling in some segments of the US. I’ll be addressing that in the 3rd and 4th instalments of the Concession and Contemplation papers.

Toni 18 years ago

Sorry Fern – I can’t see the quote.

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