My Post College Life

Random thoughts from a recent grad. Consists mostly of misplaced hostility manifested as sarcastic smack-downs on people I don't personally know.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

In My Humble Opinion:

As Americans, we should try to recognize our similarities and celebrate our differences (corny I know). As a Christian, one should be tolerant, forgiving, and loving. Isn’t Christianity about imitating Christ? Wasn’t he supposed to be all of those things?

The Christian group “Christian Battle Cry” has the same undertones as the terrorist organization E.T.A.. Specific quotes of relevance: “ETA is considered by Spain, France, the European Union, and the United States to be a terrorist organization…” and “It evolved rapidly from a group advocating traditional cultural ways, to an armed group fighting for independence.”

I think religious teen/youth groups are great if they help the individual deal with problems/life. However, I do not support any group of any religion that encourages violent behavior in defending their religion from “attacks” a la Al Qaeda. If Christians want to be more pro-active in their faith they should be missionaries, not soldiers. Battle Cry is taking faith to a place it isn’t meant to go: murder for religion.

I came across an article written by a decidedly liberal viewpoint. This is the first of three articles written on the group and its war-themed rallies which feature armed Navy SEALs brandishing assault rifles on the stage. The articles outline the blatant appreciation for violent overtones and declarations of war as well as the fact that good old President George W. Bush sent a letter of support, greeting, prayer and encouragement to the Battle Cry event which was read to open the rally.

I have visited the official Battle Cry website and read some disturbing things. Words such as “warrior”, “battle plan”, and “trench mate,” are used to illustrate the organizations mission to fight the war they believe is being waged against Christianity. The following is “the crisis”:
“A stealthy enemy has infiltrated our country and is preying upon the hearts and minds of 33 million American teens. Corporations, media conglomerates, and purveyors of popular culture have spent billions to seduce and enslave our youth. So far, the enemy is winning. But there is plenty we can do. We need to take action. We need to answer the Battle Cry.”

So Christians are noting that their religion seems to have come under attack in recent years. Maybe it has something to do with members of the Christian religion pressing their values on everyone else. If members of the Islamic faith decided one day that everyone needed to be like them and started going on TV and staging rallies and telling people that they’re damned for not being of their sect, well then everyone would be attacking Islam. Oh that’s right, they already are.

The problem I see with this organization is that they are doing the same things to America’s youth that the corporations are guilty for. Battle Cry creates a sort of mob mentality, a team scenario in which impressionable teens think they are more important and “better” than those poor unsaved schmucks on the opposite side. They are feeding on the need teens have to ‘follow the herd’ and to yearn for acceptance within a group. They try to say that they want to save teens from the scurge of popular culture that has brainwashed them into a damned existence without values.

See also the Wikipedia summary of the Battle Cry organization for some truly eye opening quotes. I especially like "We will respect the authorities placed in our lives, even though some may not live as honorably as they should." Classic.

If Battle Cry really wanted to help teens overcome our mind numbing corporate culture, they would be out there encouraging our youth to think for themselves and support small business. How about encouraging teens to volunteer, to watch less T.V., spend more time with their families? This organization may claim to do these things, but the problem is they use the Christian religion and fear of Hell as their motivation. If, for example, you were a Jewish teen looking for guidance, it wouldn’t matter to Battle Cry if you agreed with their distaste for popular culture and needed help because, well, you’re a Jew.

So what is the difference between the fashion industry saying “buy this Gucci bag or risk being totally uncool and friendless,” and the Christan Battlecry saying “join this group and support our cause or go to Hell?” In the fashion industry there are tons of choices in brand name labels that will get you popularity, acceptance and shallow notoriety if you can shell out enough cash. In the industry of religion there is apparently only one brand good enough to keep you from eternal damnation, and all it will cost is your soul. I think I'll stick with the Gucci bag.

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