Sunday, February 22, 2004

Okay, here I am going to smear my wonderful housemate, who, for the record, cleans the house and dishes in a manner that nobody in this family could possibly achieve. That said, her music sucks.

No, really. This is downright terrifying. She listens to pop...Christian...radio. How does this differ from normal pop radio, you ask? It's simple; instead of greasy hard-bodied blondes singing lustfully about sex, greasy hard-bodied blondes sing lustfully about God. It's disturbing. But not as disturbing as this:

One of the songs I heard was about how the "seasons turn, turn turn" (I hastily made my oatmeal and cleared out as quickly as possible) and how there is a "tiiiiiime for X, and a tiiiiiime for Y." Two of the lines were,

"A tiiiiime for war, a tiiiiime for peace"
"A tiiiiime for love, a tiiiiiime for hate."

Whataminnit. Christians have, I repeat, a time for hate? Have I been asleep? If we're supposed to love our enemies, and love our neighbors, who do we hate? Fence-sitters? Insurance salesmen? Hard-bodied prettyboys? But really, this follows a general trend in pop music; if your music makes a statement, or defines itself in any way, it alienates listeners. That is way pop music lyrics are as vague as possible, following this general pattern:

"I want to have sex with you really badly"

"I did have sex with you, and I want to tell the world"

"I have lots and lots of sex, and you besta bend over at my whim, being that I am a man" (but do not, repeat NOT, show your boob)

If a song has any kind of artistic merit, or strikes a chord in a particular listener, or expresses a statement that is not "sex is great," it is out. So, most of this religious pop I have heard goes something like this:

"I love God."

"I love God."

"Oh, and by the way, there's this one deity I really like."

Now, I hope we have a good relationship with our Creator and all, but there are all sorts of respectable Christian musicians who spread the words of "love your neighbor" and "give away your second coat" and blahblahblah. But the reason we get the "turn turn turn" song, which comes from a more obscure verse in the Bible as my mom tells me, is because talking about peace or justice on the radio would alienate listeners who are uncomfortable with that whole social justice thing. And so, Christians are stuck in this cultural rut, unable to express any mainstream message other than "god is really great," making us look like dorks.

Lets repeat: Religion doesn't, and really shouldn't, matter. Whoever you believe in, if anybody, is A-okay. Religion without conscience, without purpose, however, is merely a righteous fetish and it's plenty useful for personal reasons but evangelizing for the God Fetish is pretty counter-productive.

C'mon, say it with me now. "Love your enemy." Maybe if we say it over and over again, the popular perception of Christians as war-mongering lunatics will come to an end.

(edit: okay, most people don't think Christians are war-mongering lunatics, most people [in America] think Christians are the pinnacle of righteousness regardless of what they do or how they act towards others, and that's a big part of the problem. Religious arrogance abounds in the US, and when you put that together with our curious culture of victimhood you get a volatile and absurd concoction.)

(oh, and why is it that a man can sing about sex all he wants and glorify his own promiscuity, but if a woman wants to act out of her own desire, she has to seek permission from her male betters in order for it to be culturally sanctioned? That really gets my panties in a knot.)
That first song is by the Byrds, not a Christian Band. :D
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