There is a significant subset of Christians who somehow find great comfort in products stamped with a "Christian" label. While they proclaim the rejection of "worldly ways" they often adopt them by dressing up inferior knock off products in Christian god talk language and act as if that somehow provides value and morals. They feel they get automatic points for using a PrayStation instead of PlayStation, taking Scripture Mints instead of Altoids, or starting a collection of Holy Bears instead of Beany Babies.

Product branding allows worldly junk to be transformed into Christian value just by slapping a name on it. There are lots of examples of product branding, consider what happens within Christian Rock, Christian Wrestling, Christian Diets, Christian Romance Novels, Christian Video Games, Christian Horror Stories, Christian Motorsports, Christian Nightclubs, even Christian New Age woo woo. With Christian Products you can ignore values, the main things are the name and intent. Don't stab with a light saber, use the Bibleman sword. It vibrates and has sound effects. Abandon mind numbing rock music and listen to mind numbing Christian Rock music. If a product, action or activity somehow has some tenuous claimed tie to the glorification of God and avoids swear words and doesn't directly contradict any current dogma, it can become sanctified.

I didn't used to worry so much about these believers in the magic power of a name. Let them build their own weird subculture where they have a second rate mirroring of secular society with the name Jesus plastered all over the place. I thought, who can that hurt outside their own group? I'm afraid now that the answer is all of us. These poor mislead individuals might end up getting one of their own into the oval office.

A lot of people given right words and talk about Jesus, can convince themselves that almost anything is admirable. Call your values biblical, say you love Jesus and then do whatever the hell you'd like. You can sell God's war in the Middle East as well as God's natural gas pipeline. Jesus can turn anything around. Sara Palin was not happy hearing her son had a tattoo, but gushed, "oh, he did something right coz on his calf was a big ole Jesus fish." Branding with Jesus helped an irresponsible teenager who impregnated another irresponsible teenager, be invited to sit in the VIP box and hear the cheering throngs at the Republican National Convention. Previously religious conservatives might have shunned young people guilty of such an indiscretion. But now that problem can be solved because they are practicing the new "Christian" version of teen sex, another inferior product that gives comfort to these people. They would otherwise condemn ordinary teen sex, but can appreciate, applaud and admire the "Christian" version.

Let's look at that inferior product. "Christian teen sex" is built exclusively on the model of abstinence. Sex is bad, don't even think about it. Don't even think of alternatives that might avoid pregnancy, because you should just say no. The" Christian Teen Sex" model recognizes temptation, sin and forgiveness, but please do not plan on sex or do anything like taking reasonable precautions just in case. Whatever happens should happen with a minimum of precaution.

During times of temptation what might go through the mind of a young girl, raised with the "Christian Teen Sex" approach. Her mind is telling her she should abstain but the temptation she feels is huge. She might start out by reasoning that if she doesn't get pregnant; she won't get caught and recognizing we all are sinners she can seek forgiveness later. As temptation looms her feelings might take over. She might think:
"What's the worst that can happen if I do get pregnant? How very sweet babies are. How much I think I love this boy. My Mom will be so proud of me for carrying this baby. I can marry the boy. We can be a Christian pro-life role models who are applauded and respected. This just feels right in my heart.".
Forget any rational assessment of what is best for her, the boy, or the baby. Not having been trained to think critically and question emotional thinking, she is set up to make a bad decision. Her feelings may overcome her fears:
"Deep inner feelings like that wouldn't mislead you, would they? Oh, no of course not. They are so similar to how I know God and how he speaks to my heart."

For the rest of us, is this new "Christian Teen Sex" an improvement over ordinary teen sex? Certainly most of us would like to shield teenagers from the adverse impacts of bad choices. However that might best be accomplished by encouraging personal responsibility, something missing from the "Christian Teen Sex" version. The mixed messages of "Christian Teen Sex" tend to maximize adverse impacts while diminishing the chance for positive sexuality to emerge. "Christian Teen Sex", it's just talk without any real positives.

Providing only language about God and Jesus without that addition of any real values is a lot like putting lipstick on a pig. However, it's a lot harder to find people who will say the pig is beautiful, than to find those who will uncritically accept the empty talk around Christian Values.

Views: 59

Tags: abstinence, christian, marketing, palin, sex, teen

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