If you live in America, which I’m assuming just about every reader of this does, you run the risk of subscribing to the cinematic culture woven by media companies, the MPAA, and big-budget Hollywood, a key message of theirs being that violence is not too terrible, but sex is wildly immoral. Just about all other countries will give a violent film a harsher rating than a film with a lot of sexual content. Many Americans think this is backwards because they’ve been raised by a Puritanical culture that is afraid of sexuality; however, Europeans think we’re backwards because violence kills and sex does not, yet we glorify the former and vilify the latter. They watch our media and then see how violent our nation is in terms of foreign affairs, and no one is surprised. Read More
This post is one in a continuing series for the month of March that aims to examine the American Church’s response to homosexuals in their midst, whether they be believers, agnostics, or atheists. This month’s series was spawned by the Harding University Queer Press publishing a zine on March 2 featuring the voices and stories of past and present LGBTQ students at Harding University in Searcy, Arkansas, my alma mater. The zine can be downloaded in its digital entirety at http://www.huqueerpress.com.
The last post zoomed out a bit to take a broader look at why the Church’s reputation has gotten so bad, and I ended it with noting how all eyes are on the Church. People are watching intently. And it’s not just the media, it’s not just scholars, it’s not just cultural analysts—the gays and lesbians are especially watching, and (time to zoom back in) this is true at Harding University. Read More
Today is a big day at Harding University. Past and present students who are gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender will have their voices heard in the form of a self-published zine distributed on the religiously and politically conservative Searcy, Arkansas campus. I was going to post this at the same time the physical copies of the zine would be distributed on the campus tonight, but the publication was leaked early, so quite a few people are already aware of its existence. But whether you’re a current or former student of Harding University or don’t even know where the heck Searcy, Arkansas is, you should check this zine out. While it focuses primarily on students experiences of being closeted and marginalized gays at a religiously fundamentalistic college in the South, there are still universal themes here to which all should pay attention. Read More