Friday, January 26, 2007

And now I take on religion. Sort of.

I watched half of Jesus Camp last night (until it was time for Ugly Betty and Nicole took the TV away, which was fine because I finally got to finish The Tin Drum, which took me a week and a half to watch and not enjoy). I did enjoy what I saw of Jesus Camp, though I have some issues with it.

I think since moving to Chicago I've become slightly (just slightly, people, so don't get your panties in a twist) more conservative. This is probably because being a raging liberal isn't as fun here as it was in Virginia. And when I say that I'm slightly more conservative, I actually mean that I'm more apathetic about most causes (abortion, prayer in schools, Iraq - you know, the really important ones that cause people to constantly lose their shit whilst arguing with others whose opinions are the polar opposite. (These are the type of issues about which people will not change their minds.)), although I still care very much about certain issues, albeit quietly. This is exactly why I don't turn my blog into a political one, and it's also why I don't read political blogs (although a few certain ones are so goddamn hysterical (read: nuts) I can't help myself sometimes). And really, the only conservative stance I take on an issue is global warming, but LEAVE ME ALONE it's my opinion and I wrote papers on it and that's where I base said opinion (and, sure, when we're all wearing space suits when we walk outside because the temperature will be three-hundred degrees just like they promised it would back in elementary school, I will gladly concede that yes, global warming is completely and totally real and it's all my fault for using Right Guard spray for two years).

Anyway: Jesus Camp. I read somewhere that someone at sometime (and maybe I'm making this up) voted this to be the scariest movie of the year (after An Inconvenient Truth, of course, which everyone (but me, since I had to cut it off after fifteen minutes once the "So You've Got Global Warming" animated short started playing) agrees is truly terrifying). I think if I was still in high school and still anti-religion (having friends who attended Jerry Falwell's college will do that to you - and, by the way, I apologize now for the parentheses), I would probably have the same reaction. But now I'm older, I'm wiser, and I'm a lot more accepting. I don't really care too much about religious issues anymore; you can have your God, I won't have mine. Is that cool? Can we leave it at that? Good. Problem solved.

Except, it isn't, because the extremists from both the Right and Left keep it dragging on in the bitter fight. And it's all so BORING. I'm so bored, people. You've got the raging conservatives who want to ban gay marriage, take away reproductive rights, keep capital punishment legal, blow up the Middle East (starting with Iraq, of course, and then "Palestine," because They Stand With Israel, even though the Jews killed Jesus), and teach every child that evolution is for Satanists. And then you've got the raging liberals, who stand tall as Christians (they need the Red State voters) but still...uhm, well, honestly, I'm more for these guys, so it's harder for me to come up with the bad things they want. But I do think the constant ridicule of Christianity and Red Staters is pretty obnoxious, because it doesn't do much for the unification of this country. And, frankly, I think constantly portraying Christianity only in the way that Jesus Camp and Borat does is not very fair. Granted, I'm not a Christian, but I do know a couple who are perfectly normal. And while they aren't the holy rollin' types, I'm sure that if one were to examine just why and how people believe these things, you'd learn a lot more than just ridiculing their faith. (Try Searching for the Wrong-Eyed Jesus, for example, which is a superb documentary.)

I'm glad I grew up Episcopalian, a denomination that treats religion as more a hobby and a social ritual than a way of life. Also, everyone knows that Episcopalians are the classy Christians.


Broady said...

"I'm glad I grew up Episcopalian, a denomination that treats religion as more a hobby and a social ritual than a way of life. Also, everyone knows that Episcopalians are the classy Christians."

Interesting paragraph. As another Episcopalian, I'm not sure if I want to laugh, agree or argue with you on that point. I will be mulling this throughout the day.

Anonymous said...

Tyler Tyler, on this whole Global Warming thing...I find it hard to believe you don't believe it's real yet (not Gore's global Warming from his movie, he's just ignorant). There's a big difference between Gore's definition of Global Warming and the accepted definition of Global Warming. But I won't bore you with all that stuff.

And about the whole growing-up-Episcopal thing, yea, you're pretty much right. I've heard it described as "It's like being Catholic, without all the beliefs."


sarah said...

spray on deodorent? really?

Tyler said...

Sarah, didn't you also make some snooty comment about my acquired flat iron? You're all about ridiculing my former grooming habits. :)

Garin said...

I watched Jesus Camp yesterday. My friend told me it was the scariest movie he's ever seen, so i was intrigued. I was shocked at those kids. They are gonna grow up to be deviants. Or serial killers. Or start David Koresh-esque cults. I like the girl who walks up to random strangers thinking they need saved."I think they're Muslim." Funny.