While I was at the Wild Goose Festival in NC a week or so back, Deborah Arca of Patheos' Progressive Christianity Portal asked me and a few other folks (Brian McLaren, Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove, Lisa Sharon Harper, and Roger Wolsey) – apropos of an impending July 4th – if we would speak on video for a wee little bit about our understanding of patriotism and how it played with out Christianity. My response is above and here, and though I'm not 100% on my subject-verb agreement and my diction leaves more than a speck to be desired, I feel pretty good about what I said on the whole. By all means, please go ahead and check it out, AND make sure to read the paragraph that follows this one for the thing that gets me going.
What is bizzarre / sad / unfortunately-predictible-upon-cultural-assessment is the sheer number of objectify-ingly disrobed women that popped up when – doing my normal Google image search for some nice little graphic to plug into my blog post – I entered the search term "Patriotism." To put this another way… when Google (which is really nothing more than an easily accessible repository for the traces of America's projections) was asked to show me patriotism, MORE THAN 1 IN 10 OF THE IMAGES PROVIDED AS AN ANSWER WERE BLATENTLY misogynistic. If you want to see in greater detail what I am talking about, turn off "safety search" (if you have it enabled) to ensure no ratings-based censorship that happens, then check this search out.
Maybe it is the late time of night or the heat getting to me, but SWEET JIMMY! does this make me wonder / bothered / sad.
Now I'm certainly no sexless prude, but here's my two cents at the moment: if you didn't already know that the Principalities and Powers where at work idolatrously conflating our political nation with our spiritual salvation, then look no further than the way we heavily employ sexism to visually conceive of the notion of patriotism.
May this too find redemption.