"Anxiety in a man's heart weighs him down, but a good word makes him glad." -Proverbs 12:25

"Anxiety in a man's heart weighs him down, but a good word makes him glad." -Proverbs 12:25
Midnight Blue (1963): Jazz guitarist Kenny Burrell featuring Stanley Turrentine on tenor saxophone, Major Holley on double bass, Bill English on drums and Ray Barretto on conga. Midnight Blue is one of Burrell’s best-known works for Blue Note Records. In 2005, NPR included the album in its "Basic Jazz Library", describing it as "one of the great jazzy blues records".

He said, She said...

"You are not designed for everyone to like you - Wise Man Phil

FRAGILE: Sting, Yo Yo Ma, Dominic Miller & Chris Botti

Friday, May 3, 2013

Culture War: Tebow & Collins

Celebrate: to praise widely or to present to widespread and favorable public notice, as through newspapers or novels: a novel celebrating the joys of marriage; the countryside celebrated in the novels of Hardy.

"Culture War"

Yesterday I posted a comment on Facebook that generated meaningful dialogue and contrasting point of views. My post shared a picture and posed this question?:

"I wonder why {he} is not celebrated for his courage? Not trying to be smart or cute. Just a thought..."

Tim Tebow was released from the New York Jets today. 
Here is Tim's response:
Proverbs 3:5-6 states: "Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take."
Now before I go any further this piece is going to be somewhat brief and will be void of any attempt to make a case for or against homosexuality (if you care to read my views on that topic please read my piece entitled: "I'm Gay"). I'm also not here to marginalize Jason Collins or champion Tim Tebow. 

What I want to discuss is why there is such a different standard on how our media chooses to cover different topics and personalities within our culture? Why are some people marginalized because of what they believe and others are viewed as heroes, and are celebrated? This piece is less about sexual preference or christian belief, and more about what our culture, and media, choose to encourage and applaud.

With that being said, I realize that both of those topics have everything to do with how stories are reported and why certain agendas are supported within our society, and our country's media, while others are not.

Jason Collins

Let's face it, if it was only about sports {football & basketball} you would never here their names. Since leaving Florida Tebow has been a "BELOW ADEQUATE" NFL QB, that has been highlighted, and ridiculed, more for his christian beliefs than his play, which for the most part has been poor. Jason Collins, on the other hand, has been a journeymen for 12 years in the NBA that has been foul prone and limited offensively during his career. He averaged 3.6 ppg {2,596 points} and 2.8 fouls {2,026 fouls} per game over his career. 

At the end of the day, everyone who is remotely familiar with me knows how much I respect, appreciate, and admire Tim Tebow. On the flip side I have along admired Collins, and his twin brother, Jarron, for being standout student(s) that have excelled in the classroom at Harvard-Westlake School and Stanford, as well as, on the hardwood. It has been a dream of mine for many years now to have a child go to an Ivy League institution, a military academy and Notre Dame or Stanford. 

I have a lot of kids so I'm able to have this dream. Read the "The Black Brady Bunch" and you will see what I'm talking about.

I apologize for getting off point and becoming distracted. With as many kids that I have it can become extremely difficult to remain focused in even the smallest of things. 

When reviewing the mainstream media's coverage of Tebow and Collins it's a tale of two different stories with the same agenda. The reporting on both athletes is less about sport and more about the dismissal of christian belief and the support of homosexuality. 

Should we be surprised?

I would reply, no. We are just following the path of a secular society.

I think most Americans would agree that as we've become more "progressive" as a nation, and in doing so we've become a more secularized society. A secular society as Os Guinness defines is a society where religious ideas, institutions and interpretations lose their social significance. In another words, if you {have} to claim to be a religious person with strong religious beliefs and values, you are to do so within a secular society quietly, and to keep those beliefs out any discussions surrounding our social institutions, and public policy and debate.

To be a christian today in our society we are directly and indirectly, openly and subliminally ask to keep our beliefs to ourselves. We are ask to be humans with a chest but no heart; a people with a brain, but no thought or opinion.

When Tebow shares his faith people are annoyed. When Collins shares with us his sexual preference he is lionized and celebrated.

I find it interesting that as a society, framed by a majority of media outlets across this country, no other group is ask to keep their beliefs and opinions to themselves like the christian believers are.

USA Today: 5.2.13 (pg 9.) (Toon Talk) 
 How many "negative" characterizations or depictions of Jason Collins, or any gay person 
for that matter, have you seen in mainstream media?

What if the media, and Hollywood, treated the "Gay Community" in the same manner as the christian community is treated. Below are the words of Peter Roff for US News & World Report:

It's a study in contrasts. The fellow who represents what everyone seems to think is the cultural orthodoxy – Tebow – is practically chased off the field in a flurry of social media cat calls while Collins, who represents the outcasts and the unacceptable, gets the call from the president.

 Considering all that, it seems there's a little bit of cultural dishonesty being perpetrated on the American public by the New York-to-Washington mediaplex and the folks out in Hollywood. To hear them tell it, the country still perceives open homosexuals in the ways it did before Stonewall while Christians carry the day as they did in the days of Cotton Mather. And that's just not the case. 

Look at the programs on broadcast television and basic cable, as my friend Janine Turner – formerly of "Friday Night Lights" and "Northern Exposure" and who now hosts a daily radio program on KPRC 950AM out of Houston if you use iHeartRadio – has suggested on more than one occasion. There are more homosexual characters appearing regularly on television right now than those who hold openly conservative or Christian political views. 

More often than not, those who are the conservatives or the Christians – if they appear at all – are the butt of the joke in the comedy, the killer in the cop show, or the malefactors of environmental evil in the crusading lawyer dramas. This is not to suggest that there ought to be quotas or anything of the sort; it's just evidence that gays increasingly get cultural acceptance while conservatives and Christians are treated like invaders from another planet.

I also like this tweet from @sportsfanatic62 that appeared in the USA Today yesterday:

"brave and courageous, the bible says his choice is sinful, but it says same about divorce. Lets not be hypocrite."

Well said.

I think it is important to note that I don't think being a martyr for the christian faith is the way to go. Our world has enough martyrs. Being a martyr is something I'm not interested in. 

Again, my point is very simple: Tebow, or anyone for that matter, should not be celebrated for sharing their views on who they believe they are in Christ. Their personal relationship with Jesus Christ need not be trumpeted throughout the media, but why is it so easy for so many to look at him with a negative eye because of it?

Reality vs Agenda 

Tebow is a very poor NFL QB, that is without question, but so was Troy Smith, who also won a Heisman in college like Tebow. You here very little about Troy Smith... even in Columbus, Oh.  Then there is JaMarcus Russell, the first overall pick of the Oakland Raiders in the 2007 NFL Draft. The Raiders signed Russell to a contract worth $61 million with $32 million guaranteed. Russell played three seasons with the Raiders, compiling 7–18 record as a starter. Due to his inconsistent play the Raiders released him on May 6, 2010. Russell was later arrested on drug charges. How much has the mainstream media covered Russell with an irritating glance?  Do you here about him? No you do not. The reason you don't is because both athletes are not out spoken Christians that pray on the sideline. But Jason Collins shares with the public his sexual preference that fits the agenda of the media, which he is free to choose and do so, and he is celebrated.

Ask yourself; how would Tim Tebow be viewed by the media if he was pro-choice and he happened to be gay? The narrative surrounding that young man from a media standpoint would be completely different. 

He would be a cultural hero then.

In closing, when I posted my remarks on Facebook I was implying that Tebow is often looked at and reported by the media with a {rolling} eye for being a upfront and vocal Christian. He believes what he believes, but when others take a stand for what they believe they are a cultural hero that are to be celebrated. As I mentioned before, I have nothing against Jason Collins, and I'm more than convinced that he wouldn't care if I did. I will say again; I like and admire him very much.

But why the difference in the "reported" appeal and the support of a belief? 

At the end of the day, I think it's important to encourage honesty, truth and courage, but I think it is equally important to be careful what we celebrate as a society. What we have chosen to do as a society is to celebrate the one and only {god} we care about: our-self. We have relegated unto our self the authority to redefine marriage and to decide if another human being should live or die. Our beliefs have become centered around what is truth to the individual. We are playing {god}.

God didn't intend it to be this way. 

We have went to great lengths as a society to desacralize the sacred. Marriage, sex and human life were created by God for good, not for selfish pursuit and vulgarity. God's plan was to celebrate the sacredness of those institutions within the framework of his commandments that we're placed there to protect us, not to harm us. But what we as a society have chosen to do is to do what we think is best, all the while, doing so with the agenda of putting to death accountability and eliminating any absolute truths. The only absolute truth that stands today is that there are {no} absolute truths at all. 

When a secular society begins to eliminate the truths of God, and begins to become gods unto themselves the end result is a country that places it's foundation on the elimination of accountability, shame and guilt. Just observe how teens and adults alike share very private information and images online without concern or shame. Scary. To many it is not.

God placed those legitimate qualities of shame, guilt and accountability within us to protect us from ourselves. I believe He knew what He was doing in doing so.

Think for a minute if we chose to drive our cars in the same fashion society has decided to redefine truth, and that truth is only what is truth to the individual. Imagine drivers deciding to no longer abide by the traffic lights, traffic signs, and painted lines on the road. Picture in your mind cars going where they want to go without the framework of laws and absolute truths preventing them from going where they want to go with little, or no regard, for the consequences of their actions?

The picture I have in my mind is chaos. And that is exactly what we have in our country today; chaos

There is a reason we don't allow drivers to drink and drive. It's because drunk drivers are impaired drivers that are of danger to everyone they might come in contact with. As a country we're driving drunk, and the drink of choice is a combination self importance, selfish desire, and Godless thinking.

And what we have created and developed is a very unsafe environment for everyone involved to live, an enviroment that is littered with media supported cultural wars, the eradication of accountability, shame and guilt, and an eye pointed towards a Godless country.

What we truly have is chaos. Do yourself a favor and tighten up on your world history, and see what comes after chaos?

Let me help you little bit; it's not pretty.

sbb 3.5.13

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