My wife and I have dragged our daughters to many churches over the past several years. We’ve enjoyed most of the sermons, congregations, programs and pastors, and my wife has liked most of the music. As for me, I’ve pretty much given up on finding any worship music that doesn’t drive me a bit batty.
For background, I’m a plain-old Christian, sans denomination, though I have enjoyed Lutheran, Baptist, Anglican, Reformed and other congregations over the years. Most of the churches I’ve attended are evangelical, with several that would fit into the “megachurch” category. Most have offered inspiring teaching with solid, if not terribly deep, theology. But the music… oh heavens, the music.
My family tires of my weekly critique of modern church music and architecture, so I figured it was time to inflict it upon a larger audience. (You’re welcome, readers.)
Brendan Eich, a successful developer and tech legend, was recently named the CEO for Mozilla Corporation. The for-profit venture is most closely associated with their open-source Firefox web browser.
But after his appointment, a dark secret emerged about Eich’s past. Was it embezzlement or child endangerment? Terrorism or even murder? Even worse. Six years ago, he donated $1,000 to California’s Proposition 8, which banned same-sex marriages in the state.
This personal view, which in 2008 was supported by the majority of California voters and President Obama himself, is now a firing offense in the U.S. Under intense pressure from Silicon Valley activists, Eich has stepped down as CEO and also from the board of the nonprofit foundation which wholly owns it.
Mitchell Baker, Executive Chairwoman of Mozilla announced the change on the company’s blog:
For years, I’ve been annoyed at the slovenly among us. I’m hardly a tuxedo-clad metrosexual, but why do so many adult males dress like kids on summer break? Whether I’m at a tech office, a church service, or — heaven forbid — an airplane, it looks like the Sunday morning after frat rush week. Stained T-shirts over big bellies, ill-fitting Wal-Mart shorts, ratty gym shoes — and would it kill you to drag a comb through that shaggy mop?
Growing up in the Southwest, I’m hardly one for undue formality. Shorts and light shirts are essential for several months of the year. But if you’re afraid to carry a styrofoam cup because strangers keep throwing change in it, it’s time to re-evaluate the wardrobe.
It wasn’t always this way. Compare the crowd buying hotdogs at a baseball game; this first shot is from 1920s New York, the second from today.
If I'm going to succeed in this new America, I need to learn how to be offended. It’s not that I haven’t tried, but I sadly have neither pearls to clutch nor a fainting couch to collapse upon.
The past few days have provided a crash course in the new Politics of Offense:
For years, the media has characterized the GOP as an old, white male monolith. They ignore (or ridicule) Republican female governors and lawmakers, but concoct sexist narratives out of every stray comment.
But the media and Republicans do agree that conservatives need to reach out to women voters. Former governor Mike Huckabee did just that at a meeting of the Republican National Committee this morning. After discussing women’s remarkable achievements, he criticized the Democrats’ ideological sexism:
As a kid, New Year’s Eve fascinated me. It was a night when grown-ups dressed up, drank fancy cocktails and danced across ballroom floors. Granted, my parents only went out a time or two, but I had seen the movies. Most adults had the times of their lives and I couldn’t wait to join them.
Once I hit drinking age, I spent several New Year’s Eves at college bars or block parties trying to join the excitement. I rarely found any. Most the celebrations were overcrowded nightmares of sweaty throngs and queasy drinkers. Hardly the tuxedo-clad soirees I had imagined as a lad.
Eventually I figured out why I didn’t care for New Year's celebrations: They are filled with people who say "WOOO!" I don't like being in places where people say "WOOO!" The revelers aren’t actually having fun, but trying to convince everyone around them that they’re having fun.
Like a weekend in Las Vegas, most NYE revelers are trying to force themselves to have a good time and failing. And what are we even celebrating? An arbitrary hour on an arbitrary calendar first accepted in the U.S. in 1752. There aren’t even any presents.
Tonight I’ll enjoy another quiet evening in, playing board games with the family and watching queasy drinkers shout “WOOO!” on the TV. I’m confident that many readers will roll their eyes at grumpy introverts like me and enjoy far more exciting celebrations. What do you think: Is New Year’s Eve overrated or do you have an evening planned that will change my mind?
New Year's image via Shutterstock.
Two days ago, the left was apoplectic over Megyn Kelly’s scurrilous allegation that Santa Claus is white. (A white Santa?! What a crazy woman!) Not since George Wallace stood in the schoolhouse door has our nation suffered such an assault on racial harmony.
Yesterday, the pretty blonde elf ethnologist was relieved to learn that the offense furies had found a new mortal to torment. In an interview with GQ (that’s still around?), "Duck Dynasty" patriarch Phil Robertson revealed the shocking secret that he’s an old-school, Bible-believing Christian. Maybe Esquire will report that he has a beard and likes hunting.
With a week to go before the big day, I’ve need to get something off my chest: If I hear Paul McCartney’s “Wonderful Christmastime” again I’m going to convert to Norse paganism, grab a battle-ax and lay waste to the local all-holiday radio station.
The choir of children sing their song!
Ding dong! Ding dong!
Ding dong! ding Ahhhhhhh…
"SECURITY! A Viking just killed the board op!
Save us from the wrath of the Northmen!"
The ex-Beatle abomination is number one on my list and I can’t even bear to embed the video. But there are other horrifying songs that litter airwaves, malls and waiting rooms in an effort to ruin this time of year.
The New York Times asked its readership “What Does Black Friday Mean for You?” A few choice comments reveal the tone of the other 318:
To me it means getting in the car with my spouse and adult daughters and heading to Cape May...Birding! None of us buy into this nonsensical consumer binge day.
We interrupt the collapse of the U.S. health insurance system to announce that Colorado’s health exchange did something dumb.
Granted, the Front Range brain trust has set a low bar for itself, what with the shivering co-eds they paid to walk around Denver in their skivvies. And who could forget last month’s Brosurance adfeaturing the dumbest, whitest seventh-year undergrads in the state keg-standing their nation to insolvency?
One would think that the Colorado Consumer Health Initiative would have watched a few Mad Men eps before trying their hands at another campaign. Au contraire.
Worried that the bro-only focus left out the ladies, the site DoYouGotInsurance.com (actual name) decided to make young women look dumb too.