Monday, December 04, 2006

What we're up against . . .

Out of curiosity I popped my head into the Matt LaClair thread on the Kearny discussion boards. The thread is still alive, and has reached eight pages. Halfway down page four, Paul LaClair weighs into the debate, addressing points raised hitherto thoughtfully and sincerely.

How does the first Paskiewicz supporter respond? Thusly:

Are you an atheist?
Sigh. It doesn't improve from there, I'm afraid. Paul doggedly persists in conversing with his interlocutors in reasonese, and the rubes keep bringing up his religious beliefs and his occupation as a lawyer (not to mention the odd spelling error) as if they constitute valid counterarguments. (Not to mention ARGUMENT BY CAPS LOCK!!!!! and the repeated refusal to acknowledge the lies of St. Paskiewicz.)


GodMen: the Devil in Mr. Flanders

I don't know how this slipped under the radar, but back in October Newsweek ran an article on the latest phenomenon in American Christianity: GodMen. In its own words:
GodMen believes that being a guy is a reason to be proud - not a problem to be fixed. We connect men to their spiritual masculinity - making them dangerous in a righteous way. [. . .] GodMen reflects a fresh movement among Christian men, a return to biblical patterns of masculinity. Its purpose is to create better disciples, citizens, husbands, and fathers.
GodMen is opposed to pornography, masturbation, single-mother families, and "Christian nice guys." They reserve particular opprobrium for the latter, complaining that Christianity has become "feminised" and a church is no longer a place for a Man's Man. They stand for "Moral purity, integrity, honesty, simplicity, and humility"--everything "nice Christians" and women aren't, presumably.

GodMen sounds like a throwback to the Muscular Christian movement of the nineteenth century. It wouldn't surprise me if these guys agonise over the amount of elan vital they have wasted away on the doona-covers of their youth, never to be regained. (To the strains of typically Godawful country music, of course--check out the music video for "Testosterone High.")

Hugo Schwyzer provides a Christian take.