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Thursday, February 15, 2007

Is It Really About the Unfairness?

I was reading some of my favorite blogs while feeding Jerome and came across a very funny Valentine's post on one of them. What struck me was the replies in the comments.

The post described a dishonest means of getting girls to make some sort of chastity vow in quite the hilarious manner. It was absolutely dishonest, and evidently at this church in the 1980s, they did not seem to think it was important for the boys to vow to be chaste. I'll leave off my thoughts on signing a contract to indicate acceptance of a vow, or the morality of extracting a vow by surprise, and the heavy burden and responsibility those church leaders have for any failures to uphold that vow, since they induced people to make them, rather than encouraging them to make a promise, I'll also skip the biblical understanding of the difference between a promise and a vow or the discussion of the wisdom of trying to get young people to vow to anything without giving them preparation, and a good understanding of what God thinks of upholding vow.

Anyway. Many of the people responding were outraged, outraged I tell you!, that the boys were not asked/required to make this same vow. I am there with them, actually. However, their further comments give lie to their care in whether or not boys or girls make or keep such a vow. The rest of the discussion indicated that the main reason for not signing on to such a thing wasn't because of the duplicitous means of extracting said vow, or because only the girls were expected to do so, and certainly wasn't because of any of the things I mentioned above that I'm not really going to discuss at the moment. Their main reason for not signing on was because they thought chastity unnecessary, foolish and unworthy. If that is the case, then I wish they wouldn't use their outrage about the boys as a smokescreen. It isn't the real issue. The real issue is that they disdain chastity.

I also really appreciated the comments of one person in particular, who wrote:

Pastor's kids are scary. The woman who broke up my marriage was a pastor's daughter. Nuff said.

Because we all know that one person is enough to brand an entire group of people. I believe there are some words for that in our language. Misrepresentation, prejudice and bigotry are the first three to come to mind. Don't get me wrong, I've known a couple pretty messed up PKs, but to paint with such a broad stroke is foolish, at best. The vast majority of pastor's/priest's kids I've known or heard of have been decent, faithful, nice people. They make mistakes and foolish decisions at about the same rate as everyone else I've known, but also seem to come to themselves and turn from their foolishness in better time. I also somehow doubt the experience of someone who, of her own words, avoids churches and religious people to have a great grasp on those people's natures. It is easy to see only the scary pastor's kids when you don't know that the people quietly going about their lives are also, some of them, PKs, especially if you go out of your way to avoid most church folk anyway.


I wonder why they would think it's ok to do such a thing? Strange.
I read that blog entry, actually the first time I'd ever seen that blog. I found the way she was set up quite outrageous, but the rest of it simply deeply sad.

On a far more superficial level, as a metaphor for how to deal with such a situation, I had an election worker call me once and highly pressure me to talk about my upcoming vote on an issue. I simply said, mildly, You wouldn't tell me how you are going to vote, would you? A perfect stranger? Right. Then why would I be telling you?
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