Friday, July 07, 2006

New Statue of Liberty Unveiled

It’s funny to think back on the early 70’s (something, alas, I can actually do,) and consider the veritable spicerack of movements taking place at that time: The Black Panthers, Women’s Lib, Gay Rights, Stop The War, the fledgling environmental movement, assorted post-hippie Back to Nature groups, etc. There, among the stalls in that crafts fair of lifestyle choices, could be found the first twinkling of the modern evangelical movement: Jews for Jesus.

They were a whacky but seemingly harmless lot, like hippies with much, much better drugs. They were perpetually on message (Jesus Will Take Care of Everything,) smiled all the time and passed out happy-talk pamphlets with simple prose, cartoons and lots of exclamation points!!! Hard to believe they won.

But win they did, my friend… bigtime. Jews for Jesus morphed and coalesced with others into the “Born Again” movement (which, whatever it does for its adherents, certainly managed to revitalize the Christian Faith,) and now that overfriendly, moon-faced guy in tye-dye handing out cartoons has captured the hearts and minds of over half the nation.

It could’ve been worse I suppose: it could’ve been the Moonies, or those people who used to dress all in red, or the Krishnas (imagine half the country banging on tambourines and an economy based on asking for money at airports.) If history is any guide, however, things are going to get much worse before they get better. Look for further cooption of national symbols, historical revisionism and the discovery of many, many more enemies of the Christian Faith. You, for example.

Unfortunately, fundamentalist religious movements rarely go away by themselves. They usually end up in a sort of national hysteria and purging of non-believers, coupled with disastrous foreign campaigns, economic and social collapse and a long, slow road to recovery spent muttering “Never Again.” And then the whole thing starts all over again. Somewhere further down the road our grandchildren may get to see Lady Liberty with one of those ridiculous ponytails holding a tamborine.


Annie said...

Somewhere further down the road our grandchildren may get to see Lady Liberty with one of those ridiculous ponytails holding a tamborine.

Now that's a statue I'd like to see!

"Senator, when you took your oath of office, you placed your hand on the Bible and swore to uphold the Constitution. You didn't place your hand on the Constitution and swear to uphold the Bible." - Jamie Raskin
Responding to to a question from Maryland Republican State Senator Nancy Jacobs about whether marriage discrimination against gay people is required by "God's Law."

Nutmeg5 said...

Why not have Lady Liberty dressed in a sheet and the cross on fire?

Anonymous said...

You know your history well. Too bad more Americans don't.

Anonymous said...

The more twisted of us could have some fun with that statue. Crossed eyes, red lipstick and rouge, and maybe Kermit The Frog nailed to the cross.