This week, CaPCMag is all about controversy. We delve into the stuff that divides us and try to come to some sort of nuanced and truthful place that somehow drives the conversation forward. In two exclusive features available only in the iPad and iPhone app we examine one controversy that’s on the forefront of everyone’s mind, and another controversy that ought to be more prevalent. To read these fantastic articles, make sure you download and subscribe now! (there’s a free trial if you’re uncertain. You’ll love it though, so it’s kinda redundant.)
This issue, S.L. Whitesell offers up a meaty analysis of the concept of marriage, and a stark explanation of how the DOMA decision will affect the church going forward:
In the span of a decade, it went from taboo to fashionable to support “marriage equality,” and the language of civil rights was appropriated for the cause. Senators and other national figures, mostly Democrats, came out of the woodwork to announce their support. In 2012, the Democrat National Committee became the first major party in the United States to include the issue as part of its platform. Some Republicans, mostly the usual suspects, adopted this latest fashion (though they lagged well behind Dick Cheney in this regard).
Christians were not immune from the preference cascade. Some liberal denominations had supported such measures for years — if that’s a badge of pride for you as a Christian, consider yourself acknowledged as ahead of the times. But the pressure was immense even on traditionalists. At best, Christians were accused of naively clinging to an outmoded morality and trying to force it on the rest of the nation. At worst, traditional marriage defenders were compared to white supremacists and jeered at for denying equal citizenship.
Christians have been equally unhelpful, accusing well-meaning revisionists of attempting to destroy civilization, or speaking of a sinister gay agenda. The narrative of equal rights and love-is-love puts traditionalists on the defensive, oftentimes scrambling for a rhetorical bomb to lob back in retaliation. Whatever truth there may be in such claims, it is hardly necessary to take such a tone in every conversation.
Also in this issue, Jason Morehead wonders if we miss the deeper moral questions at play when we dive head first into the opportunities technology offers us:
Technology’s quickening pace has many positive aspects. It opens up new frontiers in research, development, engineering, art, and science that were previously unimaginable. It gives more power, convenience, and flexibility to individuals. Goods become cheaper and easier to produce. And technology begets technology: Existing technology gives rise to new technology that is more powerful, flexible, and innovative than its predecessors. Indeed, given the swiftness at which technological change occurs, it’s tempting to see us living in a sort of new golden age — especially if you’re of a geeky persuasion.
However, there is a side to this rapid rate of change that often gets overlooked: The laws used to regulate the technological spheres simply can’t keep up with the rate of technological change. Furthermore, once technology gets out into the wild, it becomes incredibly malleable. In other words, it’s used in ways, both good and bad, that its creators may never have foreseen. (When Tim Berners-Lee essentially created the World Wide Web in 1989, I doubt he envisioned such things as Facebook, Twitter, Amazon, and Netflix.)
In addition to these exclusive features, this issue includes a letter from the editor explaining why Christ and Pop Culture can’t help but kind of love controversy, a defense of the retrogaming trend, a grappling with Kanye’s new album, a mediation between comedian Patton Oswalt and Twitter celebrity Prodigal Sam, a basic primer on how we should think about gay marriage, and the regular “Common Graces” feature which offers up five recommendations for your popular culture enjoyment–all in a pleasant-to-read package.
In case you missed the original post explaining the idea behind the magazine, you can read all about it here.