The Minority Report: You Are Not Special

Every Tuesday in The Minority Report, Drew Dixon takes a look at trends in youth culture and offers some biblical wisdom for navigating them. few weeks ago I attended the local high school in our area's graduation ceremony. The valedictorian told the many graduates to go out and "catch their dreams." Call me a cynic, but as I sat there listening, I couldn't help but think about how many of these students would not go out and catch their dreams. Many … [Read more...]

Citizenship Confusion: The Power of Complements and Egalitarians

Every Monday in Citizenship Confusion, Alan Noble discusses how we confuse our heavenly citizenship with citizenship to the state, culture, and the world.Last week, Rachel Held Evans organized a blogging event to promote egalitarianism titled the "Mutuality 2012 Synchroblog." Along with other bloggers, Evans wrote a few thoughtful articles on "mutuality" (egalitarianism), including one particularly interesting post on the ways in which Greco-Roman household codes might have influenced Paul's … [Read more...]

The Kiddy Pool: Facebook for the Whole Family?

This week, Facebook proposed allowing children under thirteen (the site’s current age requirement) to sign up; the kids’ accounts would be linked to and monitored by parents’ accounts, at least insofar as parents take on that supervisory role. The Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act limits the information that websites can legally collect from children under thirteen, but connecting to parental accounts bypasses those restrictions and, let’s be honest, offers Facebook a new demographic’s dat … [Read more...]

Mixed Signals: What Your Facebook Likes Say about Jesus

Mixed Signals is Erin Straza’s weekly musing about marketing miscellany in advertising, branding, and messaging.What is it about that plucky, thumbs-up Like button? Facebook has taken a simple engagement tool and turned it into a marketer’s dream. With every click, we consumers are cataloging the businesses and brands we are partial to. And it’s so easy to do—just a click links us to something that charms us.However, our participation in this community-wide click-fest has given Facebook a stu … [Read more...]

The Female Gaze: To Eat or Not to Eat

Each week in The Female Gaze, Faith Newport engages the trends, events, and issues that affect women—and the men who care about them.Let's talk about women and food.It's gotten pretty complicated. Let's use my life as an example for a moment here.There are the people who give me the funny looks whenever I decline a dessert (rare occasion though that might be), the slight eye roll, and the inevitable exclamation of, "But, you're so thin!" There are the other funny looks I get from w … [Read more...]

The Minority Report: Balancing Sex Education

When many Christians hear stories like that of Bedford-Stuyvesant Preparatory High School which had planned to hand out condoms at their high school prom, there seems to be a tremendous temptation to overreact. We get this picture in our head of school administrators forcing condoms in the hands of unsuspecting young people with the purpose of enabling them to have sex freely. We live in a sex saturated culture and we hear stories like this and we feel that our schools must be willfully … [Read more...]

Me, Jessica Simpson, and The Postpartum Road to Recovery

Every week in The Kiddy Pool, Erin Newcomb confronts one of many issues that parents must deal with related to popular culture.I followed Jessica Simpson’s recent pregnancy with interest: we’re the same age, we both carried baby girls, and we were due about a month apart. I watched her show “Fashion Star” (admittedly, for me, an interesting concept but an inferior program to “Project Runway”) and wondered what it was like for her to work throughout her pregnancy. My own pregnancy felt taxing an … [Read more...]

Citizenship Confusion: Alienation and the Christian Ethic of Shopping at Threadless, Etsy, and Trades of Hope

Every Monday in Citizenship Confusion, Alan Noble discusses how we confuse our heavenly citizenship with citizenship to the state, culture, and the world.When I first saw my iPad, it was sealed in plastic and encased in a sturdy white box. Inside, the warranty and manual were neatly placed in a little white box and USB cable was carefully wrapped with clear plastic. The screen was covered with a clear plastic sheet to protect it from any harm. It was sterile, like a hospital. It gave the … [Read more...]

The Televangelist: Community's Advanced Observation and Introduction to Participation

Each Friday in The Televangelists, one of our writers examines the met and missed potential of television.The outlook for Community is not good (one news outlet helpfully called it, “the darkest of all possible timelines”). Despite 13 more episodes, its poor ratings virtually ensure cancellation. Further, creater and executive producer Dan Harmon has been shown the door, and the executives at NBC don’t want to talk about it . . . but they are looking forward to next season.There are three pla … [Read more...]

Citizenship Confusion: Breaking the Shopping Habit

Every Monday in Citizenship Confusion, Alan Noble discusses how we confuse our heavenly citizenship with citizenship to the state, culture, and the world.I've written a lot of criticism lately about how the church engages in politics and culture, and while I stand by what I wrote, I hope to broaden the way I use this space in the future by providing balance to my criticisms and by criticizing less, as I addressed last week (See: Citizenship Confusion: Why I Criticize the Church). What better wa … [Read more...]