Trading our Birthright for a Pot of Message

John Dunlap on AmChurch Academe’s teenage demand for childhood privileges and adult rights. 35 years ago, the American Church said, “Gimme the keys to the car, old man! And stop telling me what to do!” It started sneaking out of the house at night, growing sullen and resentful of all the “rules and demands”. It chafed. It starting hanging out with friends to smoke a joint and look at girly magazines. It Learned a Thing or Two and didn’t need some old fart around, killing the party with his Glenn Miller music. “Leave me ALONE!” it screamed, night after night, as it ran up to the bedroom and slammed the door. It flopped down on the bed each night, muttering into the darkness about how this place stunk and how it couldn’t wait to be free.

Then, the day came where AmChurch was driving home from the prom with all its new friends. They were all a little bit high and a little bit drunk. And the gay guy in the back seat tried to put his hands down the pants of somebody. There was a scream. Somebody grabbed the wheel. Somebody else threw up. Chaos. The car plowed head on into a semi. Several passengers were killed. AmChurch was put in the hospital in traction. It’s first thought on regaining consciousness was: This is all Dad’s fault! How am I supposed to pay all these bills? Why did he let me use the car?