Thursday, December 19, 2013

Happy, Happy, Happy; Right, Right, Right

Phil v. Francis - Why the media ducked.

Ask any Christian.  The Bible is always right.  After all, it is the Holy Word of God.  Phil quoted it as such.  Very many people who don't like what the Bible says simply aren't content with the happiness that their un-bibilical lifestyles bring.  Happy isn't good enough, they want to be Right.  And they need everyone else to affirm their rightness.

The whirlwind of controversy swirling around the (entertainment) media's thorny relationship with the stars of Duck Dynasty reached a fever pitch recently when the real stars of the reality show about "bitter clingers" got too real.  The patriarch, Phil Robertson, quoted the Bible (1 Corinthians 6:9-11) to GQ magazine.
GQ said he then paraphrases a biblical reference: "Don't be deceived. Neither the adulterers, the idolaters, the male prostitutes, the homosexual offenders, the greedy, the drunkards, the slanderers, the swindlers — they won't inherit the kingdom of God. Don't deceive yourself. It's not right."

Now many have pointed out that the Roman Catholic Pope Francis has also talked about homosexuality (though not fornication and drunkenness)  in the public realm recently, and he was titled Person of the Year by Time magazine and the homosexual magazine The Advocate. How? Were they unaware that the Roman Catholic church considers homosexuality a sin too? Is the pope Catholic?

Nah, say the pundits.  The difference is just that the pope was nice.  He reached out, showed humility, built bridges.  He didn't use offensive language.  From Time magazines website
Francis, though he privately holds to certain doctrine which some might see as “anti-gay,” has not used any of his public speaking opportunities to share these with the world. Instead, Francis has repeatedly offered grace to the LGBT community. At one point, he even uttered what might go down as the expression of public humility that singlehandedly saved the Church: “Who am I to judge?”
So it's all about not being offensive in your speech?
There’s a way to disagree with majority opinion without coming across as disagreeable. The Pope knows how to do this. Phil does not. As a result, we respect Papa, and shame Phil.

I don't buy it.  "Niceness" has never saved anybody from the media's clutches.  They can cut right through a nicely worded comment to gut the ideas they detest.

The "judge not" angle though, was right on target.

People don't like to feel wrong.  If someone is perceived as "judging" them, they can't help but feeling that the disagreement means there is a chance they might be wrong.

The LATimes presciently published an article on this very phenomena earlier this week.

Happiness is overrated: It's better to be right, study finds.
The husband and wife were helping a trio of doctors test their theory that pride and stubbornness get in the way of good mental health. In their own medical practices in New Zealand, they had observed patients leading “unnecessarily stressful lives by wanting to be right rather than happy.” If these patients could just let go of the need to prove to others that they were right, would greater happiness be the result?

So the husband agreed with the wife on everything over the course of several days, and the wife's happiness rating went up.  (The husband's went down). 

The team was able to draw some preliminary conclusions.
“It seems that being right, however, is a cause of happiness, and agreeing with what one disagrees with is a cause of unhappiness,” they wrote.
Hence the love for Pope Francis, who didn't quite say they were right, but didn't say they were wrong either.

Hence the hatred for Phil, who believes God is right, and is himself "happy, happy, happy".

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