Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Ranting Against Christians

David Marr's long article/rant/manifesto against orthodox Christians in the Sydney Morning Herald comes about as close as citing hatred against Evangelical Anglicans as one can imagine. It's an interesting read if you want to understand: (1) why the left-wing intelligentsia hate orthdox Christians, and (2) the current dynamics in the world Anglican communion. Of course, we shouldn't really be surprised at this; if you fail to bow the knee at the pantheon of pluralism, postmodernism, and pansexuality, this kind of talk is always gonna happen.

Update: Here's my response to Marr:

David Marr's article: "Archbishop says No" was one-sided and disappointing. What I found objectionable were:

(1) He mentions the protest of the Fred Phelps group at Gene Robinson's ordination as a bishop. They reportedly yelled out: '"Fag Church, Fag Gospel", "Thank God for September 11", and "AIDS is God's Curse".' Fine, I really dislike them as well, but they are hardly representative of any or all "evangelical" Christians (in Sydney, Nairobi, or the USA). Marr was tacitly linking this kind of hate mongering with the views of the Sydney Anglican diocese and made no attempt to differentiate them from one another. The Phelps group is extremist not mainstream.

(2) Marr omits the Lambeth Resolution of 1998 where the world Anglican communion accepted the historic and orthdox Christian teaching on sexuality. For all his tirade against Jensen for seeking schism, it was the Americans who acted unilaterally and violated the resolution. So who's the schismatic now? What is more, the former TEC primate Frank Griswold told the Anglican Primates that he would not consecrate Gene Robinson given their objections, and then he went ahead and did it anyway. Talk about duplicity, but Marr didn't mention that one either. In light of this, is it fair to insinuate that a schism is the fault of Jensen and Akinola and their narrow brand of Christianity?

I understand Marr's dislike of orthodox Christian teaching on sexuality, I don't agree, but I genuinely understand. But one would expect a journalist to try to understand someone on their own terms without resorting to this kind of pot shot journalism. I got the feeling that his intent was no so much to report the facts (some of which were disorted [Phelps] or missing [Lambeth Resolution]) but to promote antipathy towards Jensen and the Sydney Anglicans. If one were to deconstruct the rhetoric of this discourse, that is where the centre of gravity appears to be.

My question for Marr and the SMH editorial team is would they write a similar piece about an orthodox rabbi or an Islamic cleric and their views on human sexuality? I would love to read a piece by Marr saying the same kind of thing with the same kind of rhetoric against a local Moslem leader in Sydney (he'd probably end up spending the rest of his life hiding in a motel with Rushdie and a couple of Danish cartoonists!). Please email me when the piece is published.

Mike Bird
(Go the maroons!).

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