I don’t like to touch matters of religion or politics on this blog too often, mostly because I’m very comfortable with my own feelings on those subjects and don’t feel any particular need to share them with anyone else, but also partly because lately, when it comes to religion and politics, everyone’s an asshole. I don’t like being preached to or challenged about something that, in my opinion, is nobody’s business but my own, and I’m not thrilled about the idea of putting my own beliefs out here just to see them be misinterpreted or poked at with a big judgy stick or otherwise trashed by anonymous dickhead trolls who have nothing better to do with their time than leave asinine comments on my blog about how I’m going to hell.
(Besides, that hell thing’s not exactly news, you know? I’ve been holding a ticket for my front-row seat on the Train Goin’ South for a long time now, and I’ve been given creative directions to the station by people a shitload more interesting than some asshat blog troll who’s too chicken to even sign his or her own name.)
I have friends from all walks of life – Democrats, Republicans, Libertarians, Catholics, Jews, Mormons, Atheists, you name it. Some are devout, most not so much, but the one thing they ALL have in common is that NONE of them expect me to think the way they do and Every. Single. One of them understands that preachy tellinyawhattado assholiness is a deal-breaker for me. No exceptions. One of my very closest friends in the entire world is pretty much exactly the opposite of me on matters of both politics AND religion, and neither one of us gives a shit because our friendship isn’t based on those things. It’s rooted in a long history of love and camaraderie and that’s what we choose to focus on. Do I disagree with some of her opinions? Well, yeah. I do. Vehemently, in some cases. But she’s a smart girl and it’s not my job to do the math for her. She believes what she believes for her own reasons, and I don’t question that. Just like I wouldn’t want HER questioning MY positions on matters of god or Obama.
I’m lots of things– a mom, a wife, a friend, a sister, a daughter, a writer, a joker, a smoker, a midnight toker. But I’m no pundit. There have been times in the past when I felt differently, when I held fervent and intense positions on certain issues and ran with my emotions out in front of me, unable to see around them. But then I had a kid and Hey! Newsflash! Kids change everything! Things that once seemed OHMYGOD END ALL BE ALL important suddenly seemed… well… meh. I mean, I still fall solidly on one side of the fence and likely always will – but nowadays my weekend TV, once filled with Chris Matthews and George Stephanopolous, is occupied by Sesame Street and the variety of human-sized sex toys posing as characters on Yo Gabba Gabba. (Seriously, people. Muno? Really?)
And I kind of like it that way.
Don’t get me wrong, I fully and heartily support the right of each individual to believe or pretend to believe or practice or observe or obey or celebrate or fear or ignore the dogma of his or her choice. One of the things that makes this world so wonderful is its vast diversity of thought and the amazing breadth of ideas and art and inspiration that have sprung forth from that diversity. How can anyone possibly look at something like the Parthenon or Michaelangelo’s La Pieta or the Notre Dame Cathedral and NOT appreciate the dedication and faith that drove its creation?
But just because I appreciate something doesn’t mean I adopt the principles behind it. Swelling up with joy and love at the iconic images of the Sistine Chapel doesn’t automatically make me a Catholic. It just makes me a bad ass.
(Well, okay, it doesn’t actually make me a bad ass. I just AM a bad ass, naturally. But anyway. I digress.)
My point is, I don’t want to be “saved” or sold a bag of goods just because someone else feels a need to project their business onto mine. If you want to paint a picture or write a poem or compose a song about your faith, I am ALL FOR THAT. If it resonates with me, all the better. But DON’T PREACH TO ME. Really. Thank you very much for your concern over my soul but get the fuck out of my life. If I want or need your guidance, I’ll ask for it. I’m sure god appreciates the help in spreading his “word” but honestly, if he needs YOUR help with that, he’s not much of a god, is he?
Why can’t churchy people enjoy it internally? Why do they feel the need to spread “the word”? I don’t spread “the word” of sleeping in on Sundays and I think it’s awesome.
– The BFF
The only reason I’m even writing this post is because today I read this article on The Consumerist and I just HAD to acknowledge the ridiculousness of it, because if it’s true — and I don’t know if it is (the BFF thinks it’s made up because, in her opinion, no company in its right mind would respond to a customer complaint about preachiness with MORE preachiness) — but if it IS true, it sucks.
Because until today, I kind of LIKED shopping at Hobby Lobby. I mean, I’m not exactly the crafty type, and I don’t do a ton of shopping there, but on the few occasions I’ve been there, it hasn’t been a horrible experience. I even got a very nice fake Christmas tree there one year (and right now at this very moment I’m realizing the irony of that). But now I don’t want to go there anymore, because I’m scared I’m going to get smacked in the face by some unexpected jesus. I don’t WANT to suffer for my sins — I just want a hot glue gun and some ribbon, okay?
If you run a “Christian” business, good for you – but unless you’re marketing yourself specifically as such, and selling exclusively Christian-related items, keep your faith to yourself. You’re not the Family Christian Store, or whatever that place is – you’re a fucking HOBBY STORE.
And if I’m your non-believing customer, and I write to express my unhappiness with a preachy marketing campaign of yours, don’t respond with more preaching! That’s just STUPID! Your preachiness will only serve to piss me off more, and land you on the Consumerist, where other non-believers will read about how stupid you are and decide not to frequent your store, either, for fear of being judged or just handing our money over to stupid people.
Call me a rebel, call me a heathen, whatever — but as a rule, the harder you work to “sell” me something, the less inclined I’m going to be to buy it. That goes for hot glue guns and posterboard, of course.
But it also goes for Jesus.Stumble it!