7 Signs You Got the Secular Agenda MemoAs our society slowly gravitates away from meaningful discussion toward pointless short bursts of senseless verbiage, I thought I’d have some fun cataloging a few of the one-liners, memes, simplistic overgeneralizations, and nonsensical philosophies you may have accepted if you buy into secular culture, along with a few thoughts on how we can treat the underlying problems.
Oh, and I’ve sprinkled in just a touch of snark here and there for fun, because I love you.
- “What do we want? [Insert pet cause here.] When do we want it? Now!” Gosh, have some patience, will you? I mean, I share your enthusiasm (assuming your cause is just), but you’re setting some unrealistic goals for yourself, don’t you think? This one always drives me a little crazy. It’s usually coming from the same crowd that wants immediate gratification on everything. Plus, if St. Augustine had taken this approach to chastity, he’d be just a little less famous: “Give me chastity, Lord, and give it to me this instant!” Christian prescription: Patience. Everyone together now: “What do we want? Patience! When do we want it? Now!”
- You identify yourself as a member of GBK – Generation Burger King. “I always have it my way.” Alternative options include Generation Wendy’s (“I always do what tastes right”) and Generation Nike (“Just do it”). Both make about the same amount of moral sense. Christian prescription: Humility.
- “Another kid? You know what causes that, right?” So, you insist that sex has nothing to do with children, the sole exception being when you feel the burning urge to share the birds and the bees with a friend who has an unacceptably large family (say, 3 kids). I’ve been thinking about this one lately, following Drew’s post on the sudden onslaught of nasty comments whenever a family passes the acceptable size. In his case, he heard the old standby: “You know what causes that, right?” (Favored response: “Yeah, pretty cool something as awesome as kids come from something so enjoyable, isn’t it?!”) In my case, only a few days into announcing that we were expecting, I heard, “What? Were you hit over the head?” Another friend, after delivering her first child, was immediately prescribed the Pill by the obstetrician. “I don’t want contraceptives,” she protested. “Why not?” Came the reply. “Because I want more children.” Immediately, the doctor ordered her husband to leave the room before interrogating her: “Okay, how often does he beat you?” Apparently, wanting more children is a symptom of Battered Wife Syndrome. Who knew? I find it supremely ironic that everyone in the world knows where babies come from when confronted with a “large” family, but at any other time, sex is just for pleasure and has nothing to do with children or families (thus the foregone conclusion about the morality of contraception or the rapid increase in support of same-sex marriage). Christian prescription: Consistency and logic, but most of all, chastity.
- You insist that the Church stay out of your bedroom, but pay for what you do in there. Ideology has a tendency to lead to hypocrisy because ideology professes certain things to be true at the expense of other truths. When we first started the Stand with the US Bishops page to combat the HHS Contraception Mandate, a lot of folks posted there telling us how disappointed they were in the Church for not respecting their rights to contraception. In the words of Pope Benedict, “we impose nothing, yet we propose ceaselessly.” The Church has not advocated a ban on contraception (nor would such legal action be required by our theology). Our FB members quickly discovered that explaining those few details won many people over to our side who otherwise would be against the Church. Christian prescription: Honesty.
- You’re convinced you need to modify your metabolism because you’re just not losing enough weight sitting on your couch all day. How very secular! You’ve managed to idolize the body while simultaneously decrying its nature! “My disciplines don’t need to change, my nature does!” I’m dieting right now and I’ve lost 20 lbs. on a diet designed to line up with evolutionary biology. Trust me, your nature doesn’t need to change. You just need to get over your cravings for high-glycemic, carb-loaded foods. Oh, and get off your couch before you start looking like it. Christian prescription: Discipline.
- “There is no such thing as absolute truth.” Really, genius, is that true? Yeah, it’s an oldie, but a goodie, and an easy response for the world’s most objective relativistic claim (especially one that seems to have so much staying power). Christian prescription: Logic.
- “Catholics are judgmental hypocrites.” My favorite snarky reply: “Wow, I guess you and we Catholics have more in common than I thought!” Trouble is, we Catholics never claimed to be free of judgment and hypocrisy. It’s one of the reasons we go to Confession. Christian prescription: Examination of Conscience (get the log out of your own eye, bro).