Musings on Muses
Monday, January 24, 2005
Should I care if Spongebob is gay?
The latest flap to descend on the Christian world is Focus on the Family's Dr. James Dobson warning parents about the evils of Spongebob because of the animatedd sponge's appearance in a video teaching children the value of "tolerance". It's essentially gay propaganda, and uses Spongebob and his pal Patrick as examples. I will admit I have not seen much of the show, and have not liked what I've seem, but I think both the instructional video and Dr. Dobson are way off base.

There has been a long held belief that men and women cannot form friendships because of sexual tension. It now appears that with the normalization of homosexuality, no one can be friends anymore. There is simply no place for a deep male friendship that can be interpretted without a "homoerotic subtext". If this is in fact where our society is headed I weep for it. It is a sad day when Eros has crowded Philia out of its proper place.
Karma is not a beautiful thing
On vacation, I've been seeing a lot of television. Saturday night we saw the premier of Town Haul, a spinoff (sort of) of Trading Spaces. One of the designers, Genevieve, is doing a much bigger project than redesigning a room. She's redesigning a small town in New York, a kind of urban renewal aimed at reviving the dying small towns of America. Jeffersonville looks like a nice little place and the people seem deserving. But I can't help but cringe at the promo, where Genevieve comments, in a happy and slightly tearful voice, "Karma is a beautiful thing."

Huh? What does karma have to do with this town? As far as I understand it, the principle of karma says that these people are living in a dying town in the boondocks because their previous lives were not sufficiently good to be born into better circumstances. Charity is not born out of a belief in karma. Calcutta is what happens when people believe in karma; people starve because the ones that can help believe that to ease the suffering of the unfortunate is to impinge on their karma. You're born where you belong and it does no good to anyone to help out.

I can't stand these silly western interpretations of Eastern religions. Don't throw around trendy Hindu ideas without seeing how it affects real Hindu people. Call charity what it is, charity. Something born out of a virtuous impulse, a magnanimous impulse, a belief that it is good to love your neighbor. Which is why in the land of karma, India, it is the Christians who are the ones taking care of the poor and dying.

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