Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Tolerating The Intolerant; Why ESPN Is The Real PC Bully


This is an opinion piece I wrote for my buddy Dan at Stronger Christian. Please click through and visit his site.



This week ESPN, the global sports and entertainment giant, once again showed its idiocy by firing Hank Williams, Jr. over comments he made on FoxNews. Williams compared a golf outing between President Obama and House Speaker Boehner as a similar pairing of Adolph Hitler and Benjamin Netanyahu. The idea of Hitler and a powerful Jew playing golf juxtaposed with a Democratic President and Republican leader is a bit extreme, but certainly not a fireable offence.

But this is the fate of the culture left to the devices of Political Correctness. When the pc crowd "outlawed" the use of certain words and phrases as "bad taste", we merrily went along for the sake of the victims of certain slanders. "Why," we reasoned, "WOULD someone want to hurt the feelings of that small person by calling them a midget? SHOULDN'T we call them vertically challenged?" It seemed sensible at the time. If the label "handicap" was hurtful, why wouldn't we say that they were physically challenged instead? Perhaps it was more fitting to refer to a blind person as sight challenged, and to drop the word retarded from our vocabulary in preference to mentally challenged. My point is not to say that these changes were not compassionate or eagerly received by the individuals affected, but that this opened a door that has allowed the "tolerance at all cost" crowd to gain a strong foothold in the culture. And, it seems apparent that this has become circular in its practicality, as it is becoming increasingly offence to many to be referred to as challenged.

This is in similar vein to the race designation of Black Americans, which progressed from Negro to Colored to Black, and now to African American. Many who fought for the change from Negro to Colored now find the designation Colored offensive itself. Not that I blame them. I have been called Racist (because I don't like Obama) Redneck, (Because I am from the South) a Jesus Freak (Because I am) and White. Despite the fact that I am more .......wellllll.....peachy. I think I should be called a Person of Non-Color. Come to think of it, I'm white in the winter, tan in the summer, blue when I get cold, green when I get sick, and red when I stay in the sun too long. Maybe I'm the one who should be called colored!

The real problem with all of this PC nonsense is that it has opened the door for an Über-tolerance mood in the country. It is intolerant for Hank Jr. to use the words Obama and Hitler in the same sentence. (By the way; shouldn't Netanyahu be the REAL offended person by that comment?!) But it is not intolerant of ESPN to castigate him as some Redneck Hillbilly. It is intolerant of anyone to criticize the President or his policies. You are either a racist (if you're Peachy) or an Uncle Tom (Hello Mr. Cain) if you're Black. It is inconceivable that you just disagree with the man's ideology. And the real point; It is intolerant for a Christian to be intolerant.

Unfortunately though, that is exactly who we are as Believers in Jesus Christ. I don't like it. It doesn't make me happy. But it is THE core truth that all of Christianity rides on. The doctrine is known as The Exclusivity of Christ. You see, it does not matter if Jesus was born of a virgin, or that He lived a perfect life, or that He died for sins, or that He rose from the grave, or that He ascended to Heaven, or that He sent a Helper. If Jesus is not the exclusive way to the Father, none of that matters, because I could simply find someone else to get me there. Jesus said of Himself that He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. He also said that no one would get to the Father EXCEPT through Him. He, therefore, is exclusive, and we, therefore, are intolerant. We are intolerant of others saying they can get you to heaven. We are intolerant of those who say there are many paths to heaven. And we are intolerant of those who say it does not matter because all good people go to heaven.

In our culture today, Political Correctness has become more than a feel-good, compassionate ride to acceptance. It is the vehicle used by the BHL's to usher in an age of tolerance, where everything is tolerated except intolerance itself. But, these folks are wolves in sheep's clothing, for they have become the ones who are the most intolerant of all. Which is to say that they have become intolerant of everything that disagrees with them. Hank Williams, Jr. may have made a bad analogy, but where has all the tolerance gone? In the end, it seems to me that ESPN is the real PC bully.

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