Tuesday, July 13, 2021

Navigating the culture war... Again

You can find my previous thoughts on navigating the culture war here. I've also written some other bits and bobs on the subject if you look.

This morning I've been pondering that one of the most useful courses we can take in the ongoing culture war is to ignore it. I don't think this is a good idea all the time. I think it is, as a rule, a good idea to have some understanding of what is going on in the wider culture, and I think it is often necessary to pick sides. After all, not fighting a war is a good way to lose one.

On that subject, I think the current attempts to say that there really isn't a culture war - that it's all being made up to manufacture outrage or whatever - are deluded at best, disingenuous at worst. It reminds me of Russian tactics in Crimea. Keep denying that an invasion is happening until such time as it is a done deal, because that makes it a good deal harder for anyone to fight back.

Sometimes, however, it is important to just ignore the culture war. It frees you up to do the right thing. To give an example, sadly not hypothetical, wearing culture war lenses can make it difficult to do something as straightforwardly good as deploring racism, out of fear that the other side is weaponising the issue. When everything is read as a move in the culture war, one has to weigh up more than just the rightness or wrongness of an individual action or reaction; one has to think about what might be conceded to the opposition, how one's action or inaction will affect the strategic state of affairs.

So sometimes you just have to forget the culture war. For Christians in particular, our calling is not to be strategic in our thinking but obedient. With our minds held captive by Christ, we enjoy perfect freedom to act (and to refrain from acting) on the left and on the right. 

No comments:

Post a Comment