The word “hood” has come to be identified largely as shorthand for “neighborhood.” It’s yet another example of African-American culture taking over the American lexicon. Fair is fair. If their ancestors had to endure 250 years of oppression on this continent, I can stand being ridiculed for saying “bro” when the everyone else has advanced…
It seems to me that “cultural appropriation” only becomes problematical if the “culture” being appropriated is associated generally with people of color. (White, by the way, is a color. The Crayola people say so, anyway. And the pale orange-peach tone that accurately defines the skin of this “white person” is a color, too. But I digress.)
I love my life in Florida. But I must say, trips back to Texas remind me of what I have left behind. Bluebonnets in March, and prickly pear flowers in May. Beef brisket barbecue so good that is actually better without sauce. Two dozen varieties of peppers in your local grocery store. Mexican food that is worth eating.
But one of the least-appreciated Texas delights is a pastry called a kolache.
Young people in Indonesia are boiling women’s sanitary products (there’s a euphemism for you) and drinking the water. Evidently it gets them high. I am not making this up. This is real.
This process is not safe; that fact probably does not take you by surprise. But the illness that it reveals is far worse than any condition that might result.
It is no wonder that a society that tells its citizens constantly that they are no better than the animals — indeed, no different from them — winds up seeing those same citizens act like animals. Why wouldn’t they? How could we reasonably expect anything else?
As Christians, we hope and expect humans to rise above the animal world. Animals can be trained, after all. Why not humans? But culture wins over holiness, time after time. And thus we see headline after headline, proclaiming in grotesque detail how degraded a culture bereft of God can become.
A Facebook “preachers” group that I somehow became attached to (you social media types know how easily that can happen) brought a preacher in Tuscumbia, Alabama, named Jesse Winn to my attention. After e-mailing Bro. Winn and exchanging a few thoughts and pleasantries, I decided (with his permission) to include his name and a link to the article in question. You can find the article here. I encourage you to read his article with the same prayer, spirit and consideration I ask when you read mine. The gist of his article was this (his emphasis):
I believe that, generally speaking, as a movement, we (the churches of Christ) need to be less afraid of change when necessary and more willing to question things.
Midge Decter, a writer with whom I am completely unfamiliar, is credited with my favorite quote of the week: “Join the side you’re on.” If that’s a bit too on-the-nose for you, allow me to supply some context.
Most references to “love” in the New Testament use one of two Greek nouns — agapao or phileo. (Hide the children! Hal’s faking a knowledge of Greek again!) But there is another Greek word included in the compound word astorge, which is usually translated “unloving.” The root storge is generally defined as “family love,” that…