June 30, 2009
This is definitely further evidence that making a big circus about something draws attention to that thing, which in many cases leads to the opposite outcomes from what the protestors hope. So much so that a marketing department invents outrage to sell more games! Take, for example, how David Letterman's ratings surged when Sarah Palin complained about a joke he made.<br>I will take issue with your use of the words "mock" and "make fun of". I don't think this protest is a parody, I think it's an attempt to manufacture real controversy. In politics they call it astroturfing.
I do think you hit the basic problem when we bring attention to something we often raise the awareness of that thing. And those people that favor the thing may actually use it more to show support. This happens no matter what side we are on. Christians have shown support for groups that have been "banned". Think of Ms California, after she was protested against tons of Christians rallied to her defense, even though many of those same Christians would not have generally supported the Miss America pagent. So if it both works for us and against us we probably want to think about how we really do the engagement. <br><br>I personally think that tactics like this are fundamentally unChristian. What happens is that you parody the thing, turn it into a black and white issue and then refuse to acknowledge the humanity of the person or group you are protesting.
I do think this is significant and sad. I work in the advertising industry. I have a friend that owns another Ad Agency in town and one of their bigger business niches is gaming companies located in Los Angeles. It IS mocking Christians, mocking the Bible, mocking judgement, mocking hell. Yeah, Christian groups like the one parodied are easy targets. They are not very articulate, they may not be very intelligent, they have strong emotion, they are not cool. But Christian groups people these parodied are still brothers and sisters. I notice a very overweight lady in a blue polyester top. I notice a video with a guy wearing a plaid shirt buttoned at the top. The art director, copywriter and creative director are congratulating each other and laughing. They will probably enter the parody in an advertising competition that most cities have. I have watched the push towards gross obscenity and sacrilege year after year in the advertising awards. This is just one more line crossed. <br>Of course, I agree that these kind of protests may not work (I say may because at minimum they do serve to bring attention to the offensive material) and I am probably too cool to march around with a picket sign for fear someone I know will see me...which is a sad thing in its self. But I still maintain that these copywriters and art directors have crossed another line of mocking God.<br><br>Remember, dear brothers and sisters, that few of you were wise (or smart and cool) in the worldâ€™s eyes or powerful or wealthy when God called you. Instead, God chose things the world considers foolish (or uncool) in order to shame those who think they are wise. And he chose things that are powerless to shame those who are powerful. God chose things despised by the world, things counted as nothing at all, and used them to bring to nothing what the world considers important.
I think we need to back to the "old" style of engagement - preaching the good news of Christ and not the stomping around about the latest cultural or political battle. <br><br>We should participate as citizens (which includes protesting) if something is bad law or policy, but when we moralize and try to get the culture to conform to Christ without Him, we are doomed to failure.<br><br>Let us change the land one person at a time instead of one law at a time.
that makes me sick. people seriously need to feign protests by Christians to get publicity? and yes, what DOES that say about Christians? about those who are more interested in making a scene, who are more interested in condemnation than grace, who are living in hate instead of love. Does that really make them Christian if they aren't even living by Christ's principles? are they just giving lip service? will they be among those that Christ never knew?
i saw the rather maudlin youtube video, and i feel like it's pretty clear that it's all a stunt; however, i also fail to see where anyone has proven these aren't actually wackos who are actually protesting for real
i think this should be a wake up call. let's honestly ask the question... would Jesus be found among these so-called culture warriors? or with those who engage people at the level of their deepest need? think Jesus at the well in an unholy hour with a samaritan woman. one would expect the world to mock us and our Savior, but maybe we should also evaluate what they're mocking about us? is it our lifestyle of grace, love and hope or judgemental attitudes, legalistic ways and hypocrisy?
Christians don't do very well with protests. However, I am reminded of the response of Christians in Denver, some years ago, to the municipal Xmas celebration that was unabashedly an attempt to get people to come downtown and spend money. Instead of going to court to demand equal time for Jesus, they simply came downtown singing traditional carols, handing out hot chocolate, showing the love of Christ, and incidentally inviting people to join them at any of a number of participating churches.<br><br>This, of course, was not a Christian protest at all. It says something that the planners believed a mock Christian protest would attract positive attention to their product. But I doubt they could duplicate a mass of sincere, and sometimes off-key, caroling. That's something you can't do well on line, you have to step out into the real world.
I think that Christians need to be much more careful in choosing their battles, and they need to think much more clearly about whether or not the battle they are fighting will damage the effectiveness of the gospel message they preach when they are not protesting. <br><br>There was a minister in Scotland who got heavily involved in a protest against a education policy that would allow (among other things) the teaching of homosexual partnerships as being an equally valid home and family environment as a hetereosexual environment. (You can read about it at <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Section_28" rel="nofollow">http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/S...</a> )<br><br>We're now a few years on, and the minister who was so heavily involved has said that he wished he hadn't got involved, not because he has changed his opinion, but because it completely removed his ability to share the gospel effectively for a number of years, because people knew him from that campaign. <br><br>Now, I'm not saying that it wasn't the right battle to fight, but I think we have to think much more carefully and strategically before we wade in with 2 left feet.
wow, im never buying a EA game again.
I think it's kinda funny, and I've been a Christian since I was 7.
What is truly sad about this is that, assuming it is mock protest, the game company thinks it is setting up an "us vs. them" scenario. "Us" in this case are the cool gamers and others who applaud that particular culture and all the things that go with it; and "them" in this case are the hopelessly behind-the-times, out-of-step-with-reality Christians who still wear blue polyester. It's not "us against them"; it's "Satan against Humanity." He hates all of us--Christians and non-Christians--and he uses things like this to pit us against each other. How in the world will Christians ever be able to witness to non-Christians if we can't discern where the real fight is? I agree, we do need to pick our battles, but we also need to make sure we are in the right war!
What this "protest" reinforces is the dire need for Christians to get off the sidelines. What would the marketing look like if there were Christians working at the ad agency that repped EA? What game might have been developed instead of this one with Christians that were game developers at EA? What movies would be produced and marketed if more Christians made a deliberate effort to dive in deep into Hollywood? <br><br>All this campaign exposes is the decision by Christians to not be involved in areas of culture that influence the masses. Yet, we're happy enough in our little Christian circles to point fingers and condemn non-Believers activities. <br>
Unfortunately, many Christians trying to design a video game would come up with something very like "Dante's Inferno." At least, it would be some silly variation on chutes and ladders where players try to stay out of hell, get out of purgatory, and/or find their way to heaven. All of those features would raise legitimate theological questions, e.g., if we can't get to heaven on our own merit, how can characters in a video game do so? It would be equally damaging if a game offered a chance to lead crusades against enemies of (our image of) God, to lead the Spanish Inquisition in rooting out heresy, etc. But, how do you "virtually" share the love of God and the Gospel in cyberspace? You don't, you do it in real world interactions with real world humans.
This is nothing new. In 1982, a group of churches was wanting to protest the opening of the Mormon Temple in Atlanta. For some reason, they chose to hire professional picketers from Mississippi instead of having anyone local protest.
Christians are expected to be mocked... That is actually indicitive of being in the correct positions scripturally. I have enjoyed many EA games in the past, but don't think I'll be buying anymore. Not because of "Dantes Inferno" but for corporately "bearing false witness".
Maybe I'm going to hell for thinking so, but this is funny. Crazy Christians with more time on their hands than sense ought to be exposed through parody.
Quit thinking like "Christians" and start thinking like CHRIST!<br><br>Christians have been at the center of hate and protesting against the world for centuries. NONE of this is what Christ taught.
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