Sunday, June 6, 2010

A Different World

Last Sunday our pastor's sermon was on our nation. He mentioned a quote stating  "We are one generation away from a Godless society...All it takes is one generation forgetting God."He read from this passage-
Deuteronomy 4: 5 See, I have taught you decrees and laws as the LORD my God commanded me, so that you may follow them in the land you are entering to take possession of it. 6 Observe them carefully, for this will show your wisdom and understanding to the nations, who will hear about all these decrees and say, "Surely this great nation is a wise and understanding people." 7 What other nation is so great as to have their gods near them the way the LORD our God is near us whenever we pray to him? 8And what other nation is so great as to have such righteous decrees and laws as this body of laws I am setting before you today?
 9 Only be careful, and watch yourselves closely so that you do not forget the things your eyes have seen or let them slip from your heart as long as you live. Teach them to your children and to their children after them. 10 Remember the day you stood before the LORD your God..

I had an experience this week that illustrated this to me.
 I am an avid reader.  It is hard to find an author today that doesn't use offensive language in their books. I read every Christian author that I can. But some of them are so fluffy with their stories and I like a good mystery. There are some authors that not advertised as Christians and have good stories but have an occasional word in them. I was curious about the electronic readers that are out there today such as the Kindle. So I asked this question on their forum on Amazon--
"I am interested in purchasing a Kindle? My question is I don't enjoy reading books with offensive language in them. Could you block certain words or delete them or do you have to take the book as written?"
I really thought it was a valid question and would receive a simple yes or no answer. It was unbelievable how people took offensive to this question and the venom in their answers. Here are a few responses--

(One response)--What are these "bad words" that are SOOO offensive that you simply MUST block them out? ALL of them are IN dictionaries. They are obviously good enough words to be entered there. But "too bad" for your eyes to accidently fall upon them in the line of a book.

(Second response)--Oh what a sheltered life some people lead. Serendipity in the movie Dogma said it best - she was referring to Christians in general. "I have issues with anyone who treats faith as a burden instead of a blessing. You people don't celebrate your faith; you mourn it."

(Third response)--I, personally, could care less about the verbiage in my books and celebrate Banned Books Week every year with my children. I just gave my 10 year old a (completely filter-less) Kindle for her birthday. I was initially concerned with her ability to access inappropriate material, but set some stead-fast ground rules. I have been watching this "filter" post for a couple of days now and mulling over the benefits of having one for my child's Kindle. I decided that it was a very bad idea. Here are my reasons:

1. A person will be exposed to language that they may not like for the rest of their lives. Time to cope and move on. You don't have to use it (in my daughter's case, she'd better not!) You cannot stop others from using it so learn to censor your brain, not others' voices.

2. Literature is, in fact, "a voice." It is distinctly the author's voice. You have no right to censor it.

3. Language has no power without context. If you disagree with the context you ought not be reading the book.

Granted, I "censor" my daughter because she's 10, I'm her mother and it's my obligation to not let her read ..... As an adult, you are responsible for picking your own books. Don't attempt to silence someone else just because your imaginary friend "told you" that you shouldn't hear "bad words." Your God used plenty in his book!

(Fourth response)Why does the OP (original poster) sound like a troll to me? ----
(Me? I thought a troll was a old short man in fairy tales...)
These were a few--there was 5 pages of responses!

 Now I was wanted this for my own personal device. I even examined myself. Was I wanting to be part of the world?  I want to be sure my desires are not to be part of the world, but be separate. Maybe my answer is to stick to strictly Christian authors. 
These answers frighten me. What I thought would be the desire of all was quickly showed to not be. There were a few that said they understood and a few answered the question with "no it is not possible". But some were almost afraid of my requests. I feel like 20 or 30 years ago this request would have been the norm but now I felt like I had to defend my Christianity and my rights. I felt like a minority.  What will the next generation face? Will this be minor compared to the rights they will try to protect? This was any eye-opener to me.

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