(I don’t write about politics that often because it’s not a topic I can write about very well. There are so many good political blogs that I tend to avoid it. Plus, political comments usually get really ugly, really quickly. But my friend Rachel is going to change that. Today, she checks in with a funny look at the secret life of Christian liberals. Enjoy.)
Last month, Jon Acuff wrote a piece for CNN.com about Christians treating secular media like Satan’s newspaper. A faithful reader of both SCL and The New York Times, I laughed along until about midway through the article when Jon joked that Christians are “pretty sure Fox News is baptizing people in their lobby,” at which point I completely lost my sense of humor.
It is an unspoken rule among liberals that only one Jon is allowed to make us laugh about Fox News—and it’s Stewart, not Acuff.
But how was Jon supposed to know? He’s an evangelical Christian, which means he is statistically obligated to have only one liberal friend.
So as a Christian and an occasional democrat…(yes, we do exist)…I’ve decided to be that friend, offering SCL a brief list of stuff liberal progressive Christians like:
1. Calling ourselves “progressive” instead of “liberal’
The word liberal (like evolution and sex) carries with it negative connotations in the Christian subculture, and is often used in the context of play-by-play accounts from a pastors or Sunday school teachers about the dangers of competitive slippery slope sliding. Progressive is better. People like Jesus and Donald Miller are considered progressive. Progressive communicates the fact that we’re not headed down, but forward…and just a little to the left.
2. Assuming our daily fair-trade latte from Starbucks makes us committed to social justice
I may drive a gas-guzzling clunker to Wal-mart to buy a trunk full of out-of season fruit, but I’m certain that the steam pouring off of my free trade Cinnamon Dolce Latte is a sweet aroma to God.
3. Agreeing with the Democratic Party on everything except abortion
I am one of many progressive Christians in the unhappy predicament of supporting things like health care reform and environmental stewardship, while remaining steadfastly pro-life. To compensate for our insecurity about this situation, we progressives like to try to one-up conservative pro-lifers by noting that we’re also against the death penalty and war. This does little to actually advance the conversation, which usually ends with people yelling at one another about who is being more judgmental. Sorry about that.
To borrow a metaphor from a friend, we progressives are pretty sure that Ira Glass is mystically distributing the Eucharist through the airwaves during “This American Life.”
So, what would you add to the list? What else do progressive Christians like? (Conservatives, please don’t say “going to hell,” as it kinda hurts our feelings and messes with the whole Christian unity thing.)
(Rachel Held Evans is a liberal progressive Christian from Dayton, Tennessee, home of the Scopes Monkey Trial of 1925. Her first book, “Evolving in Monkey Town” officially releases with Zondervan in July, but is currently available on Amazon. She blogs at rachelheldevans.com.)