Friday, October 29, 2004


With the Boss appearing daily (it seems) with John Kerry, P. Diddy warning "Vote or Die" and MTV Rocking the Vote, evangelicals have their own answer:
This is the evangelicals' answer to Bruce Springsteen: an anguished rocker prowling the stage in a black shirt and tight faded jeans, hair matted with sweat, licking his lips and turning his bright, beckoning eyes to the teenage mob in the front row:

"Get out to the polls and affect this country," says Jason Roy, lead singer of the band Building 429.

"Can you do that?"

"Yes!" they roar back. The kids are jumping. The room is hazy with fake smoke. A boy in a ski cap sneaks a hand around his girl's waist. It's chilly outside but it's really hot in here.

The scene could be part of a Vote for Change concert tour, but as with everything else in the vast parallel world of Christian pop culture, it is hard not to notice what's different from the secular version.

The show takes place not in a concert hall in the city, but in the sanctuary of Gilead Friends Church on a rural road an hour north of Columbus. Aside from Ski Cap Guy, most of the couples showing any public display of affection are married. The brown liquid in all those bottles is iced tea or soda pop. And when a screaming girl leans over to give the guy beside her a kiss, he's likely to be her dad.

Of course, I'd probably rather listen to the Boss but not as long as I have to look at Kerry.

It's an interesting cultural phenomenon, which has some validity. At the same time it gives interesting insight into how the evangelical culture often strangely mirrors the culture at large, offering something akin to "secular light". The article is worth a look.

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