Boycotting Fear? 4

Oh Facebook, you always seem to like to show stuff that I find myself disagreeing with. I’m sure it has something to do with the amount time I interact with said post and the amount of comments I put forth, but that’s here nor there.

The latest such post to show up in my News Feed was “I’m Boycotting Fear” by John Pavlovitz. John and I don’t tend to see eye to eye on many issues, at least from what I’ve read that’s popped up on Facebook. Or we agree on parts but not the whole, which is fine. It’s good to get different perspectives on important issues. Really, it is.

In John’s post he targets (see what I did there?) the “bathroom issue”. John has a nice way of not exactly coming out and saying what he thinks but fairly heavily implying it (in my opinion).

The gist of the article is that many Christians who want to boycott Target or have concerns about Target’s new bathroom policy are participating in “…manufactured bathroom battles..”, are people who “…imagine a thousand terrors lurking in restrooms and around corners…” and think that they are at war with other people, among a host of other characteristics John goes on to put forth.

Now, I’m not saying there are people where those labels apply. I’m sure there are. But I would reason to guess that for a large amount of people those labels don’t apply.

I think many people are generally concerned for safety reasons. John seems to poo poo this idea. John’s words.

I am saying no to the lie that our women and children are in danger, and that the only way to protect them is to damage someone else.

I am saying no to “religious liberty” that makes someone else less free. 

Is it really a lie that children and women are in danger? I guess a fear-filled person like myself would say there is definitely at the very least a potential they are in danger. It’s just common sense that if you allow any man into a bathroom that there is a chance that said man could perform unspeakable acts in that room. I’m not trying to stir up fear, but let’s be honest here. That’s a possibility.

But John seems to think that’s a silly notion, for some reason.

As much as John professes love and tolerance and acceptance, he seems to be good at actually pitting Christians against each – again without coming right out and explicitly saying so.

It goes a little something like this. My paraphrase.

“You can boycott Target if you want to, but I’m boycotting fear…” And there it is. John has instantly made it so that if you have any concern at all about Target and wish to boycott them you must be some crazy fear filled person who obviously doesn’t love or tolerate people (which he goes on to describe later in his post). Then John and people who agree with him are clearly seen as champions of love and tolerance and enlightenment and…and…and…

Guess what? This is a divisive issue. It’s not really one that lends itself to fence riding.

And yes, it needs to be handled in love. We can love people and disagree. Shocking, I know. We can be loved-filled Christians and boycott Target, if we so desire. Or any other company for that matter.

I submit to you that we should indeed “boycott fear”, because there is no fear in love (1 John 4:18).

Definitely interested to hear your thoughts on this one!

4 thoughts on “Boycotting Fear?

  1. Reply Jenny Howard Apr 29,2016 4:13 pm

    This is not about keeping “men” out of women’s restrooms. It’s about keeping transsexual women out of women’s restrooms. The issue is that many on the political Right refuse to acknowledge the difference. Many refuse even to acknowledge that there is such a thing as transsexuality. Many of those who do acknowledge it invent their own definitions and psychological theories, utterly disregarding a century of research and the current diagnosis and treatment guidelines from every major professional association — the American Medical Association, the American Psychological Association, and the American Psychiatric Association.

    If you don’t know anything about transsexuality besides your own opinion based on your own feelings, I would urge you to study and learn. A good starting place is “The Riddle Of Gender”, by Deborah Rudacille. The (non-trans) author has no agenda either way; she’s a non-fiction writer sharing with the general public what she has learned in her own studies. It’s extensively footnoted, and provides a long bibliography for anyone who wants to know where she got her information.

    Or, you can just decide that your “opinion” is as good as, or better than, what scientists have learned from actual research.

    I do hope that you study the topic, and then re-read what you just wrote in light of the knowledge gained.

    • Reply Jared Apr 29,2016 7:54 pm

      Hi Jenny! That’s for chiming in.

      I think perhaps you’re missing the point of the post. My take was that this stance by Target has the possibility of putting women and children in danger. Not a stance against transsexuals or transgenders.

      The other part I was trying to get across is that while John accuses those who don’t see things his way of taking part in “fear”, he uses fear to ostracize those same people. Pitting us against one another, in my opinion.

  2. Reply Lori Apr 30,2016 5:45 pm

    My opinion: Target will suffer for this.

    Love is a given, but tolerating political agendas is not a requirement of either the right or the faithful.

    Blogging is all about opinion, and finally…

    medical and scientific associations have and will manipulate data to serve their needs, which is why we all need to use other/additional sources of information to develop our own personal set of guidelines for living.

    Thanks for being brave enough to post on this issue, Jared!

  3. Pingback: States’ Rights and Bathrooms ← define: Jared Barden

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