Tuesday, February 23, 2010

What Goes In

What goes in, must come out. This week I'm reminiscing about my high school youth group trips. We had a rule in our youth group - no secular music allowed on trips - only Amy Grant, Michael W. Smith, and Sandi Patti could tag along. One memorable trip, Shannon Myer copied over her Wayne Watson tape with some 80s big hair bands and had a secular music song fest in the back of the bus. Our youth minister packed her up and shipped her by Greyhound back to her, no doubt, displeased parents.

Now I drive buses of teenagers to and from activities and I have grown weary of much of the secular music to which they listen. I am tired of singing about the degradation of women. I am tired of hearing, over and over again, how a woman has a rear that will swallow up a g-string. And this one, which drives me absolutely crazy, "I'm trying to find the words to describe this girl without being disrespectful." Seriously? How about these words, "Hi, you look very nice tonight"?

My girls, your girls, everybody else's girls listen to these songs over and over again. These are songs that condition and prompt them, I believe, to act in ways that are beneficial for those who find it easy to disrespect women. How do we teach our girls that this type of music is unhealthy? Digesting this type of music has a direct effect on actions. Those who write these songs, produce these songs, and play these songs know that.

Body Theology manifests in multiple revelations. Who we think we are as body selves directly affects our actions. What goes in must come out. That holds true for the man who grew up under decades of conservative Sunday morning sermons that prescribe who God is based on a theology of fear instead of love. It holds true for the girl exposed to True Love Waits who now has trouble reconciling her sexuality. What goes in must come out. So this music that my girls listen to scares me. It scares me that they are constantly bombarded with hyper sexualized messages detailing how they should dance, what they should wear, and how low they should go.

I most certainly will not offer the average contemporary Christian song as an alternative. I question the words in many of those songs too. I've taken to classical these days. The girls don't really appreciate that, but we seem to be settling on the music that Shannon Myers had on her taped over copy of Wayne Watson. Yes, 80s big hair bands and Lyndard Skynard are offering us alternatives. We could argue the sexism in those songs too, but I feel the women depicted are on a more equal basis with their male counter parts. They are more often players in the scenarios and not just objects.


Blogger Meg said...

What do you think about this?


12:49 PM  
Blogger Sparkfly said...

My world is more complicated than Kathleen Parker's. Her book and arguments are troublesome to say the least.

1:45 PM  
Blogger Meg said...

Uh yeh. Agreed.

5:40 PM  

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