Monday, February 11, 2013

No Soliciting

I was visited by some door-knocking evangelists recently, and was again reminded of what an offensive way to annoy people "spread the Gospel" it is. Had toys scattered all over the floor, both children demanding attention - even my mom was there - and these two elderly gentlemen with slightly crazy twitches in their eyes knock on my door.

They were probably Seventh-Day Adventists, or possibly even Mormons.  As they could see that they were quickly losing me with their initial pleasantries, one tried to launch into the spiel and asked me if I agreed that "we live in times that are getting worse and worse", or some such phrase.  I frowned, countered with "God is in control", and slowly shut the door after saying "No thank you."

However, this isn't a rant about the Fundy propensity for ineffective outdated methods of evangelism.

I've actually been stuck in a moment of l'esprit de l'escalier since then, wishing I could have those moments back - because I remember being a Fundy with the peculiar vision of modern times as the epitome of evil.  Never mind that we live better, more secure lives now than in the entire history of the world.  Modern medicine, sanitation, and education have made life exceptionally good compared to much of the past.

I'm ecstatic I live in today's world, especially as a woman.  Both I and my first child probably would have died in childbirth.  Actually, I would have died even before that from hemorrhage due to a miscarriage - not to mention whether I would have even made it past childhood.  In the majority of earth's history as a woman I would have been treated as property at best and lived a difficult and short life.

So what I wish I had replied was, "No, I think we are living in amazing times.  What, you think it was better when women were denied education and basic human rights?"  The apoplexy would have been interesting.

Fundamentalists, as part of their raison d'être, have to believe that the world around them is exceptionally evil and they alone are the guardians of a pure faith.  If much of anything out there is good, there's nothing left to separate from and be afraid of.

Don't get me wrong.  There is a great deal of evil in this world.  It's not, however, rock music, movies, or clothing styles.

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