Five for Friday: Demonizing Women, Enduring Christian Rock, Throw Away Kids’ Art

CHICAGO, IL (September 21, 2018) – Covenanters routinely share links to social media articles and videos that Covenant News Service believes may be of interest to others. Each Friday we post five of them. Following is a sample of those submissions—their inclusion does not represent an endorsement by the Covenant of any views expressed.

The Demonization of Women in Toxic Relationships

When famous women die or struggle with substance abuse, the men in their lives are rarely blamed, but too often women are shamed for the tragedies of their romantic or past-romantic partners. Ariana Grande, 25, was the latest to suffer the wrath of multitudes after her former boyfriend and rapper/singer/producer Mac Miller died when he crashed his car while intoxicated.

From the article: “Grande is not the first woman to carry the weight of a romantic partner’s demons on her shoulder. Especially where fame and fandom are involved, the gossipy headlines about betrayal and heartbreak seem like a more tangible cause for tragedy than the reality that no matter how much support they have, even the strongest of our heroes can lose the battles they fight. And because, in this case, Grande had very publicly moved on to meet the man she has called her ‘soul mate,’ her outward happiness was enough proof for the most misogynistic of commenters that Miller’s downfall was her fault.”

Black Patients Miss out on Promising Cancer Drugs

For multiple reasons, the percentage of African Americans and Native Americans who participate in cancer trials is far lower than their makeup of the general population. For some drug trials, fewer than 2 percent of participants were African Americans.

From the article: “The very relationship of race to drug development is fraught with controversy. Race is primarily seen as a social concept, rather than as a product of measurable biological traits. Yet there’s growing evidence that, whether for environmental or genetic reasons, drugs may have different effects on different populations.”

The Unlikely Endurance of Christian Rock

Who knew it was still around? The article is a well-written synopsis of the ups and downs of Christian rock from its pre-formative days when even Martin Luther King Jr. was opposed to mixing rock music and sacred lyrics, through the height of its popularity in the 1980s and ’90s, to today, when groups with a strong faith influence eschew the label of being “Christian” bands.

From the article: “Do Christian bands have a propaganda problem? It is certainly true that most Christian rock bands were obliged to follow doctrinal rules. But, in their determination to deliver clear messages, these bands weren’t necessarily much different from the many secular bands that wrote protest songs: in the history of rock, furious conviction has been neither rare nor necessarily unhelpful. There is no easy way to distinguish between a musician who spouts ‘prepackaged doctrine’ and one who boldly stands up for what is right.”

Throw Your Children’s Art Away

When it appeared earlier this month, this was among the most-read pieces on The Atlantic’s website, drawing many positive responses. Readers said it helped them feel less guilty about ridding themselves of all those drawings, painting, and craft projects taking up storage space. The author contends that saving your children’s art is an unhealthy nostalgia.

Yet the author reduces the decision to keep or throw out children’s art to a binary choice—keep it all or throw it all out. If children’s art is ephemeral and incomplete, then why isn’t the art of adults? You be the judge.

From the article: “If it’s the act of making the art that’s useful and good for children, then let this part of the art live, and then let its results die. Like its aesthetic quality, the output of children’s artistic efforts is incomplete. Throwing it away actually does everyone a favor. It completes the artistic life cycle, allowing ephemera to be just that: actually ephemeral. Childhood is like that, too—or that’s how parents ought to think about it. Kids thrash about until a more recognizable self takes hold. Then they turn their attention toward preserving that developing self. The paperwork they produce along the way is mostly a means to that end.”

The Best Books of the 21st Century – So Far

The website admits it’s premature and somewhat “bizarre” to come up with such a list at this point, but it polled dozens of authors and critics to get their opinions on what they would consider a “canon” of books spanning the past 18 years. They were surprised that some books got more than a few votes given the volume of literary work to choose from. Even if it’s incomplete, lists always make good discussion starters.

From the article: “The purpose was not to build a fixed library but to take a blurry selfie of a cultural moment.”

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

About the Author

Stan Friedman is the news and online editor for the Covenant Companion and is grateful for the opportunity to serve in a job that combines his newspaper and pastoral ministry experience. He has been to 15 Bruce Springsteen concerts in four cities and listened to “Thunder Road” an average of at least once a day for 41 years.

Author Archive Page

Post a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *