August 08, 2003

Judgment Day

While reading Mr. Lileks' commentary (doesn't everyone?) on Reverend Gene Robinson's problem with taking his own commitments seriously, it occured to me that this represents the limits of postmodern moral relativity. Mr. Lileks does an excellent (natch!) job of expressing the problems that Rev. Robinson has in downgrading solemn vows to mere intentions and noting that those of us who are uncomfortable with this will generally be challenged with a "who are you to judge" question, as though we cannot, in fact, have any basis for determining what is good. Never mind that the question of what is good is at the heart of what it is that Rev. Robinson professes to be trying to teach others. But Rev. Robinson's moral sickness goes even deeper than that. By internalizing the postmodern moral relativity necessary to transmogrify the sacred commitments he made before God, family and friends into nothing more than his "intention" to do the right thing, Rev. Robinson has lowered the bar of anti-judgmentalism so far that not even the Mighty Sparrow in his prime could limbo through the metaphysical contortions necessary to ask, "who am I to judge myself?", in all earnestness without failing.

I almost feel sorry for him.

Posted by Charles Austin at August 8, 2003 11:22 PM

I don't get as close to feeling sorry for him as you do, Charles.

Moral relativism has no place inside a church's walls. The entire function of a church is to promulgate a vision of what is right and good -- indeed, what is demanded of us by God. Rev. Robinson's elevation is a clear signal that the Episcopalian denomination has ceased to be a church, and will now concentrate on other matters, probably fashions.

Churches can't command anyone's allegiance. They don't owe anyone a "sense of inclusion." Why churches, which ought to be the most conservative institutions in the world (in the sense of conserving a creed and a set of doctrines), should have become so susceptible to fads and the whims of popular sentiment baffles me utterly. It's an abandonment of their mission; indeed, a declaration that they have no mission that couldn't be equally well served by Abercrombie & Fitch, or MTV.

Posted by: Francis W. Porretto at 07:46 AM

Let's see. Jesus Christ gave his life so that man could be saved. Rev. Robinson gave his wife (and kids) so that he could have sex with a man. Yes. The Very Reverend Robinson is certainly Christ-like.

"And here's to you, Mr. Robinson,
Jesus loves you more than you will know (Wo wo wo).
God bless you, please, Mr. Robinson,
Heaven holds a place for those who pray (Hey hey hey, hey hey hey)."

Posted by: Richard Nieporent at 10:12 AM

Another Role Model from Hell. And since they obviously don't believe in either concept, that shouldn't offend anybody, right?

Posted by: Tom McMahon at 10:38 AM

Bless you for plugging the Sparrow

Posted by: Charles Iselin at 10:50 AM