From a paper by Michael Werner, author of the new book, Regaining Balance: The Evolution of the UUA,
“Looking back, a significant revolution within U.S. theological schools began with Paul Tillich’s book, The Courage to Be, written in 1952. In it, he suggested we could redefine the word God in secular terms as “that which is our ultimate concern.” (Of course, interpreting this in the extreme, one could say that God is golf just as easily as God is love.)”
Yes, we could say God is golf but I would argue that God is money in America. And with that sweeping generalization, I can also offer a solution to the current argument about if the media uses a double standard when covering interracial violence like white George Zimmerman killing black Trayvon Martin and two black teenagers (and one white teenager) killing white Chris Pine.
In the business world there is a single standard: Maximizing profit.
Of course there are liberal or conservative biases. All we need to do is listen to any news outlet to hear how they spin the facts to appeal to their target demographic. Do we really think it’s an accident when we hear our ideas reflected on our favorite news station?
Or when we find the outlet that validates our preconceived ideas, do we really think they are reporting the facts without putting spin in our preferred direction?
Even more ridiculous, do we think there remains a single news personality that isn’t influenced by the people who pay their salaries? Do we think they can report the news without their employer’s bias? To speak truth to power?
If we do, we’ve lulled ourselves into a state of somnambulism. Maybe we all need to continue our sleepwalking uninterrupted by the reality around us. And that is our right in America. Unfortunately, it seems to have evolved into a necessity.
But please recognize that biases are not valid facts. If we insist on living in a bubble, right or left, fine. But don’t use that spin to try to convince others we have the market on truth: For instance, that the press uses a double standard and under-reports blacks killing whites or over-reports whites killing blacks.
Don’t we realize how ridiculous that is when we think about the profit involved in pleasing an audience? Maybe not. Maybe we’re too numbed by the superficiality of life in postmodern America to think clearly.
Sorry Reverend King, your dream has taken a twist in America. We have another God who doesn’t care about the content of your character or the color of your skin. It only cares about the color green. Lots and lots of it, above all else.
Yes, Paul Tillich, the increasing secularization of America has made it much easier to redefine the word God as that which is our ultimate concern.
Yes, Michael Werner, we have redefined our ultimate concern and it’s not golf. It’s profit.
Yes, Karl Marx, we’ve almost reached the place you warned us about, where money is the basis of every human transaction.
“That which is our ultimate concern” is our love of money. Racism is good for circulation, readership and advertising revenue. All it needs is a little stimulation from the Drudge Report, Rush Limbaugh and Fox News, which they are well paid to provide.
Wake up folks! The senseless violence is the message, not this current hiccup about how the press reports it.
Racism is just another fuel that keeps the fires burning in the church of commerce that now rules America. As we’ve done in religious disagreements for centuries, let’s keep arguing amongst ourselves while the church of commerce builds new cathedrals in its own honor.
Robert De Filippis