click to enlarge
When I was growing up in an evangelical family, there was a lot of bullshit in terms of what I had to believe. These days, the BS evangelicals must swallow is a lot higher, wider and deeper than it was in 1979. But I think the general social trend is growing more progressive. The more we as a society grow in a progressive way, the louder and more idiotic the evangelicals must be to survive - the more attention they must draw to themselves. The more progressive pressure that is applied to evangelicals, the more they are forced to move farther to the right, thus the more inconsequential they become.
For example let's look at the Ku Klux Klan. The KKK used to be a huge influence, especially in the American South. They were terrorists and those that are still members of the Klan should be regarded as terrorists. They should be put on the no-fly list and treated the same as Al Qaeda.
Eventually, over several generations, America tossed out the idea of "blacks being inferior" and we have moved toward a more colorless society. Before you send me hate mail, let me say, racism is alive and well in America and we still have a long way to go. A very long way. When I was born in the 60's, Blacks in the South had to jump through unimaginable hoops just to vote. Now, the woman that handled my last voter registration issue at the local Board of Elections was Black. In less than 40 years, that is a HUGE change. Less than 50 years ago, a Black man marrying a White woman could lead to a lynching. Now, hardly anyone cares. I am a White guy who has been married to a Black woman for 15 years and never has anyone come up to me and said something stupid. We are just another American couple - not a mixed race couple, an American couple. Even when we travel to the rural parts of North Carolina, where Rebel Flags grace damn near every front yard, no one cause a ruckus, no one give us the disapproving eye. Nothing. Clearly, we are not living in 1960. Clearly Dr. King moved mountains.
I think the internet helps. The web is a barrage of free speech - an assault of ideas ranging from sublime to spectacular. From recipes to lifestyles, you are constantly having your ideas challenged. Your way of thinking reevaluated.
It as neurological Darwinism on fast forward.
It happens one person at a time.
Before I moved to the real town of Dobson, NC, I was well on my way to challenging the ideas of my evangelical family. The first thing on the list was religion, or at least the laundry list of crazy ideas I was required to subscribe to. And religion was the first thing to go. I went to the Synagogue, I went to the Mosque, I went to everything I could find. (I never could find a snake-handling church - that would have rocked!) I eventually dumped Christianity and went home.
Same thing we race. I started dating out of my race in High School (more like mowed through according to my friends at the time). Then my political views were challenged.
Tink Von Wagnersteinstadtdorffmacher is the new character in the strip - actually not new, I drew her years ago as she was one of the original characters but it is her first appearance. Her storyline is starting. Biblethumper Jr. has increasingly been questioning his father for some time. And now he has met Tink and Tink will change him more than he ever expected.
The real life Tink is a girl I went to High School with. I loved spending time with her family. The stuff her brother and I got into was right out of Ferris Bueller. There was this one time we met this redneck with a donkey... oh never mind...
Tink didn't read Teen Beat or magazines focused on the young female demographic, she subscribed to US News and World Report. After her brother and I would finish up a night of harassing rednecks on the back roads of Surry County, the Von Wagnersteinstadtdorffmacher family and I would drive to Hardee's at midnight for a round of biscuits and foreign policy chat. Where others challenged me on racism, they challenged me on politics.
And I changed.
Yesterday White males flocked to Barack Obama to vote for him in the Potomac Primaries. White guys voted for a Black man to pull this nation to safety. Change has been underway since Dr. King told us of his dream. Barack isn't campaigning on bringing change, he is change manifest.
Obama is where he is at today because society changed, one person at a time.