When Karl Rove or David Axelrod write an article for any newspaper or website, there’s almost always a line or two at the beginning or end that describes their previous roles in President Bush’s or President Obama’s administration. It’s only fair that people know what they are reading is not objective journalism. The articles may still be helpful and informative, but the “disclaimer” helps us to adjust our mental filters to the left or to the right while reading their pieces.
A Right to Know
There are many more articles that could do with similar disclaimers. For example, if a journalist has had an abortion (or has supported his wife or partner in having one), I’d like to know that fact when she or he is “reporting” on the subject. Similarly, if someone is writing about homosexuality, I think readers have a right to know if the journalist is a homosexual.
I say that because over the years I’ve noticed many professedly “objective” journalists have used their position and profession to campaign for abortion rights or homosexual rights, only much later to reveal a history of abortion, or that they are a homosexual, or that a close family member is. Same goes for politicians and judges.
But I’m also increasingly noticing this in Christian journalism, and even in pastors. At least three times in the past year or so, I’ve seen “Christian” journalists and pastors writing and speaking favorably of homosexuality (and often speaking pejoratively of any Christians who stand for biblical marriage). They portray themselves as “thoughtful” and “objective.” They’ve “read and consulted widely.” They’ve studied and reviewed the biblical evidence. And they’ve come to a carefully crafted and considered conclusion. It’s all so reasonable, fair, neutral, scholarly, and so on.
But, sooner or later it’s revealed that they have some history of homosexual/lesbian activity or same-sex attraction, or someone in their family does. In other words, there’s much more personal feeling, biased subjectivity, and pained conscience in this than they want to admit.
You mark the “Christian” journalists, bloggers, and pastors who are prominent in the so-called “Gay Christian” movement or are sympathetic to it. Sooner or later you’ll discover that their views are much more influenced by their own sexual preferences or activity, or by a family member’s, than by biblical exegesis.
All I’m asking is that in the interests of journalistic integrity and pastoral honesty, their articles (and speeches) should carry a “disclaimer,” some admission of personal interest, agenda, or gain in the subject that help us make the necessary adjustments when reading them. Their articles (or speeches) may still be informative and helpful, but we’ll read and hear them more as opinion pieces, than as “fair and balanced” reporting.