The attack by BuzzFeed and Cosmopolitan on "Fixer-Upper" stars Chip and Joanna Gaines reveals the passion of left-progressives to achieve cultural hegemony.
BuzzFeed's Kate Aurthur, and Cosmo's Gina Meispewed snarky yellow-tinted ink at the Gaines because Aurthur and Mei have problems with the church the Gaines attend in Waco. Jimmy Seibert, the pastor there, takes a firm stance on the Bible's teaching that marriage ought to be between an actual male and an actual female, and that the homosexual lifestyle is not biblical.
It's a commentary on our age that I am compelled to insert "actual" so the reader will know I am speaking of men who are men and women who are women objectively, and not merely subjectively.
Ironically, the leftist culture that wasn't bothered by Barack Obama aligning with Pastor Jeremiah Wright's Chicago church is upset about the Gaines attending Pastor Jimmy Seibert's Waco church. (Full disclosure: I am familiar with the history of Antioch Community Church, and its founding around incarnational, missional ministry that has blessed many impoverished people).
But then again, when one is a hegemonic power, truth is what one says it is. Contradictions and inconsistencies do not exist. Thus saith ESPN, BuzzFeed, Cosmo, and all the other powerful organs of the hegemonic class.
"Hegemony" refers to domination. The term is used most often in a geopolitical sense. Hitler, for example, wanted his Third Reich to be the European hegemon, and ultimately that of the whole world. Japan sought hegemony in east Asia, which helped spark the Pearl Harbor attack on December 7, 1941.
But the hegemonic principle is not limited to geopolitics. The progressivist left demands cultural obeisance, of which bowing at the altar of the LGBT value system is the highest and holiest sacramental act.
The goal of left-progressivism is to be the cultural hegemon globally. It wants all societies to kneel before its idol. And while they are at it, these cultural hegemons want developing nations who struggle to stoke the energy of strong economies to yield to their preachments on climate change nee global warming while they enlarge their own carbon footprints.
The cultural hegemons of the left have spoken, so must it be.
If they still want a voice on the public stage the cultural hegemons believe to be their property exclusively, Chip and Joanna must denounce their pastor, change churches, and bow to the sacred magisterium of the progressivist left, or else.
Anyone who refuses to kowtow before the great icon erected by the neo-Nebuchadnezzars must be thrown into the fiery furnace. Such deviates must be stripped of public respectability and forced to their knees or go up in ashes.
The Benham brothers, another HGTV pair, still have the smoke of the furnace on their garments, like Daniel's friends literally centuries ago. However, like Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, the Benhams are unscathed by the flames, though they lost their HGTV contract because they would not bow.
There are some Orthodox, Catholic, and even Evangelical Christians who believe they can negotiate with and appease the progressivist cultural hegemons. Sadly, Pope Francis sometimes falls into that delusion.
Hardly anyone, however, understands better the progressivist drive for cultural and social dominance than R.R. Reno. This Catholic Christian is editor of the thoughtful journal, First Things, and author of Resurrecting the Idea of a Christian Society, inspired by the brilliant twentieth century essayist and poet, T.S. Eliot.
"Today's culture warriors on the left trumpet their commitment to justice, but they lord it over the weak, redefining our public culture in countless ways," says Reno. "Today's liberalism is almost entirely focused on cultural politics — abortion rights, sexual liberation, and the strange, twilight battle for sex equality in a society where women outnumber men at universities."
The new cultural hegemon of the left, continues Reno, "dictates acquiescence in gay marriage, an exclamation mark on the trends that have weakened marriage for the poor, and now 'transgender rights,' which will further dismantle the developmental norms for children and youth."
"What is male; what is female?" ask the sophisticates of the hegemonic class.
One is reminded of the relativistic befuddlement of Pontius Pilate when he asked Jesus of Nazareth the most famous rhetorical question of all time: "What is truth?"
Jesus responded with stunning elegance: complete silence.
And so should the Gaines in the courtyard of today's cultural hegemons.