Wednesday, December 13, 2006

"Hated on by the Youth"? Not for the First Time

Not an embarrassment like Mr. dewey decimal! Joe got a little bit of a style. Oh, he puts the knife in, but it tickles as much as it smarts. Good on you, Joe.

Joe has left a new comment on your post "Now, This is More Like It":

You tell him, Mr. Moeller. For the sake of full disclosure, it ought to be mentioned that the majority of Robert Moeller’s own Taylor-hatin’ was restricted to tirades and petitions based on reinstating free ESPN in dorm rooms. This, I believe, proves an important point: today, Taylor is place of social conscience, student initiative, and progressive, populist activism. The place is full of engaged students (pun!) who are passionate about their education as well as their faith, and wouldn’t be content to settle for some autocratic propaganda even if it was being spoon-fed to them. So maybe the architecture isn’t any better than the football team, it’s the faculty that really matters, and Taylor has some truly gifted professors that encourage critical and thoughtful discussions that aren’t bounded by political or theological presuppositions. It would be easy enough to hear that and concede, “well the place sure has changed,” but I don’t think it’s that simple. There are still bitter people at Taylor. There are still students who refuse to engage the community and join the debate, who would rather settle resentfully on the outskirts, console themselves by denouncing the rest, and wait to reflect on the missed opportunities and invisible rebellions of a closed mind until the pithy comebacks come forty years too late. There are plenty of people from a wide range of social, political, and theological backgrounds that have enjoyed their time at Taylor, used the opportunity to learn and grow, and have gone on to do all sorts of great things. Robbie Moeller, as you can see, has started his very own blog! What I mean to say is, your unfortunate experience at Taylor has as much to do with you as it does to do with Taylor. Of course by now you’re probably sick of getting hated on by the youth, so I’ll leave out the requisite heaping on of coals and prayers of exorcism (Andrea, sweetie, you just did comment on “how rude, insensitive, cruel, and ignorant…”) and move right into a more reconciliatory catching-up-to-speed. We still can’t smoke or drink. We can dance, but not very well. “Occasional hand-holding” was on a pretty steady rise throughout the 80’s and 90’s, peaked towards the end of the Clinton Administration, and has been quickly losing ground to “heavy petting.” Chapel is not required anymore, but it is strongly encouraged, along with communal prayer and generous alumni giving. There have been reports of “moral banditry” in local bars, though it was probably just to aid the stagnant local economy. Most references to “Whooping Jesus Bible College” have been removed from official stationary. The new letterhead reflects a more modest, calmly encouraging Risen Lord and Savior. So you can see, things are getting better every day. Judging from the response you’ve gotten, however, I think it’s safe to say that one thing hasn’t changed: there is, apparently, still not a whole lot to do in Upland.

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