Monday, January 28, 2008

A Time For Grace

Madison Trammel at Christianity Today wonders what should be done about ESPN's Dana Jacobson. If you aren't familiar with Jacobson's recent transgressions go here for the full story. The short of it is that in a drunken rant in which she was vulgarly denigrating the University of Notre Dame, the "Touchdown Jesus," and Jesus Himself she delivered herself of the unladylike sentiment, "F---k Jesus."

This has caused predictable outrage among Christians everywhere, though certainly not of the sort that would have ensued had she substituted Mohammed for Jesus. Many are calling for ESPN to fire her and indeed they fired Rush Limbaugh for much less, and other sports journalists have been given their pink slips by other networks for much more innocuous statements. But I agree with Trammel. The potty-tongued Ms Jacobson obviously needs to have her mouth washed out with soap, but I don't think demanding that she be fired is the best way for Christians to handle this. Trammel says:

Personally, I can't see that firing Jacobson accomplishes much, besides showing that Christians can flex their muscles and get people fired just as well as any other group. "Bless those who persecute you," Paul writes in Romans 12:14, "bless and do not curse." As followers of Christ, we'd be better served by an ESPN-arranged meeting between Jacobson and a group of local pastors. She could apologize in person-something she's already done in a prepared statement-and they could explain, with grace and understanding, why they accept her apology in the name of the one she denigrated.

I think that the circumstances do indeed call for a display of grace, should she ask for it, which would show the world that Christians are compassionate and forgiving people. Let's leave the fatwas to the Muslims. Who knows but that such an act of love and reconciliation would touch Ms Jacobson and perhaps nudge her into the Kingdom. It'd sure illustrate better than any argument ever could the stark difference between Christianity and Islam.

Dana Jacobson


Rooting For Obama

Barack Obama won big in South Carolina on Saturday, and this will be seen as good news by Republicans who should be cheering for an Obama win in the Democratic nominating process. The reason is that if Hillary wins the nomination she may decide, or have it decided for her, to ask Obama to run as VP. A Hillary/Obama ticket would be almost irresistible to an electorate eager to parade their willingness to vote for a woman and/or a black man regardless of what they stand for. To put both on the same ticket would make the Democrats very difficult to beat in November.

If Obama wins the nomination, however, it's unlikely that Hillary would be willing to serve as his Vice President. The nature of the office would be deemed beneath her station, and she would likely choose to remain in the Senate. If so, the Democratic offering would be weaker with Obama at the head than with him as the running mate.