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Why I Am Not Boycotting Texas In July’s Participation In The Take Action Tour
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As many of you know there is an organized boycott of a pro-life band on the 2011 Take Action Tour. The band is called Texas in July. Members of Texas in July are not only pro-life but they are also personally Christians. Are you confused? Let me explain.
First, I want to make it clear that my opposition to this boycott is not a personal attack on those who are boycotting. I know many of the pro-lifers participating. I do not wish to make this into a public drama situation. I have prayerfully considered voicing my disagreement, and decided that I must. My conscience and convictions compel me.
Many pro-lifers have assumed that I would joining the boycott and urging our list to do so as well. Many were shocked to learn of my private position not to. I believe that the status messages and Facebook pages do not tell the complete story, and therefore, I must make this public. Here is my statement. If, after reading it, you still have further questions, feel free to contact me with them, and I’ll do my best to respond.
If you are not familiar with the boycott, here is a brief summary.
The Take Action Tour is an annual 4 – 5 week Spring-time tour with 4 – 5 bands on average each year. Each year the tour chooses a different non-profit to highlight and support. This year, unfortunately, the tour chose to benefit a very questionable organization, SexEtc. This organization describes itself as being: “dedicated to providing and promoting comprehensive sexuality education to young people and the adults who teach them.” Once you spend a few minutes on the site it is clear they are not coming from a perspective of saving and defending innocent human life during their earliest stages of life nor advocating for innocence, purity and chastity as the only or even main goal a young person should aim for.
Let me make another point crystal clear: I in no way endorse SexEtc or anything on their webpage. While I haven’t read every single thing on their site, I’ve seen enough to know that I do not support it.
Many years ago, Rock For Life may have organized or participated in a boycott of a tour like this, as a whole because of their support of SexEtc. However, since that phase in our ministry, many pro-life bands that Rock For Life has supported over the years have broken out of the typical Christian music scene and into the mainstream, or “secular” arena. Similar to the Christian action of being a light in the darkness, pro-life bands who we support are encouraged to be a light in the darkness.
Texas in July is a pro-life band. They oppose abortion. As a result, they are most likely the only pro-life voice that will be heard on the Take Action tour. So, why are pro-lifers aggressively going after TIJ?
I believe that our opposition should be targeted elsewhere. Rather than targeting young individuals who mostly (if not completely) agree with us regarding the pro-life viewpoint, why not focus on SexEtc or Take Action?
I understand that the main reason for the boycott is that TIJ is raising money for SexEtc. But in actuality, SexEtc is most likely spending more money than they’re making on this tour. I am very familiar with tours, touring, playing tours, sponsoring tours, being the beneficiary of a tour, etc. SexEtc is not making any money off of this tour. Yes, they are getting exposure. Exposure that they are going to get from this tour whether TIJ is on it or not. TIJ is in the unique position to counter the negative SexEtc messages with the pro-life message.
At this point you may be wondering: What are they gonna say from stage? Is it going to be a strong pro-life and/or Christian message? I’m not going to be happy unless it’s a strong pro-life / Christian message. I don’t know.
But let me ask you, do you ask the same question to the Christian missionaries in Islamic Countries and/or brutal anti-religious freedom secular countries like China? A Christian missionary faces expulsion while their citizens risk arrest and death for proselytizing. Is the Christian missionary not Christian enough for not wearing “I <3 Jesus” tshirts? We are to be as wise as serpents but as gentle as doves.
A demand is being made of the band to pull out of the tour immediately. But what will that accomplish? They signed a contract. Should we not honor our commitments? What about the financial investment the band, their management and the label have made to be on this tour? Should they throw that out the window and soil their reputation as a band?
Another complaint made by the boycotters is the band’s official statement. The claim is that they didn’t come out strong enough against SexEtc. Yet they clearly said in the statement that they oppose abortion. This means that SexEtc has welcomed a band of pro-life Christians to not only play the tour, but also to speak their minds in whatever manner they would like. What else can we ask for in this situation?
I believe in boycotts. They work. Life Decisions International researches companies who financially contribute to Planned Parenthood and encourages boycotting these companies. Many companies have stopped giving financially to Planned Parenthood because of the boycotts while many keep giving regardless. There are a lot of companies on this list. As much as I would like to I AM NOT currently boycotting them all.
One of them is Bank of America. Several years ago they purchased my loan from my previous mortgage company. It is extremely difficult, and costly (especially in this economic climate) to just change mortgage companies. Am I a poor pro-lifer because I am not boycotting Bank of America?
How many of you are using a Mac computer instead of a PC (Windows operating systems)? Yep, links to pro-abortion causes. How many of you have health insurance? Does your health insurance cover abortions? Most do.
In conclusion: TIJ is on the tour and booked for the remainder of it. Instead of focusing on demanding that they leave, let’s recognize that they are young kids in a small band who are self-professed Christians who have been given the amazing opportunity to open for 3 – 4 well known acts on a big national tour. Ultimately, THEY NEED OUR PRAYERS! I’m sure this boycott effort must be very traumatic for them. They are probably wondering why fellow Christians and pro-lifers are attacking them. I believe this situation calls for grace over finger pointing. Let’s support them and make the best of this situation.
This is why I am not joining a boycott of pro-life and Christian band Texas in July. If you are participating in the boycott I would highly encourage you to prayerfully reconsider. I respect their desicion to stay on the tour. As they finish out the tour, I will be praying that they continue to shine a light and that they will have many opportunities to share their faith and the pro-life position. Will you join me?
Click here to join the facebook page, I Support Texas in July on the Take Action Tour