Unstoppable

KirkCameronByLuigiNovi
Was it a glitch in the automation or something more calculated?

After actor Kirk Cameron who happens to be an outspoken Christian had the links to the trailer of his upcoming movie, Unstoppable, removed from Facebook, he publicly took issue with the action, saying on his Facebook page

that links to the website for “Unstoppable” had been blocked by the social network for allegedly being “abusive,” “unsafe” and “spammy.” The following day, he announced YouTube had done the same and had blocked the “Unstoppable” trailer because it was considered “spam,” a “scam” and “deceptive.” (Huffington Post)

In his appeal to fans to support him against Facebook and YouTube, Cameron said his movie is about

“faith, hope and love, and about why God allows bad things to happen to good people. What is ‘abusive’ or ‘unsafe’ about that?!” (Ibid.)

A day after Cameron went public with the issue, Facebook rescinded their block, saying that the address he was using for the movie site had previously been used by a spammer and therefore blocked by Facebook. Their automated system simply hadn’t caught up to the change.

Sounds reasonable.

But what about YouTube?

Apparently there’s an active attempt to have all Cameron’s YouTube videos removed, though they also retracted the “Unstoppable” block. Why would YouTube want Cameron’s videos taken down?

Without saying this is the reason, a USA Today article on the subject mentions that Cameron is “outspoken against gay marriage.”

Cameron himself addresses why people hate God in a new YouTube video, pointing first to the fact that they hate the moral standard.

So is all this a tempest in a teapot, a simple and understandable techno-glitch? Or is this a foreshadowing of what is to come for Christians who speak up for what they believe? I suppose only time will tell, but I find it sobering.

Social media has given every person a voice and an audience, but how quickly it could be snatched away. What if “religious topics” are one day considered too divisive, too inflammatory to be allowed?

After what happened with Kirk Cameron, that possibility doesn’t seem so far fetched any more.

I suppose for too long we Christians in the United States have felt protected by the First Amendment to our Constitution. It guarantees freedom of speech, doesn’t it? It guarantees freedom of religion.

Amazingly, the very clause that was put into the Bill of Rights to ensure that people could speak their mind and practice their religion, is being turned against people of faith. No “establishment of religion” has come to mean no allowance of religion.

First this was in schools, then government buildings. Now there are attempts to extend this to government property–like public parks and beaches.

While the shift is startling, it simply reminds me that government was never the guarantor for our freedoms. God is.

Should Christians face a period of persecution here in the US, we’d only be joining the millions of our brothers and sisters who are experiencing the same around the world. It’s not something I look forward to, but it’s something I expect. Could it be that the vitriol aimed at Kirk Cameron (see comments such as “Kirk Cameron is a sanctimonious, obnoxious f***knut and a washed-up former
child T.V. star…”), is an indication of what lies ahead for all believers? What do you think?

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10 Comments

  1. Last I checked (5 minutes ago) I can access links on both Facebook and Youtube. However, if a significant number of people complain, Youtube and Facebook both have the right to suspend links while they investigate. Facebook did that, and re-instated when they found the reason for suspending the account had no merit.

    What’s next? People complaining that they are being unfriended because of their religious beliefs?

    No such thing as bad publicity.

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    • Cameron, are you saying, that no, we are not moving closer to being stripped of the rights we’ve enjoyed to express our religious beliefs? Interesting.

      Becky

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  2. By the Way, from Youtube’s community guidelines:

    “We encourage free speech and defend everyone’s right to express unpopular points of view. But we don’t permit hate speech (speech which attacks or demeans a group based on race or ethnic origin, religion, disability, gender, age, veteran status, and sexual orientation/gender identity).”

    Their company… their policy.

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    • I guess it all depends on how you define “attacks or demeans.” If it means “disagrees with,” then the policy would seem to be in conflict with the first amendment.

      Becky

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  3. Excellent blog Rebecca. Could it have been part truth and part advertising on Mr. Cameron’s part? Possibly.

    I would like to go on record (again) as stating that I do not “hate” homosexual people. I do not believe that their lifestyle is in accordance with biblical principles and as such, cannot agree with them that their sexual orientation is acceptable in the eyes of God. I don’t hate them, I don’t dislike them, I just don’t agree with them. Condemning my position – which is based on a sincere belief of the principles laid out in the Word of God – is as much “hate” speech as anything isn’t it?

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    • Mike, I wondered that too–nothing sells like controversy. I’d like to think it wasn’t that. I’d like to think the media picked up on the issue after it was resolved–which makes it look like it was nothing. But after the links and video had been pulled, and before they were restored, it might have looked very different.

      And I’m with you regarding the Biblical position about homosexuality. It is no more hateful to say that homosexuality is sin than it is to say lying is sin.

      Becky

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  4. Many years ago, Christians understood that, to become a Christian is to take a stand for what is right, even as we learn to live it, regardless of our “press,” our imprisonment, and yes, even our death, if necessary. If we die, the Truth remains–a Truth that always outlives our own memory, a Truth that is our legacy. If we love in action, “hate” speech that isn’t will eventually be seen for what it is–quoting God!

    Will we face this persecution? Jesus said we would, in Matthew 24. Peter wrote that if we are to be Godly in this world, we will suffer persecution.

    So, how do we respond? Sometimes, Paul took it and once, he took officials to task, and insisted on an escort, that embarrassed his enemies. Apparently, we just have to know what God believes the situation warrants, and for that, we will have to be exceptionally close to God.

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    • Well said, Peggy. I often think the young people of today, and more so the small children, have no idea what they may face. When I was growing up, people talked a lot about persecution, but I don’t think I ever seriously believed it. I couldn’t imagine a world without Bibles or the ability to pray openly or go to church.

      Now I know better–that there are millions of people who live under those conditions. Why would we think the West should be spared?

      You’re absolutely right that Christ said we would face persecution. Peter did too in his first letter and Paul spoke of the same thing.

      Interesting that you point out how Paul didn’t respond in the same way each time he faced persecution. Appropriate that he said our speech should be with grace so that we will know how we should respond to each person. (I think that’s in Colossians). And Peter said we should be ready to make a defense to everyone who asks us to give an answer for the hope that is in us, yet with gentleness and reverence. So it seems the what we say or do should be tailored to the person and situation, but the attitude should the same.

      Becky

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  5. Great post, Becky, but I have to admit that I’ve taken an awful lot of flack for my stand on legalizing gay marriage because I’m not against it. It’s just a piece of paper and it certainly hasn’t kept any male/female marriages together. Of course, I’m totally against Christian ministers agreeing to perform the ceremony. That’s not a LEGAL matter. At best, that legal piece of paper may represent the government’s “blessing” on a marriage, yet my husband and I have been married 25-years (as of last May) and, of all the marriage-busting problems we’ve survived, not once was it because we were honoring a nifty piece of paper that we paid the state to bless us with in the first place. I think that the attempts to federalize marriage as being between a man and a woman are exactly what brought this matter to the Supreme Court’s attention now. If (IF) you want to read my more thorough opinion on it, it’s on Freedom Bunker, but I won’t post a direct link because I don’t want you to think I’m just trying to promote myself here.

    Anyway, still, great post! I’m a huge fan of Kirk Cameron.

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    • Amber, I understand where you’re coming from. Sinners will sin, so why are we putting such emphasis on “stopping” them, when in fact, we can’t and won’t. The “permission” is simply a legal formality.

      The issue as I see it has two prongs that could be harmful. One is that this tacit societal approval will open the door for more to experiment–people who would not have otherwise considered involving themselves in homosexual behavior. And second, this legal formality can be used to force Christian organizations “not to discriminate,” so that the pastor you mentioned will by law have to perform the ceremony.

      In the end, I hate to think our nation passes laws that condones what God decries.

      But of course, my point here is that Kirk Cameron should be allowed to voice his opinions, if indeed we still believe in freedom of speech.

      I hope I can get some time to stop by and read your thoughts on the subject. Hectic right now!

      Becky

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