Yesterday I was reading through my Twitter feed and came across a Twitter conflict between Wil Wheaton and Adam Baldwin over a book promotion video. In the promo, Wil says the book is “funnier than the Bible” and “the Bible is supposed to make you afraid”. Baldwin claimed it mocked the Bible. I’m not sure it was that bad.. Now I have a lot of regard for Wil Wheaton (in fact my wife thinks I have a man crush), but we certainly don’t agree about Christianity. But I’d hang out with him in a minute to talk things geek and learn how to be half the writer he is.
But his words hurt a bit. Frankly, I was surprised by his words, as Wil’s motto is “Don’t be a dick.” He defines the concept more specifically as: “you can be kind and awesome, or you can be a petty and selfish dick. What do you choose? I do my best to be the former.” And I guess, if I was talking to Wil, I’d ask him to consider how his words about the Bible might impact his Christian fans. Is it a “kind and awesome” thing to do. Not really. If Wil were right here, I’d ask him to think if his statement resonates with the “Don’t Be a Dick” philosophy.
Anyway, all this got me thinking about something else. Last year around this (Easter) time, I began to see Zombie Jesus posts. The Zombie Jesus concept seems to be kind of a hit with my geekier friends on Facebook and Twitter. And I get it, it’s kind of funny. They don’t believe in Jesus and they aren’t Christians. I’m cool with that.
But, I am a Christian. Far from the best one and far from the stereotypical one your atheist friends warned you about. Just like not all geeks have poor social skills, bad complexions and live in their parent’s basement, not all Christians are picketing Planned Parenthood or beating their neighbors over the head with a Bible. We’re certainly not all Pat Robertson or the woman with pink hair on PTL. But we all believe in a few core things and Jesus rising from the dead to free us from our sins is a pretty big one. So when I see the mockery, it hurts a bit. Many geeks have experienced mockery and I can’t imagine any of us enjoyed it.
I really struggled with this last year and truthfully, I’m not looking forward to it this year. Now I know I’m going to see it Sunday and hey, that’s fine. I’m not hugely offended. I’m not going to yell at you. I’m certainly not going to say you can’t say it. I guess all I’m asking is; before you post it, think about it. Know it’s going to hurt someone in your geek community just a bit. And I’d like to think that’s not what we geeks are all about.