My apologies to anyone who is weary with another American election cycle and flinched at seeing the topic on this normally politics-free blog. But when I saw the Obama campaign’s ad, “The Life of Julia,” I thought a couple things that I wanted to share.
First, given that the political right accuses the Obama administration of Big Brother approaches to government, it is disturbing that the media people for the Democrats chose to name the woman in the scenario “Julia”. 1984, anyone? But perhaps it was just a Freudian slip.
The main thing that struck me again in the different slides in the ad was that here again is the lie of feminism bearing fruit: “We don’t want our fathers or husbands and certainly not male church leaders taking care of us!” Enter male president.
What is not surprising is the thought behind the ad. Everybody knows – or at least feels – deep down that every woman needs someone to lean on. Even Hilary Clinton has someone that she calls when she needs advice and support, and everybody feels bad that it’s not her husband. The ad is saying that in order for women to do what they want to do, they need help.
What is surprising is how overt the ad is about the worldview that is behind it. It pretty much accepts that we ladies need an arm on which to lean and Barak is gallantly offering his. This is not merely political strategy, whether the Obama campaign knows it or not. Having taken away the biblical authority of husbands and fathers, postmodern socialism would like you to meet Uncle Sam – or any other man who will dole out what you need, when they think you need it. This ad, despite the happy 50’s look of the graphics, is an attack on the family and especially on women, who, if they want something like what is offered there, will be left open to the impersonal, unbelieving, bottom-line care of politicians. And the ad would be equally wrong regardless of which candidate sponsored it.
The sad thing is that a lot of women will buy into this. Women who were raised into feminism will see the ad not as paternalistic, demeaning and intrusive, but simply as aiding them in their independence and self-fulfillment. They will see free birth control and “preventative care” as a personal advantage instead of a societal threat. They will believe that working hard your whole life and depending solely on the government after retirement is normal. They will flee to a secular, man-made institution away from the safety of God-ordained institutions in order to find security, provision, and comfort. Sin blinds, and it has duped a whole generation into viewing ads like this and thinking that they are promising freedom when they actually violate God’s creation order. In short, it’s the lie of the Garden all over again and modern Eve looks ready to bite.
There is no way to filter worldview out of an election season. That’s why we’ve already been warned in the Word: “Put not your trust in princes, in a son of man, in whom there is no salvation. When his breath departs, he returns to the earth; on that very day his plans perish. Blessed is he whose help is the God of Jacob, whose hope is in the Lord his God… who executes justice for the oppressed, who gives food to the hungry…The Lord watches over the sojourners; he upholds the widow and the fatherless, but the way of the wicked he brings to ruin. The Lord will reign forever, your God, O Zion, to all generations. Praise the Lord!” (Ps. 146) The Lord is very familiar with election tactics and has already promised to preserve His sojourning people through them.