During the 2012 Presidential campaign, much was made of a supposed “war on women.” The term implied that the future of so-called women’s rights (including abortion and contraception) were at risk. A recent pop culture incident, however, showed that the real war on women is the head-on attack on their dignity.
Child actor grown into music star Miley Cyrus (daughter of country music singer Billy Ray Cyrus) recently performed a dance routine during a music event that simulated sexual acts. The act by Cyrus, known to many parents as “Hannah Montana,” created a swirl of controversy. In the wake of shock and derision toward her, a key observation was missed by many. She was not dancing alone.
There was a man—or we will call him a guy anyway—who seemed to get a pass for his miserable actions. This is symptomatic of society today, which has created a barbarian’s paradise in which women feel as though they must act out sexually to be noticed by men.
Look no further than the average commercial break on TV to see marketers cater to what is base in men. The pornography-drenched society, which only leads to a debased, dehumanized view of women, has taken its toll.
New U.S. Census data shows that the number of births out of wedlock in Oklahoma is up, a sure sign that women are giving into men’s desire for sex outside of marriage. Further, human trafficking is growing ever worse in this soil of indignity. What are we to do?
As we pray, God also implores His people through His Word to “defend the weak” (Psalm 82:3) and uphold the dignity of those made in His image. Too often, Christians are cowed when these issues come up for fear of being dismissed as mere prudes.
In all reality, Christianity offers the golden mean between what the world wants and what extreme religions want. Certain Middle Eastern religions require women to cover themselves from head to toe. Hollywood, on the other hand, insists women wear as little as possible. Christians, meanwhile, ask for mere modesty.
Moreover, Christ Himself is the perfect example of how to treat women. His love, grace and correction was effective with the woman at the well (John 4). His relationship with His mother, Mary, was exemplary. His commands, if heeded, lead to justice for all.
While the world may have its flash and allure, the people of God ultimately know what women really need—what we all need. That is to be forgiven and set free, to be restored in Christ and find truth, worth and dignity. Those are prized possessions no war can take away.