Faith, Media & Culture

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture.

Now what? First of all, it’s good to be back — after spending a week in cold and darkness courtesy Hurricane Sandy. Now, let’s hope Chuck Norris’ dire prediction concerning the next thousand years doesn’t materialize. I’m actually more hopeful and, though my guy didn’t win last night, Mitt Romney said it best in his classy concession speech:

“The nation, as you know, is at a critical point. At a time like this, we can’t risk partisan bickering and political posturing. Our leaders have to reach across the aisle to do the people’s work. And we citizens also have to rise to the occasion.

“We look to our teachers and professors; we count on you not just to teach, but to inspire our children with a passion for learning and discovery. We look to our pastors and priests and rabbis and counselors of all kinds to testify of the enduring principles upon which our society is built: honesty, charity, integrity and family.

Now, Mitt, not that you exactly need career advice from the likes of me, but may I offer you an unsolicited suggestion on how your failed presidential campaign could become the foundation of something potentially even greater.

It’s been said that politics is downstream of culture. With your name recognition, access to capital and proven business acumen, you are just the man to launch (or acquire) an entertainment distribution system (i.e. TV network) that would promote popular programming (movies, series etc.) that would promote the values you stand for and mentioned in your speech — honestly, charity, integrity and family.

Rupert Murdoch certainly proved that there’s a strong market for a conservative values news channel. It’s just a shame he has refused to lead the way on the (just-as-important) entertainment side. I’m not talking here about a religious channel but, rather, a broad-based network that would subtly (because subtle is usually best) that would uphold the ethos of faith through popular entertainment.

There are plenty of producers, writers and other creative professionals out there ready and eager to make it happen. But the persistent problem remains a reliable platform to deliver their product to audiences.

Let’s face it, those of us who think both our culture and our politics have drifted too far from our foundational values (while also becoming just plain mean), need our own Glee or Daily Show  to express and stand up for our point of view with creativity and without any sort of vengeful nastiness. We need a network with a bottom line that involves lifting people up through positive storytelling. It can be done. There’s a provable market for it. It requires only faith and vision. And, of course, a little financing would help.

Encourage one another and build each other up – 1 Thessalonians 5:11

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