The Super Bowl halftime is still burning my biscuits and it isn’t because of the performance.
It’s because nothing will ever be “ok” for women unless it is in someone elses’ self-righteous box. Sadly, I see this more in people who claim to love Jesus.
Once upon a time it wasn’t ok for a woman to show her ankles and pretty much had to be covered in many layers while working on a farm on a summer day.
Remember medieval times when you could kill your daughter if she was raped by the neighbor boy wearing the above mentioned layers in the summer? I think that is still allowed in some places.
Was a woman worth more than JLo and Shakira because she was covered head to toe in 1867? Or 1463? Or before Jesus was born?
Nope. A woman’s worth has never had anything to do with the clothes on her body. It didn’t even matter if she had intelligent thoughts, opinions on who she marries, or a desire to become a wife at all. Women used to be actual property world wide and in some places still are.
Here’s another thought?
Does the 2020 halftime performance of say, nuns singing Ode to Joy or a Miami children’s salsa club protect my own daughter from sex trafficking? Would that stop perpetuating a slutty stigma of women in general?
Would “family friendly” halftime performances and music videos have prevented the boys when I was 8 from chasing me and my girlfriends all over the playground and trying to pin us down? (1988: “Something Grand” featuring 88 grand pianos, the Rockettes and Chubby Checker)
Or what about in 5th grade the boy who asked me what I had in common with a pirate everyday at recess for a week? FYI it was a sunken chest. (1990: “Salute to New Orleans” and 40th Anniversary of Peanuts’ characters, featuring trumpeter Pete Fountain, Doug Kershaw & Irma Thomas)
Would it have stopped the boys on the bus in 6th grade from calling me tater tot titties?
Or what about my 6th grade teacher who didn’t help me when I said the boys were calling me and my friend Tiffany sluts in class on Halloween? He said I shouldn’t have worn my outfit. Too bad I don’t have a picture. It was a jean skirt that reached my knees, crimped hair, and a white t-shirt that I wrote rock and roll and put lipstick kisses on with the help of my Jesus fearing momma. (1991: “A Small World Salute to 25 Years of the Super Bowl” featuring New Kids on the Block)
Or what about 7th grade when my mom and I went shopping for this adorable bodysuit, vest and plaid kulouts? When I finally wore it to school a male classmate tried throwing spit wads at my chest each time he walked past me.(1992: “Winter Magic” including a salute to the winter season and the winter Olympics featuring Gloria Estefan, Brian Boitano and Dorothy Hamill)
Or what about at church camp when I wore shorts a few inches above my knee in 8th grade and I was made to put on jeans in July because they were too short and I could cause a boy to stumble in his faith with God. (1993: “Heal the World” featuring Michael Jackson and 3,500 local children. Finale included audience card stunt.)
At this point, my mind didn’t know what to think about myself as a young woman.
Was my body bad? Was it good? Or is it only good for the one I will save it for 15 years from now and bad until then? Whose opinion on my body mattered at all? Did mine matter? Was I supposed to cover it up all the time because boys are dirty? In church, I just keep getting the message that I am a no good, dirty sinner, and need to repent? I am supposed to repent for being a woman? And will God hate me for making a boy want to touch my tater tots?
And guess what? All of that happened during family friendly halftime performances.
Women are and always will be a commodity to be consumed. It isn’t our job to mandate or ridicule what women do. It’s our job to first remove the plank from our own eyes before commenting on the speck in our brother or sister’s.
Jesus came here and chatted up a woman at the well midday. She couldn’t come in the cool morning hours because the other woman didn’t want to be seen with her. She had a few too many husbands and the man she was living with at that moment wasn’t her husband at all. He loved her. He told her she was worth it. I wonder what would have been said about her by Christians if social media was around back then. (John 4)
Jesus healed a woman who wasn’t allowed in public because she was bleeding too much. 12 years of loneliness. He made her whole and said she was worth it. What message would social media Christians have shouted about that woman breaking the law to leave her confinement? (Luke 8:43-48)
When he was asked what the number one thing to do of all the lessons He taught, He said, Love God and love your neighbor as yourself. (Matthew 22:34-40)
And until men learn to love God and receive His love back into the depths of their souls, there will never be a world where women and young children aren’t a commodity to be ogled, purchased, and abused. And until all those who claim to love Christ actually walk in love toward one another instead of calling out the speck, it’s all just the clanging of a cymbal.
So I am not sorry when I get irritated with Christians shouting from their social media rooftops how horrible this performance was and how much it is objectifying women. I am just so thankful that I found a Jesus who loves me, a message that will stick in my mind forever, and one that I will pound into my daughter fiercely. You were fearfully and wonderfully made and You. Are. Worth.It.
The change starts in one love filled home at a time. And that change doesn’t come from vilifying women who don’t dress or behave to our “Christian” standards.
Keep making your house a love filled home. High five for home.