Peter Hitchens’ Report On Moscow

Peter Hitchens, the Christian brother of atheist and Doug Wilson debate foe Christopher Hitchens, has found his social and ideological niche here in lil’ ol’ Moscow, Idaho. That his niche is a sterile, carefully crafted pod of overblown pseudo-insight shouldn’t really bother us, of course, because — golly! — Peter Hitchens is a cool, tweedy, British academic. Women want him; men want to be him; children will remember the moment Peter Hitchens recognized Moscow as a political bellweather of the American West.

He likes us! He really likes us!

He hasn’t a clue.

But, of course, it’s unlikely that he would, given that his hosts and tour guides are the men of chest of Anselm House, those powerful Calvinists who see the Palouse as a strategic post in the battle of Patriarchal Reformation Good vs. Girly-Church, Sodomite-Loving Evil and Hitchens a “get” in the war of public opinion. Hitchens is flattered by the attention, the Kirk is flattered by the prestige — we’ve got Hitchenses coming and going! — and we’ll all be the better for it, whether we’re blue collar, public school-educated, Maxwell House quaffing rural folk or washed-up old hippies with their effeminate men and ugly, liberal women. Wilson, et al, won’t have to actually engage with any of us, but the rising tide of Wilson’s Hitchensian Exposure will elevate us all.

I think, though, that I’ll opt out of the whole deal. First, I can’t be impressed by the observations of a man whose exposure to my beloved town is shaped by the ones who do the most damage to it. Second, I’d be infinitely more thrilled if a national Christian leader — Ron Sider, perhaps, or Jean Bethke Elshtain — came to Moscow and declared that THIS was a place where the Church spoke out courageously and prophetically against evil, starting with the evil within. The Church has failed miserably in confronting the misdeeds and malice of one of its own; the stakes here are considerably higher than the question of “How blue or red is Moscow?”

Finally — and I say this as a genuine Intolerista, albeit, perhaps, the only Trinitarian one — Obama’s vote totals in Moscow were encouraging. I’m glad he won. But until Moscow’s true-blue liberals and courageous red-heart conservatives join together to confront the garish tartan of ecclesiastical error and offense that covers the Palouse, there will continue, for me, to be another division Hitchens can’t possibly understand: Those who love truth, justice and mercy and refuse to consider tolerance of bigotry a virtue, and those who don’t get the significance of it all and continue to look to others to tell them that, no, it’s really not that bad, not such a big deal, and not anything to get riled up about.

It is. I pray that the next big name who comes into town is someone with the guts and wisdom to tell us what we need to hear — as evangelicals, as neighbors, and as pawns in the great Wilsonian chess game of dominion.

3 Responses to “Peter Hitchens’ Report On Moscow”

  1. Philipa says:

    Wow, impressive post. Personally I’m not a fan of Doug Wilson. At all.

    Here’s a question – would either Doug Wilson or Peter Hitchens sponsor me to be baptised and/or confirmed into the Anglican church? I don’t think so.

  2. I’m sorry I’m just now getting to your comment, Philipa. I don’t know if Wilson or Hitchens would sponsor you for baptism. Is their something that makes you think such would not be the case?

  3. Troy Austin says:

    I recently listened to Keelys debate with Doug Wilson on youtube. What I found most amazing about the debate was the fact that very little scripture if any was quoted and further more they only used their own human wisdom when God is the true authority. The other thing that amazed me was that Keely had said that she was a “Pastor”. I have news for her and that if she truly believes that the Bible is the written word of God then she should believe the scripture that says “woman remain silent in the church” and also the scripture that says “woman should not usurp (take away) authority from a man. Im sure if she has read this scripture, somehow she has twisted it into meaning something else. Please look for my video that I am making for her

Leave a Reply