As Mr. Spock from Star Trek might say, "Intriguing" or even "Fascinating." To what do I refer? The most intriguing phenomenon of what appears to be a fairly silent blogosphere now that Issues, Etc. has actually returned to the airwaves on the Internet and on radio.
Back on March 18, the blogosphere erupted with talk of what happened, why it happened, and how to fix it. Many words were written, many posts were published--by myself and others--and I know that visits to my blog skyrocketed to over 1000 hits for several of those days following the ignominious cancellation of Issues, Etc. Yes, we wanted to know "Why?" I had fun creating that little red circle-slash over the old Issues logo, and was quite thrilled to see it pop up in so many other places. (Perhaps I should have copyrighted it? ;-)
So what's happening now that Issues, Etc. has returned to the airwaves? Where are the bloggers and those who visit, read and comment? I posted one little piece yesterday after the first hour and as the second hour got underway. For this blog Site-Meter shows a whopping 239 visits yesterday, and as of now I have one comment for the Issues post. (Don't get me wrong, I truly appreciate all 239 visits from yesterday as well as the singular comment so far. Thanks, Susan!)
Now I'm sure that many of the blogs which commented on the Issues, Etc. debacle, the online petition, and even the events leading up to and including the protest in front of the LCMS International Center wound up on some kind of watch lists at the IC. I am certain that many readers of the blogs for those few weeks merely wanted to spy out what was being said for the purposes of "damage control," or being informed on what some of us loonies were saying, or who knows what. (Hmm. Wonder what's in my official, top-secret file now? ;-) Now that Issues, Etc. has resumed independent of any official LCMS channels, I'm sure some couldn't care less. They achieved their objective of ridding themselves of a thorn in their theological side and their ecclesial agenda, and they weathered their little self-made typhoon. So be it.
But what is most intriguing to me is that, apparently, those who longed for and eagerly anticipated the return of Issues, Etc. - and with the promise of "no holds barred," as we heard on the initial announcement of its return - also seem somewhat silent. What's up with that? (Please don't take this as any kind of chastisement. It's not meant that way at all! I'm simply observing a most intriguing phenomenon.)
What is that phenomenon? It would appear that blog publishing, and perhaps periodical publishing in general, seems to thrive on and long for *bad news* rather than good news. After all, what make the front page of the newspaper? The sordid bad news of floodings and murders, not the good news of births and wedding engagements. So, it would appear that the same holds true for the blogosphere even when discussing Issues, Etc. and related matters. When the tragedy happens, the blogosphere livens up quite quickly. But when things are coasting along smoothly and well, then we just sort of carry on with our business ... and make it a point to listen to www.piratechristianradio.com come 3:00 p.m. Central Time.
Let me say again, I don't mean this as criticism in any way, shape, matter, or form. It's just an intriguing observation, and I thought that I'd put it out for general consumption and discussion. I have no doubts that faithful Issues, Etc. listeners are very glad to hear once again the discussions, the host, the producer, and the guests. Yes, thank God for it. I'm sure everyone got their "fix" yesterday afternoon :-), and it is certainly nice to hear some much better bump music! :-) I'm even looking forward to see how the listenership numbers measure up to what they were previously on KFUO-AM or in the previous online, on-demand venues. I hope they put the previous numbers to shame!
What I will say is this: Come on, folks, talk it up! Let's not let the bad news rule the day; let's enjoy and promote the good news that is happening - especially this good news that draws us and so many to the real Good News of Jesus Christ crucified and risen for us sinners. So many wanted Issues to return to the airwaves. Well, it has. So let's keep talking it up! (And, of course, keep supporting it financially as well.) After all, we Christians have a chance to show how set apart from the world's values we can be. We can actually put something good and decent on these "front pages" called blogs.