I just got an email from a friend and fellow Harding alumna with these links:
See also Malibu Librarian's post, which has several additional links as well.
Ah, I remember me a time when I joined a very subversive conga line during a TMBG concert in Benson Auditorium. Yes, and sure enough, the conga line, or perhaps it was the equally subversive performance of the song "S-E-X-X-Y," got them never invited back. Bloody miracle they were invited in the first place, not being country singers. And doubly miraculous that they came! But of course no good deed goes unpunished, not even might-be-giants'.
Unfortunately for me, this little story of my alma mater, like most I suppose, leaves not just the warm fuzzies thinking of all those innocent little undergrads shakin' their hips on the Benson stage to the greater glory of God, but leaves me with a little tingly feeling of dread and dismay as well. It's not that I'm surprised by the rank hypocrisy of a school that forbids dancing while simultaneously endorsing the overblown spectacle of euphemistic choreography dubbed "Spring Sing" every year. No, that's just to be expected; part of the quirkiness of Harding life.
It's the appearance of "CABs" [Campus Activity Board] in special uniform green T-shirts that bugs me. College students deputized to enforce the kyriarchy's arbitrarily decided standards of morality. Can we think of any precedents for this move toward empowering young people as a police force against their peers? Hmmm...Dolores Umbridge's "Inquisatorial Squad" comes to mind, as do more obvious historical examples, and none of them are at all positive. Does Harding really want to be teaching its students that the most moral way to relate to the other is as adversary, watch dog, policeman? That the path to Christian living is marked by a readiness to use force in order to ensure conformity? That control over others is the moral goal of any pious Christian? That other people simply cannot be trusted to exercise good judgment over matters such as how to properly move their limbs?
CAB, IS, or any other acronym you care to add, it doesn't matter. The creation of any such organization, and the lessons it teaches, are the same, no matter what the ostensible moral concern to be enforced is. Sure, quibbling over dancing is nowhere near the level of moral seriousness that, say, racism is. But empowering one subset of people over another within a general population teaches the pernicious lessons of moral superiority, endorsement of force as a moral means to an end, and the disrespect of others.
Shake your booty down to the floor, y'all. If dancing is all it takes to be subversive, well, start small. Sooner or later your moral senses will escape the appalling damage being done to them and you'll wake up to the issues in the world that are really worth fighting for.