Issue: Dec 2002


Kobes Beef



Drive What You Want

by Gerry Kobe

Heaven help us -

I almost fell out of my chair when I first heard about the Evangelical Environmental Networks (EEN) campaign: What Would Jesus Drive??If you haven't already read the details you can catch up at http://whatwouldjesusdrive.org/ but if you rather not have that on your browser history I can give you the Cliff Notes.

The thrust of the campaign suggests that what we drive is a moral issue and that Jesus, if he were holding a valid drivers license, would probably choose an ecologically friendly vehicle that got heavenly mileage, whilst simultaneously casting all trucks and SUVs into the salvage yard of darkness.

An interesting premise, but Ive got problems with it.
First of all, I think its a bit presumptuous, if not blasphemous, to assume that Jesus has somehow endorsed certain vehicle segments and condemned others. I mean, this is a self-serving, fiction-based argument if ever Ive heard one. It occurs to me that the originators of this movement have both asked and answered the question and somehow credited their answer to the Almighty. And lets face it, God has a tendency to view things a little deeper and more practically than most of us.

For example, Jesus was a carpenter. He had an awful lot of tools to move around so I cant see him piling them into the trunk of a Toyota Prius. Think about it. How many contractors have come to your house in a Honda Insight or Smart Car? That would be precisely none - they drive trucks. And what about the 12 good friends Jesus traveled with? They were always together so I think its safe to assume that in todays world they would want to car pool. I think a full-size van or a Chevy Suburban would be exactly the right vehicle to move around lots of people and tools.

It's also not lost on me that Jesus was from a Middle Eastern, OPEC country. Unless we re-write history completely, Jesus would be looking at roughly 35 cents a gallon to fuel his vehicle. And if he started preaching about conserving fuel at those prices, people would look at him like he had two heads.

Of course, my point is not to analyze and dignify a ridiculous premise, but merely to illustrate that the logical answer to this trumped-up question may not even support the agenda of the EEN. I think Jesus probably WOULD drive an SUV based on his needs, so who are we kidding here?

And has the EEN ever thought for a few minutes about what kind of collateral damage the image of Jesus will sustain if other industries pick up on using a deity as a pitchman? What kind of beer would Jesus drink? How about his favorite cigarettes or nightclub? I can actually think of a few more graphic examples, but my fear of getting struck by lightning tells me to keep those to myself.

And why stop with Jesus? What would Allah drive? Or Buddha? Or even Krishna? All of these guys have very different transportation needs, so does not it make sense that they would each choose accordingly? And why is that so different from you and I?

This entire campaign and the underlying message that Jesus would disapprove of us driving anything other than what HE would drive is probably more insulting to Jesus than it is to our sensitivities. The bottom line is that you have common sense and you have a free will. I suggest you use them both, forget about the EENs propaganda and drive what you want. I think its a bit presumptuous, if not blasphemous, to assume that Jesus has somehow endorsed certain vehicle segments and condemned others.

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