Challenging the cultural climate is a major component of the new apologetics, said Sean McDowell, head of Worldview Ministries. "The apologetics resurgence has been sparked ultimately by teens who are asking more questions about why people believe the things they do," he said. "Those who thought that kids in a postmodern world don't want an ideology were wrong."
I've have been seeing some interesting cultural shifts of late, including among our youth and young adults. It's something I've described seeing to people I've had debates with on various topics, but those I've mentioned it to do not see it. I'm not surprised by that. What they are seeing is what the mass media and certain alternative media that they follow want them to see. They are seeing the results of popular polls and superficial trends. In their eyes, religion is being destroyed by "science" and "rationality"; they see opinions towards SSM going in their direction, which they describe as "the right side of history" and other such meaningless catch phrases; they see the abortion issue as decided and beyond debate. Everything around them is telling them that "their side" has won.
I follow enough of popular media to know what they are seeing - and who is telling it to them. However, I follow both sides, and what I'm seeing is something very different. Even as the mainstream media claims that the abortion debate is no debate at all, painting pro-lifers in the worst possible light, I am reading the blogs and articles and watching the videos of those who were there. I am seeing the astonishing increase in people who are now openly and unwaveringly pro-life, even in the face of sometimes violent attacks from pro-abortion supporters. In popular and social media, I see the assumption that people of science are all atheists, and the claims that religion is anti-science and ignorant. The verbal attacks on those who hold religious views by those who claim to be "rational" and "scientists" are inevitably rude, crude, vile and completely unreasonable and unintellectual. Meanwhile, I am seeing people of faith make polite, rational and evidentiary defences in the face of these attacks. I read the papers, articles, books, blogs and reports written by men and women of both science and faith, and their careful claims blow away the irrationality of their attackers. I am also seeing, in complete contradiction of the claims made by those who support SSM, a rise in support of traditional marriage - a rise based on logical argumentation, rationals discussion and evidence based claims.
In all cases, this shift that I am seeing is very much a grassroots thing, and the demographics are completely at odds with how the opposition portrays anyone who disagrees with them. They are not the "old, rich white men of privilege" or "Christian bigots" and so on. No, I'm seeing this shift happening across the board. Men and women, rich and poor, of all colours, religions (or lack of them!), cultural backgrounds, even sexuality.
Most of all, however, I am seeing this shift increase among youth. For all the social experimentation of our public schools, some youth are still managing to be exposed to both sides of issues.
And when they are, they are seeing through the politically correct shadows and lies, recognising truth for what it is, and taking a stand.