These days, I have little or no interest in the bleatings, castigations, or promulgations of organised religion of whatever hue. To me they are just about all the same, from the protectors of paeadophilic priests of the Roman Catholic variety, through the hand-wringing sopping-wet versions as supported by the various shades of Anglican thought, to the fanaticism of the Muslims, as demonstrated by the fun-loving Abu Hamza of the hooks.
However, when a Pro-Life organisation gets the financial muscle to fund a thirty-second Anti-Abortion advert at the SuperBowl in Miami, I believe that another front has been opened up in the long running war between those who believe in the sanctity of life, and those who vehemently oppose any limit on the ability of women to regulate either their own bodies, or their choices in that regulation.
The advert is not, however, one of the famous, or rather infamous ‘destruction of fetus’ varieties, but the words of a survivor, born after the offer of abortion was rejected by his mother. Tim Tebow is also a football legend, playing for the Florida Gators, and I am advised that he commands considerable numbers of female fans. But I am troubled by this young man’s message, coming as it does from an angle so far apart from the area in which he has gained his fame. Are Superbowl watchers, of there are presumed to be over one hundred million, to take a partisan message as hyped as this one so obviously is as Gospel; on the grounds that whatever Tim says is bound to be correct, because of his natural ability to kick, or throw, or hit a member of the opposing team?
When we see David Beckham posing with a razor, wearing a suit or a pair of underpants, we get the underlying message, despite the fact that he is being paid rather a lot of cash to advertise the product. When we used to watch Tiger Woods flashing his new watch before blasting yet another ball down the fairway, we got the message that if Tiger wears one, the rest of the worlds’ duffers, bashers and grunters might improve their golf if they bought one as well! But what are we to make of the message that when Tim scores, or runs, or does whatever he does, he does so because his mother refused to take the advice she was given to have an abortion? Apart from the simple truth that he would not be alive!
p.s. Due to my famous lack of knowledge of all sport, as can be confirmed by David, I am still unaware of young Master Tebow’s exact place in the realm of football, or what he is supposed to do when playing!