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On the preference for mugging old ladies

When I say I “like” Bach, and you say you “like” Bon Jovi, are we really using the same verb? That is, when I listen to Bach and you listen to Bon Jovi, is essentially the same thing happening to each of us? At one level, all we mean is that each of us take pleasure in listening to our respective music. But there are many ways of taking pleasure, not all of them comparable, and not all of them morally good. One person may take pleasure in visiting the elderly in nursing homes on Saturday afternoons; another may take pleasure in mugging old ladies on the street on Saturday nights. One person has a “taste” for acts of benevolence, another for acts of violence. But this difference in preference is not simply a matter of “taste” as the word is usually used.

Ken Myers, All God’s Children and Blue Suede Shoes: Christian and Popular Culture, 77.

Scott Aniol

About Scott Aniol

Scott Aniol is the founder and Executive Director of Religious Affections Ministries. He is Chair of the Worship Ministry Department at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, where he teaches courses in ministry, worship, hymnology, aesthetics, culture, and philosophy. He is the author of Worship in Song: A Biblical Approach to Music and Worship, Sound Worship: A Guide to Making Musical Choices in a Noisy World, and By the Waters of Babylon: Worship in a Post-Christian Culture, and speaks around the country in churches and conferences. He is an elder in his church in Fort Worth, TX where he resides with his wife and four children. Views posted here are his own and not necessarily those of his employer.

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