Dear friends of mine agreed to be interviewed last year by Lauren Sandler for a book she was writing – the just released, Righteous: Dispatches from the Evangelical Youth Movement. The interview was with Ted Dietz, mainly, but following the interview Ted and his wife, Sarah, my best friend of fifteen years, invited Lauren and her husband over for dinnerâ€¦
â€¦TO BE NICE.
What was just released this week is a gross twisting of fact and reality, and a sad distortion of the lives of two women â€“ my friend, Sarah, and another gal I know, Judy. These are lovely, strong, educated women who have made the choice to be married, to raise children, and to stay home with their children while they are young.
Their lives and the choices they have made are currently being mocked and scrutinized and debated on the reputable salon.com, and in blogs across the internet. Lauren has portrayed both these women as shallow, trapped, sell-outs who left behind great careers and a fabulous life of partying because they bought into the brainwashing tactics of a tennis shoe wearing, cool aide drinking pastor.
You can read an excerpt of the book here at salon.com. If you know Ted and Sarah as I do, you will be disgusted at how they are portrayed. If you donâ€™t know Ted and Sarah, please know that what is printed is not fact, but rather an attempt to shove a size 10 foot of reality into the size 8 shoe of Laurenâ€™s agenda.
When Bryan and I were talking last night, and I was flying off the handle with expletives and threats of dismemberment, he reminded me of Jeffrey Overstreetâ€™s hilarious story on his Looking Closer blog â€“ the one where he was contacted for an interview on whether he thought the media was anti-religious. As he was preparing his response, one that called out the mediaâ€™s tendency to cover the most arresting stories, which also tend to be the extreme voices in religion â€“ the Jerry Fallwell types who blame terrorist acts on homosexuals â€“ the media source called him back to cancel, determining that Jeffreyâ€™s voice was not extreme enough for the interview.
â€œI can’t think of a punchline good enough to end this story,â€ he said in conclusion.
Ted and Sarah are balanced, salt of the earth people. What they lacked in extremity, Lauren fashioned with words in a James Frey Million Little Pieces sort of way. But hey, a little augmented reality never hurt anybody, right?
It certainly sells books.