In that blog Mr. Rumney mused whether any of HWA's wannabe successors would imitate HWA's shameful example: "What's the bet that one or more of the grumpy old men who represent the hierarchy in today's COG's will leap into smug mode and bewail the attention given to the departure of the king of pop? How many sermons this coming Sabbath will take cheap shots?"
Here's the cheap shot.
PCG's Ron Fraser's column, America's Decline--From Sinatra to Michael Jackson. This article slavishly adapts HWA's article for today's situation.
Reading [a certain Newsweek article by David Gates] brought back memories of the timeless piece written by Herbert W. Armstrong about society’s reaction to Beatle John Lennon’s murder. (Bolding mine.)There is no shame or embarrassment at HWA's spiteful reaction to John Lennon's death, instead it is viewed as a work of genius worthy of emulation.
"Before Michael Jackson came Frank Sinatra, Elvis Presley and the Beatles …." Thirty years ago, Herbert Armstrong nominated the same entertainment icons of the postwar era as being part of a trend that indicated "[t]his world is fast losing all sense—if it ever had any—of true social values."Observe how Ron Fraser tries to link the same targets HWA chose to use in his article and then tries to link them with Michael Jackson. This only shows just how slavishly PCG tries to wrap themselves around with Elijah's words to establish their legitimacy.
It is interesting that journalist David Gates would choose exactly the same trend, employing exactly the same examples, as Herbert Armstrong to describe this postwar phenomenon."If any secular journalist is found to be saying anything close to what HWA said then he must be a genius" seems to be the criteria of evaluation employed here.
What effect does having such a confused individual as their “idol” have on young minds? Believe it or not, it has a deep effect on the molding of a child’s mind, particularly influencing what it ultimately accepts as normal.It seems to me that the author is here confusing admiration for one's music and dancing to it, with the imitation of one's personal life. Just because one may be a fan of his music does not mean they wish to imitate his personal behaviors or eccentricities.
And on and on it goes. Before we leave this topic I wish to share what one anonymous poster had to say concerning HWA's attitude towards John Lennon's death:
When you think about the doctrine we all shared in CoGdom, namely, the dead being judged at the end when the Millenium is over. If we truly believed or believe that, then, how can one judge someone like Jackson if his judgement has not come as yet? Where is Christian love, compassion, patience, forebearing? You would think sermons would resonate with; "I am not his judge." "His time is coming to know what we know." Instead, snide comments from individuals who really have never done anything for themselves, let alone doing things for those who pay their salaries.When I read that AW blog I was actually hoping that the COG ministers would not slavishly follow HWA in this error. Alas, such hope was bound to be disappointed.
And so we see that this particular COG ministry really has not learned anything thirty years after HWA's vicious and jealous parting shot at a deceased pop star, but they wish to continue following his many errors.