Why I Am Not Boycotting Texas In July’s Participation In The Take Action Tour

As many of you know there is an organized boycott of a pro-life band on the 2011 Take Action Tour. The band is called Texas in July. Members of Texas in July are not only pro-life but they are also personally Christians. Are you confused? Let me explain.

First, I want to make it clear that my opposition to this boycott is not a personal attack on those who are boycotting. I know many of the pro-lifers participating. I do not wish to make this into a public drama situation. I have prayerfully considered voicing my disagreement, and decided that I must. My conscience and convictions compel me.

Many pro-lifers have assumed that I would joining the boycott and urging our list to do so as well. Many were shocked to learn of my private position not to. I believe that the status messages and Facebook pages do not tell the complete story, and therefore, I must make this public. Here is my statement. If, after reading it, you still have further questions, feel free to contact me with them, and I’ll do my best to respond.

If you are not familiar with the boycott, here is a brief summary.

The Take Action Tour is an annual 4 – 5 week Spring-time tour with 4 – 5 bands on average each year. Each year the tour chooses a different non-profit to highlight and support. This year, unfortunately, the tour chose to benefit a very questionable organization, SexEtc. This organization describes itself as being: “dedicated to providing and promoting comprehensive sexuality education to young people and the adults who teach them.” Once you spend a few minutes on the site it is clear they are not coming from a perspective of saving and defending innocent human life during their earliest stages of life nor advocating for innocence, purity and chastity as the only or even main goal a young person should aim for.

Let me make another point crystal clear: I in no way endorse SexEtc or anything on their webpage. While I haven’t read every single thing on their site, I’ve seen enough to know that I do not support it.

Many years ago, Rock For Life may have organized or participated in a boycott of a tour like this, as a whole because of their support of SexEtc. However, since that phase in our ministry, many pro-life bands that Rock For Life has supported over the years have broken out of the typical Christian music scene and into the mainstream, or “secular” arena. Similar to the Christian action of being a light in the darkness, pro-life bands who we support are encouraged to be a light in the darkness.

Texas in July is a pro-life band. They oppose abortion. As a result, they are most likely the only pro-life voice that will be heard on the Take Action tour. So, why are pro-lifers aggressively going after TIJ?

I believe that our opposition should be targeted elsewhere. Rather than targeting young individuals who mostly (if not completely) agree with us regarding the pro-life viewpoint, why not focus on SexEtc or Take Action?

I understand that the main reason for the boycott is that TIJ is raising money for SexEtc. But in actuality, SexEtc is most likely spending more money than they’re making on this tour. I am very familiar with tours, touring, playing tours, sponsoring tours, being the beneficiary of a tour, etc. SexEtc is not making any money off of this tour. Yes, they are getting exposure. Exposure that they are going to get from this tour whether TIJ is on it or not. TIJ is in the unique position to counter the negative SexEtc messages with the pro-life message.

At this point you may be wondering: What are they gonna say from stage? Is it going to be a strong pro-life and/or Christian message? I’m not going to be happy unless it’s a strong pro-life / Christian message. I don’t know.

But let me ask you, do you ask the same question to the Christian missionaries in Islamic Countries and/or brutal anti-religious freedom secular countries like China? A Christian missionary faces expulsion while their citizens risk arrest and death for proselytizing. Is the Christian missionary not Christian enough for not wearing “I ❤ Jesus” tshirts?  We are to be as wise as serpents but as gentle as doves.

A demand is being made of the band to pull out of the tour immediately. But what will that accomplish? They signed a contract. Should we not honor our commitments? What about the financial investment the band, their management and the label have made to be on this tour? Should they throw that out the window and soil their reputation as a band?

Another complaint made by the boycotters is the band’s official statement. The claim is that they didn’t come out strong enough against SexEtc. Yet they clearly said in the statement that they oppose abortion. This means that SexEtc has welcomed a band of pro-life Christians to not only play the tour, but also to speak their minds in whatever manner they would like. What else can we ask for in this situation?

I believe in boycotts. They work. Life Decisions International researches companies who financially contribute to Planned Parenthood and encourages boycotting these companies. Many companies have stopped giving financially to Planned Parenthood because of the boycotts while many keep giving regardless. There are a lot of companies on this list. As much as I would like to I AM NOT currently boycotting them all.

One of them is Bank of America. Several years ago they purchased my loan from my previous mortgage company. It is extremely difficult, and costly (especially in this economic climate) to just change mortgage companies. Am I a poor pro-lifer because I am not boycotting Bank of America?

How many of you are using a Mac computer instead of a PC (Windows operating systems)? Yep, links to pro-abortion causes. How many of you have health insurance? Does your health insurance cover abortions?  Most do.

In conclusion: TIJ is on the tour and booked for the remainder of it. Instead of focusing on demanding that they leave, let’s recognize that they are young kids in a small band who are self-professed Christians who have been given the amazing opportunity to open for 3 – 4 well known acts on a big national tour. Ultimately, THEY NEED OUR PRAYERS! I’m sure this boycott effort must be very traumatic for them. They are probably wondering why fellow Christians and pro-lifers are attacking them. I believe this situation calls for grace over finger pointing. Let’s support them and make the best of this situation.

This is why I am not joining a boycott of pro-life and Christian band Texas in July. If you are participating in the boycott I would highly encourage you to prayerfully reconsider. I respect their desicion to stay on the tour. As they finish out the tour, I will be praying that they continue to shine a light and that they will have many opportunities to share their faith and the pro-life position. Will you join me?

Click here to join the facebook page, I Support Texas in July on the Take Action Tour


40 Responses to Why I Am Not Boycotting Texas In July’s Participation In The Take Action Tour

  1. christa622 says:

    Thanks for posting this Erik! You’ve said a few things that I’ve been thinking since this attack started. Where is the love if we’re badgering our brothers and sisters?

    • you bet! I feel the same way. Spread around. Let’s support our brothers and sisters!

      • marie says:

        I am very disappointed in Rock for life taking this stance and supporting Texas in July! They openly admitted in a statement written a few days ago that they support sexect.com, a website that “educates” children on the subject of sex and all of its consequences. I have thoroughly reviewed this website and was appalled by the material! They encourage casual sex, under age sex contraception, abortion and discourage these children from reaching out to pregnancy crisis centers because” they lie and are not licensed professionals”. This is a complete untruth since the crisis pregnancy center I am involved with in my community and many other I know very well have obgyn doctors, registered nurses, licensed councilors and people with no degree but who have simply had an abortion and had to live with the horror that is causes a woman for the rest of her life and donate there time to share there experience with young girls and even the not so young women. claiming to be christian and pro-life then in turn advertise for This site that is void of any moral compass is pure hypocrisy! Rock for life Is making a huge mistake and is bound to confuse alot of there supporters. To be Christian is to be Christ like so ask your self what would Jesus do? The boycott was never about hurting the band only enlightening them. but more importantly enlightening there young fans to be aware of what sexect.com is all about. Abortion is the biggest holocaust of our time and pro-lifers should live by the no tolerance rule when it comes to this issue…..especially you Erick Because you lead one of the most well know pro-life groups and you have a duty to be all in……..Feel me? Let the truth of our Lord be your guide and Gods grace be upon you.

      • Marie, I understand. First of all TIJ’s statement is not an endorsement of SexEtc. They just simply re-released a SexEtc statement to “clarify their position.” TIJ are pro-life Christian individuals. I believe that they signed onto this tour not know what they were getting into. The fact of the matter is they are already there and are now at least somewhat educated as to who SexEtc. is. They have decided to stay on the tour and make the best of it. Does that mean they are endorsing SexEtc? Hardly. And neither are we. That is ridiculous! I don’t think we should aim our full fury of the pro-life movement towards young Christian and pro-life men who made a hasty, ill-informed decision. A boycott would be better served towards the tour itself for choosing SexEtc as a benefactor, NOT the only pro-life Christian voice on the tour. Plus, the boycott is demeaning by calling them “so-called Christians,” “self-proclaimed Christains,” or just simply putting “Christian” in quotations. That makes it personal and un-Christlike.

  2. Hello,

    Thanks for the article, sir, especially coming from Rock for Life.
    I can see many of the points made, and I agree with many of them, such as “”Once you spend a few minutes on the site [sexetc] it is clear they are not coming from a perspective of saving and defending innocent human life during their earliest stages of life nor advocating for innocence, purity and chastity as the only or even main goal a young person should aim for.” And ‎”I believe that our opposition should be targeted elsewhere. Rather than targeting young individuals who mostly (if not completely) agree with us regarding the pro-life viewpoint, why not focus on SexEtc or Take Action?”

    However, I must put some disagreement:

    I don’t completely agree with all, part of it depending on how much money is sexetc gaining from this, and also on the part that we should honor our commitments: not always, not if they go against moral and divine law. I suppose this is a philosophical/ethical point to be discussed: is participating on a tour that is sponsored (or sponsors?) SexEtc morally wrong, morally indifferent, or morally justifiable?

    And further, it wasn’t grateful that TIJ took off ALL pro-life comments, but let profanity on their profile. Yes, the Page is not a debate battleground, but at least in the name of freedom of expression the comments could have been left, or at least the profanities been taken off as well.

    • Juan, I understand. I didn’t mean that the commitment comment to be a blanket statement. I would argue generally speaking it is a good thing to keep our commitments. The tour isn’t sponsored by SexEtc, they are the benefactor, not necessarily of funds, but of recognition. I would side with morally justifiable, which is my argument, because they are pro-life and Christian on a tour that doesn’t have that voice.

      I understand the frustration with the comments being taken off the wall. I can understand that as I’ve had to delete comments of mine. Many call it trolling. But come on, do they really need dozens if not hundreds of people bombarding them – questioning who they are, what they stand for and what they are doing?

      The profanities? Yeah, I can understand that and I’m not going to endorse that. But I’m not going to go after them for that. That may be a private conversation I have with them, not a public challenge

      • Israell says:

        There were no reasons for TIJ to delete those comments. I’m sure all other bands speak their minds through their profiles. 1 or 2 well-thought of pro-life comments don’t constitute profanity or hate speech. All they’d have to do is ignore the bulk of hateful comments etc. I just added info on RockForLife to my website: israell.net .

  3. Trevor says:

    Well put Erik! It’s unfortunate that so often taking a stand for what is right is usually the hardest path to take. I find this encouraging, I hope everybody who reads this acts as maturely as you have. God bless! One LOVE!

    • Trevor, thanks for the kind words!

    • JoAnna says:

      Here is where your logic fails:

      1. TiJ is not a Christian pro-life voice on this tour because they have not been vocal about their stance. They have not publicly said, “We disagree with sexetc’s stance on abortion issues.” Quite the opposite.

      2. TiJ is RAISING MONEY for sexetc. They must have zero integrity if they want to raise money for a group with whim they are opposed. I can only conclude that they think sexetc is a cause worthy of funding, which means TiJ believes that abortion advocacy is worth funding.


      • JoAnna, I appreciate you reading the article and commenting.

        RE: #1 – You can’t make that judgement. Are you at their shows? Are you aware of their personal relationships with their fans? Their business relationships? Their lyrics? You are basing this off of a statement written and released by their publicist. Just because their statement isn’t strong enough for you then that doesn’t make them non-Christians or not Pro-Life. How about a little grace and less finger pointing?

        RE: #2 – The tour is raising money and TIJ’s appearance is little to insignificant in the whole financial outcome. You do not know how this all came about. Do you think it is at all possible that they signed on to a tour to raise money for a good cause, only to find out later, like right before the tour or after it started, what it is all about? It is possible. We don’t know the circumstance. If they leave we loose the only Christian, Pro-Life voice on the tour and then the tour hires another band who most likely is not Christian / Pro-Life. AND we are all risking NEVER having a Christian / Pro-Life voice on a TaKe Action Tour ever again.

        I believe targetting Pro-Life Christian young men is misguided. The main culprits are SexEtc and even the Take Action Tour for picking them as the benefactor. Why are we ignoring them while aiming our fury at TIJ?

        Finally, I am curious JoAnna, do you boycott all companies and organizations who financially donate to Planned Parenthood? Valero gas? Chase, Citibank & Bank of America? Windows operation systems? Dallas Cowboys / Jacksonville Jauguars? Boston Red Sox? Starbucks? Do you have health insurance? Does it pay for abortions and chemical contraception? It’s a huge list. Do you pay taxes? I mean, all of us are guilty of financially contributing to Planned Parenthood and abortion in general. Not to be rude, but I would argue to the pro-life movement pull the planks out of our own eyes before pulling the speck out of the eyes of our brothers in the Lord / fellow Pro-lifers.

  4. Kat says:

    “grace over finger pointing…” yes yes yes, i could not agree more…your points were all of the things i’ve been thinking as i have been reading the page here & there the past few days, and i am SO glad to have found this page. it encouraged me because so much of what i’ve been reading has reminded me why the anger in the pro-life movement has put such a sour taste in my mouth, though i have not and will not waiver on my personal pro-life beliefs. the condemnation & condescension coming from the pro-lifers just seems to be hurting the witness of the love of Christ TIJ might have been having in some of their fans who are not believers…and that makes me so sad. However, God is good in spite of us thank goodness and is far more capable to change hearts and bring them back to Him than any amount of arguing or attacking…actually, im fairly certain that arguing & attacking is n.e.v.e.r effective in changing hearts!

    i don’t know TIJ well nor do i think they went about all of this perfectly, but i am glad they’re on this tour…might not be the best set up, but then again, it might be the perfect one to reach the people that need their message the most! (Note: if this were a concert to financially support PP or any other abortion provider, this’d be another story.) we should be praying for them as they sing & speak to tons of kids from a thousand different places in life, that their message would overflow with the LOVE and MERCY of Jesus Christ & that these kids would come to the throne of grace because they have heard & understood that there is NO condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, and that THAT would be what changes their hearts; what opens their eyes to their true identity in Christ, what shows them the sacred beauty of ALL life.

    • Kat, very well put. Unfortunately many have been soured by this and similar type of tactics by some in the pro-life movement. We are asked to be salt and light, not lemons!

      • Kat says:

        Amen. I know that you & RFL will be taking heat from the same sorts, so we, who are encouraged by the grace you’ve publicly given TIJ, will be praying for you all as well as the band. Thank you again!

      • Thank you! It’s already happening. It’s expected :/

  5. Beth says:

    To say that they are “personally prolife” reminds me of all the politicians, the ones that say they are “personally prolife”, then back pro-abortion and pro-death bills. If you back, with your music, a corrupt and pro-abortion organization that encourages kids to act in ways that do not support your supposedly “Christian” beliefs, then you should not be considered Christian. I pray that this band will reconsider their choices. It might be alright money-wise, but to play in support of something that brings death– like this website– seems pretty unchristian to most normal people.
    In short:

    • Sharry says:

      Some may do it for the wrong reasons (politically and morally), but others do it for the right reasons. The world needs leader who are open-minded and respectful to the variety of opinions. While it is important to stand behind your beliefs, it is also important to consider what is BEST for we humans as a whole. In that sense, it is right to follow your faith as a Christian while helping others find this light. While it is great to convert many to those beliefs, the reality today is that there are many others who will not change their faith. With that being said, certain political leaders are doing the right thing by passing or considering bills that are beneficial to the growth of society in education, morals, and more. Being stubborn and choosing only one way to react to and solve problems is not the right way!

      I apologize for this reply being months late, but I still wanted to share my opinion!

  6. Josh Mercer says:

    You present a well-thought out argument. I think you made the right call.

    • thanks man!

  7. Margie says:

    Erik, how sure are you that they are even a prolife band?

    Totally agree with Beth on this one.

    • The Rock For Life staff knows them personally

  8. marie says:

    Why is my comment still “awaiting moderation”?

    • Because it’s “awaiting moderation” !!!

  9. Pingback: Christian rock band raises money to promote abortion - Jill Stanek

  10. MM says:

    I dunno man. I get the “light in the darkness” thing, but they’re still participating in a fundraiser for SexEtc. Would you have the same position if they were participating in a fundraiser for Planned Parenthood?

    Beyond participating in getting them money, I’d think they would be lending Planned Parenthood some credibility by doing that, whether TIJ intends it or not.

    • MM, I understand the question and I would hope that you know I don’t have to answer that. The spirit of my post is I don’t support a boycott against a pro-life Christian band. I think its the wrong approach and misguided. Yes they made a mistake most likely based on not knowing what they were getting themselves into. Them dropping off, yes would be awesome and courageous and admirable. In the long run, if it’s about money, is it going to have a huge effect? Little to none at all. The tour will just hire another band, one that isn’t pro-life and/or Christian. This is not an endorsement of them being on the tour. This is my reasoning for NOT BOYCOTTING THEM.

  11. Beth says:

    It’s so weird that Rock for Life seems to have completely lost their values–the WHOLE POINT of Rock for Life was to support bands that were prolife in their actions– and it seems Rock for Life has lost the strength to stand for what is right.

    I never thought that I would see Rock for Life supporting a band that is promoting a pro-abortion site with their music because of “personal relationships” with a few of the members . You cannot confuse personal love for someone with the greater picture, especially if those “personal friends” promoting a site that brings death to young girls. Definitely not a “christian” or “prolife” move. 😦 It’s pretty heartbreaking.

    Be brave, have a backbone, remember the reason you exist. It seems pretty simple to me.

    • Beth, TIJ made the wrong decision to be on this tour, most likely uninformed. I believe that boycotting TIJ, who are Christians and Pro-Life is not a wise idea. The main culprit is SexEtc & the Take Action Tour. They should receive the full fury of the pro-life movement, not TIJ. We should lift these young men up in prayers, not attacking them viciously publically.

      • Beth says:

        I am not attacking them “viciously” simply asking them to make the brave choice, rather than the profitable one. To raise money for a group to further the abortion cause is not a brave action. Obviously, you don’t seem to care about this, as you are defending their actions instead of asking them to be brave! It is almost hard for me to believe. I guess they finally got to you, too…just when I was hoping for a holdout against the industry…this really stinks.

        Men should protect mothers and babies, not betray us! This is breaking my heart. Rock for Life, you are in my fervent prayers. Your decision will hurt many people. Please choose to stand strong, and to help bands to stand strong AGAINST this onslaught.

      • The nature of a boycott is attacking, this one especially. Most, if not all people boycotting TIJ has never been to one of their shows or purchased any of their products, so its not much of a boycott. All this does is alienate the band and their fans. Many of their fans don’t agree with us and now see us fools. Many boycotting have used degrading, condemning & condescending language. This doesn’t show the spirit of Christ or the pro-life movement, at least not what I think it really is.

  12. Pingback: Josh Brahm Statement on the “Texas in July” Debate « Life Report

  13. Kim says:

    UnderOath is very Christian and very pro-life, and they’ve played on the Warped Tour. Planned Parenthood is one of the many organizations repesented there. It did not negate the face that this band is what they are.
    Several times Take Action has promoted suicid prevention. They pick something different each year and have done so for over 10 years now I think.

    I agree with the above poster who pointed out the number of companies in Planned Parenthood’s pocket and how hard it is to avoid indirect support.

    • I wonder if people would be upset if Rock For Life was on the Take Action Tour and/or the Warped Tour…

  14. Carol says:

    Erik, I am in complete agreement with you. TIJ are barely on the cusp of adulthood, let’s cut these kids a little slack. By now, I’m sure they are aware of all the negative flap that has been generated by all of this, given that they are Christian and Pro-Life. We should pray, rather than condemn, they NEED our prayers, NOT our condemnation. What kind of message are we sending to these young men, and their fans who are not necessarily Christians as they are? How do we know this wasn’t an honest mistake, and that they aren’t regretting it and asking God what to do? Perhaps God WANTS them there, they can be a positive Light. Think of POD touring on Ozz Fest. I have seen personal testimonies of people SAVED by POD’s positive Christian message while attending Ozz Fest. Someone’s heart might be touched by hearing the gospel message in TIJ’s music. And this can be a learning experience for a new young band, who are still, for the most part, in their teens Teenagers sometimes make poor decisions, because they are still immature in many ways. When all is said and done, TIJ will have an opportunity to support the Pro-Life cause, Rock for Life can and should hold out an olive leaf and suggest things they can do to undo any possible damage they may be indirectly responsible for. I’m sure they feel they are in a “Damned if you do, damned if you don’t” situation. Why do so many fail to see the bigger picture here? God is in control!

  15. Pingback: abortion » Blog Archive » Christian rock band raises money to promote abortion

  16. Jakz says:

    I’ve seen many posts about boycotting this band, and they all seem over the top. Who are we to judge the bands intent on being on this tour? Do I know them? No. Do I have the opportunity to discuss with them why they’re on this tour, and if they actually knew what they were getting into? I don’t. So I refuse to assume the worst. Maybe they knew it supported SexEtc, maybe not. Maybe they have huge regrets? Or maybe they’re trying to take a difficult situation and use it for good. It’s possible! And we as Christians and/or pro-lifers should not be making this harder for them, but supporting them and encouraging them to make good decisions under strenuous circumstances.

    Props to Rock For Life for no joining in the chorus of judgement, and choosing grace.

    • they wipped the middle finger to crowd at purple door music fest last weekend. you be the judge.

  17. Texas in July was playing at Purple door this past week and going into a break down 3 of the members wipped the middle finger to the crowd at the same time. also their new member is not a christian. he was also wearing a satanic bands tshirt at the fest.
    WAKE UP!

  18. Repented1 says:

    But they were very pro-life on the sex, etc. website. Texas in July “posted a statement from Sex, etc. claiming that the site provides “accurate, age-appropriate information.” Good dodging on your part of the fact that it was a fundraiser for what they knew supported killing human beings. Or actually, rather, not good dodging on either of your parts because its painfully obvious that no matter how good this band is they signed a contract with the devil. If I was a gambling man I’d be willing to bet that they didn’t speak a word about pro-life anything at this event either.

  19. Pat says:

    I completely agree with your view on this situation. We are supposed to be the light that shines in darkness. I know this is way past due but, I just wanted to say that your views and kind, yet firm statements left me very impressed and proud of you as a christian for sharing this.

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