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Message to Madonna: YOU'RE NOT THE KIND OF HO THAT SANTA HAD IN MIND!:
 
Madonna with Child vs. Madonna Gone Wild
By psychologist, Dr. Bruce L. Thiessen, aka Dr. B.L.T., aka Santa Shrink
 
When I was only 17, my father wanted to find some California oranges for us at Christmastime. A prostitute approached him, and knocked on his front door, said. “If you're lookin' for a good time, I'll give you that, and more. 
 
He said, "It's only oranges, that's all I'm lookin' for, to feed my wife and family, the ones that I adore. So leave me be, leave me alone, I'm good to go. I'm fine. You're not the kind of ho that Santa had in mind."
 
If that story reads like a song, that is because it is a song, but it's also a true story about what happened to my dad. It's completely true, with the exception of the last line. I tacked that on for effect. My dad couldn't have said it, because until he actually heard the song, he didn't know what a "ho" was.  
 
If my dad seems naïve in the story, that's because we had just moved down from Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada where hookers are rarer than hen's teeth.
 
The story and song have a moral, actually more than one. My dad isn’t perfect, but in this case, like many others, he modeled assertive consumer behavior as well as assertive moral behavior. My father knew that what he was looking for, oranges, was innocent, wholesome, healthy, juicy, rich in vitamin C, but in no way forbidden fruit. When pressured to buy the forbidden fruit, something that didn't fit his needs, something decidedly less wholesome, and something that could threaten his health, his family, and his self-respect, he promptly turned down the offer, tempting though it may have been.  The second moral of the story is alluded to in the chorus:  
You're not the kind of ho 
That Santa had in mind 
So get up off the streets my dear 
There's better work to find 
Tricks were meant for Halloween 
And it's almost Christmastime.
You're not the kind of ho 
That Santa had in mind...  
Extracted from the Christmas song, “You're Not the Kind of Ho that Santa Had In Mind” by Dr. B.L. Thiessen, 2002 
 
I intended the song to be broad in its interpretation and application. The underlying moral is not only directed at the "ho" in the narrow definition of the term, but to all ladies, young and old, particularly those in the music or entertainment industry, who would cheapen themselves, or their art, just for the sake of selling more records.
 
Mary’s Message 
 
The moral of the song is one I'd like to expand upon, based upon the example provided by the Virgin Mary, the original Madonna. My primary concern is the type of values (or lack thereof) promoted in the media, particularly through the vehicle of modern music. It has to do with the type of “rock 'n’ role models” out there in contemporary culture (or lack thereof) for young women to emulate, specifically on the modern, musical Madonna (the anti-Madonna) and to all those who would follow in her spiked-heeled, misguided footsteps. 
 
 
Madonna Gone Wild: an Impostor and an Anti-Madonna
 
The word Madonna means "my lady" in Italian. It is the name associated with countless artistic renderings of Mary, mother of Jesus, most often depicted holding an infant Jesus. The modern day singer/actress known as Madonna, is actually an anti-Madonna and an anti-virgin. Everything she has ever represented goes against the grain of what the original Madonna, mother of Jesus, stood for. 'Modern' Madonna is undoubtedly gifted with talent and has had her artistic moments. Furthermore, I don't want to make modern Madonna the scapegoat for all that has gone wrong with pop music, but in my opinion, 'modern' Madonna is more a purveyor of perverted sex and panegyric praise for pagan hedonism than a purveyor of art.   
 

Pardon the Pun, but I’m not Knockin’ the Booty
 
If you've ever read the Old Testament book entitled Song of Solomon, you'll understand that God made the body as a reflection of ultimate beauty, something awesome to behold. The body is indeed cause for celebration. Likewise, he did not intend sex to be bereft of pleasure. It was God, and a holy God at that, who created the body and that same holy God created sex. Thus, it behooves those who live in that body, and who are filled with sexual urges, to read and follow the manual of Emmanuel. If the message underlying her music is any indication, pop star Madonna, has very little regard or respect for that manual and would prefer to write her own, but it's time we all read between the lines.  Check the small print in the linear notes. The devil is in the details. 
  

Like a Virgin?
 
Though she had a few benign dance ditties on the charts prior to “Like a Virgin,” “Like a Virgin” was her first defining hit. With that smash under her fat, 80s styled belt, pop star Madonna made her grand entrance into a stunningly successful musical career.  But in the song, the singer irreverently mocked virginity as an antediluvian, Victorian virtue. She has been mocking it, and the virtues of Madonna, the mother of Jesus, ever since. That is tragic, because she has taken center stage for decades, and has had multiple opportunities to be a “rock 'n’ role model” for young women around the world. To be fair, there is some modicum of redeeming value in her long, commercially successful career. Who can knock her performance in Evita, for example? Over the decades of her decadence, Madonna would even through a few scraps of virtue to the moral watchdogs of the day. “Papa Don't Preach,” for example, contains a clear moral, and though the girl in the story will never be “Like a Virgin” again, it wouldn't be too much of a stretch to experience the song as a pro-life anthem.  
 
Madonna has squandered her inheritance apart from a string of prosaic, but otherwise benign, bouncy love songs, and the odd morally redeemable ballad. She has catered to the lowest common denominator and shamelessly defiled the name of the original Madonna. I realize that she may have suffered from religious abuse as a child. Her father prohibited television and apparently regularly shoved the Roman Catholic religion down her throat, but did she really have to throw baby Jesus out with the bathwater? Think of what a powerful influence on children and teens she could have had. Think of how many young minds she could have illuminated and shaped for the betterment of society. In a recent melancholy melody, Madonna proclaimed that there was nothing greater than the power of good-bye. Hello? What about the power of holding a worldwide audience in your hands? What about the power that comes with drawing upon the same divine power the original Madonna drew from, and using it to infuse countless fans with core human values and virtues?   
 
There would be a steady string of hits to follow “Like a Virgin,” but sandwiched between every set of harmless hits would be Madonna's display of her true colors, in songs and 'artistic' sentiments designed to perpetuate her anti-Madonna belief system. It would be quite a stretch for a music critic to label Madonna's Material Girl as a satirical indictment of the worship of material things. It is my opinion that the song clearly glorified materialism as the sole (as opposed to soul) reason for living. The original Madonna, the mother of Christ, lived a meager existence but left a legacy rich in purity, humility, and spirital devotion. 
 
Madonna hit her nadir in the early nineties when she released Erotica and its concomitant book, Sex. The CD, videos and book pushed the limits of sexual expression to perverse, vile and twisted levels. She regarded it as art. I regarded it as carnal vomiting. That side of her has not retired. All that is carnal in the new millennium made a huge comeback with music video “Music” in which she glorified the pimp and ho life while wildly winking at bisexual bliss. 
 
The vapid video presaged the return of 'Madonna Gone Wild' in 2003 at the MTV Video Music Awards (aka The Pimp and Ho Show). I'm referring to the kiss of death between Britney Spears and Madonna. It was more than the kiss that I reacted against. It was what it symbolized and projected to young men and women with curious and vulnerable minds.  Like the Judas kiss, it was a betrayal--in this case, a betrayal of good taste, artistic integrity and basic values. History may reflect on it not as future footnote in the pages of contemporary cultural history but a contributing factor and defining moment on the road to the eventual death of values-based music. 
 
Madonna spent decades designing a luxurious, deceptively shallow pool and Britney jumped in head first. Britney wannabes are likely to follow this female Pied Piper of perversity to that same pool and dive in after her. Parents, ministers, youth directors and Christ-centered psychologists like myself can expect a lot of bruised, bloodied heads to bandage. 
 
As we try to undo the damage of pop music's master mogul, Madonna--the Madonna imposter, the anti-Madonna, the Madonna Gone Wild--we will need to offer an alternative. We need to point to the original Madonna-Madonna with Child, to the baby savior that she delivered, and to the deliverance that this baby king offers to material girls living in a material world. 
 
The Bible says that believers will be known by their fruits. Can we compare Madonna Gone Wild with Madonna with Child? It's like comparing forbidden fruit with ripe, salubrious oranges. My dad made his choice. It was oranges. He just said no to the ho. No, she was not the kind of ho that Santa had in mind, and neither is the anti-Madonna. 
 
So, Madonna, I'm no saint, but I would urge you to reconsider the type of message you want to deliver. Just like your song title “Like a Prayer” suggests, redemption is, a prayer away. Give your heart to the Christ child that Madonna delivered and you will have something worth delivering. To those young ladies who lost their virginity ho-style, it's not too late for you either. Turn from those Madonna and Britney Spears records, follow the music of Jaci Velasquez or Rebecca St. James. If you prefer things a little more rockin', then get on board with the likes of the frontwomen from Sixpence None the Richer and Evanescence.  Or check out rock 'n’ role model bands like Chevelle, Threefold7, Creed, Jitow, Dashboard Confessional, P.O.D., and Switchfoot. You may never be "like a virgin..." again, but you can be "touched for the very first time," or the second, or the third, in a spiritual place by a spiritual hand from above. As for your redeeming your relationships here on earth with mortal men:   

Certain things are meant to share with someone that you love
Someone who will fit you, just like hand in glove
So find that man, hold him tight and never let him go
And maybe he'll forget about the days you were a ho! 
Merry Christmas from Santa Shrink, aka Dr. BLT, aka, Dr. Bruce L. Thiessen! 
 
 
 
 
 

 

 
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