There’s a new brouhaha stirring over funding cuts to Unitarian-Universalist youth and young adult programs at the national level. It promises to be far larger and more divisive than the waves over I.D. checks at the port where General Assembly 2008 is being held. But there is a possible irony looming here over anti-UUA activism. UUs have it in their DNA to distrust central authority and to view even their own institutions with suspicion, often interpreting complicated situations in the least charitable possible way in regards to potential motives on the part of authority figures. This is especially strong among younger UUs, who are raised on an ideology of resistance inherited from the Baby Boomers, yet live within a quite liberal church by any normal American standards and therefore are actually frustrated in their lack of windwills to tilt at.
The irony is this: the same people who are incensed enough to boycott General Assembly over the handful of actual people who may be turned away because of I.D. checks, are largely the ones who would also be most likely to go to GA and make a big show of protest and resistance over the defunding of continental-level young UU leadership. Since those most enamored of UU protest culture and least forgiving of UUA actions will have self-selected themselves out of GA attendance, perhaps it will turn out to have been a (probably unintentional) stroke of fortune for the UUA Board that they reached their conclusions over funding in the same year as the I.D. kerfluffle.