A Lonely Citadel Against The 24/7-Culture

If you’re old enough to remember when blue laws were common, Bergen on a Sunday is a nostalgia trip. Kids play road hockey, skateboarders practice kickflips on open swaths of pavement, and you may suddenly notice the cawing of blue jays. The locked Garden State Plaza, lost among its empty parking lots, seems vaguely apocalyptic. The scene is liberating, but also heavy with the demand that free time places on the self. You find yourself constantly checking your cell phone for messages.

“That’s a little snapshot of what it must have been like around the country,” Judith Shulevitz, author of “The Sabbath World” (2010), told me. “This was once just as commonplace as anything American.”

…It’s not difficult, in casual conversations around Bergen County, to find others who oppose the blue laws, but the same time-pressured people who are irritated by not being able to shop on Sundays are generally also too busy to become activists.

—J. Mackinnon, “America’s Last Ban on Sunday Shopping” (HT: Nick Davis)

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  1. Of course some of the most heated supporters of the denial of our people a Sabbath Day are in our own NAPARC congregations and denominations.

    I’ve heard that North Texas Presbytery of the PCA is once again bringing an Overture to their General Assembly to “study” the issue.

    Things are not any better for sure in my own denomination, the ARP. Sabbatarians are looked upon as, at best, a nuisance.

  2. There is something else we should remember about the time period when the Blue Laws were in effect. It was a time when Christian privilege in society was higher than it is now.

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