Rebecca Barry

Rebecca Barry is a Herald columnist

Rebecca Barry: Brian and Beyonce's shared Destiny

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Brian Tamaki and Beyonce each have their own dedicated followers. Photos / Mark Mitchell, AP
Brian Tamaki and Beyonce each have their own dedicated followers. Photos / Mark Mitchell, AP

It's about time someone asked Beyonce what she makes of this covenant proposed by Brian Tamaki's men.

If you're a paid-up member of the Destiny's Church, a "spiritual son" of the self-appointed bishop, doesn't that make you Destiny's Child?

I have never been to a Destiny's Church sermon but I'd imagine there would be some sort of copyright infringement if everyone turned up with their surprise gifts and donations of cash, sat close to the front of the church without being too close so as to get in Bishop's face, as Single Ladies boomed out of the speakers.

Don't be so sure that song isn't on the church jukebox. Surely this new male-only covenant is going to make the wives and partners of the 700 "sons" feel isolated from their spouses. If ya like it then ya shoulda put a ring on it, Brian, and that shoulda included the ladies.

Why are we so up in arms that these men are no longer allowed to disagree with their leader in public? It's virtually an invitation for the women to do just that.

Maybe they could start their own organisation, the Bug a Boo Temple, presided over by Beyonce herself. "All the women, independent! Throw your hands up at me."

On the other hand, it would be quite nice to sign your life away and not have to think for yourself. Just imagine the liberation from suffering, stress and negativity that would come about through the surrender of the soul to another. Who needs 100 per cent of their income in these economic times when you've got a snazzily dressed leader whose clifftop mansion is on the market (obviously he's going to donate it to his people and go live in his boat), selling his words of wisdom on his website for $30?

Forget Jesus - Bishop T is way cooler. His ushers wear earpieces. They were obviously on to something, and although I can't say for sure if it's Bluetooth they're using, chances are they've already decked their cars out with hands-free cellphone kits, so they can keep chatting to God on speed dial while comfortably shifting the gear stick.

The similarities between Destiny's Church and hands-free cellphone use may not be instantly apparent, unless of course you're driving to a sermon and ringing ahead for some Pad Thai to present to the good Bishop.

Are both dangerous? The Church may have succeeded in getting 700 men to put their signature on a piece of funny literature but that's their business. The majority of New Zealanders aren't about to vote their political party into power.

As for the law change prohibiting hand-held cell convos in Volvos, it's obvious the false prophets to emerge from the law change are the hands-free car kit providers claiming to provide a "solution" to the problem.

On the Vodafone website, advertising such a kit, is the unholy scripture: "Not only is it easier to concentrate, it leaves your hands free to give angry gestures to the car that just cut you off!" Yup, and a spare arm to protect your face when that person comes at you at the lights.

I now have a hands-free kit in the car but feel I've done so against the old testament (of driving): thou shalt not communicate with non-passengers while powering a vehicle.

Study after study since years ago has reiterated the same thing: it's not cellphone usage that's the problem but the act of conversing itself. Yes, texting is obviously a huge danger when manoeuvring a vehicle - although you might get away with it on a mobility scooter - but talking to someone outside the car is almost as bad.

Just as we are four times more likely to have an accident while talking on a cellphone while driving, we're 3.8 times more likely to have an accident while talking on a hands-free kit. Especially if the restaurant doesn't do Pad Thai.

Rather than a kit that allows the use of both arms, why not an attitude covenant? How good would it be to say to your boss, "I couldn't answer the phone - I was driving."

"But we just installed a hands-free kit."

"Yes, but I fear becoming hands-free by using it. And my job requires quite a lot of typing so it's not going to work in your favour if I have a nasty accident."

At which point your boss may terminate your employment.

And you'd say, as a proud member of the Bug a Boo Temple, "I'm a survivor, I'm not gon' give up. Our sister (Beyonce), which art in Los Angeles, hallowed be thy name."

- NZ Herald

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