Chrissy Stroop starts a three-part series for The Conversationalist on the failure of “respectable” Christian evangelicalism in America.
If a large, powerful body of Christians insists that backing a strongman credibly accused of sexually assaulting numerous women in order to grab power is Christian behavior, then, empirically, it is Christian behavior. Religions are complex cultural systems with traditions and texts that are subject to communal mediation and interpretation, which means that well-meaning liberals who dub Christian Trump supporters “fake Christians,” fail to see that authoritarian Christianity is just as “real” a version of the faith as any sort of progressive or liberationist Christianity. Meanwhile, “respectable” commentators like Wehner who mostly agree in substance with the majority of white evangelicals’ illiberal Christianity may see Trump support as a bridge too far, but their cries to this effect fall on deaf ears among their more uncouth brethren.
Pair with yesterday’s link to a discussion of white Christianity’s undone reckoning with its historic racism.
Robert P. Jones, adapting from a forthcoming book, writes that white Christianity in America continues to have some unaddressed reckoning to do with its role in racism and slavery, and some uncomfortable but lingering effects of that role.
In my day job, I am the CEO and founder of Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI), a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that conducts research on issues at the intersection of religion, culture, and politics. I’m a social scientist by training and have always been fascinated by the ways in which beliefs, institutional belonging, and culture impact opinions and behaviors in public space. I strive to conduct research and write as an impartial observer. In our work at PRRI, we’ve found that white Christian groups—including evangelicals, mainline Protestants, and Catholics—consistently hold views that are at odds with African American Protestants’ views. The attitudes of nonreligious white Americans, conversely, tend to be more aligned with African Americans’. For white Americans, the data suggest that Christian identity limits their ability to see structural injustice, and even influences them to see themselves, rather than African Americans, as a persecuted group.
Olof Hellman talks accessibility, idioms, and the future he wants (via Brent Simmons). The first two notes at the bottom maybe are the best bits, which is a tough call. Basically, if you read one blog post today (other than, apparently, this one) it should be Hellman’s.
Here’s my official opinion about conservative Christians in America and their “siege mentality” (scroll down; Micro.blog conversation links don’t have anchors to be able to link directly to a comment): enough already with the persecution envy.
Mine Furor might deem churches to be “essential places that provide essential services”, but I’d think twice if your God or gods value your presence in a particular man-made structure over your sacred life. That said, he doesn’t actually care about the worship; he cares about being able to punish Democratic states.
- Apparently the official White House position indeed is that people can only “pray to their gods” this Sunday if they are allowed into specific physical buildings.
In this edition: autism and actual masking, dining with mannequins, genetic drift, ousting Burr, cats and coronavirus, a new giraffe, black churches, reopening Oregon, COVID-19 and the brain, Oregon restaurants, the post-pandemic commute, bicycles, disability claims, the sage grouse, lockdowns and history, “Obamagate”, walking a trail, test failures, the privilege of escape, Multnomah County, the last Blockbuster, public shaming, and an invasion of goats.
“It spread like wildfire,” said the lawyer for Oregon churches whose lawsuit demands they be allowed endanger public health in the name of religion, without apparent hint of understanding the irony. “It took on a life of its own.”
In this edition: city streets, pricing by algorithm, barbershops, NASA’s ventilator, brutal numbers, old movies, NPCs, llamas, excess deaths, mariachis, coffee history, Muggletonians, air pollution, and the political conversation.
Surely we’ll all be okay given the alien thinking about a laughing Jesus that’s looking out for us from a post in downtown St. Johns.
Here’s an idea for when and where we should build a wall.