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Are Christians “persecuted”? Don’t make me laugh!

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I got an email yesterday, called “Save the Persecuted Christians,” that made me laugh out loud. (I couldn’t find a web link for the email, so I cut and pasted it at the end of this post.)

This email is comedy at its driest and wittiest. It claims that Christians “are being persecuted simply because of their faith. They are being tortured, enslaved, raped, crucified, driven from their homes and murdered in the most horrific ways imaginable.” It accuses “some Americans” (hmm, who could that be?) of “enabling” this “odious behavior.” This group, “Save the Persecuted Christians,” actually held a series of rallies the other day, “To hold anti-religious persecutors and their enablers accountable.”

The maximum leader of Save the Persecuted Christians is a fanatical neo-con, Frank Gaffney, who has long lurked in the more hateful, conspiracy-theory extremes of conservatism. Gaffney is especially known as an Islamophobe; his political career began under Reagan. Today, he writes for the crazy rightwing Newsmax. Gaffney’s closest political colleagues include such delightful white neo-fascists as Newt Gingrich, John Bolton and Jared Taylor, a white nationalist who wants “voluntary racial segregation”, since legal segregation is now illegal. Taylor is a huge fan of Donald J. Trump, whose election, he wrote, was “a sign of rising white consciousness.”

These people all profess to be “Christian,” but then, so did Hitler—who was only trying to appeal to his Christian supporters, but the same is true of Trump, who also claims to be Christian but who for most of his life showed no signs of being so.

So are Christians really persecuted? It’s true that in some Moslem countries they are, but so are other religious minorities: Sunnis persecute Shia and vice versa, and both persecute Jews; and in India, Moslems persecute Hindus and vice versa. In the U.S., no claim can legitimately be made about Christian persecution. Christians founded this country; they’ve run America since before the Revolution, and they still run it. Christianity, if anything, is gaining power in America, because of the rise of religious fundamentalism. And let’s not forget that the worst persecutors of the rights of LGBTQ people, of Muslims, of immigrants, of Native Americans and of non-Christians in general are Christians.

Which makes “Save the Persecuted Christians” a joke. In countries like Nigeria, where Gaffney’s friends in the American evangelical and Pentecostal cults have been trying for years to convert the population, anti-gay violence is on the increase due to their hate speech and indoctrination of children. Trump’s born-again vice president, Mike Pence, has been active in this Christian missionary work in Africa, thereby violating the spirit if not the letter of the law that says America is a secular nation and ought not be promoting any particular religion.

Now, remember that “some Americans” quote, above—the one that accused some of us of “enabling” anti-Christian behavior? Who could this smear be referring to? Like all inuendoes, this one is long on implication, short on detail. I would wager that in the eyes of these “Christians” the chief enablers are Democrats and liberals. To conservative, rightwing Christians, inclusiveness is a dirty word. Rationality doesn’t fit into their world view, because rational people understand that the “facts” of the Bible are superstitions. The world is not 5,800 years old, as Pence and other Biblical literalists allege. Thus Democrats, who sincerely believe in inclusiveness and in science, are the enemy of rightwing Christians.

These people—the Save the Persecuted Christians members—and their ilk are preparing for war here at home. They have formed a strange-bedfellows alliance with ammophiles (the NRA), white nationalists, home schoolers, anti-government types , para-militarists and just-plain haters. We call this alliance the Party of Trump. It has temporarily found a home in the Republican Party but this mustn’t be viewed as permanent. If it finds a more hospitable home someplace else, it will instantly migrate there. It’s always existed in America: the Know-Nothings in the 19th century epitomized its ignorance, the America Firsters who opposed our involvement in World War II because of their infatuation with the Nazis continued it, and it has found new expression in this century in the Tea Party.

We should learn from history that this strain cannot be wiped out. It’s just too entrenched and stubborn. Nor, unfortunately, can its adherents be reasoned with, since (as I pointed out), reason is one of the first things they threw when they join it. What then? Politics. These people can only be beaten electorally.

How dare these “Christians” complain? They have run things in the West for two thousand years. They have burned, crucified and tortured their opponents—and there’s absolutely no doubt in my mind that they would burn and torture us again, if they ever get powerful enough. Every American President has been a Christian. They run the country, and now they’re complaining that they don’t have enough power? Please.

THE EMAIL:

Nationwide Religious Freedom Rallies Set for Today in 15 Major Cities—Including San Francisco

Rallies Hosted by Save the Persecuted Christians and Nations in Action Will Highlight Religious Persecution That Is Nearing Genocidal Proportions

WASHINGTON—Next week, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is convening the largest human rights event in State Department history—the Ministerial to Advance Religious Freedom. This topic is a priority for President Donald Trump and his administration, but too many Americans are still unaware that, around the globe, hundreds of millions of people are being persecuted simply because of their faith. They are being tortured, enslaved, raped, crucified, driven from their homes and murdered in the most horrific ways imaginable. The majority of the persecuted are children, with girls and women being among those most violated.

To raise awareness of these outrages and to hold accountable those responsible, Save the Persecuted Christians (STPC, www.SavethePersecutedChristians.organd Nations in Action have joined forces with an informal coalition of other advocates for religious liberty to hold the persecutors accountable and create costs for their crimes against humanity. STPC advocates for hundreds of millions of persecuted Christians worldwide, along with partner organizations who also work tirelessly, so believers can pray, worship and witness freely and without fear. To that end, the groups are organizing more than a dozen Religious Freedom Rallies nationwide today to bring attention to the sufferings of brothers and sisters in Christ globally.

WHO:         Save the Persecuted Christians and Nations in Action

WHAT:       Religious Freedom Rally—San Francisco 

WHERE:     275 Battery Street, San Francisco, CA 94111

                     *Rallies of various sizes are also planned for Atlanta, Cleveland, Columbus, Dallas, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, Phoenix, Tampa, Tysons (Va.), Washington, D.C., and West Palm Beach (Fla.) 

WHEN:       8 a.m. PT Wednesday, July 10

WHY:          To bring attention to the sufferings of those persecuted for their religious beliefs, as well as to call out persecutors—and their enablers—and hold them accountable

HOW:       Rally In-Person. Attend the rally in-person in San Francisco or one of the other cities, bring a sign, and take a stand to end worldwide religious persecution while hearing from experts and leaders. RSVP by city here.

                     Rally Online. Create awareness on social media by sharing and re-tweeting posts using the hashtag #Free2Pray, as well as call into local talk radio shows and write letters to the editor to highlight global Christian and religious persecution. Sign up online here.

                     Learn more about the nationwide events at ReligiousFreedomRally.org, where religious persecution photos and news as well as downloadable resources for the rallies are available, or visit twitter.com/freedom_rally or facebook.com/religiousfreedomrally.


The mission of Save the Persecuted Christians is to save lives and save souls by holding the persecutors accountable for their crimes against humanity. To that end, it will disseminate actionable information about the magnitude of such crimes and bring to bear a movement of concerned Americans determined to hold persecutors accountable for such crimes and create real costs for perpetrating them against those who follow Jesus. 

Because most of these crimes are not covered in the media, Save the Persecuted Christians developed a dedicated news aggregator—www.ChristianPersecutionNews.com—to capture current instances of persecution and to provide readers an easy way to share these heartbreaking stories with others.

###

To interview a Save the Persecuted Christians representative, contact Media@HamiltonStrategies.com, Patrick Benner, 610.584.1096, ext. 104, or Deborah Hamilton, ext. 102.

  1. Paul Moe says:

    Steve,
    I agree with your premise, and I wish we had a more clear separation of church and state, as the Founding Fathers requested. I’m curious about your choice of “Moslem”, which in Arabic means “one who is evil and unjust vs “Muslim”, which in Arabic means “one who gives himself to God”. Moslems probably do prosecute people in India, Muslims probably would not.

  2. Paul Moe says:

    *persecute

  3. Bob Rossi says:

    “let’s not forget that the worst persecutors of the rights of LGBTQ people, of Muslims, of immigrants, of Native Americans and of non-Christians in general are Christians.”
    Or at least people who claim they are.

  4. Yes, Bob Rossi, “people who claim they are.” I’ve met lots of “Christians” who are truly mean, selfish, dreadful human beings!

  5. Dear Paul Moe, thanks for pointing out the distinction between “Muslim” and “Moslem.” I was unaware of it, and will be more careful in the future.

  6. Bob Henry says:

    This assertion is in dispute:

    “Christianity, if anything, is gaining power in America, because of the rise of religious fundamentalism.”

    Excerpt from the Wall Street Journal Online
    (posted May 12, 2015):

    “Americans Unaffiliated With Any Religion Outrank Catholics, Study Says;
    Share of unaffiliated U.S. adults has risen to 22.8%, according to Pew survey, compared with 20.8% for Catholics and 14.7% for mainline Protestants”

    URL: https://www.wsj.com/articles/americans-unaffiliated-with-any-religion-outrank-catholics-study-says-1431403261

    By Tamara Audi
    Staff Reporter

    . . . the ranks of Americans who don’t identify with any religion, many of them former Christians…. is growing so rapidly, it now makes up a greater share of the U.S. population than Catholics or mainline Protestants, according to a survey to be released Tuesday by the Pew Research Center on changes in religious affiliation between 2007 and 2014.

    The U.S. is expected to remain majority-Christian for decades. But surveys have noted a decline in the share of Americans practicing Christianity for years, especially among Protestant faiths. Meanwhile, the number of Americans who claim no religious affiliation, known as “nones,” has climbed.

    The trends “have been under way for some time,” said Greg Smith, the Pew study’s lead researcher. “But I am struck by the pace at which that group [the religiously unaffiliated] continues to grow.”

    The share of Americans who say they are unaffiliated with any religion rose to 22.8% last year from 16.1% in 2007, according to the study. Over that time, mainline Protestants—including large denominations of Methodists, Presbyterians and Lutherans—dropped to 14.7% of the population from 18.1%. The share of Catholics fell to 20.8% from 23.9%.

    Only evangelical Protestants — which include the Southern Baptist Convention — account for a greater share of the population than the unaffiliated, with 25.4%. The Pew study is based on interviews with more than 35,000 Americans in 2014, in all 50 states plus Washington, D.C.

  7. Bob Henry says:

    Excerpt from the Wall Street Journal Online
    (posted November 3, 2015):

    “Religious ‘Nones’ Multiply in Both U.S. Political Parties;
    The unaffiliated have become largest Democratic group; evangelicals remain dominant in GOP”

    URL: https://www.wsj.com/articles/religious-nones-multiply-in-both-u-s-political-parties-1446526860

    Accompanying exhibit URL: https://si.wsj.net/public/resources/images/NA-CH712A_PEWRE_16U_20151102183613.jpg

    By Tamara Audi
    Staff Reporter

    Americans with no religious affiliation have supplanted Catholics as the largest such group in the Democratic Party, according to a new Pew Research study set to be released on Tuesday.

    “Nones,” as the religiously unaffiliated are called, make up 28% of Democrats and Democratic-leaning adults, Pew’s Religious Landscape Survey found, compared with 19% in 2007, the last time it studied the issue.

    Christians overall still make up a majority of the Democratic Party, 63%. Catholics comprised 21% of the party as of 2014, down from 24% in 2007, the Pew study concluded.

    Evangelicals remain by far the largest single religious group in the Republican Party, with a 38% share. But nones have grown in the GOP ranks, too, to 14% of the party in 2014, compared with 10% in 2007, the study found. Pew surveyed more than 35,000 adults by phone for the study.

    The impact of the nones on politics “remains to be seen, since at least to this point, religious nones really punch below their weight, politically speaking,” said Greg Smith, the primary researcher on the Pew study. “They’re less engaged in the political process.”

    The overwhelming majority of Americans say they belong to a religion, though the study shows a drop in the share of Americans who do so—76.5% in 2014, compared with 83% in 2007.

    Still, the total number of religious Americans has remained stable. Their share has decreased because the number of nonreligious Americans has grown.

    Nones — who include not only atheists and agnostics, but people who may believe in God but have no specific religious affiliation — have grown as an overall share of the American population, to 23% of the total, compared with 16% seven years earlier, according to research that Pew released earlier this year.

  8. Bob Henry says:

    “Religious Landscape Study — Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life”

    The RLS surveys more than 35,000 Americans from all 50 states about their religious affiliations, beliefs and practices, and social and political views.
    [Sections:] User guide | Report about demographics | Report about beliefs and attitudes

    URL: https://www.pewforum.org/religious-landscape-study/

  9. I have said many times that these evangelicals are a clear and present danger to America. They are an internal enemy, dedicated to overthrowing our Constitutional system and imposing an insane “christian” theocracy.

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