The French Revolution
Are Christians Obsessed With Gays and Abortion?
But what about organizations like Focus on the Family? Focus is big, no doubt, with gross receipts exceeding $135 million. But anyone with even a passing familiarity with that organization knows that the vast majority of its efforts are thoroughly divorced from the "gays and abortion" side of the culture wars. Its website and radio show are primarily dedicated to such topics as enriching your marriage, dealing with unruly teens, and reviewing TV shows and movies for their family-friendliness.
How do those numbers stack up with leading Christian anti-poverty charities? Let's look at just three: World Vision, Compassion International, and Samaritan's Purse. Their total annual gross receipts (again, according to most recently available Form 990s) exceed $2.1 billion. The smallest of the three organizations (Samaritan's Purse) has larger gross receipts than every major "pro-family" culture war organization in the United States combined. World Vision, the largest, not only takes in more than $1 billion per year, it also has more than 1,400 employees and 43,000 volunteers.
And I don't begrudge them a single dime. In fact, I'd say our relative priorities are just about right. When you see World Vision efforts on the ground in Africa, you see they are often standing as a firewall between life and death, hope and despair. Samaritan's Purse and Compassion International are likewise standing in the gap for the "least of these," living out the pure religion that scripture commands.
So given these realities, what is our real "obsession"? Historically, monetarily, and with our time and lives today, it is serving our fellow man. We fight the culture war, but largely as a defensive struggle—fighting against changes instigated by the Left, like legalized abortion, the redefinition of marriage, and attacks on the basic free speech rights of Christian parents and students. Do critics expect no opposition to such cultural change? Do they believe any such opposition is inherently illegitimate?
Imagine a world in which mainstream coverage of Christian America reflected our actual expenditures and actual efforts. You'd barely hear from people like me, and perhaps you wouldn't even have to. We'd have the entirely justified reputation as America's most generous community. Yet instead we're labeled as "homophobic" or "anti-choice," and that label dogs us in all aspects of our public life.
But that's because of other people's obsessions. Not ours.
David French is a lawyer, writer, soldier, and veteran of the Iraq war. He is Senior Counsel at the American Center for Law and Justice. Follow him on Facebook.