Well, there is a certain logic to the question — even if Fox’s Brian Wilson was tossing raw meat to his cable-TV base demographic. I am referring to reporter Mark Leibovich’s chatty piece in The Washington Post‘s Style section — that lively dwelling place of the old New Journalism — about Howard “God, gays and guns” Dean coming to a major U.S. Capitol photo op.
Here is the mean, but logical, question reported from the scene:
The press chorus then devolved into a cacophony of competing screams. (And Dean knows screams!) After several seconds, a booming voice cut through the noise. It belonged to Brian Wilson, a Fox News correspondent who was standing in the middle of the crowd. He asked Dean “if people are focused on the other things that you’ve said about hating Republicans, about Republicans being dishonest and then this latest comment about the Republican Party is full of white Christians. You say you hate Republicans — does that mean you also” hate white Christians?
Dean is, of course, a white liberal Christian. It does no good to claim that he is a secularist of some kind. He is not.
This serves as yet another reminder that the blue-red zip code divide is not about “secular” vs. “religious.” It is, in large part, about two radically different versions of faith, with divisions among progressive and traditional Christians, Jews and others. Yes, this does return us to James Davison Hunter territory. And, of course, ditto for the work of those New York University guys, Gerald De Maio and Louis Bolce.