Who’s a Religious “Minority” in the United States?

On Monday Republican South Carolina Representative Tim Scott, at a South Carolina Tea Party conference that also included presidential hopefuls Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich, made a rather dubious assertion concerning religion in America.

[blackbirdpie url="https://twitter.com/#!/mviser/status/159018959033729024"]

Christians are the “greatest minority under assault today?” Where does that come from? While it’s true that “the religious beliefs and practices of Americans do not fit neatly into conventional categories,” the statistical pie, no matter how you slice it, shows Christianity is the dominant form of religion in the United States. In addition, Christianity remains the world’s largest religion, with nearly 37% of the world’s Christians making their home in the Americas. Now, are there countries where Christianity is an endangered minority? Of course, but the United States is not even close to being one. Yet time and again we hear a persecution narrative that paints Christians in North America as though they were living in Iran or North Korea. Conservative Christians have painted the Obama administration as waging a “war on religion,” with figures like New Gingrich decrying the “bigotry” of the current president. That’s nothing new for Gingrich, who claimed  in 2009 that Christians were “surrounded” by “paganism”.

“I am not a citizen of the world. I am a citizen of the United States because only in the United States does citizenship start with our creator. [...] I think this is one of the most critical moments in American history. We are living in a period where we are surrounded by paganism.”

So it seems we really need to start clearly defining terms like “minority” and “persecution” when we are talking about religion in this country.  Consult any dictionary or encyclopedia, and they’ll tell you that a minority faith is smaller than the majority faith in a country or region. In South Carolina, home to Rep. Scott, 45% of residents are evangelical Christians, 18% are mainline protestant Christians, and 8% are Catholics. Guess what that adds up to? You guessed it! A majority! Catholicism taken alone outnumbers all non-Christian faiths in South Carolina combined. Yet we are led to believe that it is Christians who are under “assault.” As I’ve said before, Christianity has a historical and theological persecution narrative, which can unfortunately become something of a complex that distorts reality,  instead of calling its adherents towards a witness of tolerance and coexistence for all.

Republican Rep. Tim Scott and Newt Gingrich in November, 2011. Photo by Richard Ellis/Getty Images.

Republican Rep. Tim Scott and Newt Gingrich in November, 2011. Photo by Richard Ellis/Getty Images.

If Rep. Scott were clear-eyed on the issue of religion he’d see which religious groups were truly struggling in his state. He’d see a Wiccan ostracized and harassed when she objected to sectarian government prayer (and later held up as an example of Christians being denied their freedom of religion), he’d see Pagans in local interfaith groups fighting to be recognized as something other than “other,” a place where any religion can get a religiously-themed license plate, so long as it isn’t a Wiccan wanting one. Despite this, we are forced through the looking glass into an inverted world where the increase of freedom and rights for a non-Christian group somehow decreases their rights and freedoms. It’s as if anything short of total hegemony were oppression.

Yesterday, in addition to it being Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, it was also National Religious Freedom Day, the anniversary of when the Virginia General Assembly adopted Thomas Jefferson‘s landmark Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom. That statute provided the framework for religious liberty in the United States, ensuring free exercise for all citizens.

“Be it enacted by General Assembly that no man shall be compelled to frequent or support any religious worship, place, or ministry whatsoever, nor shall be enforced, restrained, molested, or burthened in his body or goods, nor shall otherwise suffer on account of his religious opinions or belief, but that all men shall be free to profess, and by argument to maintain, their opinions in matters of Religion, and that the same shall in no wise diminish, enlarge or affect their civil capacities.”

As Jefferson himself said, “neither Pagan nor Mahamedan nor Jew ought to be excluded from the civil rights of the Commonwealth because of his religion.” So even if Scott’s nightmare scenario were true, if Christianity were shrunk to the size of Paganism, Hinduism, or Buddhism in America, they, like us, would still have the secular protections of State to save us from the worst excesses of religious majoritarianism. If Scott, and Gingrich, and other politicians truly believe that Christianity is under threat, all the more reason to vigorously defend religious liberty, and the separation of Church and State, lest the tyranny of a imaginary non-Christian majority sweep into power.

About Jason Pitzl-Waters
  • Baruch Dreamstalker

    These clowns know better. They are throwing out red meat for that portion of the Christian electorate that responds to persecution paranoia.

    This is what you risk when you vote for a Republican, of whatsoever ethnicity.

  • http://www.facebook.com/rapture.hoax2011 Roy Linford Adams

    Keep this in mind whenever you hear the term “war on christmas”.

  • Kilmrnock

    Thes folks are just plain brain damaged. This is the only excuse i can come up w/ for making such an absurd claim in view of obvious proof to the contrary. I understand it’s red meat for the extremist religious right , but come on. This stuff just makes them look stupid to the rest of us , meaning anyone not brainwashed by this crap.Anyone that actualy uses thier brain . Oh well gotta love , but keep an eye on these crazies. Kilm

  • http://quakerpagan.org/ Cat C-B

    No, no, no. You misunderstand Dominionism. Catholics, Mormons, Quakers, mainline Christians, Jehovah’s Witnesses, etc., etc., etc. are not “real” Christians. As a (I would have thought) Christian friend of mine once explained, he (and all those other, non-Dominionists) is “worshipping the wrong Jesus.”

    You know… the one who probably wouldn’t vote for Santorum.

  • Patrick Barry

    The problem here is that the claim of victimhood brings power in our society. Instead of being able to deal with the diminishing role of mainstream christian denominations in U.S. society, they have to pick up the banner of the victim. It gives them something to rally around and draws attention to their cause.
    To crib a line from the mighty Monty Python:
    “Help! Help! I’m being oppressed!”
    They cannot have their “Merry Christmas” in schools anymore (at least not where I live), some studies have noted that up to 60% of mainstream protestant churches will be closed in under a decade. This is not oppression of course, but the mainstream moving away from a dogma that doesn’t make sense to a significant portion of the population.
    If you want to see real victimhood you can easily find it in may different places, but not with them.

    • Baruch Dreamstalker

      “This is not oppression of course, but the mainstream moving away [....]”

      And they don’t know, institutionally, how to deal with the mainstream moving away. What you have is the evangelical cohort, which has some hold on its followers, looking over at Catholics and mainline Protestants and saying, at some level, “Hey, I don’t think much of their brand of Christianity, but if they deflate the way they’re going I won’t be able to claim this as a Christian nation in a few years. How can this be happening?”

      That question has two answers: “Secularization,” which has a gloomy (to our exemplar) aura of inevitability as society evolves; and “Persecution,” which fires the blood and evokes the possiblity of resistance. Into either answer can be thrown stuff like abortion rights, gay marriage or that pesky Witch who wants her turn at saying the benediction before the City Council meeting. Thrown into the latter answer, they provide more emotional hooks.

      Christians really are a persecuted minority in places overseas — a dour outcome of the Arab Spring is more jeopardy for Copts in Egypt, eg — and that provocative bad news gets communicated to America via US overseas evangelical efforts. Bring up a kid on a diet of that and they’ll believe any persecution narrative, sometimes even unto adulthood.

    • Baruch Dreamstalker

      “This is not oppression of course, but the mainstream moving away [....]”

      And they don’t know, institutionally, how to deal with the mainstream moving away. What you have is the evangelical cohort, which has some hold on its followers, looking over at Catholics and mainline Protestants and saying, at some level, “Hey, I don’t think much of their brand of Christianity, but if they deflate the way they’re going I won’t be able to claim this as a Christian nation in a few years. How can this be happening?”

      That question has two answers: “Secularization,” which has a gloomy (to our exemplar) aura of inevitability as society evolves; and “Persecution,” which fires the blood and evokes the possiblity of resistance. Into either answer can be thrown stuff like abortion rights, gay marriage or that pesky Witch who wants her turn at saying the benediction before the City Council meeting. Thrown into the latter answer, they provide more emotional hooks.

      Christians really are a persecuted minority in places overseas — a dour outcome of the Arab Spring is more jeopardy for Copts in Egypt, eg — and that provocative bad news gets communicated to America via US overseas evangelical efforts. Bring up a kid on a diet of that and they’ll believe any persecution narrative, sometimes even unto adulthood.

      • Patrick Barry

        Baruch said:
        “That question has two answers: “Secularization,” which has a gloomy (to our exemplar) aura of inevitability as society evolves; and “Persecution,” which fires the blood and evokes the possiblity of resistance. Into either answer can be thrown stuff like abortion rights, gay marriage or that pesky Witch who wants her turn at saying the benediction before the City Council meeting. Thrown into the latter answer, they provide more emotional hooks.”

        Correct, my wife is Episcopalian and I will go to her church picnics with her (she is open to going to druidic ceremonies with me, too) at said picnics the discussion inevitably turns to a debate about what the church is doing wrong you get the two sides of the camp squaring off about whether the church has become to liberal.

        It seems to me what they should be talking about is how their church has become less relevant to modern society. They are watching their church diminish in front of them but will not drag themselves into the 21st century to save it. That same church is in the middle of blowing itself apart because they got a female priest (Gasp!). The old guard couldn’t handle it and took their money with them.

    • Baruch Dreamstalker

      Sorry about the duplicate. Computer problem, and not on my end.

  • Obsidia

    BTW, Rep. Tim Scott introduced this Bill in Congress in December:

    H.Res.489 – Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives that the symbols and traditions of Christmas should be protected for use by those who celebrate Christmas.

    “Official Summary
    12/7/2011–Introduced.Recognizes the importance of Christmas symbols and traditions. Disapproves of attempts to ban references to Christmas. Supports the use of these symbols and traditions by those who celebrate Christmas.”

    Looks like he wants to run for Vice Prez.

    • Ursyl

      Dude must have missed school the day they covered The First Amendment, and all that it entails.

      Congress is specifically forbidden from doing what that bill of his does.

    • Charles Cosimano

      He knows it. He’s just playing to his voters that can’t read so have no idea what the Constitution says.

    • VenerableReid

      Does this mean they aren’t protected for those who don’t celebrate Xmas?

  • http://egregores.blogspot.com Apuleius Platonicus

    There’s just one thing that needs to be added to what Jason has already said: no one has done more in the way of persecuting Christians than Christians themselves.

    Even before they had the political power to do anything about it, Christians were already obsessed with “heresiology” in the 2nd century AD. And as soon as they had gained power, Christians wasted no time getting down to business: one noted historian has estimated that at a minimum 25,000 Christians were murdered by their fellow Christians during the first 225 years of fratricidal bloodletting that followed the adoption of the Nicene Creed in 325.

    To this day Catholics are sufficiently “oppressed” in Protestant England that at least one prominent Catholic politician hid his true religious identity for most of his adult life (that would be Tony Blair).

    • Bo

      Erm…being a (lapsed) British cradle-Catholic, I feel you’ve rather got muddled about TB’s reasons for doing what he did, whether or not one agrees with it. It’s a fact that the Prime Minister ex officio gets to choose Church of England bishops and archbishops. It would have put him in a very odd and unprecedented position to be a non-Anglican choosing Anglican bishops, hence his officially converting after he stepped down (his wife and children are Catholics). Nothing to do with being ‘oppressed’ as a Catholic, with or without the sacre-quotes. And though there’s an officially established Church here the UK is infinitely more secular in its public life than the US, so that even the term ‘Protestant England’ reads a bit oddly, when about 90% of people just couldn’t give a toss.

  • Cara

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/courts-law/supreme-court-turns-away-local-government-appeal-over-prayer-at-public-meetings/2012/01/17/gIQAvC8W5P_story.html

    The justices on Tuesday left in place a federal appeals court ruling that held that the predominantly Christian prayers at the start of Forsyth County commission meetings violated the First Amendment’s prohibition on government endorsement of a particular religion.

  • Danacorby

    Jason said “It’s as if anything short of total hegemony were oppression.” Not ‘as if.’ That’s really what they think. They see themselves as besieged on all sides by evil people and terrifying forces that want to destroy them. And their drive for total control is an effort to protect themselves from destruction, a destruction they believe will be visited upon them not only by the evil people and terrifying forces, but by their OWN GOD, in retribution for their failure. What a horrible way to live!

  • Fireweed

    This seems like a pretty common PR tactic — if these people accuse their opponent of their weakness, they get to frame and shape the discussion about the topic and deflect the discussion from their actions–the power they have to wield and how they wield that power. Instead of members of minority religion talking about ourselves and our experiences, these people are getting us to spend time focussing on them and whether they are a minority religion or not. That’s time spent NOT talking about how these specific people are working to restrict various minority freedoms. This is designed to obfusticate and dilute our call for religious equality, LGBTQ equality, etc.

    • Fireweed

      I meant to say “That’s time spent NOT talking about how we can work to expand various minority freedoms.”

  • Malaz

    I left this over with P.S.V.L. but it’s appropriate here as well.

    This is a pdf on 40 examples of Christian privilege incl.
    #32 It is likely that disclosing my religious beliefs will not prevent me from adoption.

    #38 The elected officials in my community, state and nation are part of my religious group

    (and my own addendum to #27)
    Openly displaying symbols of my religion will not cause me to be stopped and searched in airports or other public places.

    http://convention.myacpa.org/archive/programs/Boston10/Handouts/446/ChristianPrivilegeHandout.pdf

    (BTW Jason, I stopped using Disqus to sign into my Yahoo account, I think they’re fishing and always get more spam after I post here)

  • http://www.magickal-media.com Alice C. “A.C.” Fisher Aldag

    Disqus is acting weird today, printing some things three times, deleting others.

  • Pitch313

    This fails the “Are You Smarter Than A Fifth Grader?” test.

    On the other hand, we probably can legitimately claim that the 99% are a true majority relentlessly persecuted by the 1%. So maybe majority and minority no longer mean, politically, what they used to mean…

  • http://ladyimbriumsholocron.wordpress.com/ ladyimbrium

    Thomas Jefferson was- though arguably odd and certainly controversial- wise in many ways. Civil rights and religious rights do not fall under the same authority. The body and the soul, while connected in this life, are essentially separate and should not be held by the same boundaries.

  • http://entdinglichung.wordpress.com Entdinglichung

    what distinguishes religious fundamentalists and fascists from other people is, that they feel persecuted when they are not able to persecute “the other”

    • Castus

      Oh, aren’t you just adorable? What distinguishes Fascists from fundies is a complicated political philosophy, not whatever crap you said. The term ‘Fascist’ actually means something, people; it’s not a term for everyone you dislike.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=574896155 Ryan Smith

        A complicated political philosophy aimed at the enshrinement of the few at the expense of the whole all in the name of strict top-down obedience.

        Not terribly different from a theocratic state really when you look at the end result. Only difference I can see is the justification, not the execution.

        • Castus

          I don’t know why ignorance like this surprises me. No one actually bothers to read about shit anymore. Fascism aims for the betterment and strengthening of the State through… oh forget it. Read the damn Doctrine:

          http://fascists.zxq.net/dfa.htm

          • Anonymous

            FASCISM: an authoritarian and nationalistic right-wing system of government and social organization.
            (in general use) extreme right-wing, authoritarian, or intolerant views or practices

            (Source: http://oxforddictionaries.com/definition/fascism)

          • Merofled Ing

            Yes, everybody please read the text Castus suggested.

            Quotes from the text:

            “If liberalism spells individualism, Fascism spells government. ” I agree, except that the text thinks liberalism is bad.
            “The Fascist State organizes the nation, but it leaves the individual adequate elbow room. It has curtailed useless or harmful liberties while preserving those which are essential. In such matters the individual cannot be the judge, but the State only.”
            That’s followed by the bit about religion, especially about the “ Roman Catholicism, the special, positive religion of Italians”

            The site does not offer any information on who posted it, who is behind it, or who the speaker is.

            That may be because it might be off-putting to most people if “Mussolini” came up in the first line. The citation that’s missing is: Benito Mussolini, “THE DOCTRINE OF FASCISM” (1932). You can find all of it on the net. The other text that explains fascism in similar terms – well, I wouldn’t be able to quote from it as its publication is illegal where I live.

          • Merofled Ing

            Addentdum to prevent misunderstandings by those who don’t know me.
            I do not mean to endorse the filth from this text in any way.

          • http://egregores.blogspot.com Apuleius Platonicus

            Fascism is not necessarily “right-wing” at all. Both Nazi Germany and Fascist Italy were full-blown welfare states. One of the leading modern scholars of Fascism, Michael Mann, emphasizes the “transcendence” of left/right political ideologies as one of the core features of Fascism.

            But even if one concedes that Fascism is itself “right-wing” then we must immediately acknowledge that Communism is in every respect as savagely authoritarian as Fascism, so the whole “right-wing” business has nothing whatsoever to do with what makes Fascism evil. Also, the fact that Communism has proven to be far more resilient than Fascism actually makes Communism that much more evil!

          • Anonymous

            Apuleis: The concept of a “welfare state” is not tied to either the Left or Right, and indeed has nothing at all to do with the definitions of such. Every major scholar of Fascism acknowledges that while some elements of Fascism drew from both the Left and Right, the placement of Fascism on the Right is the only reputable academic position.

            As Mussolini himself stated, “If it is admitted that the nineteenth century has been the century of Socialism, Liberalism and Democracy, it does not follow that the twentieth must also be the century of Liberalism, Socialism and Democracy. Political doctrines pass; peoples remain. It is to be expected that this century may be that of authority, a century of the “Right,” a Fascist century.”

            Regardless, this has nothing to do with Communism… Fascism is Right-Wing Authoritarianism, and Communism is Left-Wing Authoritarianism. The idea that the Left and Right are divided between Individualism and Collectivism is one of the most absurd and moronic urban legends of the last few decades.

            In both ideologies, it’s the “Authoritarianism” part that is the “evil” part, just as the Christian (and Islamic) Right is extremely Authoritarian in their Socially Conservative views (and indeed ALL Social Conservatism is prima facie Authoritarian and anti-Individualist…).

          • Merofled Ing

            BryonMorrigan is right.
            Besides, as per usual, I fail to get the point of the fascism/communism argument. While I take fascism to be the worse form, something like “a milimeter better than insert whichever you like” seems a poor point. A lot of inacceptable theories and practices look good next to Stalin.
            Then there’s the myth of Nazi Germany being a “full blown welfare state”. No. “Welfare”, i.e. health insurance, unemployment benefit and old age pensions had been slashed in 1932 by the last, sort of possibly democratic, conservative-christian government, while the working (salaried) population’s contributions to these insurances/benefits/pensions were increased. Although the economy picked up across the world after 1933, and unemployment was officially abolished in Germany (called “malingering”, punishable by camps), both the (high) levels of contribution by employees and the (low) level of payments handed out remained at the 1932 level. The surplus generated went into the arms industry.
            “Welfare” was replaced (for the right kind of Germans) by show: pretty, well-dressed uniformed children taking wood (once) to a poor widow, and being photographed, sandwiches after a city had been bombed to bits, handed out by pretty maidens to the sound of light music – that sort of thing.
            Neither form of government accepts religious freedom. One religion, one society, one common goal – with the individual not to be trusted to make the right choices, and something like two individuals of differing views being equal, or any individual not being where the state places him/her inconceivable.

          • http://egregores.blogspot.com Apuleius Platonicus

            BryonMorrigan: “In both ideologies, it’s the ‘Authoritarianism’ part that is the ‘evil’ part”

            That is the most important point, and it appears that we fully agree about it.

  • Castus

    -sigh-

    I have nothing against some good sophistry and rhetoric, but for the love of the gods check your fucking statistics once in a while. Christians, you’re still the big dog on the block. Stop bitching.

  • Anonymous

    There is a minority of “true Christianity”, because Christ said “narrow is the way and few be that find it”, He also said there will be many Christs(“preached”), and many false prophets.
    How many denominations of Christianity are we talking about when we cite the “Christian” majority? Has anyone read Foxes book of Martyrs out there(besides maybe Apuleius Platonicus)?
    Christ himself said “They will thrust you from the synagogues(churches), persecute you and kill you, for the word of God”, He also said “take up your cross and follow me”, not wear a cross as jewelry, come and kneel in front of, or mount on a building you gather in on the day of the sun god, but be quite prepared to be nailed to, and die on. Does this sound anything like the Christian Majority doctrine in America? It is however true to the word for Christian minorities in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan where America has waged wars, and even more so in “Arab spring” countries where we(American policy) have been promoting mob rule(democracy), in a militant religious cleansing majority.
    True Christianity? Following Christ in doing the will of our creator, by keeping His commandments, Umm since one of those concerns keeping God’s Sabbath instead of the day of the sun god at the opposite end of the week, this would narrow down the field considerably, and brings to mind the Branch Davidian Persecution where the US government used military force(I think a tank qualifies) to exterminate, burn alive rather, an entire Sabbath keeping Christian community with 60 children, over the flimsy excuse that is was a cult. Has anyone bothered looking up “cult” in a descent dictionary?
    If true Christianity is following Christ, and He said “Moses and the prophets they testify of me,” and “If they will not believe Moses they will not believe even though one returns from the dead”, also “not on jot or title will pass from the law until heaven and earth pass”. That sounds like Christs true followers embrace the law of Moses, rather than rejecting it.
    True Christianity does not put faithfulness through a divorce to keep faith while looking for fullness in the world.
    Please, I am not claiming My “Christianity” is the one true way, I am only pointing out scriptural texts that cause me to become the Ecumenical buzz kill at Christian blogs, by asking “was Jesus wrong about the narrowness of the way and how few be that find it, when we see mega churches preaching name it and claim it,(just blab it and grab it), or new evangelicals claiming the old testament is the old covenant, it’s all done away with, because Paul said in his letter to..whoever, or the Apostolic Authority has settled doctrine crowd,…what about what Jesus really said?

    • Baruch Dreamstalker

      ‘”Arab spring” countries where we(American policy) have been promoting mob rule(democracy)’

      Democracy is not mob rule, and mob rule is not what we have been promoting there. We’ve been encouraging the Arab Springers to form insitutions of democracy and respect minority rights.

      Problem is, we aren’t in a position to turn our encouragement into facts on the ground. We can’t even do that where we’ve occupied; Iraq began hostilities and brinksmanship among Sunni, Shi’a and Kurd literally the day after the last American soldier left.

      We don’t get to say whether the Arab Spring is better or worse than the septuagenarian dictators or dynasties we’ve propped up since decolonialization because they were anti-Communist when it counted (except when they weren’t). It’s not our call; we get to live with it.

      • Anonymous

        Hi Baruch,
        I think democracy in it’s simple form is “one person one vote” and the majority rules. Am I missing something? If we put a proposed legislation up to a democratic vote, on the ballot, and 99% of the people vote yes to make it law, does it not become law? The thing we have here in America is at best a republic, and at worst a limited democracy, with a quasi post legislation, “law making by redefining, or overturning” body, and a pseudo dictator mouthpiece.
        I think a reading about Socrates in Plato, is in line for anyone defending democracy, as Socrates was it’s most ardent promoter. The cold hard fact is one person one vote, and the majority gets it’s way, is exactly what democracy is, it’s only when You don’t like the way the vote went, that You will realize it’s mob rule, it’s like when You have had a family business on Your property(in the boonies) for years, and developers build houses all around You, and when the houses sell, their new occupants find Your property an eyesore, and the mob rule process begins, complaints, code enforcement, abatement orders…
        Or lets say You live in a one person one vote village, where as a single hard working guy You build a nice house for Yourself. One day the village calls a vote on the proposition to eminent domain Your house(since it’s the nicest, and largest in town), and make it the town meeting hall, instead of the collapsing bamboo pole barn outside town. The votes taken, with only one dissenting vote, and You are homeless. This is a true democracy. Now when You get a nation of entertainment addicts carrying the most charismatic actors opinions to the polls,….or a fervently religious nation taking their Ministers, Priests, or Imams opinions to the polls, then we have the classic definition of mob rule.
        Lets flip it around and say You along with almost every one else voted for a law, but because 1% of the people didn’t like it it didn’t pass. Or let’s say it passes but doesn’t require obedience from the 1% that voted against it, who continue to violate the law in your face, next door. Would You feel that your vote really meant anything? Of course not.
        BTW there is a reason the word democracy was not included in our constitution, even though it’s not a new concept, by a long shot.

        • Baruch Dreamstalker

          What we have here is representative democracy.

          No system is perfect, but I prefer this to all the alternatives I’ve ever seen on offer, and I don’t need to read Socrates, or any other homework you try to assign to people who disagree with you, to come to that conclusion.

          As above, no system is perfect, so I’m unimpressed by your parade of hypothetical or historical horribles.

          Representative democracy is majority rule with procedural safeguards. Mob rule lacks the safeguards. Sorry if you can’t understand the distinction.

          Your opinions about polity fall into ground covered in freshman poly sci, hence lack interest to me, but I do wonder why you chose a Pagan blog to trash democracy.

    • Bookhousegal

      Exactly what about various Christians claiming only some of you count as ‘true Christians’ makes Christians not actually a majority that seems to find accusing people of being not-professing-Christian a valid reason to exclude them from our own country?

      And if you’re not actually a ‘majority,’ why do you keep trying to use elections to enforce your way on all of us as though you were a ‘persecuted minority?’

      If most Christians ‘don’t count,’ why do you still try to call it ‘A Christian Nation’ …not to mention apparently demand everyone pretend to be Christians, whether we are or not?

      I mean, what’s with the whole trying to convert and rule the world when you just turn around and claim it doesn’t work, anyway? :)

      Whatever you want to say among yourselves about who’s a ‘real Christian’ or whatever, for whatever finer point of your beliefs or whatever, doesn’t mean that especially for purposes of politics and culture, you aren’t a vast and favored and moneyed majority claiming both that privilege and crying nonexistent ‘persecuted minority’ status and too often blaming non-Christians for …What Christians make and do.. While arguing with each other about ‘who counts.’

      We’re Pagans. We’re not here to oppress you or be faking your Christianity or nothing like that. We have our ways. We’re not here to be some ‘enemy.’ Maybe you should see past your books and crosses long enough to figure that out. Neighbor.

  • Anonymous

    “We are living in a period where we are surrounded by paganism.” LOL! if only …
    If only … the current politicians running for office actually followed Jesus.
    If only … the moderate & liberal Christians would call them on their hypocrisy – every day, every minute, every hour.
    If only … the rest of us could consider ourselves allies against religion used as a prop for apolitical ends.

  • Anonymous

    Addendum – the conservative right courting the votes of the Evangelical movement use their standing as a way to raise (read: extort) the millions it takes to run for office by pounding on Bibles – often disambiguation of scripture. They then couple those $$ with the millions proffered by the corporate lobbyists to continue the destruction of basic American equality & justice through economic (tax) legislation. The corruption is so deep and wide that cloaking it all in religion and pandering to the paranoid rightist element is only the way to election & re-election.
    If only … the words of Bono were more well known and repeated every time someone asks for a campaign contribution in the name of Christianity, “My god isn’t short of cash.”

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Dorothy-Mitchell/100002988335958 Dorothy Mitchell

    There are I guess three Christians to one pagan in this country and these Christians are surrounded by paganism? Give me a break! In nany parts of the US we are still forced to stay unknown. If we let it be known in our communities that “I am a teacher, and I am Wiccan, Druid, or another of the many traditions,” we would be fired and probably ran out of town. The day that one can stand up and declare their spiritual preference we will be a country who lives by its laws…of total acceptance of all religions…

    Now those running for office need to stop using religion as a scapegoat for their agenda. Our forefathers were Free Masons and if you all did your homework you would learn that they did not profess themselves to be Christians. In their wisdom they declared that we were to follow the freedom that the Bill of Rights gave to all of us. FREEDOM OF RELIGION.

  • Anonymous

    Most people are getting tired of the Christian victim/bully pity party. Their antics have alienated them from the mainstream religious of all faiths. Evangelicals are the reality TV religion. The loud mouth drunk at the end of the bar religion. They might shock and amuse, but look how well they do in their own GOP. I do not allow my Catholic children to play with our evangelical neighbors because they relentlesly disregard my wishes to not have my children molested by their prejudice masquerading as faith. Pandering Preachers / Politicians Peddling Puffery and Prejudice with Perfidious Piety for Personal Power and Profit. That is what evangelicals have become in America.


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