Thursday, April 14, 2005

Christian America: Red vs. Blue?


The Myth Of Christian America Posted by Hello

In a recent article by Vice President of Government and Public Policy for Focus on the Family Tom Minnery gives a very misleading idea as to the present condition of our nation. In Our Befuddling Nation (Final Word, Citizen Magazine, May 2005) he writes concerning both Alex de Tocqueville's 1835 verdict (Democracy in America) on the reasons for American "Exceptionalism" and a present day book attempting to figure out the same thing. The book under review is "The Right Nation" written by British authors John Mickelthwait and Adrian Wooldridge, both of them journalists for the The Economist magazine. Their conclusion resembled that of de Tocqueville: America's Christian religious influence is its primary reason for being "exceptional."

The problem arises when Tom Minnery, and the authors for that matter, deduces the issue to red vs. blue politics. My beef here is not with the British secularists (although I do disagree with their assessment of both the health of American Christianity and its influence on Public Policy) but with Tom Minnery. Rather than admitting the pathetic (apathetic) condition of American Christianity and its lack of any significant political advancements he goes into applause and ends his piece saying that their conclusions are, "a source of encouragement."

So where does he get his source of encouragement? Is it the condition of our Church? Highly doubt it. We have homosexual marriage on the rise, pedophile priests being punished with a "transfer," PC seeker-sensitivity preaching, segregated Churches, rampant denominationalism, theological ignorance, seminary liberalism, and a divorce rate higher than the outside world! Are these the marks of a Christian nation? This is not the Christianity of de Tocqueville’s 1830's. This is nothing more than secularism wrapped in the swaddling clothes of Christian ritual and symbolism.

Is his reason for encouragement the political influence of the Church? Probably not. Unless you are in agreement with Mr. Minnery that the Christian/non-Christian politic is as clean cut as red and blue. I myself am not a subscriber to that notion. I do not believe that Christianity is, or should be, as simple as red vs. blue. Yet to these men, Mr. Minnery included, this die-hard alliance to party politics is a quality worthy of exceptionalism. If Christians getting nominal Christians and secular "moderates" into office year in and year out, all the while losing both in policy formulation and law, is an "encouragement" then I would hate to know what would be the cause of discouragement!

Does Mr. Minnery believe that it is our influence over public policy? Let us do a quick review. Prayer is out. Evolution is in. Federal spending is at an all time high. Federal debt is beyond comprehension! Abortion is still over 4,000 daily. Euthanasia is making strides against some so-called "culture of life." Federally funded embryonic stem cell research is supported overwhelmingly by many of those we have put into office. We have a tyrannical level of taxation. Just War theory has been replaced by pre-emptive violence in pursuit of some global democratic revolution. We have no fixed standard for our currency. Every day we are being subjected to the rulings of unknown bureaucrats in the UN, WTO, World Banks, and others. There is no longer any fixed standard of law and justice due to the fact that precedent rules the day and setting precedent is the trend. The list could go on and on and on.

The sad fact is that Minnery knows all of this! But instead of dealing with the fact that what goes for Christian political theory is little more than the secular, conventional wisdom of the Republican Party he chooses to applaud this assessment as some kind of personal confirmation. This comes as no surprise to me or anyone else who has not yet become drunk off of the Partisan wine. Maybe one day our espoused Christian leaders will stop patting themselves on the back for "accomplishments" and begin the ever so needed reconstruction of the Church and its influence over public policy with a distinctively Christian social theory.

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