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Christianophobia in the US

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Published on: January 31, 2015

Christian, conservative, constitutional Americans, along with many Republicans and so-called “right wing” individuals, have been accused of Islamophobia, homophobia, and every phobia in between. The reason for this is the perception of the liberal, progressive, Democratic, left wing sect of America that speaking “truth” about Islam, homosexuality, and other issues indicates “hate” or “fear” against a group or groups of people. But, is it really Christian, conservative, constitutional Americans, many Republicans, and so-called “right wing” individuals who are the phobics?

According to two sociologists at the University of North Texas, there is a certain amount of “Christianophobia” present in a small group of the influential and elite in the United States. George Yancey and David Williamson, in their recently released book So Many Christians, So Few Lions: Is There Christianophobia in the United States?, shared their corroborated findings and issued a cautionary warning to Christians. While indicating the phenomenon of “Christianophobia” isn’t widespread, both men agreed that a very small group of people hold “unreasonable hatred or fear of Christians.” This very small group of people are comprised of “elite individuals with more societal power than the average person,” according to Yancey in an interview with the Christian Post.

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According to The Blaze:

Yancey said that he and his co-author were motivated to explore potential Christianophobia after they began collecting qualitative data from interviews with liberal activists and notice a troubling trend among a certain subset of these respondents.

That in mind, a few months ago, the sociologist shared a sampling of some of the “unreasonable hatred” he said he encountered through interviews with cultural progressive activists for the purpose of his study. Here are just three of the comments that were made about the Christian right:

“I want them all to die in a fire.” (Male, aged 26-35, with Doctorate)

“They should be eradicated without hesitation or remorse. Their only purpose is to damage and inflict their fundamentalist virus onto everyone they come in contact with.” (Female, aged 66-75 with Masters Degree)

“They make me a believer in eugenics … They pollute good air … I would be in favor of establishing a state for them … If not, then sterilize them so they can’t breed more.” (Male, aged 46-55 with Masters Degree)

Yancey, in his post on November 19, 2014, states, “In the book, I discuss elements of dehumanization, prejudice, bigotry, and hatred within these comments. … I will partially illustrate one of these qualities – dehumanization – to better show how animosity among those with Christianophobia can manifest itself.

Yancey references the work of Nick Haslem, who best conceptualized dehumanization and identified two types: animalistic and mechanical. According to Yancey, the reading of the answers from the respondents “indicates that animalistic dehumanization fits their responses better” than the mechanical type. Dehumanization is generally describing a denial of “humanness” to others. The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines dehumanize as “to deprive someone of human qualities, personality, or spirit.” Dehumanization, as a noun, would be the act of doing so. Animalistic dehumanization is employed on a largely intergroup basis, while mechanical dehumanization is employed on a largely interpersonal basis.

Yancey cited five qualities of animalistic dehumanization – lack of culture instead of civility, coarseness instead of refinement, amorality instead of moral sensibility, irrationality instead of logic, and childlikeness instead of maturity – and cited two respondents that exemplified the latter, painting Christians as “immature individuals led by powerful, manipulative leaders.”

“The leaders are deceptive and power hungry individuals who invoke ‘God’ in a political sense to rally their supporters … They play to people’s emotions, daily.” (Female, aged 26-35 with Bachelor degree)

“Their movement’s leaders are the worst type of manipulative authoritarian scum and their millions of followers are sad, weak people who are all too willing to give up their self-respect and liberty for a fantasy.” (Male, aged 26-35 with Bachelor degree)

According to Yancey, these respondents support an “image of Christians as being children misled by bad parents.”

Interestingly, Yancey cited the demographics of those with Christianophobia as “mostly white, wealthy, well-educated, and non-religious.” Yancey told the Christian Post that “all things being equal, an elite individual can do more damage to a person than a non-elite individual.” He also indicated that while there are more people who are hostile toward atheists than Christians, those who oppose the latter group tend to be highly educated and have more per-capita power.

Some of the respondents engaged in stereotyping that went along well with the insults used. Some form of the term “brainwash” was inserted 137 times among 125 respondents. Each time a variation of the term “brainwash” was used it denoted the inability of Christians to be able to think for themselves. In addition, sixty-six respondents used the term sheep while five denoted Christians as lemmings.

“I believe that this group is in general poorly educated and often brainwashed to the point of seeing no perspective but their own. Many allow themselves to become tools of charismatic, self-serving leaders because they have been deprived of the education and tools to ever think otherwise.” (Female, aged 56-65 with Bachelor degree

“… they’re lemmings that despite factual evidence to the contrary, will usually follow the guidance of their pastors and church leaders.” (Male, aged 36-45 with Doctorate)

“A gullible group of poorly educated dupes, willing to allow themselves to be herded like sheep, to be shorn or slaughtered by unscrupulous con men wearing clerical garb.” (Male, aged 56-65 with some graduate school)

Yancey stated that they had “documented some level of Christianophobia” in certain powerful subcultures in US society which helps in understanding some actions in our society.

Sounds as though some of these respondents are engaging in projection – portraying others of having the characteristics and behavior sets they themselves possess. Being college educated does not necessarily mean that one is “educated” as the institutions of higher learning have become centers of indoctrination. Yancey himself indicated that individuals seeking higher education were more likely to encounter more people with power who hate Christians than who hate atheists.

One thing that is very disturbing is the attitude of some of these respondents toward Christians that reflect the attitude of Nazi Germans toward the Jews in the years of World War II. As the Nazis stereotyped the Jews to fuel further hatred against that sect of the population in Germany, so are these “educated” individuals employing the same tactics against Christians. In any sect of the population, regardless of religion, race, level of education, gender, or age, there are always individuals who are either gullible, easily led and influenced, manipulative, deceptive, power hungry, sad, weak and unscrupulous or a combination of any of these qualities. There will always be those who succumb to the silver tongue charlatan and buy the snake oil being sold. All one has to do is look at Congress as an example. And, while many in Congress “profess” to be Christian, how many really and truly are? Man, after all, is fallible; however, it is through salvation through Jesus Christ that man can gain strength and the ability to do all things.

It appears that these “highly educated” individuals who support genocide and sterilization of Christians cannot make the connection of how much they sound like Hitler, the Nazi Party and the SS. Apparently, World War II history and the Holocaust is not taught in the institutions of indoctrination that were once colleges and universities in this country. As the Jews were the targets of hatred in the 20th century, so the Christians have become the targets of hatred in the 21st century. Those who have not learned history are destined to repeat it.

What escapes these so-called “learned” individuals is there are many Christians who are “educated” that have never set foot in any institution of indoctrination beyond high school and there are many who have completed higher education degrees. Being “educated” does not equal being intelligent and having education does not necessarily mean one is not ignorant. There are plenty of intelligent, educated individuals who have limited academic learning and many who are far from ignorant.

While these “Christianophobics” revile Christians, it is Christians following the Word of God and the teachings of Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, who support the laws of God, uphold the idea of teaching our children, and experience a freedom beyond comprehension and a possess a fountain of wisdom through a personal relationship with the Lord. There is a quiet strength, courage and serenity among those who follow Christ that is often mistaken for weakness. However, it is Christians who recognize the acts of evil despotism and tyranny that are in contrast to the laws of God and the teachings of Christ. And it is Christians who are standing against tyranny and despotism and supporting individual God-given rights for all. These “Christianophobics” would deny Christians the basic right to life given by God. But, that is not surprising as it is these individuals who probably support the murder of babies in the womb.

As Christians speak the truth about Islam, homosexuality, abortion, and a host of other immoral acts and issues, we are branded as “phobics” instead of truth speakers. When we speak against tyranny, despotism and eradication of God-given rights instead of cowing to the false religion of “man as the creator” we are called “manipulative, authoritarian scum, gullible dupes, lemmings, sheep” and unable to think for ourselves. In speaking truth, we are called “intolerant” by those who profess tolerance but exhibit an intolerance so brazen they think nothing of expressing their desire to see Christians exterminated, murdered and sterilized. So, who really are the manipulative, authoritarian scum and possess the inability to think for themselves?

History indeed may be repeating itself. For as was seen in Nazi Germany, once a sect of the population is devalued as “human,” it becomes much easier to justify immoral, criminal, atrocious, detestable acts against them motivated by hatred and bigotry under the guise of “freedom.”

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