Wednesday, January 04, 2012

The Top Ten (Most Inane) Anti-Christian Events of 2011

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Christian Persecution Syndrome

For all the outrage from conservative-Christian ranks about how they’re supposedly being victimized daily by all those godless gay pinko radicals and whatnot, they certainly seem short on actual cases of anti-Christian persecution to validate their claims. For a prime example, here are the Top Ten Anti-Christian Events in 2011 as chosen by DefendChristians.Org voters:

10) NBC television network twice took the words "under God" from the Pledge of Allegiance in its lead-up to the U.S. Open at Congressional Country Club.

9) In Franklin Massachusetts a pro-life man was beat by the police for peacefully handing out pro-life materials. The police accused him of conspiring to plant bombs.

8) A Christian man in Minnesota was fired from his job because one of his female co-workers attended a Bible Study that his wife led.

7) A Christian Florida teacher was suspended after school administrators discovered his support of traditional marriage posted on the internet.

6) In Kalispell Montana, pro-lifers were attacked by a fire-bomb during a prayer vigil in front of an abortion clinic. No one was hurt, but a police officer remarked pro-lifers should expect this sort of reaction to their activities.

5) Because of a complaint filed by the ACLU, the liberal 9th Circuit Court ruled that the Mt. Soledad War Memorial in San Diego was unconstitutional.

4) A homosexual activist effort caused investigations by the online money-transfer company, PayPal, against pro-family Christian organizations.

3) A Bible study was shut down by San Juan Capistrano, CA officials who claimed the group needed a permit because it posed a risk to public safety and health.

2) President Obama declared June "Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Pride Month" and hosted a White House celebration by homosexuals.

1) California Governor Jerry Brown signs a bill forcing public school curriculum and textbooks to "celebrate" homosexuals, transgenders and bisexuals.

Right off the bat, the keen observer will quickly note how nearly half of these alleged hate crimes, including the two gravest nominees, are all about those uppity gays and how they stubbornly refuse to settle for being treated as second-class citizens by the heterosexual Christian majority. What’s more, even those few stories that do tell of actual anti-Christian bigotry appear to have been trumped-up or outright fabricated. And the rest are just instances where things happened in ways that some privilege-soaked Christians aren’t happy about, so they try to use them as grounds for basing their whiny outcries. It’s a deeply pathetic display.

But, perhaps for the sake of humoring them, let’s take a closer look at these purported acts of anti-Christian hatred and see how they stack up to reality:

  • 10) Hang on – one of the worst acts of persecution of the entire year that they could come up with was an innocuous decision by a few news channel staffers to take out some sectarian reference in some television presentation, a minor edit for which the company has since apologized profusely? If this is top ten material, something tells me this is going to be one tepid list.

  • 9) Two things: Firstly, if this account is true (more on that in a moment) and Peter D’Attilio was beaten by police despite being non-threatening, then this may very well count as persecution, or else as police brutality in general. There’s one problem, though: This story only appears to exist in the anti-abortion blogosphere, as not one single independent news outlet seems to mention it anywhere. While this doesn’t inherently discredit the report, it does call upon readers to regard it with a very large grain of salt.

  • 8) Same as with the last report, this would indeed be unfair if true, but a complete lack of any substantiating reports outside of the Right-wing blogosphere seems to bring a nail perilously close to the metaphorical coffin of this claim’s legitimacy.

  • 7) No, Florida high school social studies teacher Jerry Buell was not suspended solely because he openly opposed same-sex marriage on Facebook. It turned out he was a typically preachy Christianist who let his faith taint his work as a teacher, proclaiming it proudly in his school website biography and classroom syllabus. If anything, he wasn’t disciplined enough; he should have lost his job for violating the Establishment Clause. But, as usual, Christians are happy to ignore all that law-breaking stuff and just pretend he was punished for his beliefs.

  • 6) Another story that only seems to exist among the Right, and the only “mainstream” media source that mentions it – tellingly, Fox Nation – quotes the rabidly anti-abortion LifeSiteNews as its source, which again shoots a hole through its credibility. In addition, the alleged attack in itself was actually limited to one purportedly weak Molotov cocktail chucked at one elderly woman, who was unscathed. Not excusable by any stretch, but also nothing worth including in a list of the supposed top ten most grievous acts of discrimination of the entire year.

  • 5) Another non-issue: A court ruled that giant cross was – shockingly! – a decidedly Christian symbol and was therefore unsuitable as a government-sponsored memorial for fallen Korean War veterans. Again, yes, such a terrible affront to Christendom, forcing them not to shove their own faith down everyone else’s throats.

  • 4) I’m fairly ambivalent regarding international LGBT advocacy group All Out’s campaign to get PayPal to drop accounts of various anti-LGBT hate groups. All Out has every right to democratically pressure whoever they want for any reason like. If anything, Christians are being stupendously (albeit characteristically) hypocritical in kvetching about a use of non-violent pressure to achieve a goal, given their own very long history of launching countless boycotts and protests against virtually any group that so much as gives gays the right to use the restroom. In the end, it all comes down to what PayPal considers to be a violation of their terms of use, and whether or not these anti-gay organizations break the rules in using PayPal to raise funds for their hateful activities. Either way, no laws are being broken (as far as I can tell), and unless PayPal goes against their own rules one way or another (which would make them the unscrupulous party), there’s really just nothing to see, here.

  • 3) Finally, we have a report that can be independently verified via credible sources. However, while the city’s decision to shut down the bible study group for lack of a permit was inarguably unfair and ridiculous, it was merely another case of bumbling officials trying to force citizens to follow some absurd and poorly conceived regulation. It’s no more a case of actual anti-Christian bigotry than police shutting down kids’ lemonade stands indicates an intolerance towards juice-making. It’s just authorities at their incompetent best.

  • 2) Oh, wow. Declaring a month in honor of people of a different sexual orientation than yours is enough to qualify as the second worst hate crime of the whole year? You know, if you’re this damn petty, you deserve to be offended as often as humanly possible.

  • 1) Ah, the biggest injustice towards Christ of them all: Telling schools and textbook printers to recognize that, hey, gays exist and did stuff in the past, too. How truly terrible for God’s faithful.

All in all, it’s no wonder Gary Cass calls this a “surprising” list of anti-Christian offenses. In fact, it’s utterly astounding – so to speak – how such pathetic, inane and trumped-up non-events were voted the top ten of anything. All this reveals, far from a supposedly increasing level of intolerance towards Christianity, is how extraordinarily privileged and thin-skinned these Christians portray themselves as being, where merely recognizing that non-Christians exist and requesting that they be treated equally under the law is taken as a news-worthy affront.

(via Joe. My. God.)