33 votes

40% of Americans believe in creationism

36 comments

  1. [17]
    HotPants
    Link
    It's a curiously American concept. The protestants rejected Catholicism back in Luthers day, and went "sola scriptura" - by the scripture alone. Then when scientists and biblical scholarship...

    It's a curiously American concept.

    The protestants rejected Catholicism back in Luthers day, and went "sola scriptura" - by the scripture alone. Then when scientists and biblical scholarship started poking holes in the infallibility of the scripture, the catholics were fine, they had the pope, but the protestants had a choice. Do you accept that the bible is fallible, or do you double down?

    The American Protestants doubled down. It wasn't the bible that was fallible. It was scientists and scholars. Those liberal elite with their big money global warming conspiracy theories and cock eyed evolution theories.

    There are non-american protestants who believe the bible is infallible, but they tend to be less cohesive in their world views. American protestants have entire news media empires dedicated to telling them what they want to hear.

    40% of Americans also believe that Biden lost the election, and I think it's largely the same 40%.

    25 votes
    1. [10]
      smoontjes
      Link Parent
      I don't even know where to begin with statistics like this. It's unfathomable from my European, Danish view. We have our share of people who believe in crazy things here too, but they luckily...

      40% of Americans also believe that Biden lost the election, and I think it's largely the same 40%.

      I don't even know where to begin with statistics like this. It's unfathomable from my European, Danish view.

      We have our share of people who believe in crazy things here too, but they luckily don't make up a hundred million people or more as they do in the US - they didn't even get enough votes to get a single seat in parliament in the 2019 elections.

      I genuinely wonder why these things happen in the US and nowhere else. It can't all be down to Fox news? Left and right? Surely there has to be a historical reason that such a huge amount of the population are all in on these conspiracies.

      10 votes
      1. [2]
        CALICO
        Link Parent
        A comprehensive answer would probably take a historian or ten. But we can start with the beginning, and remember that New England was colonized by Puritan Separatists with strong Calvinist...
        • Exemplary

        A comprehensive answer would probably take a historian or ten.
        But we can start with the beginning, and remember that New England was colonized by Puritan Separatists with strong Calvinist beliefs—essentially kicked out of Europe for being a pain in everyone's ass. While the Native Americans were here first, and the French & Spanish had various colonies, there was no established government to keep things restrained. Leave that petri dish mostly-undisturbed for a hundred or so years, and you get a very deep rooted culture that has survived to the modern era, in some form.

        Early America was """empty""", and loaded with fertile land & multitudes of resources. Combine human greed, religions capacity to be abused, with the above, and you get a wealthy class of people with a societal blank-slate. The Founders can be considered as idealistic as they want, but by the time the Declaration of Independence was penned there was already a kind of wealthy aristocracy in America intertwined with a deeply puritan culture. It doesn't matter how many immigrants from however many backgrounds came after, the White, culturally Anglo-Saxon, religiously-Protestant ruling class was already rooted in power.

        And they've stayed in power, for the most part. Whenever something would come along to challenge that status quo, there was an often-violent response to snuff it out. Sure, the culture has changed from what it was in the 1600's, but it's nearly a direct ancestor of it. There are non-white's & Catholics who hold power now, but the culture of the common person is directly influenced by the extreme beliefs of the Pilgrims. What could be called our modern Aristocracy don't all have blood lineages linking them to colonial day, but they've succeeded thanks to the society and government cultivated by those with a lust for power & loose morality.

        Religions of all flavors have been used as a tool to exploit or control the common folk, over the world, throughout history. I'm not sure how many of our rich & powerful have faith, but I'm not sure it matters either.
        Genocide of the Native Americans, and the enslavement & exploitation of predominantly-Africans were both justified with religious arguments. Whether those who ran plantations, or those who pushed west for gold, actually believed they were doing holy work, or not, that was often the narrative sold in the discourse to a largely uneducated & minimally literate population.

        Those common people being sold the story that America was God's Country, and their Government & Wealthy were doing God's work, had children. And they told that story to those children. Later, those children had children. The people tied the Exceptionalism of America to God, and the Leaders were Godly men. To go against their Leaders was to go against God.

        I'm running out of steam, I'm beginning to ramble, and I'm not a historian.
        I've only barely mentioned the lack of adequately educating the common people. But I don't think it's very difficult to connect these dots to the culture of ignorance & malice that continues to cause problems for the common people & the world into the modern day. Near every challenge to this status quo has been met with rabid violence. From the American Civil War; to the Wilmington, NC massacre; Oscarville, GA; Jim Crow; the War on Drugs; Philadelphia, 1985; and Election of President Obama & the rise of the Tea Party. I'm leaving out quite a lot, and these examples primarily only deal with the physical & cultural violence against black people.

        We're a sinful people, bound by corrupt tradition, proud of what we don't know.
        I'm not surprised by anything, anymore.

        17 votes
        1. skybrian
          Link Parent
          You talk about who is in power, but it doesn’t seem to be a top-down thing at all, given the variety of religious beliefs in the US. Historically they were mostly Christian, but people were and...

          You talk about who is in power, but it doesn’t seem to be a top-down thing at all, given the variety of religious beliefs in the US. Historically they were mostly Christian, but people were and are constantly founding new churches because they were dissatisfied with the ones they had. There are a variety of leadership structures. Some denominations have centralized leadership and in others, each local church is financially independent.

          And while it’s true that there has been plenty of violent conflict in the US history, much of it isn’t clearly characterized as supporting versus opposing “the status quo.” The Civil War in particular was a regional conflict between people with different status quos. Slavery was the status quo in the South and not in the North. So it seems better to be more specific about what people were fighting about in each case?

          5 votes
      2. [6]
        Grendel
        Link Parent
        Honestly, the infallibility of scripture has little to do with creationism The issue with creationism (and anti-intellectualism) isn't the belief that the scripture is infallible, it's the belief...

        Honestly, the infallibility of scripture has little to do with creationism

        The issue with creationism (and anti-intellectualism) isn't the belief that the scripture is infallible, it's the belief that scripture is wholely literal. I do believe in the infallibility of scripture. The protestant reformation was about doctrine, not science, and that was the message behind "Sola Scriptura". The other solas are doctrinal too; Sola Christus (Christ alone), Sola Gratia (grace alone), Sola Fide (faith alone), and Solus Gloria Deo (God's glory alone).

        I used to identify as a creationist, but I always held that the "7 days" that God created the world in weren't necessarily 7 literal days. It could have been billions of years.

        I've just looked it up, and most definitions of creationism include a literal interpretation of scripture. I know that for me, intelligent design seems to be a better term for my belief. Why couldn't God have been the architect/initiator of evolution? Maybe rather than "magically" (so to speak) creating things despite the rules of the universe He simply created the rules of the universe that led to what we see today? Why couldn't the earth be billions of years old? I don't understand why any of that inherently negates scripture unless you take a literal view, which is different than an infallible view.

        That's not to say that I don't struggle with my belief in the infallibility of the scripture. I deeply struggle with the differences between the Old and New Testaments. I see things in the OT that I don't really "like", and many of those things seem difficult to explain how they are coherent with the NT. I still operate on faith that the bible is infallible, but I don't exactly know for sure what infallible means in the context of faith and scripture.

        8 votes
        1. [5]
          HotPants
          Link Parent
          Thanks for sharing Grendel. I appreciate your input. Creationism is definitely a literal interpretation. However, I think maybe Creationism is more an orthodox belief. It's the traditional...

          Thanks for sharing Grendel. I appreciate your input.

          Creationism is definitely a literal interpretation.

          However, I think maybe Creationism is more an orthodox belief. It's the traditional interpretation that Americans still cling to.

          No one reads the entire bible literally. Shellfish are OK now. Women don't have to sit silently in church wearing headscarfs any more. You don't have to literally love your neighbor as yourself, turn the other cheek if you are attacked, sell all your possessions or even feed the poor (as long as you tithe and pay taxes.)

          Even creationists rely on others guidance on what is considered orthodox to determine which parts should be read literally and which parts might be open to a little more interpretation. In fact, the initial date of creation of 4004 BC was based on James Ussher's 17th century Annals, which used a bunch of other historical records in addition to a mostly literal interpretation of the genealogies. The bible isn't always clear, and has a number of apparent contradictions, so Ussher had to pick which verses to interpret literally, and plug the gaps with the historical records he had on hand.

          As for why creationism remains orthodoxy, but women silently sitting in church with head scarfs is no longer orthodox, there is animosity among christian conservative circles against scientists, and I think it all started when science questioned the orthodox/ literal interpretation of the bible through the documentary hypothesis and the theory of evolution, although perhaps most Americans have always felt that science should be more democratic/ consensus driven process.

          I really like framing creationism as faith in current orthodoxy , because no amount of quoting literal scripture will ever change the orthodox interpretation. I think the only thing that changes orthodoxy is broad consensus change in biases.

          For instance, I find the current views on abortion incredibly weak from a literal biblical interpretation, but incredibly strong from a historical orthodox and current consensus perspective. Perhaps the only thing that can change those views are stories that show the horrors of forcing mothers to cary fetuses to term.

          And while the current views on homosexuality at least has some solid biblical support, so also does slavery, which almost no one is a proponent of any more. I would bet if all the gays converted to conservative christianity or somehow overcame deep conservative christian biases, the orthodox interpretation would change, and gays would be considered fabulous from a christian perspective.

          There are likewise huge pressures in the Republican party to adhere to party orthodoxy. One Republican announced it was RINO hunting season - hunting out Republicans Only In Name. RINOs are those that dare to question party orthodoxy.

          So perhaps if you are used to adhering to religious orthodoxy, perhaps you are more open to party orthodoxy?

          (Sorry for the wall of text. I deleted what I could)

          7 votes
          1. [4]
            Grendel
            Link Parent
            I think that's some great insight. It's also interesting that there is a lack of knowledge of church history as well. Many conservative evangelicals think that their doctrinal orthodoxies have...

            I think that's some great insight. It's also interesting that there is a lack of knowledge of church history as well. Many conservative evangelicals think that their doctrinal orthodoxies have existed since the founding of the first churches.

            But, we actually have a decent amount of information from the early church that shows that's not the case. The example that comes to mind at the moment is the topic of glossolalia (speaking in tongues).

            I grew up in a charismatic pentecostal church. For those not familiar with the term, that means behaviors such as: Speaking out in syllables and sounds that don't make up a language. having someone interpret those sounds into English, trying to heal someone by laying hands on them, and in some cases even running and jumping through the church.

            Now, the particular denomination that I grew up in put a HUGE emphasis on speaking in tongues. In many ways, it was viewed as "proof" so to speak of the validity of your salvation. The New Testament does have a few references to "speaking in tongues", though there is room for debate on whether that really matched what is done today.

            Here's the interesting thing: There is very little evidence of this behavior in the early church. Of all of the writings we have from that time period, only a few (I think as few as 2) pieces of writing reference it at all, and even then it appears to be isolated events.

            However, most people in this denomination seem to believe that this was a core part of the early church that was then "lost" or neglected or neglected later on in history.

            There's a reason that not many fundamentalists dig too deep into biblical scholarship or early church history, and I think it's because they are afraid of what they might find.

            5 votes
            1. [3]
              HotPants
              Link Parent
              I've really only met one person who was interested in biblical scholarship and early church history. I'm sure there are more. It's not a conversation that comes up very often :)

              I've really only met one person who was interested in biblical scholarship and early church history.

              I'm sure there are more.

              It's not a conversation that comes up very often :)

              1 vote
              1. [2]
                Grendel
                (edited )
                Link Parent
                I really mean Christians in particular. Understanding cultural context is so incredibly important to understanding scripture, and right now it's so much easier than ever before to do so. My wife...

                I really mean Christians in particular.

                Understanding cultural context is so incredibly important to understanding scripture, and right now it's so much easier than ever before to do so.

                My wife bought a bible that comes with a commentary that provides extensive historical information and cultural information paired up with the passages that they are relevant to. There are examples of things that are euphemisms that we would never pick up on, such as the fact that certain references to feet in the old testament are often a euphemism for sex or genitals.

                The below text is an example that went on longer than I intended. The main point is above, and there is no need to read the example below unless you are interested in it. One example that can actually change how we understand and apply scripture is found in a passage in Ephesians. This was a letter written by Paul to the church in Ephesus. This one is actually a bit of a conflict point for Christians, with some insisting the verse be taken literally without considering what it would have meant to the original audience. The verse essentially talks about wives submitting to their husbands. Naturally, this has been used for *many* years as justification for inequality within marriages as well as a way to try and force gender roles.

                 
                 

                The interesting cultural aspect that we need to understand comes from Roman culture. The audience of this letter was occupied by Rome. Roman culture had a very rigid hierarchy in their homes and society, with the husband at the top, followed by wives, children, slaves, etc.

                 
                 

                What Paul (the author) was really trying to do was subvert this cultural norm. He knew that their homes were already following this hierarchy. The verse prior states that we are to "submit one to another". There are no conditions given on that, no exceptions based on status. Now, on the surface, this seems to be in conflict with what comes after it, and as a result scholars over the years have tried to use some (shaky at best) linguistics to show that mutual submission doesn't apply to marriage.
                 
                 
                What's really going on is that Paul is using this to subvert that hierarchy. The verse following is also counter-cultural, stating that husbands are to submit to God. This removes the husband as the "final word" so to speak, meaning that if a husband isn't following God's directives his authority is invalidated since God is the source of that authority. This wouldn't have been lost to the original audience, since husbands were considered the final authority in the home, and therefore were free to do whatever they wanted to do.
                 

                So what is God's directive to these husbands? The verse after that hierarchy description states that husbands are to "love their wives as Christ loves the church". This means not restricting free will. It means unconditional love. It means unlimited grace and forgiveness. Anything less than that is in violation of the God that the husbands are instructed to submit to.

                 
                The hierarchy represented their current understanding of the home. It's like he's saying "Sure, think of it that way if you want to, but here are the parameters on that", and those parameters pretty much make that hierarchy meaningless. It was really about mutually working together as a team. There are other examples of this thinking too. In Paul's letter to the church in Galatia, he states "There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus." When studied properly, the New Testament church was actually a radically progressive group that was (intended to) bring about a level of equality to oppressed people which was unheard of and (largely unimagined) at that time.
                 

                What got in the way was the selfish nature of humans. We strive to fight that, but ultimately we aren't perfect. All we can do is try to continually assess ourselves and try to be better than we were yesterday.

                Note: I'm not a biblical scholar. This is my best understanding based on my research, and as always is subject to error. I have no doubt that there are some arguments against this view that I haven't covered, but hopefully, it serves as a good example of the importance of research.

                1 vote
                1. HotPants
                  Link Parent
                  I meant Christians as well. There are two types of biblical scholarship tho. I was referring to secular scholarship however. I know plenty of christians interested in deep exegesis through...

                  I meant Christians as well. There are two types of biblical scholarship tho. I was referring to secular scholarship however. I know plenty of christians interested in deep exegesis through historical study.

                  1 vote
      3. Akir
        Link Parent
        Two major things. Come to mind. For one thing people who believe in fantastic and crazy things aren’t treated as the crazy people they are. And even if we have an official declare that their...

        Two major things. Come to mind. For one thing people who believe in fantastic and crazy things aren’t treated as the crazy people they are. And even if we have an official declare that their mental state is a problem, the official policy is basically to ignore the problem. Mental hospitals barely exist here anymore.

        But far worse is that they have become political tools. They share a constructed reality and so every time someone tells them an objective and provable fact they will simply hide behind the shield of having a difference of opinion and internally think that you are the crazy one.

        6 votes
    2. [6]
      vektor
      Link Parent
      I never realized in such clarity why in Europe the more progressive branch of Christianity are the protestants, while in the US the opposite is the case. While I'm not religious myself, here in...

      The American Protestants doubled down. It wasn't the bible that was fallible. It was scientists and scholars. Those liberal elite with their big money global warming conspiracy theories and cock eyed evolution theories.

      I never realized in such clarity why in Europe the more progressive branch of Christianity are the protestants, while in the US the opposite is the case. While I'm not religious myself, here in Germany the protestants are generally mostly liberal: Priests have families, no bullshit about child abuse or indoctrination, they mesh well with secular and civil society. It's the Catholics that are much more conservative: Issues with gay marriage, and endless problem with child abuse, corruption, that kinda stuff.

      Doesn't help that the protestants usually use the term evangelisch (evangelical) here. If I'm not mistaken, that's the US term for a particular breed of protestant that would be particularly at odds with our protestants.

      So yeah, thanks for putting it in those words, it added clarity.

      7 votes
      1. skybrian
        Link Parent
        There are many varieties of protestants in the US . I don’t really follow the differences, but some are extremely conservative and others can be very liberal. I would guess conservatives are more...

        There are many varieties of protestants in the US . I don’t really follow the differences, but some are extremely conservative and others can be very liberal. I would guess conservatives are more common, but it’s probably better not to talk about protestants as a monolith.

        3 votes
      2. [4]
        NoblePath
        Link Parent
        You appear to be conflating protestantism with evangelical fundamentalism. The two are distinct. Mainline white protestants in the US are progressive to varying degrees. This includes Episcopals,...

        You appear to be conflating protestantism with evangelical fundamentalism. The two are distinct. Mainline white protestants in the US are progressive to varying degrees. This includes Episcopals, Presbyterians (PCUSA), Methodists, and until the 1980s, even the Southern Baptists, togther with some smaller denominations like UCC's and Congregationalists.

        Important note, these mainline protestant churchers are declining in membership, and have all suffered schisms where an evangelical/fundamentalist faction has either splintered off (e.g. EPC and PCA) or taken over (Southern Baptists).

        Then you have the billions of evangelical fundamentalist vareitals. Most of these fall in this unfortunately large sector of creationists who believe Trump is the righful president.

        Another day we can have the conversation about how many of these mainline churches are progressive-repressive, i.e., they espouse progressive ideals but work to preserve the status quo.

        1. [3]
          vektor
          (edited )
          Link Parent
          Oh, I don't think evangelicals and protestants are at all the same. But my understanding of the terminology is that evangelicals must be protestants, or else they would be catholics, which they...

          Oh, I don't think evangelicals and protestants are at all the same. But my understanding of the terminology is that evangelicals must be protestants, or else they would be catholics, which they definitely aren't. Right? (Or maybe it's defined by secession from the church during the reformation, which doesn't change the picture much)

          I mean, not all protestants are evangelicals, and I'm convinced that US protestants have probably a wide range of beliefs ranging from more-liberal-than-german-protestants to more-conservative-than-catholics.

          What I wanted to express with my comment there is that from a German perspective, it's strange that the most radically conservative segment could be the protestants, seeing as our protestants are a much less conservative and much less strongly religious group than catholics. The difference being that US protestants doubled down on the bible in a very literal interpretation, while german protestants admitted the bible is fallible and/or symbolic. It's no surprise at all to me that a group that is defined by its protest against central papal authority diverges in their beliefs and is quite varied that way.

          It also complicates things again that the german protestant church has at least some central guidance and is relatively uniform; things that break that uniformity, particularly on the conservative side, aren't generally regarded as protestant here.

          3 votes
          1. nukeman
            Link Parent
            Generally yes, American Evangelicals are Protestant or Protestant-adjacent, although there has been an increase in harder-right Catholics (often with a neo-Integralist bent).

            Generally yes, American Evangelicals are Protestant or Protestant-adjacent, although there has been an increase in harder-right Catholics (often with a neo-Integralist bent).

            2 votes
          2. NoblePath
            Link Parent
            I guess it depends on who is doing the demarcation. Evangelical fundamentalists certainly grew from the protestant movement. But when I was one, I considered myself distinct from protestants and...

            I guess it depends on who is doing the demarcation. Evangelical fundamentalists certainly grew from the protestant movement. But when I was one, I considered myself distinct from protestants and catholics both. The belief was that we were a return to the original church of the first century. If you're interested (and you probably shouldn't be), you can look into "the great restoration."

            2 votes
  2. [2]
    ras
    Link
    We had some shutters installed in our house a while back and the guy who did the install just talked non-stop about how the earth is only around 7000 years old. I was so gobsmacked I didn't even...

    We had some shutters installed in our house a while back and the guy who did the install just talked non-stop about how the earth is only around 7000 years old. I was so gobsmacked I didn't even really know how to engage with him. I didn't think I'd ever met someone that held this belief, but according to this poll, I've probably met several people.

    12 votes
    1. NoblePath
      Link Parent
      I sure hope the engineers and manufacturers behind that mounting hardware don't believe similarly.

      I sure hope the engineers and manufacturers behind that mounting hardware don't believe similarly.

      3 votes
  3. [17]
    post_below
    Link
    It's like the start of sci-fi sub plot. For me the holy shit moment was Trump getting elected. After that, my feeling is "of course 40% of Americans think an anthropomorphized father figure calls...

    It's like the start of sci-fi sub plot.

    For me the holy shit moment was Trump getting elected. After that, my feeling is "of course 40% of Americans think an anthropomorphized father figure calls the shots". Or 40% of those who responded to the poll anyway. I'm still hesitant to believe it's really 40% of the population. Can't be too far off though.

    There are a lot of evils you can attach to religion, and a lot of good too, but maybe the biggest drawback in the modern world is that it conditions people to have unswerving belief in something there isn't evidence for. No one really intended it, but I think it made people more susceptible to internet misinformation. And cults of personality. Gut over reason.

    As far a dystopian plots go, it has potential in a variety of directions.

    7 votes
    1. [13]
      kfwyre
      Link Parent
      Here’s some more dystopia for you. Christianity can be a wonderful , beautiful thing. It can be centered in love, hope, and forgiveness, and literally everyone would be lucky to have more of each...

      Here’s some more dystopia for you.

      Christianity can be a wonderful , beautiful thing. It can be centered in love, hope, and forgiveness, and literally everyone would be lucky to have more of each of those in their lives right now.

      Unfortunately, malice and prejudice have so strongly rooted themselves in Christianity in America that the dominant face we see the religion wearing is so horrific it is unrecognizable.

      I genuinely feel bad for all the Christians out there trying to live a holy, loving life. Their names, identities, and entire belief systems get undeservedly dragged through the mud. Their goodness gets overshadowed by the people for whom Christianity is a means of leveraging control over and hatred towards others.

      Those elements have always been part of Christianity, but they were buttressed at least somewhat by the good parts. In recent years, however, malice in Christianity has grown to become more vocal, more powerful, and more emboldened than I’ve ever seen it. It also, honestly, became just plain worse. I watched Christians I know — formerly loving, caring people — become inconsiderate, spiteful assholes during the pandemic.

      My conservative Christian mother would plead with her conservative Christian friends: “it is pro-life to wear a mask!”.

      Her simple logic — advocating for only a simple act of minimal compassion — was completely ignored or, worse, outright resented.

      The Christianity I grew up on talked of sacrifice and “turn the other cheek” and “do unto others”. That is so far removed from what I see today. I know all the good stuff is still out there somewhere, but it’s impossible to see past the hatred and malice that are so eagerly being given quarter in the faith right now.

      12 votes
      1. [7]
        Grendel
        Link Parent
        I think I've mentioned on here before that I'm a Christian struggling with this exact thing. I live in a very conservative area and that makes it even harder because I see the worst of it. Many...

        I think I've mentioned on here before that I'm a Christian struggling with this exact thing. I live in a very conservative area and that makes it even harder because I see the worst of it.

        Many people who wear the identity of Christianity are missing out on what it actually offers: peace, joy, and hope. A limitless love beyond anything you could imagine. Grace and mercy that are freely and repeatedly given despite being wholly unearned.

        And as you said, not only are they missing out on this for themselves, but they are also causing pain and strife in others, which runs completely and totally contrary to the genuine pupose that Christianity gives to its followers.

        I desperately want to bring about change in the church in America. I want to help Christians see the truth and start living it out to the best of their ability. I just don't know how to do that right now. I don't even know where to start. I have no credentials. I'm not ordained. No pastor has any reason whatsoever to let me speak from the pulpit.

        I hope and pray that somehow we can get on track, that we can get back to what's most important, which isn't "being right".

        9 votes
        1. [6]
          HotPants
          Link Parent
          I've noticed this too. Discussions with conservative relatives have devolved recently. The liberal side is not only wrong, but very bad, and "Lord please continue to make my enemies look...

          I've noticed this too. Discussions with conservative relatives have devolved recently.

          The liberal side is not only wrong, but very bad, and "Lord please continue to make my enemies look ridiculous, ha ha."

          I honestly can't tell when my relatives are holding a genuinely offensive opinion they feel obliged to share publicly on social media versus when they are deliberately trolling to "enrage the libs." Could be both. Probably both.

          No amount of "love your neighbor" changes behavior.

          When Jesus said all the rules can be boiled down to loving God and also loving your neighbor as yourself... I kinda feel like he was saying don't be a dick? I don't know. Maybe he only meant your literal neighbor.

          7 votes
          1. [3]
            Grendel
            Link Parent
            This is exactly what I'm struggling with right now within the church community. They've traded what's most important for "being right". They've been fed the belief that the "others" want to...

            This is exactly what I'm struggling with right now within the church community. They've traded what's most important for "being right".

            They've been fed the belief that the "others" want to destroy their way of life, and that the only solution is to view them as the enemy and fight them.

            It's no coincidence that this has been pretty helpful to a certain group of politicians. I'm not excusing the behavior of the church right now; it is a fact that there has been a lot of effort over the last 40 years to tie their faith to ideologies, and those ideologies to politics. They have the bible right in front of them, they have no real excuse for falling for propaganda that so blatantly contradicts the faith they claim to have.

            3 votes
            1. HotPants
              Link Parent
              It's so weird. Facts don't matter. Lies don't matter. Expert opinion doesn't matter. Democracy doesn't matter. The Bible doesn't matter. Corruption doesn't matter. Divorce doesn't matter. Sexual...

              It's so weird. Facts don't matter. Lies don't matter. Expert opinion doesn't matter. Democracy doesn't matter. The Bible doesn't matter. Corruption doesn't matter. Divorce doesn't matter. Sexual assault doesn't matter. Underage sex doesn't matter. Bankruptcy doesn't matter. The poor & hungry definitely don't matter. Crazy weird baseless conspiracies don't matter. All that matters is the other side is worse than your side. #Believe.

              2 votes
            2. teaearlgraycold
              Link Parent
              Speaking as a "liberal": To be fair, I don't want to destroy their way of life. But I am happy any time I think their way of life might expire. I see the conservative stranglehold on America as a...

              They've been fed the belief that the "others" want to destroy their way of life

              Speaking as a "liberal": To be fair, I don't want to destroy their way of life. But I am happy any time I think their way of life might expire. I see the conservative stranglehold on America as a last tooth-and-nail effort to hold onto power. They don't like the game of politics anymore so they're flipping over the chess board. These aren't the moves of a powerful bunch, they're the moves of a dying bunch.

              To some degree it's a self-fulfilling prophecy. You tell people their way of life is dying and that's how they (and I) see it. There are many other more productive perspectives we could choose. Ones focusing on evolution, development, and change.

              1 vote
          2. [2]
            NoblePath
            Link Parent
            If memory serves, the parable of the good samaritan is told in answer to the question, "Who is my neighbor?"

            If memory serves, the parable of the good samaritan is told in answer to the question, "Who is my neighbor?"

            1 vote
            1. HotPants
              Link Parent
              Sorry. I was being snarky. I have no more love to give. <hugs>

              Sorry. I was being snarky. I have no more love to give. <hugs>

              1 vote
      2. [2]
        NoblePath
        Link Parent
        This isn't really new, goes back to the founding of the religion. Like, Jesus was pretty much crucified for this whole hippie message, right?

        This isn't really new, goes back to the founding of the religion. Like, Jesus was pretty much crucified for this whole hippie message, right?

        3 votes
        1. kfwyre
          Link Parent
          My Biblical knowledge is super rusty now, but IIRC it was less for his hippie messaging and more for blaspheming. And yeah, lots of awful stuff has been done in the name of Christianity at large,...

          My Biblical knowledge is super rusty now, but IIRC it was less for his hippie messaging and more for blaspheming.

          And yeah, lots of awful stuff has been done in the name of Christianity at large, but my main focus and point of reference is the “close to home” Christianity of people I know in my real life. Many of them have undergone a very real and very sad decay of character.

          People doing awful things in the name of the Lord isn’t new (it’s why I left the Church and faith in the first place) — it’s that I used to experience it more as an undercurrent.

          1 vote
      3. rosco
        Link Parent
        Well that was a terrifying way to start the day.

        Here’s some more dystopia for you.

        Well that was a terrifying way to start the day.

        2 votes
      4. HotPants
        Link Parent
        I was following the logical premise until they associated wokeness with the occult and evil...

        I was following the logical premise until they associated wokeness with the occult and evil...

        1 vote
    2. [3]
      skybrian
      Link Parent
      Did you see the graphs in the article? This isn't new at all. There's a slight uptick from 38% in 2018 or so, but before that, the percentage was always higher. This "plot" started centuries ago...

      Did you see the graphs in the article? This isn't new at all. There's a slight uptick from 38% in 2018 or so, but before that, the percentage was always higher.

      This "plot" started centuries ago and it has hardly anything to do with Trump. (He's not religious.)

      5 votes
      1. post_below
        Link Parent
        I only said that the holy shit moment for me was Trump, not that he was the start of religion. Yeah you'd have to go way back if the plot was about religion specifically. Personally I see religion...

        I only said that the holy shit moment for me was Trump, not that he was the start of religion.

        Yeah you'd have to go way back if the plot was about religion specifically. Personally I see religion as a contributing factor to the larger issues of anti-intellectualism, tribalism and misinformation.

        9 votes
      2. nothis
        Link Parent
        Thank god (heh) for that graph. Ultimately, this is a downwards trend long-term.

        Thank god (heh) for that graph. Ultimately, this is a downwards trend long-term.

        2 votes