Wednesday, January 03, 2018

Newsweek: "How Trump And The Nazis Stole Christmas"

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Newsweek featured an article on Christmas Eve saying that "President Trump wants Americans to think he reinvented Christmas."

They claim the phrase "Merry Christmas" is merely a "dog whistle for white nationalism"---at least as far as Trump and his evangelical supporters are concerned.

In the mind of those who wrote---and published---this article, those who embrace both Christian beliefs and American patriotism are... well, Nazis.

Can Americans actually be "Christian" and "patriotic?" And not be a Nazi?

The Religious Left--- Jim Wallis, Tony Compollo, Rob Bell and a host of other lost leaders essentially say "no" in what they say and what they write about American patriotism, but when asked directly they say well...yes, however..."

Much like then President Barack Obama's response to whether he believes in American Exceptionalism.

"Well...yes, I suppose I believe America is exceptional, like people in Greece think Greece is exceptional..."

The Left, including the Religious Left, consistently communicate that American patriotism is OK, however..."

Newsweek, in their piece, "How Trump and the Nazis Stole Christmas to Promote White Nationalism," says saying "Merry Christmas" is, "an effort to exclude other religions and foment a culture war."

The article goes on to accuse Trump of "weaponizing" Christmas and draws parallels with the Nazis.

It says, "Trump's rhetoric differs from that of Nazi Germany's most notably because he has never advocated for genocide. But Trump's talk about Christmas coexists with the reemerging white identity politics."

Newsweek says, "Committed white nationalists love Trump's bringing back Christmas campaign almost as much as evangelicals. His followers see this as gospel and a rebuking of multiculturalism and political correctness, and the growing influence of Jews, Muslims, atheists and other non-WASPs."

Is that what they really think we believe about Christmas, and "Merry Christmas?"

Apparently, these folks think we believe Christmas is a political opportunity; and we are all very insecure about our "whiteness" ---and are not very smart because we are being used like modern day "brown shirts."

It's actually "their" narrative that is a "dog whistle" for the advancement of far Left, secular progressiveism.

This narrative was launched within hours of Trump's Inauguration last January.

Think Progress, a far Left but widely read organization, featured an article in January that claimed "Trump is creating a new form of Christian nationalism centered on himself--- Trumpian patriotism is the new piety," they wrote.

They also gave a review of history going back to when Emperor Constantine made Christianity the state religion of Rome in 313 AD. They, of course, use 313 "CE" rather than recognize the birth and death of Christ by using "AD."

The article claims, "The American expansion westward---and the subsequent subjugation of the Native Americans---was justified using theological concepts of 'Manifest Destiny', for example, and modern China has a habit of promoting state-sponsored versions of Christianity that meld patriotism and religious devotion."

I'm not certain whether they believe Trump is more like China, or Constantine---but you get their message.

All this nonsense is built on the pretext that all evangelicals are white and we want a theocracy. Neither of which is true.

A few days before Christmas George Barna, America's most respected Christian pollster, published an in-depth survey titled, "Patriotism Looks Different To Christians."

While the survey was not specifically related to Newsweek's story or that of Think Progress, it certainly speaks to the issues raised in these stories.

I can't adequately summarize the survey here, but it is very informative. Take a moment and read it.

Barna says, "During the course of this decade, the concept of patriotism has been the subject of intense conversation---and disagreement."

He says his new study reveals that Americans' ideas about patriotism are greatly influenced by factors such as their religious faith, age, political ideology, and race---but not always in the way that people might expect."

The survey identifies nearly every possible response on the subject of patriotism.

Among the dozens of results, this baseline was established:

Conservatives (78%) and Republicans (81%) were more likely than their political counterparts to describe themselves as either "extremely" or "very" patriotic. Moderates (52%) and Liberals (51%) and Democrats (52%) define themselves as at least "very" patriotic.

Barna titled his conclusion of the survey "Trouble Brewing"

This is from the "conclusion."

The results of the research were troubling to George Barna, the Executive Director of the American Culture & Faith Institute. “One of the historical strengths of the nation was that citizens may have had differences of opinion on issues and policies, but they had a shared understanding of what it meant to be American – a common body of ideas and behaviors that facilitated unity,” the veteran researcher commented. “This research, though, shows just the opposite: there are two very different perspectives about the nature of being American. Unless we address the differences that underlie those competing, parallel views we are bound to see the current partisan divide become even more severe.”
Barna also touched on the potential for peoples’ faith to become an avenue toward unity. “The strongest statistical relationship that emerged throughout the research was that between views of patriotism and peoples’ religious beliefs. In many ways, this is a study highlighting the different worldviews that drive peoples’ lives in America. Because one’s worldview is the filter through which we absorb, interpret, and respond to reality, ideas about concepts such as truth, equality, tolerance, respect, and human nature are affected. With a mere 10% of adults presently possessing a biblical worldview, there is an abundant opportunity for other visions of life, spirituality, and humanity to flourish – and to alter our views of things like patriotism.
“Parents have an opportunity to step up and equip their children with a more robust and appropriate view of what it means to be American. Churches and religious leaders also have the potential to bring healing and understanding to the land if they are willing to equip people with a worldview that reunites the country.
“But that will not be an easy road to navigate,” Barna concluded. “Data from this and other recent surveys we have conducted point out that the Bible has limited personal influence on their thinking, that church leaders are loathe to equip people to think biblically about social and political issues, that growing numbers of people are rejecting traditional Christian values and beliefs, and that born again and conservative Christians are among the groups least likely to see themselves as ‘culture warriors.’ Clearly there is a desperate need for strategic leadership that can provide a compelling vision of what America can look like in the future, and to attract people to a viable long-term plan and process to turn that vision into reality.”

This is why we, to the best of our ability, try to inform our readers and those who listen to our live daily radio program regarding current events, and do so from a biblical perspective.

Be Informed. Be Vigilant. Be Discerning. Be Prayerful. Be Engaged.