Tag Archives: Christianity

Is the definition of atheism “a lack of belief in God”?

I have a key that will unlock a puzzling mystery
I have a key that will unlock a puzzling mystery

First, let’s see check with the Stanford University Encyclopedia of Philosophy:

‘Atheism’ means the negation of theism, the denial of the existence of God.

Stanford University is one of the top 5 universities in the United States, so that’s a solid definition. To be an atheist is to be a person who makes the claim that, as a matter of FACT, there is no intelligent agent who created the universe. Atheists think that there is no God, and theists think that there is a God. Both claims are objective claims about the way the world is out there, and so both sides must furnish forth arguments and evidence as to how they are able to know what they are each claiming.

Philosopher William Lane Craig has some thoughts on atheism, atheists and lacking belief in God in this reply to a questioner.

Question:

In my discussions with atheists, they  are using the term that they “lack belief in God”. They claim that this is different from not believing in God or from saying that God does not exist. I’m not sure how to respond to this. It seems to me that its a silly word-play and is logically the same as saying that you do not believe in God.
What would be a good response to this?
Thank you for your time,

Steven

And here is Dr. Craig’s full response:

Your atheist friends are right that there is an important logical difference between believing that there is no God and not believing that there is a God.  Compare my saying, “I believe that there is no gold on Mars” with my saying “I do not believe that there is gold on Mars.”   If I have no opinion on the matter, then I do not believe that there is gold on Mars, and I do not believe that there is no gold on Mars.  There’s a difference between saying, “I do not believe (p)” and “I believe (not-p).”   Logically where you place the negation makes a world of difference.

But where your atheist friends err is in claiming that atheism involves only not believing that there is a God rather than believing that there is no God.

There’s a history behind this.  Certain atheists in the mid-twentieth century were promoting the so-called “presumption of atheism.” At face value, this would appear to be the claim that in the absence of evidence for the existence of God, we should presume that God does not exist.  Atheism is a sort of default position, and the theist bears a special burden of proof with regard to his belief that God exists.

So understood, such an alleged presumption is clearly mistaken.  For the assertion that “There is no God” is just as much a claim to knowledge as is the assertion that “There is a God.”  Therefore, the former assertion requires justification just as the latter does.  It is the agnostic who makes no knowledge claim at all with respect to God’s existence.  He confesses that he doesn’t know whether there is a God or whether there is no God.

But when you look more closely at how protagonists of the presumption of atheism used the term “atheist,” you discover that they were defining the word in a non-standard way, synonymous with “non-theist.”  So understood the term would encompass agnostics and traditional atheists, along with those who think the question meaningless (verificationists).  As Antony Flew confesses,

the word ‘atheist’ has in the present context to be construed in an unusual way.  Nowadays it is normally taken to mean someone who explicitly denies the existence . . . of God . . . But here it has to be understood not positively but negatively, with the originally Greek prefix ‘a-’ being read in this same way in ‘atheist’ as it customarily is in . . . words as ‘amoral’ . . . . In this interpretation an atheist becomes not someone who positively asserts the non-existence of God, but someone who is simply not a theist. (A Companion to Philosophy of Religion, ed. Philip Quinn and Charles Taliaferro [Oxford:  Blackwell, 1997], s.v. “The Presumption of Atheism,” by Antony Flew)

Such a re-definition of the word “atheist” trivializes the claim of the presumption of atheism, for on this definition, atheism ceases to be a view.  It is merely a psychological state which is shared by people who hold various views or no view at all.  On this re-definition, even babies, who hold no opinion at all on the matter, count as atheists!  In fact, our cat Muff counts as an atheist on this definition, since she has (to my knowledge) no belief in God.

One would still require justification in order to know either that God exists or that He does not exist, which is the question we’re really interested in.

So why, you might wonder, would atheists be anxious to so trivialize their position?  Here I agree with you that a deceptive game is being played by many atheists.  If atheism is taken to be a view, namely the view that there is no God, then atheists must shoulder their share of the burden of proof to support this view.  But many atheists admit freely that they cannot sustain such a burden of proof.  So they try to shirk their epistemic responsibility by re-defining atheism so that it is no longer a view but just a psychological condition which as such makes no assertions.  They are really closet agnostics who want to claim the mantle of atheism without shouldering its responsibilities.

This is disingenuous and still leaves us asking, “So is there a God or not?”

So there you have it. We are interested in what both sides know and what reasons and evidence they have to justify their claim to know. We are interested in talking to people who make claims about objective reality, not about themselves, and who then go on to give reasons and evidence to support their claims about objective reality. There are atheists out there that do make an objective claim that God does not exist, and then support that claim with arguments and evidence. Those are good atheists, and we should engage in rational conversations with them. But clearly there are some atheists who are not like that. How should we deal with these “subjective atheists”?

Dealing with subjective atheists

How should theists respond to people who just want to talk about their psychological state? Well, my advice is to avoid them. They are approaching religion irrationally and non-cognitively – like the person who enters a physics class and says “I lack a belief in the gravitational force!”.  When you engage in serious discussions with people about God’s existence, you only care about what people know and what they can show to be true. We don’t care about a person’s psychology.

Dealing with persistent subjective atheists

What happens when you explain all of that to a subjective atheist who continues to insist that you listen to them repeat over and over “I lack a belief in God, I lack a belief in God”? What if you tell them to make the claim that God does not exist, and then support it with arguments and evidence, but instead they keep leaving comments on your blog telling you again and again about their subjective state of mind: “I lack a belief in cupcakes! I lack a belief in icebergs!” What if they keep e-mailing you and threatening to expose you on Twitter for refusing to listen to them, or denounce you via skywriting: “Wintery Knight won’t listen to me! I lack a belief in crickets!”. I think at this point you have to give up and stop talking to such a person.

And that’s why I moderate and filter comments on this blog. There are uneducated people out there with access to the Internet who want attention, but I am not obligated to give it to them. And neither are you. We are not obligated to listen to abusive people who don’t know what they are talking about. I do post comments from objective atheists who make factual claims about the objective world, and who support those claims with arguments and evidence. I am not obligated to post comments from people who refuse to make objective claims or who refuse to support objective claims with arguments and evidence. And I’m not obligated to engage in discussions with them, either.

Related posts

Republicans block Equality Act bill that makes Christian moral values a crime

22 states put sexual orientation and gender identity above the Bible
22 states put sexual orientation and gender identity above the Bible

Regular readers will be familiar with the cases where gay activists went after bed and breakfasts, wedding venues, photographers, florists, bakers, etc. who refused to participate in celebrations of same-sex marriage. Christians oppose same-sex marriage, because the leader of the religion defined marriage as being between one man and one woman. However, religious liberty wasn’t a defense in these cases, because these states had passed “SOGI laws”, which made it illegal to discriminate based on sexual orientation and gender identity.

The Equality Act is a federal bill advanced by Democrats that forces all the states without SOGI laws to allow gay activists to weaponize government against Christians, forcing them to participate in non-Christian celebrations of gay activism.

Here’s the story from CBN about what happened to the Equality Act in the Senate:

Senate Democrats were emboldened by Monday’s Supreme Court decision protecting LGBTQ rights in the workplace, so they pushed for a controversial bill that would elevate those rights above religious freedom.

Every Senate Democrat, joined by two independents and Republican Susan Collins of Maine, called for a vote on the so-called Equality Act.

The bill passed the House of Representatives last year. It would extend protections for LGBTQ individuals, superseding the rights of religious groups.

One result would be forcing faith-based adoption agencies to place kids with same-sex couples, even when other adoption agencies are available.

Sen. James Lankford (R-OK) joined with Republicans Joshua Hawley (MO) and Mike Lee (UT) in blocking the vote.

“The Equality Act says that if you’re a faith-based adoption agency that only places children in a home where there’s a mom and dad there, then you either have to change your faith or close,” Lankford said.

“The Equality Act says to that institution, ‘I would rather have fewer adoption agencies in America than have you open’,” Lankford continued. “That’s not protecting the rights of all Americans.”

Critics of the Equality Act say it would also weaken the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, a bipartisan 1994 law that protects religious liberty.

Sen. Hawley argued that the Equality Act can’t be approved because it “guts” the Religious Freedom Restoration Act on the heels of a stunning Supreme Court ruling that rewrote the definition of sex with “nearly nothing to say about religious liberty or religious believers in this country.”

The Federalist described some effects of the Equality Act bill:

On the surface, the “Equality” Act is supposed to protect LGBT folks from discrimination by adding the categories of sexual orientation and gender identity to all federal civil rights laws, including the 1964 Civil Rights Act. It would make claims of discrimination related to these characteristics legally actionable in the way racism is, and applying to virtually every area of life: the workplace, education, banking, jury service, federal funding, housing, medicine and psychiatry, and all public facilities.

It is a power grab in the guise of anti-discrimination. A bait-and-switch. It’s another attempt by a ruling micro-clique to exert mega-control over everyone else’s lives, including those it purports to protect. It allows the Mass State to maximize bureaucracy and social engineering, especially by its huge regulation of speech and expression. It erodes individual rights while claiming to uphold them.

Sane people of goodwill have a host of good reasons to object to the so-called Equality Act. And many of those reasons have been written up, including the de-sexing of toilets and showers, the compelled speech inherent in pronoun protocols and severe punishment for “misgendering,” the promised harassment of business owners, the invasion of girls’ and women’s sports by biological men who force on them an unequal playing field, the utter contempt for individual conscience, and more.

The net result of this act would be a huge inequality of power accrued to the state and drained from the individual.

Other areas that would be affected: tax exempt status for churches, private college admissions, scholarships and curricula, moral standards in Christian organizations, forced transgender treatments at hospitals and health clinics, foster and adoption agencies could not prefer naturally married couples.

The author of that article lists five specific effects of the law:

  1.  It Undermines Everyone’s First Amendment Rights
  2. The Ambiguities in the Bill Threaten the Rule of Law
  3. Nudge Toward a Chinese-style Social Credit System
  4. Redefining Humanity By Outlawing Sex Distinctions
  5. It Enshrines Socially Destructive Identity Politics

Let’s see what the article says about #2:

The first thing that should hit any reader of the so-called Equality Act is the ambiguity of its language, especially with the bill’s outright emphasis throughout on “perceptions.”

[…]Consider how much the “Equality” Act would rely on bureaucratic and court actors to divine the “perception” of the perpetrator or victim of so-called discrimination: it would have to calculate your intent, read your mind, check out your body language, pick you apart for any suggestion of malice. For example, it repeatedly refers to sexual orientation and gender identity as “actual or perceived.” Many times throughout, the text notes that discrimination (or identity?) involves “perception or belief even if inaccurate” (emphasis mine).

This dependence on perception or belief about a person’s self-identity did not exist before. The language of this proposed law is more fluid than gender fluidity on steroids, and it’s wild stuff to push, especially at the federal level. It invites no end of accusations and lawfare that bodes ill for society and promises much human wreckage. The only people “empowered” by such a scam are those on the upper levels of this newly devised food chain who can call the shots.

Here’s more about #3 for those who didn’t know about the China social credit system:

If passed, we shouldn’t be surprised if it eventually produces a social credit system not unlike what is happening in China, whereby your livelihood, education, career, mobility, and access to goods and services is based on a literal “score” of your compliance with government policy. To paraphrase Sir Richard Scruton’s excellent observation of how that works in China, I’d say that the so-called Equality Act would help create robots out of Americans, with the state programming what they can say and do.

As more people self-censor because of the risk of losing their livelihoods and social status, they simply become more prone to robotic compliance and conformity with limits on their speech. This is fast becoming the case in China, where citizens feel the need to build up their “social credit” to be allowed access to jobs, education, housing, and who knows what other goods and services. The so-called Equality Act’s restrictions on First Amendment freedoms would be a big step in that direction.

A social credit system that scores you for conformity would be a logical effect of the intent of the Equality Act: to punish free expression in just about every sphere of life, including the workplace, at school, in the public square, and in all public facilities, and any place that might be connected with federal funding. (By the way, Scruton was punished—stripped of his chairmanship of an architectural commission in Britain—simply for explaining what the social credit system does to people in China. That should be another lesson for us here.)

Now, I know some Christians will say “why does that matter to me, I already agree with sex outside of marriage and I agree that marriage is just when any number of people of any sex cohabitate and have sex”. Right, this is only a problem who think that the Bible is an authority, and that Jesus knows more about morality than LGBT activists and Democrat politicians.

Right now, I live in a state with no SOGI law, and I write about studies, etc. that are critical of the gay agenda from behind an alias. The second that this Equality Act becomes law, I would instantly have to delete this blog, my Facebook page, and my Twitter in case “discrimination” was “perceived” by an LGBT activist based on my previous writings, and they decided to investigate. It would be like writing articles critical of Nazism prior to the ascent of Hitler. It’s fine to do it when Hitler’s not yet in power, but once he’s in power, you shut it down and get out.

Wayne Grudem explains what the Bible says about self-defense

Theology that hits the spot
Theology that hits the spot

Reformed Baptist theologian Wayne Grudem speaks on the Bible and the right of self-defense.

About Wayne Grudem:

Grudem holds a BA from Harvard University, a Master of Divinity from Westminster Theological Seminary, and a PhD from the University of Cambridge. In 2001, Grudem became Research Professor of Bible and Theology at Phoenix Seminary. Prior to that, he had taught for 20 years at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, where he was chairman of the department of Biblical and Systematic Theology.

Grudem served on the committee overseeing the English Standard Version translation of the Bible, and in 1999 he was the president of the Evangelical Theological Society. He is a co-founder and past president of the Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood. He is the author of, among other books, Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Biblical Doctrine, which advocates a Calvinistic soteriology, the verbal plenary inspiration and inerrancy of the Bible, the body-soul dichotomy in the nature of man, and the complementarian (rather than egalitarian) view of gender equality.

The MP3 file is here.

The PDF outline is here.

Topics:

  • what about turning the other cheek? doesn’t that undermine self-defense?
  • what does Jesus say about the right to self-defense in the New Testament
  • did Jesus’ disciples carry swords for protection during his ministry?
  • why did Jesus tell his disciples to sell their cloaks and buy swords?
  • what about Jesus stopping Peter from using force during Jesus’ arrest?
  • shouldn’t we rely on police instead of our own personal weapons?
  • what about brandishing a handgun vs actually trying to shoot someone?
  • what are violent crime rates in pro-gun USA and in the anti-gun UK?
  • does outlawing guns cause violent crime to increase or decrease?
  • do academic studies show that gun control decreases crime?
  • do academic studies show that concealed carry laws decreases crime?
  • what do academic studies show about defensive handgun usage?
  • do many children die from guns in the home compared to other causes?
  • doesn’t the US Constitution limit the usage of guns to the army and police?
  • what did the Founding Fathers believe about lawful ownership of firearms?
  • What should be the goal of someone who uses a weapon in self-defense?

This is a good example of applying the Bible to real life. We need more of that!

Why don’t men go to church anymore? The decline of male church attendance

Church sucks, that's why men are bored there
Church sucks, that’s why men are bored there

I most recently spent half a year at a PCA church, and then another half a year at a Southern Baptist church. I attended Sunday services as well as Wednesday night Bible study. I am now looking for a new church. For now, I just look around for a sermon I like and listen to that. In this post, I’ll explain why I think men don’t like church.

There are three areas where churches fail to attract men:

    1. Apologetics
    2. Feminism, sex and marriage
    3. Policy and current events

Apologetics

The PCA church discouraged me from becoming a member of the church because they said that conversion to Christianity due to reason and evidence was contrary to their teachings, and a “red flag”. Their words. I didn’t try to fight them on it, because they are Reformed Presbyterian, and this is their actual view. Their approach to apologetics was “pre-suppositional”, which is to say, they try to convince people to become Christians by asking them to assume that the Bible is infallible, without any argumentation or evidence. Naturally, this doesn’t work, so they aren’t trained to answer any serious questions from non-Christians. (1 Pet 3:15-16)

The Reformed Baptist SBC church is led by people like Russell Moore and Al Mohler, who take the “magic words” approach to evangelism. I.e. – they think that people become Christians just by speaking Bible verses out of context to them. So, when the atheist asks “do you have any evidence for God’s existence?” or “do you have any evidence for Jesus’ resurrection?”, their response is to quote Bible verses to the atheist, which have nothing to do with those topics. Christianity has lost so much influence in the culture under their approach, which is not even Biblical. (Mat 12:38–41)

These approaches to evangelism are not used in any other area of human endeavor. No one replies to questions about auto mechanics, or software engineering, or gardening, or cooking, by spouting Bible verses. In literally every other area of human endeavor, the laws of logic and supporting evidence are seen as assets when making claims to know something about the world to someone who disagrees with you.

Feminism, Sex and Marriage

First wave feminism simply asked for women to be given the same liberty and opportunity as men. That was good. But later versions of destroyed all distinctions between men and women. By destroying femininity, feminism directed women away from the traditional life plan of marriage, children and home-making.

Feminism changed how women voted. Today, about 75% of young, unmarried women vote for policies like taxpayer-funded birth control, taxpayer-funded abortion, no-fault divorce, affirmative action for women in schools and in the workplace, taxpayer-funded daycare, public schools, single-mother welfare, social security, etc. These policies and programs raised tax rates, and grew government, making it easier for women to have children without having to choose a marriage-ready man she wasn’t attracted to. Instead, she could choose men she was attracted to, and just use government programs as a substitute provider if it didn’t “work out”. Thanks to feminism, we have a 42% out-of-wedlock birth rate, and it’s rising. Few female college graduates are debt-free. About 5% of women emerge from college as virgins.

Under feminism, the traditional male roles and virtues were deemed “sexist”. Women were shamed for choosing early marriage, large families, and stable men who were good at being husbands and fathers. Instead, women today chose men based on appearance. They spend their 20s and early 30s giving men who will not commit to them premarital sex. The men who are getting sex thrown at them have no interest in Judeo-Christian values, chastity, fidelity, commitment or raising children. Women mistake the men’s willingness to have sex and cohabitate as signs that they are close to marriage. But in fact, chasing the hot bad boys just eats up the chastity, youth and beauty that could have made them interesting to the marriage-minded men they scorned. Later on, they realize that they’ve wasted their 20s on bad boys, but by then they are not attractive for marriage.

What has the response been to feminism from pastors and churches? They accept the anti-male, anti-marriage policies, that came out of feminism. They accept the promiscuity, and the marriage-delaying that came from feminism. Today, pastors just try to bully the men who were passed over to marry the women who had previously rejected them, despite the higher risk of divorce caused by the women’s past behavior.

Policy and current events

Most pastors are anti-intellectual, and they believe that this is a virtue, since they are focused narrowly on what the Bible explicitly says. Because of this, they aren’t able to understand which laws and policies allow Christianity and Christian families to flourish. I agree that what the Bible speaks about is of the highest importance. But we need to understand how to achieve the goals that the Bible states, as well as how to counter the forces that threaten the achievement of those goals.

For example, Christianity thrives when marriage thrives. Christianity is passed on from parents to children. Anything that threatens marriage, or interferes with parental authority, weakens the influence of Christianity. So, policies like higher taxes, no-fault divorce, SOGI laws, all harm the Christian family, while policies like lower taxes, protections for Christian businesses, protection for Christian schools (statements of faith, moral codes), etc. are all good for Christian families. But most pastors never talk about policies or laws, because they don’t think about how to defend the Christian worldview, how to educate Christian children, how to promote marriage, how promote Christian moral values in the public square. Even protecting the right to life of unborn children is ignored.

As the churches lose relevance, it becomes tempting for pastors to accept what the secular left promotes as good and true and beautiful. The big one is pastors pushing for redistribution of wealth by the secular government as a solution to “poverty”, even though the Bible only sanctions voluntary charity. This diminishes the cultural relevance of the church and elevates the secular government. SBC leaders like Russell Moore champion amnesty for refugees and unskilled illegal immigrants, not realizing how it will harm Christian institutions and values down the road to import large numbers of people who will eventually vote for policies like higher taxes, bigger government, etc.

Guest post: Christians Should Oppose Black Lives Matter

The following is a guest post by a friend of mine who is also a software engineer, but a different one than last time.

The Problems with Black Lives Matter

All over Facebook I’ve seen naïve Christians posting Black Lives Matter (BLM) material, hashtags, and even donation links. According to their official statements BLM aims to:

  1. Disrupt the Western-prescribed nuclear family structure”
  2. Foster a “queer‐affirming network” and “freeing ourselves from the tight grip of heteronormative thinking,” instead of helping people escape LGBT lifestyles and live as God intended.
  3. “A national defunding of police,” BLM is a member of M4BL which also calls for abolishing prisons.
  4. BLM parent group M4BL is pro-abortion: “we demand reproductive justice that gives us autonomy over our bodies and our identities.”
  5. BLM parent group M4BL is anti-capitalist. The alternative to capitalism is removing the freedom to buy and sell and putting the government in charge of resources. When government power is absolute, all checks and balances against evil disappear and atrocities become inevitable. I know of 100 million people who didn’t have a good time in anti-capitalist countries, especially minorities.
  6. BLM finds racism in everything with no concept of forgiveness. While masking the much larger and real causes of black inequality in the US. More on that below.

These goals don’t seem very Christian.

Some Christians say they only support the slogan “black lives matter” but not the organization. They’re probably friends with people who call themselves “National Socialists” and enjoy re-explaining to everyone they meet how it’s not actually the German kind. To each their own. Yet better slogans could be used to support black people.

Avoid the slackidasical “all lives matter” retort. That distracts from the real issues:

Black Inequality

Black inequality in the US is real. But BLM promotes a false narrative, blaming it entirely on modern systemic racism. If that’s true, why are blacks 3 times more likely to receive government assistance than whites? Why are police are about twice as likely to use lethal force against whites under arrest than blacks (although more likely to use non-lethal force against blacks)?

Before getting to the real reasons let’s first dig into that last source. It comes from the left-leaning Center for Policing Equity. The wording in their report focuses on specific localities where the police are harsher on blacks. But the overall data tells a different story. In tables 6 and 7 on page 20, police are 1.73 times more likely to use lethal force against whites under arrest than blacks, and 2.41 times more likely to use lethal force against whites under arrest for violent offences. Black Lives Matter and the left-leaning media would never tell you this.

Don’t police just arrest blacks way more than whites? Yes, absolutely. You can even find stats showing unarmed blacks are 5 times more likely to be killed by police than unarmed whites, a product of being arrested much more frequently. But unfortunately (trigger warning) it’s because in the US, blacks commit significantly more crime:

I looked up the FBI data this meme links to, converted it to rates per million and got the same result. Non-lethal crimes have a similar proportion by race.

What are the Real Causes of Black Inequality?

Perhaps the court systems are racist and blacks are convicted of murder more often? One could speculate so, but murders involve more investigation than most crimes, and you’d have to argue the system is so biased it only makes it appear as if blacks are 12.8 times more likely to kill whites than whites kill blacks. Quite a stretch.

Use careful grace in sharing these stats, as they’re easily abused by the small number of people wishing to paint blacks as an unredeemable, inferior race. Instead consider the better explanations for black inequality:

  1. 2.7 times more black children (65%) grow up in single parent homes than white children (24%). 17% of blacks were born out of wedlock in 1940 but that number is >70% today. Other races also increased but not nearly as much. We know broken families are strongly correlated with poverty, poor education, crime, and many other ills.
  2. As noted, blacks are three times more likely to receive government assistance than whites, a number that’s changed very little in 40 years. If welfare programs lifted people out of poverty, by now shouldn’t we see more than a slight decrease in blacks on welfare? Rather I suspect welfare increases rates of fatherlessness: women don’t need a man when the government pays the bills.
  3. Universities, employers, the government, and the media use “soft racism,” giving special treatment to blacks, sometimes causing an unhealthy and unnecessary inferiority complex.
  4. Due to this persecution narrative, and fear of being called racist, poor behavior among blacks isn’t called out, worsening the broken family cycle. Even being used as an excuse for the poor behavior of the recent rioters. Black CNN journalist Don Lemon received a “firestorm of criticism” for pointing to out-of-wedlock births as a problem among blacks.

I’m curious. Will you argue that fatherlessness leads to negative outcomes among whites, but a 2.7x greater rate among blacks doesn’t significantly increase their negative outcomes? Really?

Perhaps it’s even possible that police target blacks more frequently because these issues actually do lead them to commit more crimes, causing some police to subconsciously be more suspect of blacks? I don’t know if that’s true, but if so who is at fault?

Is Racism Still a Major Issue?

Before continuing please read this piece by conservative commenter David French (white), who adopted his black daughter from Ethiopia. He describes how through many incidents it made him realize racism is still alive and well in America.

Meanwhile, the black economist Thomas Sowell offers a contrary view:

Who’s right? David French says he used to think there were almost no racists. I’m still in that place. I don’t know anyone who is racist other than one or two people I met on strange corners of the internet. After adopting his daughter French discovered that yes, of course racism still exists, outlining several real incidents of bias against her. For example his daughter’s friend said, “My dad says it’s dangerous to go black people’s neighborhoods.” Alt-right trolls even made a cruel meme of his young daughter in a gas chamber.

Such memes are of course reprehensible. But French uses the wrong benchmark. The real question is not if racism exists, but if blacks face greater external hardship than other groups? People who are too smart, dumb, fat, thin, short, tall, attractive, ugly, rich, poor, Christian, or amoral. Or any other category. Almost everyone belongs to at least one. French doesn’t address that question.

Compared to Christian Persecution in the US (Yes, Really)

I can’t answer for most of those groups. But I am a Christian. I’m very glad to live in the US with its many Christian freedoms. I don’t even feel comfortable talking about Christian “persecution” in the US because other parts of the world have it so much worse. Yet there are still examples of anti-Christian discrimination here:

  1. I know a Christian friend who was kicked out of her PhD biology program for being a creationist. An intelligent, articulate, and polite one at that. I used to think people like her must’ve just been belligerent, but I hear similar stories from nearly every creationist or intelligent design proponent I speak to. Many keep their beliefs hidden. Books and documentaries are filled with such stories. Well known professor and textbook author Larry Moran has even called for universities to flunk by default any students who believe in intelligent design: “Flunk the IDiots.” Forbes later wrote a glowing bio of Moran for his stance. Imagine the outrage if Moran called to flunk all black students!
  2. In 2016, hapless Chinese scientists published a paper in the journal PLOS One, stating that the human hand shows “proper design by the Creator.” The remark was in passing and the rest of their paper had nothing to do with the evolution or design. As soon as this was realized, I watched as the backlash unfolded in the comments section. Five editors of PLOS One requested the whole article to be retracted (rather than the wording removed), two of those editors said they’d resign if it wasn’t retracted. Two others said the editor who approved the paper should be fired. And five scientists commented, saying they’d boycott PLOS One. Then the paper was retracted. Even though the Chinese researches explained they only meant to say “mother nature,” and English wasn’t their first language. No other issue with their research was found. That backlash was only for a translation issue. Imagine if they’d been Christians who actually believed God designed life.
  3. Practicing Christians are no longer allowed to hold certain jobs in the United States. A county clerk like Kim Davis cannot in good conscious abet two people into a lifelong commitment to live in sin, yet was jailed for refusing. California once banned all judges who volunteered with the Boy Scouts because the group previously required heterosexual scout leaders.
  4. Many friends often tell me they can’t publicly speak out against homosexual behavior in fear of losing their jobs. I doubt their employers have issue with vegetarians saying meat is murder.
  5. And of course secularists make memes, sometimes violent, mocking Christians all the time. So what.

Imagine if I took the crime stats above and marched around with signs about “white genocide” or “systemic racism” because blacks are more likely to get welfare or whites more likely to be shot while under arrest. That’d make me a complete narcissistic jerk. Or worse if I used it to justify arson, looting, and violence. Yet I’d still be more correct than Black Lives Matter because at least the data supports me.

I don’t think there’s anything special about hardships faced by US Christians. You could make a similarly troublesome list for hardships of unattractive and overweight people, probably worse. I’m not planning any protests for them or for US anti-Christian discrimination. That’s too minor compared to many greater injustices in the world. And please don’t take this and claim I’ve said racism no longer exists. The experiences of David French’s daughter are bad things that need to stop. But unlike in decades past, I’m not convinced it’s currently any worse than hardships faced by any number of other classes of people for a wide variety of reasons.

The Media Amplifies Racism for Profit

A couple weeks ago I posted to Facebook about Israel planning to ban their only Christian news station for proselytizing. Two friends commented that it was a great idea, because Christians indoctrinate people. I get similar comments often. Oh woe is me! But imagine if they’d instead called for banning black history? Call CNN! We found another Amy Cooper!

Although sometimes doing well, George Floyd had a long and sometimes violent criminal record. Nobody thinks he deserved to die. I’m glad the officers involved are being investigated. But put his case in perspective. People do awful things for many reasons. In the United States each year we have:

  • 600,000+ abortions
  • 250,000 deaths from negligent medical errors
  • 15,000 murders
  • 1,500 dead from child abuse.
  • 1,000 suspects killed by police (with 90 to 95% attacking police or another person). Among a total police force of more than 800,000.
  • 85 police officers killed.

Despite all that, the deceptive media amplifies any incident with a white perpetrator and black victim. Everyone knows about George Floyd, but few have heard of Tony Timpa (white), who in 2016 also begged for his life as police suffocated and made fun of him. The media gets away with this bias because almost everyone actually does hate racism, leading to collective outrage. So much that it brings riots, looting, and buildings on fire. Plus news media profit from increased news viewership of these riots. While the media ignores many greater injustices in the previous list.

The leftist media then uses Black Lives Matter as a front to push ridiculous leftist policies like defunding the police. Oh you’re against BLM? Racist.

Black inequality in America is real. If you love people of all races as Christ commands, then you should want to solve this problem. That can only be done if we tackle the real causes, and not the left-leaning media’s exaggerated racism narrative that masks them.