If you mix politics and religion and lose, it’s not persecution. It’s politics.

The Values Voters Summit, a convention of social and religious conservatives sponsored by the Family Research Council and similar groups, conducted a straw-poll vote among attendees in Washington over the weekend. After hearing speeches by Ted Cruz, Rand Paul, Mike Huckabee and other notables, the voters ranked the potential GOP field this way:

1.) Ted Cruz

2.) Ben Carson

3.) Mike Huckabee

4.) Rick Santorum

5.) Bobby Jindal, tied with

5.) Rand Paul

I do not believe that any of those six will ever see the title of “President” before their name, at least not of the United States. And with the occasional exception of Rand Paul, they have something else in common as well. All believe themselves and their Christian faith to be under attack to the point of persecution by the government, the liberals, the media and a variety of other antagonists. In comments to “values voters” over the weekend, several of the potential candidates made that sense of persecution a central part of their message.

That’s smart marketing if nothing else. According to new research by the Pew Research Center’s Religion and Public Life Project, that growing sense of persecution coincides with a growing belief among conservatives that it’s time for religious faith — most likely meaning their own — to play a much prominent role in our political debate.

PR_14.09.22_religionPolitics-03As the chart above documents, 53 percent of Republicans and those leaning Republican now believe that there is too little talk of religion in our political debate, up nine percentage points in just four years. The percentage of Republicans who believe that church leaders should express political views is up 11 points in that same time frame.

In addition, the percentage of Republican-oriented voters who believe that the Obama administration is unfriendly to religion has jumped by 22 points since 2009, from 32 to 54 percent. That has become the GOP’s equivalent to the Democrats’ “war on women,” a way to bolster partisan loyalty among a critical part of its coalition.

But some things haven’t changed much. As Pew points out, “large majorities of black Protestants, Jews and religiously unaffiliated voters continue to identify with or lean toward the Democratic Party. At the other end of the spectrum, white evangelical Protestant voters continue to be staunchly supportive of the GOP. Nearly three-quarters of white evangelicals identify with or lean toward the Republican Party, and a similar share say they would vote for the Republican congressional candidate in their (districts.)”

In one sense, I can understand why white evangelicals might be frustrated. There’s no doubt that on many social issues, the culture is moving away from the precepts of that faith community. Indeed, 72 percent of Americans agree that religion in general is losing influence, while only 22 percent believe its influence is increasing.

However, I don’t think that can be attributed to an unfriendly administration in Washington, but rather to what’s happening in pews and pulpits around the country. Church membership and attendance is declining. The Southern Baptist Convention, for example, acknowledged this summer that it had lost 137,000 members in 2013 alone. in addition, it found that a quarter of Southern Baptist churches had conducted no baptisms in 2013 and 60 percent had baptized no youth ages 12-17.

That’s not a political problem, which means it can’t be solved through politics either.

Reader Comments 0

818 comments
poegoe
poegoe

Why do new numbers from the census bureau state that people are fleeing the liberal northeastern states to come to Georgia Jay? The Northeasten states are losing seats in the House of Representatives because of decreasing population numbers of people leaving because the extreme taxation in the socialist Northeastern states. If these refugees frôm oppressive liberal taxes bring their liberal ideology to the South then where will they run to next? As has always proven to be true, socialism and progressive economic policies are like a virus. They eat up their host and they are un-sustainable. And that is exactly what is happening in this coûntry. You have no right to preach about economics as you are driven totally by your ideology.

lithoniaguy
lithoniaguy

Islam, Judaism, Christianity are nothing but cults. Religion is used to justify slaughtering people and taking their resources. Religion was/is used to justify rape, murder, child molestation, genocide and slavery and war. Other than those few things, religion is ok.

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

 A Compendium Of 2016 GOP Wacky Quotes

“I will credit my father, he invented … green eggs and ham. He did it two ways. The easy way was he would put green food coloring in … But if you take spinach and mix it into the eggs, the eggs turn green … I do not like green eggs and ham. I do not like them, Sam I am.”~~~ Ted Cruz

“And then, I said, Obamacare was the worst thing since slavery,” ----Ben Carson

“America has to import so many workers because] for the last 35 years we have aborted more than a million people who would have been in our workforce.” ~~~ Mike Huckabee

“I think the right approach is to accept this horribly created, in the sense of rape, but nevertheless a gift in a very broken way, the gift of human life, and accept what God has given to you.” ~~~Rick Santorum

"Almost taunting the evil spirit that had almost beaten us minutes before, the students dared Susan to read biblical passages. She choked on certain passages and could not finish the sentence “Jesus is Lord.” Over and over, she repeated “Jesus is L..L..LL,” often ending in profanities."~~~Bobby Jindal 

"What is greed? Greed is an excess of self-interest, but what drives capitalism? Self-interest and profit. They are good things."Rand Paul

"You're travelling through another dimension, a dimension not only of sight and sound but of mind; a journey into a wondrous land whose boundaries are that of imagination. That's the signpost up ahead - your next stop, the Twilight Zone!"~~~~Rod Serling


Peachs
Peachs

What is the gravity for Christians that pulls them to my bedroom or what I drink on Sunday? What a cheap religion it must be if God made it all about the other guy and if I can find enough other guys I go to heaven. I am looking out the window right now getting points; maybe there is a virgin in the reward. It is all about me…

hank89
hank89

I think it's safe to say he deliberately misses the point.


missing the mark is the definition of sin and we all do deliberately or not

Doggone_GA
Doggone_GA

"what interpretation are you talking about?"

I think it's safe to say he deliberately misses the point.

DownInAlbany
DownInAlbany

Bunch of Christianphobics. 

You folks are pitiful.

Paul42
Paul42

Let me see if I have the pattern correct:  throw out an accusation about a topic or against other people.  Make it somehow connected to religion.  Have people tell you to back up the accusation.  Go on another attack with another accusation.  Finish with 'I'm persecuted.'  Just like Jay wrote.

That about correct?

hank89
hank89

@Peachs i don't give two hoots if you smoke a fatty and sex up the cat. it doesn't make it right just because you choose to do it

hank89
hank89

@Doggone_GA which interpretation of abortion or supporting homosexuality is compatible with christian teachings?

stands_for_decibels
stands_for_decibels

@DownInAlbany a "bunch?"


Care to identify these "Christianphobics" posting here?


I'd really like to know, because this may be very useful information, later.

Nobody_Knows
Nobody_Knows

@DownInAlbany 

LOLOLOLOLOLOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


How cute.  Albany boy wants some attention.

LordHelpUs
LordHelpUs

@Paul42 My parents and the people they live around (and watch on Fox news) are already stealing themselves for the annual war on xmas...


They blow their prune juice if someone at Walmart or Home Depot says Happy Holidays.


I wish I had so little to worry about...

Brosephus
Brosephus

@Paul42 

LOL!!!  By jove, I think he's got it!!!

Whomever the heck jove is..  

Peachs
Peachs

@hank89 @Peachs 

nope you do care, and then you strongly defend yourself on this blog. The fact I know you are a Christian and nothing else about you makes my point. You are lock step in thinking which is great if you stay in your world but causes you problems if you don't so you try to change mine to so you can navigate. It is like doing away with tall people so you can be a good basketball player.

hank89
hank89

@Doggone_GA @Paul42 the charge was brought by jay that it was just politics. that is what the jewish leaders said. it wasn't persecution though just crusifixion. 

hank89
hank89

@Peachs @hank89 you are wrong, i do not care, i don't care if homosexuals unite, i just don't want them to say they are married, civilly joined, whatever just don't use the word 'marriage'. other than that i would legalize all drugs and whatever you do in your house is fine with me as long as all the parties are consenting.

Paul42
Paul42

@hank89 @Doggone_GA @Paul42

hank89 - you completely missed the point.  It's about how people, including you, responded to Jay's piece.  Or merely used it as a launching pad for your own topic.

Peachs
Peachs

@hank89 @Peachs 

What is it with Christians and gays? Why don’t you hit up on divorcees or adultery why just gays, the later had choices and chose to violate the rules?What it is, is you aren’t gay so that is the low hanging sin you can conscience free attack and probably, though a few Republicans have been caught playing with toes in men’s bathrooms, be sin free from.

hank89
hank89

@Paul42 @hank89 @Doggone_GA my point is that people who deny the persecution of the church are living in a false reality.  muslims are killing christians around the globe.

Doggone_GA
Doggone_GA

@hank89 @Paul42 @Doggone_GA Who has denied it?  It's not the persecution that is being denied...it's YOURS and others characterizations of WHO if doing the persecution.


I for one resent your characterization that Liberals can't be Christians.

Brosephus
Brosephus

@hank89 

And what about the Christians who are dropping munitions on Muslims?  Do they get a pass for their killing?

Nobody_Knows
Nobody_Knows

@hank89 @Doggone_GA @Paul42 

God told you to support the killing of all Muslims?


God told you to hate all Muslims?


Brosephus
Brosephus

@hank89 

"yes. they should kill them all"

So much for those teachings of Christ, huh?  Good thing you don't speak for all Christians.  I'd hate to be painted in your likeness.

Nobody_Knows
Nobody_Knows

@hank89 @Nobody_Knows @Doggone_GA @Paul42 

How Christian of you...............

You tell others how can they be Christian yet you are spout hate and killing of all Muslims.

You are a hoot.  
I'm sure Jesus is so proud of you right now.


What Would Jesus Say?

Nobody_Knows
Nobody_Knows

@hank89 @Nobody_Knows 

Jesus said something in the Old Testament.  

KJV I have shows what he supposedly said in red.  And all of that is in the new. 


But you keep telling others why they can't be Christian as you spew hate about Islam and why they should all be killed if you think it helps your walk with your God.

hank89
hank89

@Nobody_Knows @hank89 i know this is difficult for you but the trinity, all three, separate and the same. told the jews to go into the land of canaan and kill them all. they did not. new testament would ask them to repent.

Nobody_Knows
Nobody_Knows

@hank89 @Nobody_Knows 

LOLOLOLOL!!!!!!!!!!

So you pick and choose which part of the Bible you want to use depending on what you want to justify.

LOLOLOLOLOLOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!