Sunday, February 12, 2017

Sunday Sermons and Resources for Resistance: "Greatest Threat to Justice in the United States, and Now the World, Is Heretical White Christian Nationalism"

Reverend William J. Barber II, Moral March on Raleigh, 11 February 2017:

The actions of an extremist legislature in North Carolina, the extremist actions of the Republican-led Congress in D.C., and the election of an extremist, narcissistic con-artist in the White House have proven once again that racism and economic fear when mixed still too often can conjure a powerful magic which compels far too many in this nation to seek safety in hating others and to find security in the false nativism that has failed us before and will fail us again.

Michele Somerville, "Bannon Wants a War and He Will Use Jesus to Get One": 

Conservative Christians displayed great readiness, in the U.S. 2016 presidential election, to dispense with Jesus for reasons of political expedience. Evangelicals backed the least Christian GOP candidate in the running. Their Trump, a twice-divorced candidate credibly accused of sexual assault and marital rape is a "Christian" with no religious practice, who was ― right up until campaign time ― a life-long proponent of abortion. The Tea Party, Christian Right, Moral Majority and conservative Catholics have a long history of name-checking Jesus at every opportunity. We see through that now. We now know the Sermon on the Mount doesn't count. We now see that Jesus was a mascot. Steve Bannon, alt-right Catholic, is the embodiment of the ultra-conservative Catholic Church of no Jesus. . . . 
It's no accident that Bannon and the "alt-right" are aligning themselves with the ultra-conservative fringe of Roman Catholicism. Bannon wants a war and he will use Jesus to get one. Bannon and Trump will stand in line with Israel, the lunatic Catholic fringe, dishonest moral theologians and Putin ― as well as with any other necessary "strange bedfellows" for the chance to throw Baby Jesus out with the Baptismal water, because when it comes to prejudice, greed and the making of war, Jesus just gets in the way.

Reverend William Griffen, "Worship in the Age of Empire": 

If the 2016 presidential election campaign revealed one thing with brilliant clarity, the greatest threat to justice in the United States, and now the world, is heretical white Christian nationalism. White Christian nationalism is responsible for the election of President Trump. White Christian nationalism is responsible for the racist, sexist, homophobic, materialistic, militaristic, imperialistic, and xenophobic events we are living through. We must not shrink from calling that evil by its proper name.

Sean McElwee, "Trump's Supporters Believe a False Narrative of White Victimhood — and the Data Proves It":

Trumpism is a movement built around the loss of privilege and perceived social status and a desire to re-create social hierarchy. It is one that requires its adherents to live in a state of constant fear and victimization. This mythology requires extensive ideological work and media filtering to remain true. Conservatives must create an ideological bubble in which crime is out of control (instead of hovering near historic lows), the rate of abortion is rising (instead of falling), refugees are committing terrorist attacks en masse (they aren't at all) and immigrants are taking jobs (it’s the capitalists), all while the government is funneling money to undeserving black people (black people receive government support in accordance with their share of the population, despite making up a disproportionately large share of the poor). Conservatives, and many in the general public, believe that Muslims and immigrants (both legal and unauthorized) make up a dramatically larger share of the population than they actually do. 
At the same time, the right has created a caricature of their opponents on the left. In this imagined caricature, the left is sensitive to being "triggered" at every corner, but also capable of unspeakable political violence. The activist left are "snowflakes" on one hand, and brutal killers on the other. In reality, political violence has long been a tactic of the right, from the labor violence that left thousands of workers dead to lynchings to brutality against peaceful protesters inflicted by corporate security and police to the harassment of women seeking abortion, the destruction of abortion clinics and the assassination of doctors who provide abortions. The rhetoric of victimization has costs — white supremacists are committing unspeakable violence to combat the perceived threat of immigrants, Muslims and people of color. For the next four years, we are likely to have a government driven by perceptions of white Christian victimhood.

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