Christian Victimology

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Here's another one I wanted to make an extended comment on, but it's been almost two weeks now, and I haven't had the opportunity, so I wanted to say something. Christian victiomologists are at it again. As I've explained before in more detail, victimology is focusing on victimhood when it's only barely present (if at all), not to seek solutions to any genuine problems but merely to contribute toward one's own sense of alienation and a group solidarity based on resentment toward the group that has, whether rightly or wrongly, been perceived to be victimizing one's own group. In my more detailed post (linked above), I gave a few examples of the phenomenon, some having to do with race or ethnicity, some having to do with religion or lack thereof. Christians, particularly the more extreme elements of the religious right, are no strangers to victimology, and that's what's going on in this case.

A group is complaining that the Secret Service is anti-Christian because it has declared crosses made of certain materials and of certain sizes to be potential weapons. The fact that they allow cardboard crosses, and presumably they'd allow pictures of crosses on paper or signs, is evidence simply to be ignored. That's how victimology works. If you've got a thesis that requires a certain interpretation, then any reasonable conclusion has to be dismissed to fit your story. If the government, including the Bush Administration, which is headed by an evangelical Christian, is anti-Christian no matter the evidence, then what good does it do to explain that these are security precautions that have nothing to do with religion? It feels too good to be able to strike a verbal blow at the evil secularists to pay attention to facts. This attitude is about as far from the Christian one as you can get. Even those genuinely persecuted should not get up in arms about it, according to Jesus, Paul, Peter, John, etc. Furthermore, this is just an insult to those who have truly been persecuted. The minor inconvenience of not being able to bring a tiny physical object that merely symbolizes something of religious significance just doesn't compare with imprisonment, exile, or execution. It's also apologetically stupid, because it just makes Christians look dumb.

Hat tip: There is some truth in that

1 Comments

This "victimology," as you call it, is present in many forms among Christians in the US. Discouraged by the drift of our culture, instead of sharing Christ's love, speaking intelligently about the bases for their hope and the blessings of a relationship with God, or serving their neighbors without expectation of reciprocation, Christian "victims" bellyache, whine, and rail against such enemies as "liberals" and "secular humanists." They lend their support--verbal and monetary--to leaders who employ the inferior weapons of political activism and threats, rather than patiently, lovingly, and respectfully lifting Christ before the world.

The upshot? New enemies of Christ are created and old ones affirmed in their opposition to Him by the very people commissioned to share Christ with others.

Who then, turn out to be the real enemies of Christ?

In the first century, Peter addressed the maligned Christians of Asia Minor in order to encourage them. He didn't direct them to start a PAC, to wrest the levers of political power, or to complain about their victimhood. Instead, he advised, "Always be ready to make your defense to anyone who demands from you an accounting for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and reverence. Keep your conscience clear, so that when you are maligned, those who abuse you for your good conduct in Christ may be put to shame." [First Peter 3:15-6]

The Sacrament is bread and wine, not bread and whine.

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