It seems obvious that Obama, Putnam, and the liberal elites they speak for want to believe that American Christians are narrow-minded and obsessed to the point of being uncaring. This is an utterly delusional way of discounting the tremendous, literally and figuratively livesaving work of American Christians. But to think about them any other way would be to actually wrestle with the fact that, while we’re all imperfect, any political disagreements Christians have be over hot button cultural issues like abortion and gay marriage might actually be motivated by genuine concern and compassion. Those are, not coincidentally, the same reasons that have made fighting poverty one the church’s most vital and important missions for millennia.
Mark Hemingway, speaking truth to power. I don’t think that Robert Putnam and President Obama are simply lying when they say the demonstrably false things they say about American Christians. It may be, depending on how you run your moral calculus, worse than that: they are speaking out of an absolute indifference to truth, because questions of truth and falsehood, being empirical, consistently trouble the purity of one’s chosen political narrative. This is political tribalism trumping facts — or rather, erasing facts, rendering them nugatory.
I can’t avoid the conclusion that traditionally-minded Christians are now simply The Enemy for the American left and center-left. As I’ve commented before, I haven’t voted for a major-party politician in about a quarter of a century, but on days like this I fear that the Democrats will make a Republican of me yet.
Finally, if you think that what Christians truly madly deeply care about can be discerned by how they spend their money, run the numbers. Robert Putnam and President Obama sure as hell won’t.