Thursday, October 15, 2009

Secular Equals Liberal?

According to the October 14th Marvin Olasky article Opportunity Knocks Twice on, the O'keefe-Giles ACORN sting was the push needed against the liberal media to help jump start the second coming of Christian media.  Olasky writes the following:
In the 1830s the Christian worldview came under greater challenge from deists and transcendentalists. At the same time price cuts for printing presses and easier distribution because of urban growth reduced barriers to entry. Nonprofit publications relying on donations gave way to entrepreneurial investors and managers. Their business model was to sell newspapers for only one cent each, build big circulations, and sell those readers to advertisers, who would furnish the bulk of the newspaper owner's profit.

That model worked. The new journalistic leader, Horace Greeley, was a communitarian who hired Karl Marx as his European correspondent. In the 1850s Greeley's New York Tribune became the leading newspaper in the United States. Others imitated it. Soon the leading newspapers were all secular and, sooner or later, heading left.
Essentially, deists and transcendentalists, a group that consists our founding fathers, such as Thomas Jefferson (additional quotes from Jefferson discussing religion can be found here), would take over the Christian publications.  How did they accomplish their overthrow of the religious establishment?  They used capitalism, by mass producing newspapers and sell advertising.  Apparently, capitalism is bad because Christians can't compete in the market when it comes to savvy entrepreneurs.  According to Olasky's article, this led to the take over by liberals, including communists and socialists.  He alludes to this by mentioning the infamous Karl Marx, who was hired by "journalistic leader" Horace Greeley in 1950 as a European correspondent, just two years after the publication of The Communist Manifesto.  Shock.  The "liberal" media has it's founding with none other then the founder of Communism.  For Olansky, secular and liberal equates to non-Christian.

In the early days of the American Revolution, the cries of "no taxation without representation" did not appear to be religious in nature, but a call against taxes.  The nation may have been founded by Christians, but it was not designed to be a Christian nation, as conservative Christians choose to believe.  Thomas Jefferson wrote of the Virginia Act For Establishing Religious Freedom, which he drafted, in his book, Autobiograpy, the following:
Where the preamble declares, that coercion is a departure from the plan of the holy author of our religion, an amendment was proposed by inserting "Jesus Christ," so that it would read "A departure from the plan of Jesus Christ, the holy author of our religion;" the insertion was rejected by the great majority, in proof that they meant to comprehend, within the mantle of its protection, the Jew and the Gentile, the Christian and Mohammedan, the Hindoo and Infidel of every denomination.
Our founding fathers understood the burden religion placed on freedom, and chose to protect all Americans from the doctrine of any one church by protecting religious freedom.  For Christian revisionists to view the position of the early founders of this nation as purely Christian would be ridiculous.  My other question is what is the difference between a "diest", and why are the painted in a negative light by Christians?

According to Wikipedia, Deism is the religious and philosophical belief that the universe was created by a supreme being (God), and that this, as well as religious truth, can be determined through use of reason and observation of the natural world, without reliance on faith or organized religion.  Essentially, the major difference between views held by people like Olansky and Deists is the role organzied religion plays.  With a deist approach, church has no place, because the religion is between the individual man and his own god, with no organization interjecting in that personal relationship.  As you can see by the dialogue presented by conservative Christians, there is the desire to impose their beliefs on not just themselves, but everybody.  Promoting conversion is one thing, but having others bend to your will is another.

I found Olansky's article interesting because he lumps deism and secularism with Karl Marx and liberals.  I am constantly reminded of this moral monopoly the right claims when I think of prominent liberal American politicians, such as John F. Kennedy or Jimmy Carter, who both had to assure Americans that their faith would not hinder their capabilities to perform as President.  Maybe it is time that the religious right started looking inwards instead of left, and stop trying to use everything as a pulpit promoting their spiritual superiority.

If you consider this one last thought, Olansky's article states that Christian journalism may be on the rise because of the actions of James O'Keefe's and Hannah Giles' video about ACORN making headlines. The article fails to mention the illegality of such actions, and implies that such morally superior actions are above the law, and the article fails to even discuss the morality of the two young activist's deception and lies perpetrated against these ACORN employees, as well as their portrayal as a pimp and a prostitute, which Olansky writes that "some Christians would take issue with O'Keefe and Giles posing as a pimp and hooker: Should journalists be deceptive in that way?" and that the "issue requires more discussion, but it's not crucial to my point that the internet has opened up astounding possibilities for doing a lot with a little", helping usher in a new era of American journalism, where he writes is "one in which Christians can compete."  Olansky hopes for a return to mid-19th century journalism and a shift away from secular reporting.

I guess it is okay to sin and break the law, only to stop others from sinning, or possibly sinning, although you could argue that ACORN never sinned in that video, leaving the only two to break the commandments in the video, by lying to the employees, to be O'Keefe and Giles themselves. Moral check please...

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