Christian Nationalists and the Defense of the Nation

 

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From the White House to think tanks, and even mainstream media outlets like CNN, White Christian nationalists have been vilified, being labeled as the greatest threat to national security and religious freedom. Previously, being a nationalist or patriot was viewed positively, but now even love for one’s country can be interpreted as un-American. Athletes wearing the US uniform may choose not to stand for the national anthem as a signal of their virtue. Some Christians serving in the military feel they’re facing persecution. Concurrently, the U.S. military is grappling with a recruitment crisis, partially due to perceived exclusion of Christians and conservatives by woke policies, while many young people, influenced by woke ideologies, view nationalism negatively and are disinterested in joining.

Veterans from earlier generations express dismay at what they see as a targeted campaign against patriotic Christians with conservative beliefs. Robert Brown, a 56-year-old Army veteran and ordained Baptist minister, disagrees with the negative associations attached to the term “white Christian nationalist.” While he acknowledges the harm caused by extreme right groups like Nazis, he emphasizes that they represent only a tiny fraction of the 246 million American Christians. Brown remarks, “The people that talk about these issues tend to throw everyone in the same bucket. When they mention white Christian nationalists, I think of people who have faith and also care a whole lot about the government, and politics.”

Fifty-four-year-old Ken Talbert, a veteran with over seven years of service in the U.S. Army, has spoken out against what he perceives as unfair attacks from the media. ““Being white and Christian apparently makes you a Christian nationalist in their eyes,” he remarked. “They think we are nationalists because we don’t want open borders and millions of unvetted people coming over the border. We don’t agree with White House policies and that makes us white nationalists s.” Talbert clarified his understanding of the term, stating, “When I think white nationalists, I think about people who want a full white nation. That has never been an interest of mine, or anyone I know. I just want a nation of borders and laws.”

Once a word becomes a meme, its original meaning often shifts from the dictionary definition to encompass anything someone dislikes. In today’s context, every dispute or conflict is labeled as a genocide, individuals disliked are equated to Hitler, and any opposing political viewpoint is branded as fascism. The ambiguity surrounding these terms makes it challenging to counter them effectively. Hence, it’s crucial to establish a clear definition of white Christian nationalism before engaging in arguments against it.

Brad Onishi, a former evangelical minister who once aligned with Christian nationalism, now voices opposition to it and hosts the podcast “Straight White American Jesus.” Speaking to NPR, he described Christian nationalism as “an ideology that is based around the idea that this is a Christian nation, that this was founded as a Christian nation, and, therefore, it should be a Christian nation today and should be so in the future.”

Regarding the title of Mr. Onishi’s podcast, “Straight White American Jesus,” it’s worth noting that the Bible portrays Jesus as heterosexual. Additionally, there’s historical evidence that the nation was founded with Christian principles, as all of the founding fathers were Christians, and the original pilgrim settlers fled religious persecution in Europe. Talbert further emphasized this point, stating, “Despite what they are saying our nation was formed one nation under God. It is a Christian nation. We separate church and state, so neither has full power nor has full control.” He also highlighted the contradiction in compelling people to adhere to Christianity, noting, “We cannot have a nation of all Christians because that would be against Christianity. That would be forced compliance.”

While many Christian patriots hold the belief that the United States was established as a Christian nation, it’s unlikely you’ll find any who claim Jesus was American. Regarding whether Jesus was white, it’s a complex issue. All Christians acknowledge Jesus as Jewish, so it comes down to how one defines terms. While some may perceive Jews as white, the question remains loaded. Even if someone were to view Jesus as white or American, does this automatically classify him as a national security threat or disqualify him from serving in the military?

“Christians make good soldiers,” said Michael Harr, age 55, a 25-year Army veteran who participated in Operation Iraqi Freedom. “They believe in America and what America stands for, and as flawed as America is, it’s better than most other countries.” He went on to ask, “We are a Christian nation. How can we be the enemies of ourselves?”

Biden’s assertion that white Christian nationalists pose the greatest threat to national security diverts attention from more pressing issues. The Annual Threat Assessment released by the intelligence community consistently identifies China and Russia as the primary threats, followed by North Korea, Iran, and extremism, including Islamic extremism. Notably, the document mentions “white supremacy” only once, with no mention of Christianity. Similarly, the Department of Homeland Security’s Summary of Terrorism-Related Threats to the United States references “white” twice but does not designate white Christian nationalists as a national threat. Instead, it noted a single instance from 2022 when “certain domestic violent extremists” praised the manifesto of a white supremacist who carried out an attack on an LGBTQI+ bar in Slovakia.

Robert Brown recognized that other types of extremists are not designated as security threats, asking, “What would be the difference if an extreme liberal person wanted to join the military?” He went on to point out, “There is a continuum. If you go so far left, it’s socialism. Go further and it is communism. So, who’s more dangerous: a communist or a Christian?” He concluded with, “The communist atheist is bad; the Christian nationalist is good.

The post Christian Nationalists and the Defense of the Nation appeared first on The Gateway Pundit.

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