Christians to Blame for the 'War on Christianity'

Some Christians believe that being anti-Christian is the only acceptable form of bigotry left in America. Outside of the absurdity of the vast majority of the claims offered as "proof" of this fallacy the hypocrisy necessary to make such a claim is phenomenal.

For example, noted conservative pundit Ann Coulter once stated, "liberals always play the victim in order to advance, win advantages and oppress others". While such tactics are hardly exclusive to liberals the supposed "War on Christianity" represents the pinnacle of all self ascribed pity parties.

Christians comprise just over 78% of the U.S. population, which is a significantly higher percentage of the population than the "angry atheists" who only account for 1.6%. What are these poor Christians to do when faced with such overwhelming odds against them?

The problem is that Christians have spent so much time pretending to be victims that they have become oblivious to their own indiscretions.

Spurned HGTV stars David and Jason Benham offer and excellent illustration of this point. The brothers took to Fox News to pen an article discussing how they were dropped from the station for standing by their "Biblical beliefs". Of course the problem wasn't that they were against marriage equality. The problem was that they funded and organized an anti-gay rally because ironically they felt that these "militant gay activists" shouldn't be given the opportunity to express their view that there is nothing "demonic," "veil," or "destructive" about being gay.

There are millions of Christians who don't agree with same sex marriage but only a portion of them shamefully resort to using the bible as justification for their hate speech. Of course the Benham brothers are hardly the first high profile personalities to lose their job because of controversial statements. The fact that they are Christians is secondary to the fact that they have aggressively opposed the gay community in the past. Their actions, not their beliefs, cost them their potential television gig.

Having said that they also seem to be very confused about what is discrimination and what is not. In their article they use three examples of instances where they feel a company should be allowed to deny someone service.

"My brother and I are perfectly okay with a gay owned t-shirt company refusing to make t-shirts that say, "Homosexuality is sin." And we're fine with a Jewish baker refusing to cater an event on the Sabbath. And we'd certainly agree with the gun range owner refusing to let self-identifying ISIS members practice shooting at his facility."

First, it should be noted that a self identifying ISIS member would be arrested not refused service. However it should be noted that a public gun range would need to be able to show that there is a "legitimate business reason" to deny anyone service.

Second, the Jewish baker isn't discriminating when they decide to refuse to cater on the Sabbath. They are simply setting their hours of operation and those hours apply to all customers equally. The discrimination occurs when you don't treat all groups equally.

Finally, the t-shirt company is already protected from making shirts that require them to including wording they find offensive. That is the companies right of free speech. The T-Shirt company in this case is not refusing the customer service based on who they are they have decide not to produce a product they find offensive. This is why the public cake baker cannot deny service to the gay couple but they can refuse to make a cake that includes words they find objectionable. Denying service based on the person is not the same as denying service based on the content of the service. It may seem like a minor difference however it is very important distinction that the Benham brothers don't appear to understand.

Beyond this propensity for misunderstanding the legal requirements of a business that serves the public, there are others who believe that Christians are ostracized at far greater rates than any other segment of the population. One imagines there are plenty of Muslims, LGBT individuals, and African and Latino Americans that find this suggestion laughable but even the Atheists that are supposedly repressing Christians face as many if not more harassment in the U.S. today. Polls on American attitudes towards various segments of the population as well as other data show that the bias against Atheists is actually one of the most acceptable forms of discrimination.

Todd Starnes, for example, has become the media's resident raconteur of anti-Christian fables and regularly elicits anger towards non-Christians by providing half of the story. His faux outrage includes stories like "Why did Disney block God?," "Town told to keep Christ out of Christmas parade," "Students opposed to LGBT agenda shamed in classroom," and "Student reprimanded for saying 'God Bless America'." Conspicuously absent from Starnes' list of concerns are stories like "Christian Professor Gets Fired for 'Trying on Atheism", "Indiana Teacher Allegedly Fired For Being An Atheist," "Atheists Are Banned From Holding Public Office In Seven US States," "Atheist Student Gets Death Threats Over Prayer Banner" and "Student Forced to Stand For Pledge of Allegiance." If Starnes is such a religious rights crusader he should be equally infuriated at stories of discrimination against non-Christians.

The question people like Starnes should really ask themselves is: If non-Christians should be tolerant of Christian symbols and references in public spaces then why shouldn't Christian's be tolerant of public spaces being void of all religious paraphernalia. After all who does it hurt if the areas owned by everyone are free from all religious trappings?

The reality is that all non-Christians are asking for is equal treatment. These continued battles are simply a reaction to religious overreach that the courts have declared illegal. If Christians just stopped advocating for public religious observations the so called anti-Christian behavior would all but disappear. Unfortunately asking these Christian activists to apply the constitutional right of religious freedom equally to all Americans will undoubtedly result in more errant claims of anti-Christianity because Christian victimhood is great for business.