Gathering of “Evangelical Christians”
Supposedly, a picture of “Evangelicals” at a Bush rally in 2004
Well, we have all seen this picture before…. an “idealized” image of Jesus (as)
A map circa 2004 of the “Evangelical Christian” population density
What do all these images have in common? Well they all represent something I have been wanting to get off my chest for a long time: covert racism.
I am increasingly convinced that the harshest criticism against Islam and Muslims comes from only one group: White so-called Evangelical Christians. I have done many searches on “Muhammad, Islam, Muslims” etc. And have read a litany of blogs, message boards, articles, websites, etc. and everytime I read criticism on the level of hate, it comes from one who identifies themself as a Evangelical Christian and 9 times out of 10 they are white.
Every now and then you get a black, Asian, Arab, etc. but more often than not en mass they are are white. The criticism isn’t even particularly religious as one would expect, as I have read Jewish sites and commentary as well as Catholic and various other Christian literature and even Atheist commentary, that while critical in nature, is often positive enough to where you can take it in stride. However, the particular group of “Evangelicals” are so hateful, it’s sickening at best. Everything from blatant insults toward the Muslim concept of God to the blatant insults of Muhammad (saw), to even stereotypical portrayals and commentary about Muslims in general, all you get from these sources is hate 24/7.
I have often pondered about this and I came to this conclusion as I reflected on the “black” experience in America and how blacks have been historically treated in America. I began to compare black history with the modern industry of Muslim hate and recognized stark parallels.
One of the most important is that in the context of hate, white “Christians” hold the monopoly. It should be quite obvious at this point that everytime you hear something so critical of Islam that it’s hate or boarderline hate that it comes from someone that is a white evangelical. Turn on the TV and it’s always some white evangelical preacher, minister, “believer”, etc. every now and then their are “experts” who are of Arab or Asian descent who identify themselves as “former Muslims” however, they never identify their “current” religion, which after research you find out that they often identify themselves as evangelicals. This of course should’nt surprise people that some Arabs are involved because prior to 9/11 and even today on some government forms, Arabs can check the “white” box under race.
The most notable absence in this parade of hate is black people aka African Americans. I’m dumbfounded when I do see or meet black evangelicals, but just like in the first picture, when you see one, they are normally the only one or one in like 20 in a stadium consisting of 30k people! However, by and large it is extremely rare if ever do you hear black ministers from the pulpit, on television or anywhere else, ever criticize Muslims in any fashion near, equal to, or remotely similar to the level of white evangelical Christians.
Now before I go any further, let me clarify that I’m not talking about all white people or all Christians, just a select group.
Now why the mention of race?
In the context of the history of race in America, especially in the context of white and black there is a certain feeling of deja vu when you see how Muslims are dealt with in the media as a whole and how white evangelicals write about Muslims and Islam.
When whites of yesteryear wanted to demonize blacks one thing they would do is to attack the civility of blacks. Therefore, they would always refer to blacks as uncivilized, heathen, barbarians, who historically contributed little to nothing to history or the civilized world. This image was promoted by always referring to the black man as a lustful, radical, savage, that only wanted to kill whites and rape their women. Anytime Africa was mentioned, in film or print, blacks were portrayed as primal, with bones in their nose and having the intellect of a monkey (which we were also called). When there was good to talk about Africa, such as Egypt, it was whitewashed, i.e. white people played the parts of all the inhabitants. Therefore, promoting the concept that all civility, knowledge, and good comes in the image of a white person. Which of course in religion leads to the images of Jesus, Moses, and all the prophets (pbut), and sometimes even God, being painted in the image of a white person. (Picture #3 anybody?)
Now I could go on and on, but I will save that for next month (black history month).
How does this compare with Muslims?
It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see the parallel. Muslims and Arabs are continually demonized one of the first things questioned is, you guessed it: civility! Muslims are always called “radical”, “extreme”, etc. and the media serves a healthy dish of images of the angry Muslim male and sometimes women and children, burning flags, protesting, blowing things up, etc. etc. the common image is the angry Mullah foaming at the mouth against the west and Jews. Therefore, a whole industry has arisen that talks about the “clash of civilizations” and how from the beginning, the Arabs were a warlike people who savagely conquered the region and began to do so in “innocent, good, Christian” Europe, until they fought back the savages in the name of white Jesus of course! When Muslim and Arab history is mentioned if ever, it’s only in the context of war, slavery, and rape. Whenever there is something of note or worthy of making a movie about it, well it’s whitewashed, no surprise there. All in all, we are taught Muslims have contributed nothing toward “Civilization”.
Now I can go on and on about truth and falsehood like how some of the most advanced and wealthy civilizations were in Africa or how Muslims contributed heavily to mathematics, medicine, and science, etc. but I’m certain you get the gist.
Now what does this all have to do with the white evangelical? Well these are their source arguments and many of their authors write these books, blogs, are commentators, etc. In almost every “debate” Jesus is portrayed is this beneficent, wholesome, good, white guy, and Muhammad, a vile, savage, false, Arab. The “Christian” West is always spoken of in the context of civilization, good, and peaceful and the “Muslim” East is always spoken of in the context of barbarism, evil, and war.
In the media, print, etc. Muslim always equal Arab. As such, Arab discrimination is on the rise, and flying while Muslim is a real problem. As a black man, if I shaved my beard, I would be OK, but driving late at night and getting pulled over by a cop…..well that’s for another post:)
My overall point is that the intention and emotion behind the rhetoric coming by and large from this one group in particular is too eerily similar to ignore.
I believe it has a lot to do with the fact that they are white evangelicals because of their membership and teachings.
I don’t see this often from white Catholics, Mormons, Lutherans, Baptists, etc. only when that caveat “Evangelical” is added do you see this problem multiplied. Now there are possibly white Evangelicals that don’t act this way, just as there are probably white Catholics that do, or blacks, Hispanics, etc. However, there were also white abolitionists and black slave owners!
Most Evangelical doctrines are very supremest in nature. You have to believe as they do or you will go to hell. God is a vengeful, un-forgiving deity, that when the “rapture” comes, will only be concerned with those who believe in a narrow doctrine. The Jews will have to convert or burn eternally, and it doesn’t matter how good of a person you are, only whether or not you believe as they do. God, Jesus, and all Biblical prophets are portrayed and painted as white people with distinctly Caucasian features. These images are in all their publications, media, and even picture Bibles. In film, the main characters and cast is also white.
I’m not sure I can adequately explain in this media my thoughts on this subject, however I encourage many of you to do some research yourself and keep a watchful and analytical eye when reading, hearing, or observing these evangelical pundits.
Their supremest overtones are almost a 100% mirror of white supremacism in general, their base is nearly 100% white, and their target(s) are not.
If it walks, talks, and acts like a duck? Did anyone notice that the highest concentration of Evangelicals are in the South of the US?