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Christians Are Sick Of Being Punished Just For Punishing Other People
That's how they practice their religion, okay?
It's tough being a Christian in America, a country in which 65 percent of the population identifies as being Christian. And if you ask Ms. Sophie A. Nelson about it, the hardest thing is that whenever you, as a Christian, insult people, those people might not say, "Oh, this isn't insulting at all, it's totally fine because she's a Christian." As such, Ms. Nelson wrote a whole-ass op-ed that was published this weekend in the New York Post, titled "Christian Americans Are Sick Of Being Punished For Their Views." Cute, huh?
I'm sure you are very excited to hear the ways in which Ms. Nelson had been punished for her views. Let's hear her out!
[W]hile the First Amendment guarantees the free exercise of religion, we are no longer a nation that fully supports the right to hold or express Judeo-Christian views.
I have experienced this first-hand. When I was the scholar-in-residence at Christopher Newport University in Newport News, Va., I proudly and openly identified as a Christian woman of color. In October 2021, I criticized DC Comics for making Superman’s son bisexual , saying in a tweet, “I don’t get why this is necessary. I don’t! What if Christian parents of children reading comic books don’t want their kids exposed to bi-sexual characters? This is being pushed on kids.”
Straight away, my private tweet was brought into my public university workplace, and my Christian faith was attacked as a “cover for my homophobic views.” I was deemed “homophobic,” “unsafe” and “violent” by an openly bisexual faculty member, who then incited colleagues, university officials and students against me. Students at my college protested and demanded I be removed from my post, and despite the fact I deleted my tweet, wanted to hold a campus forum to discuss the matter, and twice expressed regret for causing offense, I was sidelined for the remainder of my tenure, and was told I would not be invited back to teach or otherwise.
Yes, all this extremely normal woman wanted was for everyone to pretend that bisexual people do not exist as a fact of life, because "Christians" don't want their children to know that, because of how they think it is bad and immoral to be bisexual and are very afraid that their kids will think they are bisexual if they find out that bisexual people exist.
It is unclear what the great risk there would even be — that they might attempt to date a person of the same sex and have it not work out because it turns out that's not what they're into? That's like ... most dating.
Nelson went on to whine about how it was unfair that people were not thrilled by a coach who forced Christian prayer on people at a public school — and just won a Supreme Court case saying he should have been allowed to do so.
Last month, the Supreme Court ruled that our separation of church and state does not prohibit public school employees from praying near students aloud on the job. The case was sparked by Washington state high school football coach Joe Kennedy who often prayed post-game at the 50-yard line, joined by his players. He was disciplined and then fired for doing so.
The thing that bothers me most about how people of faith, like Kennedy and myself, are treated is that we are just cut off. Thrown out. Removed. As if we are these hateful, bigoted religious cultists who just want to push our faith on others. That is simply not true. We have a viewpoint . We have a faith that informs how we live and think. A lens through which we process, just as I also have a specific perspective as a black female in America. I do not want to tell others how they should live and think. I simply want to be heard as every American should be.
Prayer is not a viewpoint. And yes, you are bigoted religious cultists who just want to push your faith on others. If that were not the case, you would not keep trying to make it awkward and uncomfortable for people to not practice your faith. If I were in charge of a high school football team and insisted on standing on the 50 yard line after every game and yelling that there is no God and religion is stupid, someone like Sophie Nelson might feel uncomfortable. I would not do that, both because I don't know where the 50 yard line is located and because it is not my business what other people believe unless it hurts other people.
It is also very clear that Nelson would, in fact, like to tell others how they should live and think, given that she wanted to bar Superman's son from being bisexual and that she in fact started off this whole op-ed talking about how America is a Judeo-Christian nation because "In God We Trust" is written on our currency.
It may seem radical to say it these days, but it’s true: America is a nation founded on Judeo-Christian values. Words from scripture are inscribed on our money and our most hallowed institutions, including Congress, the US Supreme Court and state capitols everywhere. Our Declaration of Independence acknowledges our “Creator” as the being from whom all our rights flow.
This does not mean that other religious groups are not welcome in America. Of course they are. People who practice no religion at all are also welcome.
But while the First Amendment guarantees the free exercise of religion, we are no longer a nation that fully supports the right to hold or express Judeo-Christian views.
We are not a nation that fully supports the right to hold or express any views in the way that Sophia Nelson would like her views supported. If I were working at a school and they made Superman's son a Christian and I tweeted, "I don’t get why this is necessary. I don’t! What if atheist parents of children reading comic books don’t want their kids exposed to Christian characters? This is being pushed on kids,” I would probably also be fired. At the very least, people might think I was an asshole.
Those of us who practice other religions or no religion are not guests in Sophia Nelson's home. There has been freedom of religion in America since 1636 when Roger Williams first founded Rhode Island specifically as a haven for people to believe what they want, while other colonies had specific religions. When they finally got to the Constitution over a hundred years later, they went with his way of doing things and not John Winthrop's.
If the founders had wanted the United States to be a Christian country, it seems doubtful that they would have just dropped hints about that on money instead of being explicit about it, while simultaneously being explicit about it not being that in the First Amendment of the Constitution and the Treaty of Tripoli. Especially considering that "the founders" were all quite dead by the time "In God We Trust" first found itself on any money (1864 for the two-cent piece and 1955 for paper money).
Academics need to read Title IX more closely: religion is a protected class, just like race, gender and sexual orientation (including heterosexuals ). Giving the rights of some groups priority over the rights of religious persons is not America. If “woke” Americans are starting to wonder why there has been such a big pushback on “cancel culture” or “viewpoint diversity” lately, it is because people of faith are tired of being attacked, labeled, isolated and treated as if we are not allowed to express opinions, too.
It is about being silenced. And punished, facing “consequences” if we simply express a faith view.
Yes, religion is a protected class. If I were Sophie Nelson's employer, I could not fire her because she is a Christian and I am an atheist. Although every state but Montana is an at-will employment state so technically I could just say I was firing her because I didn't like her socks and that would be just fine.
Being a protected class does not mean that you get to insult people and have them pretend you didn't because of how you are a Christian. I am a woman, which is also a protected class, but this does not mean that I get a free pass on being an asshole or being mean to people. That's not how this works.
There are plenty of Christians in the world who just live their lives without being assholes to people or demanding anyone pretend they don't exist, and who thus do not feel "silenced." Perhaps Sophia Nelson could take a hint from some of them. I bet she'd be a lot happier.
[ NY Post ]
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