Saturday, November 19, 2016

Do You Want To Wallow In Your Basest Fantasies Or Do You Want To Win Elections And Save Democracy? That is the question

If you read the comments, you will note that I am having a brawl with one of Simp's friends from Eschaton, a "Skeptic Tank," over his contention that it's all those Christians fault that the white Methodist woman didn't win the election - though she won a majority of the vote.

While I wouldn't necessarily trust their numbers, because I simply don't trust that kind of methodology to discern actual reality, he wants to argue on the basis the Pew research preliminary report on what percentage of people who profess what religious orientation voted for who.   I started at a different place than he wanted to, I started my argument with their characterization of what the religious composition of the electorate was. 

If you take those numbers seriously, which I will only for the sake of argument, the non-Christian percentage of the voting population is 3+8+15% or just over a quarter of the electorate.  But it is certain that not all of those non-Christians voted for Hillary Clinton, many voted for Trump and some for Jill Stein or Gary Johnson or someone else.   As you can see in this chart in the report cited by my opponent.

From just under to more than a quarter of each non-Christian group voted for Trump, so there is no way that a significant majority of those who voted for Hillary Clinton were not Christians.  A significant number of those would be classified as White Christians, though in these charts, the only such breakdown is for Catholics.  

I will note here that the large difference Pew chose to show between White and "Hispanic" Catholics would seem, to me, to indicate that their choice to concentrate on the religion of the voters as paramount is, actually, obscuring other, more salient determinants of who voted for whom.  Latino Catholics and "White Catholics" all share the same church, the same doctrines, dogmas, liturgy and sacraments, to an extent which I strongly suspect would surprise those whose concept of the Catholic church is based on false stereotypes and left over Protestant invective.  Though that invective is mostly spread by atheists these days, in my experience.   I will point out that they also share the same Pope and that the current and very popular pope is a Latino man of Italian heritage.  I would question the term "Hispanic" which hardly describes the Latino population in the Catholic church which includes many Spanish speakers of African, Native and European origin.  There are a significant number of American Catholics who are of African and other origin who would seem to have been left out by Pew.   If they'd made a similar division among Protestants I'm sure there would have been problems with that worth bringing up. 

Just on that basis, if you are taking Pew as your authority, there is no way that, if you wanted to give the "Hillary Clinton vote" some character based on the religious profession of those who voted for her, it could be anything but majority Christian.   I could point out that the graph I posted yesterday assigned characteristics to churches as "mainline" or "evangelical" I was curious to note that Hillary Clinton's Methodist Church was designated "mainline" while it certainly began and, I would say, still retains the features that define a church as "evangelical".   Perhaps that designation is less meaningful than its current use in the media and in sociological fudging of reality would lead us to believe.  I'll point out again that, contrary to atheist categorization, not even the most conservative denomination is uniform in character.

I would call your attention to the graph I posted yesterday which breaks down the supposed political preference by different religious denominations and groups.  Most of the people who look at that would concentrate their attention on whether or not the bars indicate more Republicans than Democrats in any particular denomination but I will ask you to think more liberally and notice that even within the most "Republican" of denominations, there are significant percentages of those who vote for Democrats.  Even the most conservative of denominations contain thousands, tens, even hundreds of thousands of those who vote for Democrats or who expressed no particular preference.  If you want a practical plan to win elections instead of fostering  anti-liberal -fascistic, really- atheist pipe dreams,  increasing those percentages would make entirely more sense.  Of course, any attempt by Democrats to do that could not violate our core values of equality, of people owning and controlling their own bodies, of personal dignity and the rights to more than mere and miserable subsistence.

The guy who I am brawling with seems to believe, somehow, that everything would be all better if some significant part of the American population just disappeared.  As I pointed out, that's exactly Trumps prescription for so much of what ails us, only he unfashionably proposes to get rid of Muslims, while the atheist sci-guy wants to get rid of some or a very large percentage of Christians, designating "evangelicals" for elimination.  Well, getting rid of large numbers of people based on religious identity is a common feature of dictators, Hitler, Stalin, Mao, Pol Pot, Callas, Hoxha...  I do find it rather bizarre to find such a desideratum expressed by an alleged liberal and retain their status as a reputable member of alleged liberalism.   Only atheists have long gotten away with that, one of the tools which Republicans have used to bash liberals with. 

Since he claimed that religion turns people "conservative" I will note that if someone followed the teachings of Jesus and the economic features of the Mosaic Law which so much of his gospel is based in, they would not only be a liberal by today's standards, they would be far more radically liberal than any conventional political-economic ideology of secularism can imagine.  I'm sure the atheist would denominate the Catholic church as far right, evil and oppressive when even the recent conservative Popes' economic encyclicals are radical by comparison to any Democratic platform I've ever bothered to look at.  The current Pope's environmental encyclical is attacked regularly in the right-wing media.  If liberalism is going to be revived and govern there is everything to work with in Christian teaching and it has a record of getting people elected.  His kind of atheist snobbery, ridicule, dishonest invective and class derision is a proven loser in half a century of testing.  Dump it, not Christianity. 

1 comment:

  1. Like I said: a Trump-shaped argument.

    The stupid, it still burns.