The Social Justice Movement and Christians: A Comparison

We have seen how SocJus, an secular religion, behaves when they become aware of dissenting views being expressed in their midst (here and here).  Let’s compare their behavior to how Christians have behaved in a similar setting.

The year is 2006.  Richard Dawkins had just published his book, The God Delusion and received all sorts of media attention as it became a best seller.  From the Christian perspective, the book is offensive.   Dawkins’ interpretation of God and scripture is, shall we say, not all that charitable.  What’s more, the title of the book itself labels Christians (and other theists) as mentally ill – suffering from a delusion.  And even worse, Dawkins has a chapter in the book arguing that it is better for a child to be sexually molested than raised as a Catholic.  He even approvingly quotes a friend in academia who argues that the one place free speech should be taken away is when it comes to parents teaching their children religion: “So we should no more allow parents to teach their children to believe, for example, in the literal truth of the Bible, or that the planets rule their lives, than we should allow parents to knock their children’s teeth out or lock them in a dungeon.”

Dawkins went on a book tour, appearing before various audiences to read excerpts from The God Delusion.  One such place was Randolph-Macon Woman’s College, a Methodist-affiliated liberal arts college located in Lynchburg, VA.  And as most of you probably know, Lynchburg is home to Jerry Falwell’s Moral Majority and Liberty University.  In fact, it was reported that a busload of Liberty U. students went to Dawkins’ speech.

So the analogy between this speech and the Charles Murray speech and Jordan Peterson speech is strong.  In all cases, a controversial speaker came to a campus to give a talk that many people would find offensive (for their own particular reasons).  So how do the receptions and reactions compare?

Spoiler alert – there is a vast difference.  [Video’s of the talk, along with the following Q&A, are posted at the end of this blog entry.]

When Murray got up to speak, the social justice students turned their backs on him and began to chant.  When Peterson got up to speak, the social justice students began to chant and beat percussion instruments.  When Dawkins got up to speak, he received a loud and warm applause.

Both Murray and Peterson were never allowed to speak given the loud and disruptive protesting would not stop.  The protests were designed to prevent the talk from occurring.  Dawkins, on the other hand, was allowed to speak without any disruptions, often soliciting laughter from his audience.

Both Murray and Peterson were never given the chance for a Q&A session, as their talks were shut down. The social justice protesters were not only uninterested in hearing the speaker answer their questions, but wanted to make sure no one else could ask questions.  Dawkins answered questions for about an hour.  Most of the questions came from Christians trying to challenge Dawkins and they were all rather polite.  Dawkins seemed to rather enjoy himself most during this part of the talk.

Dawkins received warm applause after both his talk and the Q&A session and it was announced that he would be given the chance to sign books afterward.  There were no security concerns.  Murray and Peterson were effectively chased out their buildings and the protest became violent at Murray’s talk.

Dawkins seemed to enjoy the whole experience.  Murray and Peterson were understandably upset by their experiences.

The contrast could not be more striking.  In fact, it would seem to me that even atheists would have to acknowledge the difference.  That is, compared to the social justice religion, Christians are far more tolerant and respectful of dissenting views.  The social justice religion will not allow opposing views to even speak.  What’s more, compared to the social justice religion, it should be clear that Christians more greatly value reason and dialog.  Rather than chanting and blowing air horns to “shut down” Dawkins, they tried to challenge him during the Q&A session.  And while many of the questions were not all that intellectually impressive (IMO), they were FAR better than chanting something like “transphobic piece of shit” at Peterson’s talk.   They demonstrated a common value shared by Dawkins and creationists – the desire to elevate reasoned dialog as a means to accommodate disagreement.

And here’s a final question for any atheist readers.  Imagine that it is simply not possible to rid the human species of its religious urges.  Imagine they have been hard-wired into our brains through millions of years of evolution.  That would simply mean it is our fate, as Homo sapiens, is to be surrounded by other humans who behave religiously.  If that was the case, who would you rather interact with?  The Christians (many of them creationist fundamentalists) at Dawkins’ talk?  Or the social justice cultists at Murray’s and Peterson’s talk?  You can answer that question privately, but you should think about it.

And here’s a final question for all.  Imagine if a hundred Christians from Liberty University had behaved just like social justice warriors.  Imagine if they had shut down Dawkins’ talk by screaming slogans in unison, such as “Shut him down” and “Dawkins Go Away.”  Then imagine them being proud of themselves for standing up to Dawkins’ Christophobia  and keeping Lynchburg a safe space for believers.

Er,……. how to you think the mainstream media would have reacted?

 

Christians Reacting to Opposing Views

Social Justice People Reacting to Opposing Views

It would be nice if someone made a mashup of the talks in comparison. 😉

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This entry was posted in activism, Christianity, Religion, Richard Dawkins, Social Justice and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to The Social Justice Movement and Christians: A Comparison

  1. TFBW says:

    The protests were designed to prevent the talk from occurring.

    We should stop referring to them as “protesters”. They like to describe themselves as “peaceful protesters”, when they are, at the most charitably, engaging in non-violent disruption (if we overlook the violent bits). Allowing them to self-identify as “peaceful protesters”, unchallenged, just gives peaceful protest a bad name. A contemporary turn of phrase for one who engages in such disruptive behaviour is “griefer”. What we’re seeing here are crusading mobs of social justice griefers. And yes, they do stand in stark contrast to the Christians in these examples, who aren’t even protesting, let alone griefing, but actually participating in a civil manner.

  2. Dhay says:

    It gets worse, the About of the “Revolutionary Student Movement – Hamilton” Facebook page from which the Facebook post Michael quoted, last thread, says: “We are the Hamilton section of the Revolutionary Student Movement; a Canada-wide revolutionary, combative, militant, and anti-capitalist student movement.”

    A few posts before this one, they re-posted a post from the parent “Mouvement Étudiant Révolutionnaire/Revolutionary Student Movement” organisation’s Facebook page:

    MER-RSM members and supporters will join the protests and actions to counter the hateful demonstrations called by the Canadian Coalition of Concerned Citizens on March 4th across the country. Let us drown Islamophobia and fascism in the sea of resistance!

    https://www.facebook.com/RSMHamilton/posts/463511400647663

    The accompanying graphic on this protest flyer is a headscarfed woman — presumably Muslim? — carrying a rifle.

  3. mechanar says:

    @Dhay It amazes me that there are actually still so many communists left on this planet. I could understand if it were a few tousands like in other cults but oh my! There are still enough to seriously influence countrys. How is that possible? Communism has been proven wrong on any conceivable level!

    But yea nothing new from the red “liberators” behind the people with peace banners is an execution squad.

  4. pennywit says:

    Honest question … how has Dawkins been received lately? America is more polarized today than it was ten years ago.

  5. Kevin says:

    Pennywit,

    With the exception of him getting in trouble from the regressive left over tweets he occasionally makes, I haven’t heard anything from him in a while. I won’t say he’s been dismissed as irrelevant by the Christian world, but he doesn’t get brought up like he used to be.

  6. Regual Llegna says:

    Pennywit,
    Kevin,

    The last time I heard of him he was distancing himself from the left and posing as a seriously conservative view. Probably receiving new critics from his fandom pre-atheism+.

  7. TFBW says:

    @pennywit: I follow Dawkins-related news, and there’s been precious little of it this year. The last thing of note he did was brand the British public who voted for Brexit “ignorant and misled”, which, as you can probably imagine, rubbed a lot of people the wrong way (in a manner that has nothing to do with religion). I don’t get the impression that the Christian attitude towards Dawkins has changed much, though. If he were to make another appearance in the USA around now, I think the main difference would be a general decline in the size of crowd he can pull, relative to past occasions.

  8. Michael says:

    Honest question … how has Dawkins been received lately? America is more polarized today than it was ten years ago.

    Dawkins did a speaking tour here in the USA back in Nov 2016. He even tried to rekindle some of that old time magic with Harris:
    https://shadowtolight.wordpress.com/2016/11/03/the-fading-dawkins/

    No one noticed. In fact, I could not find a single article about his talk with Harris.

    Dawkins and the New Atheists are no longer relevant because they are far removed from that polarization. The polarizing issues seems to revolved around political correctness – illegal immigration, Obamacare, trans issues, climate change, etc. Religion is not on the cutting edge of that polarization which is why Dawkins and the Gnus have been brushed aside.

    Here’s a good article describing the situation (I think Dhay posted it earlier):

    https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2017/04/breaking-faith/517785/?utm_source=feed

  9. Kevin says:

    I’m curious how the author can seem so intelligent and yet miss the fact that the right is not the group with the intolerant streak these days.

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