Monday, March 14, 2016

"So Many Christians, So Few Lions" by George Yancey and David Williamson: A Review

Let us take stock of what we have learned thus far. An unknown percentage of individuals hate, mistrust, and/or fear conservative Christians to an extensive degree. We know from the information provided by the American National Election Survey (ANES) that their number is not likely minuscule since nearly  third of the country feels substantial relative hostility toward conservative Christians. The extent of relative hostility directed toward his group is at least as high as that directed at Muslims; thus those concerned about Islamophobia in the United States have as much reason to be concerned about this relative hostility toward conservative Christians - especially since those with this antipathy are more likely to be wealthy, educated, and white, thus to have greater per capita social power than the average American. (109)

It is increasingly becoming clear that the only "group" subject to ridicule and abuse without any alarm from the politically correct police are Christians. What has fueled this most in recent years is, without a doubt, the sexual revolution in general and the legalization of gay marriage in particular. Like in ancient times, Christianity's clear moral stance on sexuality has resulted in derision at best, violence and prosecution at worse.

But we will never bow.

This is chronicled from an academic perspective in the book So Many Christians, So Few Lions: Is There Christianophobia in the United States? by George Yancey and David Williamson.

First a word on the title. Its genesis is taken from one of the candidates they interviewed during the research portion of the book. In response to Christians, this individual commented that there were too many Christians in America and not enough lions. They are referencing, of course, the common form of execution utilized by the Romans in the early centuries of Christianity when they were heavily persecuted and murdered. To illustrate how shocking this statement is, the authors are quick to remind the reader that this is akin to saying, "So many Jews, too few ovens" (an obvious reference to the Holocaust).

The real benefit of this book is that it is primarily a work of academia. Instead of researching news headlines and then bloviating on them in a book-length rant, the authors painstakingly engaged in research and survey its conclusions. The research answers emphatically the question raised in the subtitle with an unmitigated, "yes."

For those new to academic research books, this may be a struggle. The authors are careful with their conclusions. The book is not motivation by emotion, but research. They frequently comment how new this research is and their conclusions need further study by others, but they provide a strong data-based case that Christianophobia is on the rise in America.

I suspect that most readers will be interested in the final chapter which highlights a number of specific cases of Christianophobia. In the end, though, this book goes a long way preparing the believer for what is coming while putting a mirror before the face of those guilty of Christianophobia. They make the valid and piercing point that academics are quick to condemn all forms of discrimination and hate except in one instance: Christianity. That is hypocrisy pure and simple.

Overall, I would recommend the book. The world is changing rapidly. Now is the time to strengthen our faith and prepare for what is coming.

For more:
"The Global War on Christians" by John Allen: A Review
Can It Happen Here? It Already Has: Metaxas on the Threat of Religious Liberty in a Pro-Gay Culture
Christophobia: Newsweek and the Global War on Christians 
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