Center for Political Awareness

It’s a Good Time to Start Worrying About Christian Nationalism

Project 2025 is the enterprise established by the Heritage Foundation and other right-wing outfits. (Click image for article.)

Photo: Members of the Proud Boys, a neo-fascist group that has engaged in political violence, raise a cross on January 6, 2021, at the Michigan State Capitol during a protest of the 2020 election.Adam J. Dewey/AP

 

In response to rising concern among liberals and others about the spread of Christian nationalism, conservative voices have been pressing a counterattack, claiming all this fretting is just lefty hysteria from secularists who are not willing to acknowledge the role of Christianity in American society and who want to brand all politically active Christians as extremists. Last year, the far-right Heritage Foundation published an article declaring that Christian nationalism is a term “mostly used as a smear against conservative Christians who defend the role of religion in American public life” and that the “lack of standard definition allows critics to bundle evils like white supremacy and racism with standard conservative views on marriage, family, and politics.” More recently, New York Times columnist Ross Douthat, addressing liberal unease, wrote, “Today’s religious conservatives are mostly just normal American Christians doing normal American Christian politics, not foot soldiers of incipient theocracy.” He added, “It’s not clear to me that secular liberals should really fear Christian nationalism more today than in 2000 or 1980.”

Really?

By now, you’ve heard of Project 2025, the enterprise established by the Heritage Foundation and other right-wing outfits to both set a radical-right agenda for a possible second Trump term and recruit Dear Leader loyalists for government posts in that administration. As I’ve noted, this venture has cooked up plans and measures with an authoritarian bent. It also has been preparing to inject Christian nationalist ideas into a Trump 2.0 presidency. One example from the Project 2025 handbook: “maintain a biblically based, social science–reinforced definition of marriage and family.” That does sounds a bit Gilead-ish.

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