In addition to being part of a network that specializes in conservative victimhood, Jesus' very own morning show, Fox & Friends specializes in the travails of persecuted Christians. This morning they ratcheted up the pity party by interviewing an author who claims that Christians are being given a bad rap in the non Fox media and popular culture. Their guest, Michael Coren, who has had a multifaceted religious journey, defended Christianity whilst working in a little snark at Islam. Jesus must be very happy.
The Fox & Friends guest, Michael Coren, began life as a Jew. He later converted to Catholicism but left after having an encounter with a "vulgar" Canadian bishop. He embraced evangelical Christianity after encountering a Canadian televangelist. But in 2004 he returned to Catholicism. As reported by Dave Briggs in the intro, Coren has written a book that debunks "myths" about Christians. In response to where these "lies" about Christians are being spread, Coren said that with the exception of Fox, just about everywhere - mainstream media, universities, and even in the workplace and "the highest places in Washington." He claimed that Christians are viewed as "intolerant" and "full of hate." He cited other claims that Christians are viewed as "unintelligent" and "not progressive." (Hmmm, like OK Senator Inhofe who thinks that Jesus wouldn't allow global warming?) He then made the questionable claim that "most of the major changes and great acheivements in North American society and Europehave been in the hands of Christians. (Like the condemnation of Galileo?) He said he just wants his fellow Christians to be "treated with the same sensitivity that you might even treat Muslims perhaps, oh no, I can't ask for that; that's too much." He claimed that in 20 years, Christians haven't been treated fairly.
In response to Alysin Camerota's question about where he hears accusations that Christians are stupid, he claimed that it's prevalent in universities and gave one example of an incident in which a professor said that his one Christian student would lose his religion by the end of the year. He complained that his fellow English accented academics, like Dawkins and Hitchens "can say things, with all due respect, that aren't very profound about theology and they're believed" while the credibility of public Christians is challenged. He said it's really all about faith and cited CS Lewis, Thomas Aquinas, and Cardinal Newman as "great intellectuals." He claimed that the "chattering classes" don't think Christians are "very bright." Briggs brought the talk around to Coren's "most important" point which is a rebuttal to the notion that Jesus didn't exist. Coren said that while you don't have to believe that Jesus was the Messiah, "but there's a lot of compelling evidence that he was," and cited Roman historians. He accused those who say this of "not doing their homework."
Tutt tutt and what ho! This was all quite, clever, clever. But in the more American parlance, there ain't no party like a Christian pity party on the Fox News channel. Meanwhile we still have Christians who believe in a 6,000 year old earth, use the bible to justify fear and loathing of gays, use their theology to curtail women's reproductive rights, refer to Obama as the anti-Christ, and hate everyone who doesn't believe as they do. While Christians shouldn't be broad brushed as "intolerant," there just might be a reason why they have this reputation - and Fox News, LOL, is aiding and abetting it!