Sunday, December 20, 2015

White Noise

This is interesting:

Most major religious groups in the country favor the passage of stricter gun control laws, including majorities of minority Protestants such as black Americans (76%), Catholics (67%), the religiously unaffiliated (60%), and white mainline Protestants (57%). White evangelical Protestants stand out as the group least likely to support stricter gun control laws (38% favor, 59% oppose).
Let us begin by saying you can't verify these numbers, so they have to be taken as indicators, not as gospel truth.  Still, in a time when our leaders seem determined to be led by a minority (although a voting minority; I'm convinced gerrymandering works because of the accuracy of historical voting patterns), it's worthwhile to note they don't actually represent the majority.  And that white Protestant evangelicals don't represent Christians at all.

Oh, also that the "religiously unaffiliated" are less likely to take a "liberal" position on an issue like gun control than are black American Protestants or Catholics.

The BBC World Service reported from Venezuela after the recent elections there turned out the Chavez government.  A BBC reporter interviewed an elected official with that government who was basically on his way out, and the first thing the official noted was the media narrative:  if socialists win, he said, the narrative is that radical change has come to the nation, with the implication it has been imposed by a few on the many.  When conservatives win, however, he said, the narrative is that "the people have spoken."

I'm no fan of Chavez, but that official certainly pegged the narrative the BBC was reporting.  In the same way, the narrative in America is that if white Protestant evangelicals say it, it must be true for all Christians in America, and if they don't then no credible Christian in the country has an opinion worth noting.  The former is  nowhere near the truth, of course, and the latter just reinforces the preferred narrative.  And yet that narrative is still repeated and promoted as true by what used to call itself "the reality based community," that community which was supposed to be so suspicious of the "mainstream media."

"Reality" is still pretty much whatever confirms your preferences.

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