Dan Savage is the founder of the anti-bullying and pro-homosexual It Gets Better Campaign (which ERLC research fellow Karen Swallow Prior called “commonsensical” and “refreshing” and said the church should be “excited” about it – source link). Savage made the news several years ago while giving a speech on bullying in which he bullied Christian students with his offensive discourse, igniting a student walk-out of the event. Savage said that those who refused to listen to his anti-Christian rant were “pu*** a**sed.”
Why so bullying, Mr. Anti-Bully?
When victim-advocate, women’s liberation activist and arch-feminist, Gloria Steinhem was recently on Real Time with Bill Maher, she alleged that the women supporting Bernie Sanders rather than Hillary Clinton were only there to “chase boys.” After forty years of burning bras for empowerment, Steinhem’s legacy of crusading to change the public perception of women and their sensibilities was utterly demolished by a careless statement that exposed her activism as ideology-driven, rather than sincerity-driven. Women, in Steinhem’s mind, are only rational and capable human beings so long as they’re politically useful.
Hillary Clinton has championed herself as an advocate for women, when she isn’t calling her husband’s rape victims “bimbos.” You get the point.
Why the cognitive dissonance? Why the intellectual dishonesty among the permanent victim class? And why is it pervasive in the religious community known by a special class of egalitarian feminists and victim mongers known as “survivor blogs”?
Douglas Wilson touches on this phenomenon in his film, Free Speech Apocalypse, which we reviewed here. We wrote…
Perhaps the most edifying discussion of the documentary was a short clip on the topic of victimhood as a means of taking power. The angry, petulant mob who plainly bullied Douglas Wilson (as much as one canbully someone who won’t let themselves be bullied) painted themselves with “wounds.” The bullies dressed up as victims in order to be bullies. A book could be written on that topic, if it hasn’t already. Christians (and conservatives) should be aware of that strategy simply not fall for it. It’s been used for 60 years or so, so you would think we would catch on.
Victimhood has been the mechanism of liberal change for over half a century. And in evangelicalism, there’s a dark, dank, mildew-infested cesspool of church hatred called Survivor Blogs. Chiefly, these are enemies of the church, who desire to fundamentally change the nature, structure and function of the church as Christ has built and designed it. Their ideology opposes:
- Biblical – and by that, I mean male – leadership. One survivor blog recently complained that Coral Ridge Presbyterian chose an all-male pulpit committee to replace their pastor. So that deserves a blog post, apparently. Because it’s a scandal and the “girls and women” need to be represented. [Insert a comment about Jesus and the terribly unrepresented female population of the early church, what with an all-male apostolate and all].
- Biblical – and by that, I mean authoritative – leadership. Quote Hebrews 13:17 and watch the weeping mascara and gnashing of cheap lipstick.
- Church Discipline. In the Survivor Blog worldview, discipline is to be used only to fire pastors and not fire members.
- Church Membership. That’s only how The Man wants to control you, don’t you know? We should be free-range Christians. And whatever you do, don’t sign a membership covenant. Good grief, you’re in a cult, probably.
In accomplishing their ideological ambitions, which is fundamentally anti-christ and counter-church, victimhood is the means to achieve their end. And this is done, unfortunately, at the harm of those actual and real victims of actual and real abuse that happens within religious communities.
For the record, there are ways in which abuse or neglect happen within local churches.
- Most obviously, there is sexual abuse perpetrated upon trusting church members or even children by clergy, like with Lifeway evangelist, Sammy Nuckles. And then, there’s the cover-up like with Darrel Gilyard.
- There is spiritual manipulation, like when Scriptures are twisted to squeeze an offering out of someone, like with Ronnie Floyd.
- There’s an abuse that happens when corruption is plainly covered up and people are deprived of information regarding that corruption in violation of biblical honesty and even secular laws regarding the governing of non-profits, like with Bob Reccord or Ergun Caner.
- There’s general scripture twisting, which is an abuse perpetrated upon both the Word of God and their hearers, as you commonly see with popular leaders like Perry Noble, who’s even been known to swear at his church for wanting better scriptural teaching.
- Then there’s the pretty basic cult-like behavior in which people are brainwashed to practically worship their leaders, like with Stephen Furtick.
Notice, all of these things have been discussed at length by Pulpit & Pen and other discernment or polemics ministries. We don’t like abuse, whether it’s perpetrated upon people or Scripture. And so, we expose it.
What so-called Survivor Blogs have amounted to, however, has been a systemized attack on the religion itself, and not those that do harm under the artificial cover of religion. Things characterized as abuse by this motley crew of agitators include…
- Encouraging reconciliation in marital relationship in light of the Gospel and the revealed will of God as seen in his written Word
- Offering restoration to abusers and other kinds of sinners (especially adulterers and fornicators) upon confession of sins and professed repentance
- Exercising discipline upon the unrepentant in accordance to strict Biblical protocol
- Anything less than militant egalitarianism in leadership and authority
Religious survivor blogs are particularly nefarious and demonstrably hell-spawned in their self-portrayal as like-minded conservative Christians who are merely (and innocently) trying to expose “abuse” in the church. When in fact, like all devilish deceits, their ideology seeks to dismantle every fiber of the church as we know it (and as Jesus built it) and replace it with something akin to what we might find if Rachel Held Evans wrote for the Huffington Post religion column.
Who loses in their pursuits are actual victims. Women have provenly been the greatest losers in the feminist revolution. The very social movement (supposedly) designed to free women has enslaved them to both family and career, and have turned them into both care providers and bread winners and saddled them with twice the yoke of bondage. Instead of freeing them, no-contest divorce laws have enslaved them to poverty and freed their now ex-husbands to a life of relative ease and comfort who for a fraction of a paycheck can have free sex and no parenting or spousal responsibilities. And now, the great prize of female ’emancipation’ is sending them into combat and if our politicians have their way, drafted into war. Congratulations.
How did the feminist revolution turn out so poorly? The true victims – battered women – were just pawns in an ideological war. Instead of making men accountable, it set them free to sin, but the Gloria Steinhems of the world didn’t care. Their only ambition was to topple God’s design for home and family, even if it meant saving victims only to throw them under their own bus for traction. Such is the Survivor Blog movement.
It is not good for victims for the Scripture to be re-written or ignored to avoid the shrill shriek of contentious women demanding conformity to an immoral age. Mark my words – victims are not created because the Scripture is followed too closely, but because it is not being followed at all. But that sentence is in stark contrast to the ideology of the Survivor Blogs.
This week, an anonymous account that exists to attack Pulpit & Pen in social media, attacked relentlessly a 16 year-old young man who has contributed articles to this website. I’ve made poor choices, and even sinned, in approaching people in a non-pastoral spirit who should not have been approached in social media. But even then, a handful of unwise interactions cannot compare to the type of beating and bullying this young man received. It was not an unwise or sinful moment. It was an orchestrated and soulless attack, the kind of which can only be done through the cloak of anonymity. And what were the Survivor Blogs doing? They were encouraging that anonymous bully’s behavior. They were doing the same thing Hillary Clinton did to her husband’s victims. Her sincerity for victims was no deeper than their personal usefulness to her.
Using abuse victims as cannon fodder in an ideological war is further abuse. Playing the victim to leverage power and attention is abuse, and in the long run, hurts real victims.
[Contributed by JD Hall]