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When Christians become a 'hated minority'
Evangelical Christians say they are the new victims of intolerance - they're persecuted for condemning homosexuality.
May 5th, 2013
06:00 AM ET

When Christians become a 'hated minority'

By John Blake, CNN

(CNN) - When Peter Sprigg speaks publicly about his opposition to homosexuality, something odd often happens.

During his speeches, people raise their hands to challenge his assertions that the Bible condemns homosexuality, but no Christians speak out to defend him.

“But after it is over, they will come over to talk to me and whisper in my ear, ‘I agree with everything you said,’" says Sprigg, a spokesman for The Family Research Council, a powerful, conservative Christian lobbying group.

We’ve heard of the “down-low” gay person who keeps his or her sexual identity secret for fear of public scorn. But Sprigg and other evangelicals say changing attitudes toward homosexuality have created a new victim: closeted Christians who believe the Bible condemns homosexuality but will not say so publicly for fear of being labeled a hateful bigot.

As proof, Sprigg points to the backlash that ESPN commentator Chris Broussard sparked recently. Broussard was called a bigot and a purveyor of hate speech when he said an NBA player who had come out as gay was living in “open rebellion to God.” Broussard said the player, Jason Collins, was “living in unrepentant sin” because the Bible condemns homosexuality.

“In the current culture, it takes more courage for someone like Chris Broussard to speak out than for someone like Jason Collins to come out,” says Sprigg, a former pastor. “The media will hail someone who comes out of the closet as gay, but someone who simply expresses their personal religious views about homosexual conduct is attacked.”

When is disagreement hate?

Bryan Litfin, a theology professor at Moody Bible Institute in Illinois, says Christians should be able to publicly say that God designed sex to take place within a marriage between a man and a woman.

“That isn’t so outrageous,” Litfin says. “Nobody is expressing hate toward homosexuals by saying that. Since when is disagreement the same as hate?”

But quoting the Bible doesn't inoculate anyone from becoming a bigot or hater, some scholars say. There's a point at which a Christian's opposition to homosexuality can become bigotry, and even hate speech, they say.

Crossing such a line has happened many times in history.

A literal reading of the Bible was used to justify all sorts of hatred: slavery, the subjugation of women and anti-Semitism, scholars and pastors say.

“Truly damaging speech cannot be excused just because it expresses genuine religious belief,” says Mark D. Jordan, author of “Recruiting Young Love: How Christians Talk about Homosexuality.”

“Some religious beliefs, sincerely held, are detestable. They cannot be spoken without disrupting social peace,” says Jordan, a professor at the John Danforth Center on Religion & Politics at Washington University in St. Louis.

The point where religious speech becomes hate speech is difficult to define, though, scholars and activists say.

The Southern Poverty Law Center in Alabama is a nonprofit civil rights group that combats and monitors hate groups. Three years ago, it designated the Family Research Council, the group that Sprigg represents, as a hate group - a characterization the group stridently rejects.

Mark Potok,  a center spokesman, says there’s no shared definition of what constitutes hate speech.

“There is no legal meaning. It’s just a phrase,” Potok says. “Hate speech is in the ear of the beholder.”

'One of the most hated minorities?'

Intolerance may be difficult to define, but some evangelicals say they have become victims of intolerance because of their reverence for the Bible.

The conservative media culture is filled with stories about evangelicals being labeled as “extremists” for their belief that homosexuality is a sin.

Their sense of persecution goes beyond their stance on homosexuality. There are stories circulating of evangelical students being suspended for opposing homosexuality, a teacher fired for giving a Bible to a curious student, and the rise of anti-Christian bigotry.

A blogger at The American Dream asked in one essay:

“Are evangelical Christians rapidly becoming one of the most hated minorities in America?”

The reluctance of evangelicals to speak out against homosexuality is often cited as proof they are being forced into the closet.

Joe Carter, editor for The Gospel Coalition, an online evangelical magazine, wrote a blog post entitled “Debatable: Is the Christian Church a ‘Hate Group’?" He warned that young people will abandon “orthodox” Christian churches that teach that homosexuality is a sin for fear of being called haters.

“Faux civility, embarrassment, prudishness and a fear of expressing an unpopular opinion has caused many Christians to refrain from explaining how homosexual conduct destroys lives,” Carter wrote.

Some Christians fear that opposing homosexuality could cause them to lose their jobs and “haunt them forever,” Carter says.

“It’s easier to just go along,” says Carter, who is also author of “How to Argue Like Jesus.” “You don’t want to be lumped in with the bigots. That’s a powerful word."

Edward Johnson, a communication professor at Campbell University in North Carolina, says we are now living in a "postmodern" era where everything is relative and there is no universally accepted truth. It's an environment in which anyone who says "this is right" and "that is wrong" is labeled intolerant, he says.

There was a time when a person could publicly say homosexuality was wrong and people could consider the statement without anger, he says. Today, people have reverted to an intellectual tribalism where they are only willing to consider the perspective of their own tribe.

“They are incapable of comprehending that someone may have a view different than theirs,” Johnson says. “For them anyone who dares to question the dogma of the tribe can only be doing so out of hatred.”

Sprigg, from the Family Research Council, says his condemnation of homosexual conduct does not spring from intolerance but a desire to protect gays from harmful conduct, he says.

Sprigg, a senior fellow for policy studies at the council, wrote in a council pamphlet that homosexual men are more likely to engage in child sexual abuse than are straight men. He also wrote that gay men are also afflicted with a higher rate of sexually transmitted diseases and mental illness as well.

Sprigg says he does not believe homosexuality is a choice and that “personal testimonies" and "clinical experience” show that some people “can and do change from gay to straight.”

“Maybe we need to do a better job of showing that we are motivated by Christian love,” Sprigg says. “Love is wanting the best for someone, and acting to bring that about.”

'That's a lie'

Potok, from the Southern Poverty Law Center, has little use for the love Sprigg talks about.

He calls it hatred, and his voice rose in anger when he talked about the claims by Sprigg and other Christian groups that gay men are more predisposed to molest children and that homosexual behavior is inherently harmful.

He says the Southern Poverty Law Center didn’t designate the Family Research Group a hate group because they view homosexuality as a sin or oppose same-sex marriage, Potok says. There are plenty of Christian groups who hold those beliefs but are not hate groups, he says.

A group becomes a hate group when it attacks and maligns an entire class of people for their “immutable characteristics,” Potok says. The Family Research Council spreads known falsehoods about gays and lesbians, he says, such as the contention that gay men are predisposed to abuse children.

“That’s a lie,” Potok says. “These guys are engaging in straight-up defamation of a very large group of people. There are not many things much worse than you can say in America about somebody than they are a child molester.”

Potok scoffed at Spriggs’ claim that the council and other evangelical anti-gay groups are victims of intolerance.

“That’s whining on the part of people who spend their days and nights attacking gay people and then some people criticize them and they don’t like it,” he says. “That’s pathetic. It reminds me of slave owners complaining that people are saying ugly things about them.”

What the Bible says

What about the popular evangelical claim, “We don’t hate the sinner, just the sin” – is that seen as intolerance or hate speech when it comes to homosexuality?

There are those who say you can’t hate the sin and love the sinner because being gay or lesbian is defined by one’s sexual behavior; it’s who someone is.

“Most people who identify as gay and lesbian would say that this is not an action I’m choosing to do; this is who I am,” says Timothy Beal, author of “The Rise and Fall of the Bible: The Unexpected History of an Accidental Book.”

Beal, a religion professor at Case Western University in Ohio, says it should be difficult for any Christian to unequivocally declare that the Bible opposes homosexuality because the Bible doesn’t take a single position on the topic. It's an assertion that many scholars and mainline Protestant pastors would agree with.

Some people cite Old Testament scriptures as condemning homosexuality, such as  Leviticus 18:22 - “If a man lies with a male as with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination.” But other Christians counter by saying they are not bound by the Old Testament.

There are those who also cite New Testament scriptures like Romans 1:26-27 - “… Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men. …”

Beal, however, says Jesus said little about sex. And the Apostle Paul, who wrote Romans, was probably referring to male prostitution and men having sexual relations with boys, a practice in the Greco-Roman world.

“Paul does not understand genetics and sexual orientation the way we understand it now as something much more than a choice,” says Beal.

Some evangelicals say Christians can’t change their view of biblical truth just because times change. But some scholars reply:

Sure you can. Christians do it all the time.

Denying a woman’s ability to preach in church was justified by scriptures like 1 Timothy 2:11-12 - “… I do not permit a woman to teach or to assume authority over a man; she must be quiet.” But many churches have abandoned that teaching - and some scholars say a woman preached the first Christian sermon, when Mary Magdalene proclaimed that Jesus had risen.

Slaveholders in 19th century America justified slavery through a literal reading of the Bible, quoting Titus 2:9-10 – “Teach slaves to be subject to their masters in everything. …” And anti-Semitism was justified by the claims that Jews killed Jesus, such as Matthew 27: 25-26 - “Let his blood be on us and on our children.”

Litfin, from Moody Bible Institute, acknowledged that the Bible once sanctioned slavery, but he said that practice was a “cultural expression” that changed over time. Evangelicals who oppose same-sex marriage by citing the Bible are on more solid ground, he says.

“Marriage is a universal and timeless institution that God set up for maximum human flourishing. He set it up in the first book of the Bible with the story of Adam and Eve. It is consistent throughout the whole Bible. … Marriage is in a different category than those cultural things.”

Public jousts over the Bible's stance on homosexuality rarely change people’s minds. What changes is when people get to know gay and lesbian people as friends and hear their story, says Beal, author of “The Rise and Fall of the Bible.”

“If you open up to that other person genuinely, you basically come to a point where you have to sacrifice them to your ideology or crack open your ideology to make a hospitable place for them,” Beal says.

One Christian pastor who is gay says the uproar over the ESPN commentator’s comments can actually be good,  because debates help settle moral disputes.

“What appears to us as antiquated and prejudicial now was once a disputed issue that required debate,” says the Rev. Richard McCarty, a minister in the United Church of Christ and a religious studies professor at Mercyhurst University in Pennsylvania.

Until the debate over homosexuality is settled - if it ever is - there may be plenty of evangelical Christians who feel as if they are now being forced to stay in the closet.

Carter, the evangelical blogger, says he foresees a day when any church that preaches against homosexuality will be marginalized. Just as many churches now accept divorce, they will accept sexual practices once considered sinful.

“It’s getting to the point,” he says, “where churches are not going to say that any sexual activity is wrong.”

- CNN Writer

Filed under: Belief • Bible • Christianity • Church • Church and state • Culture wars • Protest • Sex • Sexuality • Sports

soundoff (10,982 Responses)
  1. bmonteith

    They are not a minority. Just not every Christian needs to wear it on their sleeve. And to answer the question, shortly after they decided to affiliate with one party. And lets not be too full of ourselves, Americans. One party in one country.

    June 2, 2013 at 9:12 am |
  2. prgmr6

    Nothing against Christians, but ppl are so tired of the hypocrisy. Time to answer for your hypocrisy, you are not loving understandable ppl, you are judgmental and hypocritical. You will learn to live in this time, not 2000 years ago. If that means running off to Montana or Texas, so be it.

    June 2, 2013 at 8:45 am |
  3. John

    The closet's got to have somebody in it. Now it the evangelical's turn. Can't think of a better group to go in.

    June 2, 2013 at 7:45 am |
    • lol??

      A&A's are great at makin' refugees.

      June 10, 2013 at 7:16 am |
  4. starhopper

    Considering how long the white, protestant "Christians" in this country have loudly fought and persecuted those who don't meet their litmus test, it's about time they themselves felt how it feels to be unable to speak out for fear of being labled a "radical" or "evil"

    Whether it was slavery, women's suffrage, divorce, women in the work force, gays, etc, they have consistently cited their Bibles to hold back others who do not agree with their world view. And, they have always been on the losing side of the argument.

    FINALLY, the scales are tipping against them and it's high time. It make me very sad, as I find that there is a great deal of good to be had in living a life of faith. I called myself a Christian for 40 yrs, but that term has been hijacked by nutjobs and idiots who claim to be Christian, but are anything but. I therefore no longer associate with the term "Christian" here in the US as it doesn't mane what it used to.

    June 2, 2013 at 7:43 am |
    • Science

      Evolution CREATED US..........not a fairy in the sky !

      How did feathers evolve? – Carl Zimmer

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=hPLgfGX1I5Y

      June 2, 2013 at 8:17 am |
      • Constantin Chicioroaga

        Constantin Chicioroaga traianch2005@mail.ru
        I love every day and night on several occasions his partner Stephen, we get along very well, and even think to register our relationship and adopt a few children in Germany! We live in a free country, and we want to build their lives freely in a modern way, so we do not care about all of you and what you think of us – WE ARE GAY AND PROUD OF IT!

        November 13, 2013 at 6:02 pm |
    • JudyB

      I could not agree with you more. Evangelicals are a stain on Christianity.

      June 2, 2013 at 10:52 am |
  5. Cosmo

    I wish my religious minority was "hated" the way Christians are in this country. I would be thrilled if the only think my people had to deal with over the march of history was a few snide comments. This article just shows how much power, authority, and cultural strength Christians have – that if they don't get EXACTLY what they want, they see it as hatred. You guys have no idea what its like to be on the outside looking in, even in a country that tolerates you. It's so unbelievable silly when Christians say a "war on Christmas" exists because people now say "happy holidays" – Oh the humanity, how will you ever survive...My people have had to actually endure real wars directed against us.

    By the way, when I speak of Christians in this article, its a somewhat ambiguous term that does not include everyone who practices the religion, but the intersection of religious faith, political push and cultural relevance. Think Fox news...

    June 2, 2013 at 7:28 am |
  6. Joke

    In the end, people will move and live where they are comfortable. All the Christians can go an live in Oklahoma, where the weather will seem like the End Times.

    June 2, 2013 at 7:18 am |
  7. doesnotgiveaflip

    Life's to short for me to really give a flip about christians OR gays since I am neither. I hold no resentment to you, I JUST. DONT. CARE.

    June 2, 2013 at 7:05 am |
  8. John

    These people that think being gay is wrong yet sit around and say nothing when Christians are persecuted for speaking the truth about this ought to be worried about their souls. Jesus Christ said in Luke 9:26 "Whoever is ashamed of me and my words, the Son of Man will be ashamed of them when he comes in his glory and in the glory of the Father and of the holy angels." In Mathew 5:17 He also said ""Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them."

    June 2, 2013 at 3:43 am |
    • Science

      hey John

      No horn-y 666 beast never has been..........we live........... pay taxes............. and die..............death below .

      Ancient Egyptians Accessorized With Meteorites...........death...............depleted carbon ........stony irons = carbon

      May 30, 2013 — Researchers at The Open University (OU) and The University of Manchester have found conclusive proof that Ancient Egyptians used meteorites to make symbolic accessories for their dead.

      http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/05/130530094635.htm

      June 2, 2013 at 7:22 am |
    • AaaaCccc

      Which was fulfilled in Christ. He summed up the entire Law as "Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength, and love your neighbor as yourself."
      I see the most power in those Christians who focus their ministry on helping whoever are the unloved and untouchables in society. That is when I see miracles start, conversions en masse. Those who focus on condemnation and arguing over the Law are like the Pharisees of old, missing the point. We will be judged as we judge others. The example I see was the early church preaching Good News, forgiveness, and Love. The sinners loved to be near Christ. Do they love to be near you? Not spending their days holding signs to condemn people.

      June 2, 2013 at 10:23 am |
  9. Science

    Bono at TED 2013: Eradicating extreme poverty doesn’t have to be a dream

    http://www.one.org/us/shareworthy/bono-at-ted?gclid=CIGe8cj4w7cCFcye4AodlFIAnw

    June 1, 2013 at 7:22 pm |
  10. 4ormorechars

    It's really quite simple, judge not yet ye be judged.

    June 1, 2013 at 7:18 pm |
    • Science

      Hey 4ormorechars ........wroth sharing !

      Biggest JOKE under the SUN.................NO heaven or horn-y red devil..........never has been !

      Heaven for atheists? Pope sparks debate

      By Dan Merica, CNN

      http://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2013/05/23/heaven-for-atheists-pope-sparks-debate/comment-page-43/#comment-2372761

      http://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2013/05/21/vatican-pope-didnt-perform-exorcism/#comments\

      http://legalnews.findlaw.com/article/0bj7cdy2zIcqA?q=law+OR+lawsuit+OR+legal+OR+%28court+AND+law%29

      PS Do a simple search for Prof. Higgs.............the church hates that = True Comedy Gold !

      And worth sharing RCC !

      Bono at TED 2013: Eradicating extreme poverty doesn’t have to be a dream

      http://www.one.org/us/shareworthy/bono-at-ted?gclid=CIGe8cj4w7cCFcye4AodlFIAnw

      June 1, 2013 at 8:10 pm |
    • John

      The Bible also say "judge just judgements." hatred of Christians is rampant now and it's done by people that certainly have no problem judging others. The judge not thing isn't part of their belief system. These non believers quote scripture with the same nasty snark that the Nazi's used to use when taking it out of context to justify torturing Jews. Christ also said "anyone who is ashamed of me and my words, I will be ashamed of him on judgement day," and " I have no come to abolish the law but rather to fulfill it." I notice that the hate Chrisrianity crowd never brings up these scriptures, it's easy to see why, it dosent serve their propaganda. It shouldn't be forgotten though that people that hate religious people and take scripture out of context to produce propaganda to persecute them aren't good people, and they certainly aren't above judgement as they would like to claim.

      June 2, 2013 at 3:18 am |
  11. BuleriaChk@aol.com

    You can't be saved if you ARE a Catholic. Do the math. Or the physics. Or the biology. Or the anthropology. Or the philosophy, Or the chemisty. Hey, or even pot. Just don't waste your time and life on religion......

    June 1, 2013 at 4:57 pm |
    • Constantin Chicioroaga

      Constantin Chicioroaga traianch2005@mail.ru
      I love every day and night on several occasions his partner Stephen, we get along very well, and even think to register our relationship and adopt a few children in Germany! We live in a free country, and we want to build their lives freely in a modern way, so we do not care about all of you and what you think of us – WE ARE GAY AND PROUD OF IT!

      November 13, 2013 at 6:03 pm |
  12. john

    Hated minority? When did 80-90% become a minority??

    I don't know of anyone who hates Christians. I know a lot of people who are sick of Baptists who claim that all other Christians (including different types of Baptists) are going to hell. Or Catholics who say Protestants are going to hell. Or Protestants who say all Catholics are going to hell. Or evangelicals who say that everyone except the 25 people in their church is going to hell.

    I also don't hear anyone demanding that the civil rights of Christians be taken away or limited, but I do sometimes hear Christians saying that the right of certain people should be taken away.

    When these more vocal, boisterous Christian groups begin spending more time feeding the humble and the weak, and less time condemning everyone who doesn't agree with their own particular brand of Christianity, they will start getting more respect.

    June 1, 2013 at 4:29 pm |
    • Matthew Crockett

      You're exactly right about those small groups that make up the Religious Right. For years they've purposely acted as if they are the only "real" Christians and denied the faith of every one of us non-fundamentalist Christians in this country. The worst part is how they misuse the word "freedom" to mean the right to persecute other people and scream about a War on Religion whenever anyone actually speaks up and opposes them. I'll be glad if they Do fade out because it will leave more room for people who actually Follow Jesus' teaching to do God's work.

      June 1, 2013 at 10:42 pm |
  13. The Original Wayward Ramblings

    So it's okay for anti-Christian groups, whoever they may be, to speak freely, but whenever someone wishes to express the tenets of their CHRISTIAN faith openly, which is what this country was founded on, then that's "hate speech." I use Christian in caps because no other religion is as persecuted here in our own country. This CNN "Belief Blog" is just a thinly veiled space for the usual moral relativism that liberals cling to. You know, like the rest of us cling to our religion and guns.

    June 1, 2013 at 4:01 pm |
  14. danielwalldammit

    It's a sad sad day when professional bigots must face social pressure to change. Poor things! How will they ever survive a world that doesn't bow to their malice and kiss their hateful feet?

    June 1, 2013 at 2:14 pm |
  15. Pantheist

    What would the world be like if people minded their own business and stayed out of other people's lives? It would be a different world than the hateful one we live in now!

    June 1, 2013 at 1:31 pm |
  16. Science

    By the way faith evolution gave you the brain............OK and se-x was needed back then .

    Hey all creationists ...........chadie too....the truth below !

    The fairy in the sky DID NOT create US !

    Ancient life...............3.5 billion years ago.............NO god(s) or horn-y red devil (666 the beast) never has been

    Disappearance of Stromatolites, Earliest Visible Manifestation of Life: Ancient Enigma Solved?

    May 28, 2013 — The widespread disappearance of stromatolites, the earliest visible manifestation of life on Earth, may have been driven by single-celled organisms called foraminifera.

    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/05/130528143756.htm

    +

    The University of Sydney.........................geology..............the dirt guys.

    Precious opal veinlets in a sandstone from central Australia.

    News

    Answer to opal mystery shows Red Centre's links to Red Planet

    31 May 2013

    The dramatic geological events that created opal, Australia's national gemstone, have been described for the first time by a University of Sydney researcher.

    http://sydney.edu.au/news/84.html?newsstoryid=11678

    + the damn fossils ..............works better than the BIBLE !

    Scientists Recover Wooly Mammoth Blood ..................cloning could happen maybe

    Posted by Soulskill on Wednesday May 29, 2013 @01:52PM
    from the wooly-mammoth-vampires-very-excited dept.

    http://science.slashdot.org/story/13/05/29/1712242/scientists-recover-wooly-mammoth-blood

    New study restores famed fossil to "bird" branch

    Wednesday May 29, 2013 | Alicia Chang for The Associated Press

    http://www.newsdaily.com/article/04243837283ffd8f533a0cf41d35cd27/new-study-restores-famed-fossil-to-bird-branch

    AND chadie has a link on Bing

    Quarterback's next play: Going long with the Bible – CNN Belief ...

    religion.blogs.cnn.com/2013/02/01/quarterbacks-next-play-going...

    Feb 01, 2013 · Since we've got Chad buybull ... Jurassic Park came out. Now that it has been found, ... You have nothing but a 2000 year old stone age book written ...

    AND

    All creationists...............a turtle.............but is it to old to have come from the ark ?

    Or chad crawled into his shell on the ark and finally found his way out .............you know chad ?

    The mystery of how the turtle got its shell has finally been solved by scientists studying a 260-million-year-old fossil.

    Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/scientists-have-figured-out-how-the-turtle-got-its-unique-hard-shell-2013-5#ixzz2UspYoTOm

    Prehistoric Park : T-Rex Returns – Episode 1

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KFcoGAMsQfE

    Remember chad........... the talking donkey you like so much might of chewed on that BONE.............that created eve.

    Chomp Chomp.............make sure to look up creationists for the next big chondrite and

    Crickets at the swamp............. are gone this time of year ............but the ticks are out.

    http://www.consumerfinance.gov/paying-for-college/compare-financial-aid-and-college-cost/?utm_source=turner&utm_medium=adcouncil_banner&utm_campaign=pfc_graphs

    June 1, 2013 at 1:06 pm |
    • Constantin Chicioroaga

      Constantin Chicioroaga traianch2005@mail.ru
      I love every day and night on several occasions his partner Stephen, we get along very well, and even think to register our relationship and adopt a few children in Germany! We live in a free country, and we want to build their lives freely in a modern way, so we do not care about all of you and what you think of us – WE ARE GAY AND PROUD OF IT!

      November 13, 2013 at 6:04 pm |
  17. lwhardin

    I think that anyone with common sense will see that this statement, coupled with the current social landscape proves the hypocrisy of those who use the bible to condemn their fellow man:
    "A literal reading of the Bible was used to justify all sorts of hatred: slavery, the subjugation of women and anti-Semitism, scholars and pastors say."

    As we know, women have equal rites. Slavery is over. Furthermore, we do not kill our children for disobedience. The more that religious society has changed over the centuries makes it clear that the "word of god" is not taken seriously by those who use it to promote hatred of someone based upon their placement of their genitalia in proximity to another's.

    I for one can not wait until some glorious point in the future when churches are denied tax exemption and treated like the businesses that they are. Maybe then, we can finally get over the myth and get on with the gift.2

    June 1, 2013 at 9:40 am |
    • mtcreek

      Right on!! Religion is the root of all evil & the cause of all wars. Brainwashing for money & power. The book called the "Bible" is the most violent ever written, many killers including "Hitler" have been under the brainwashing of this book & have used its commands to practice its evil upon mankind. Religious cults have no place in Boy Scouts, school, work or government, they are large corporations making billions of tax free dollars & spending very little on charity etc.

      June 1, 2013 at 11:08 am |
  18. mark

    Whining self serving nonsense. "Christians" LOVE the idea of being "persecuted"...makes them feel special somehow. You know, maybe if you shut up and RESPECTED the views of others, people would think better of you...but I'm not expecting that any time soon.

    June 1, 2013 at 9:23 am |
  19. Quincy

    Aw, de po', po' Christians! Vile bigots and hatemongers, the lot of them – and now THEY complain about being victims? Gimme a break!

    June 1, 2013 at 8:12 am |
    • William

      I do not read this portion of CNN often due to my eagerness to respond to the hate and opposition to Christianity. Why post a response when it only fuels the flame so to speak for intolerance. My question is what ground do we on if everything is allowed and accepted?

      June 1, 2013 at 11:10 am |
  20. J.F.

    So as a Christian, I'm now a "hated minority" because people have stopped putting up with Christians saying offensive things about other people? Come on, CNN. This is completely ridiculous. I guess racists are now the objects of discrimination because of their beliefs, too. Give me a break! I'm very glad I can go to church every week without having to hear all that anti-everybody-else crap being spouted from the pulpit.

    June 1, 2013 at 3:10 am |
    • Science

      Hey JF........... the truth below.

      Ancient life...............3.5 billion years ago.............NO god(s) or horn-y red devil never has been

      Disappearance of Stromatolites, Earliest Visible Manifestation of Life: Ancient Enigma Solved?

      May 28, 2013 — The widespread disappearance of stromatolites, the earliest visible manifestation of life on Earth, may have been driven by single-celled organisms called foraminifera.

      http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/05/130528143756.htm

      June 1, 2013 at 6:15 am |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.