Viewers and readers can sense that reporters don't believe in the superiority of Western ideals. They are relativists who don't believe in the moral superiority of anything, with the potential exception of themselves. They see love of country as a primitive notion not to be embraced by the enlightened. They believe that Americans espousing their political ideals on the world stage is the most oafish expression of bad manners.
This same relativism is extended to love of God, particularly when the subject is Christianity. Thus, it becomes controversial in the eyes of the press when Christian aid groups land in Iraq to offer not just food and medicine, but the gospel of Jesus. The underlying supposition is that Christian proselytizing is an affront to the Islamic world. But if that's true, why isn't Islamic proselytizing in America just as much an affront to Christianity?
Steve Waldman, a former Newsweek reporter and Clinton aide who now runs Beliefnet.com, even asserts that what Franklin Graham's group, Samaritan's Purse, is planning -- sharing the gospel with the aid -- is "immoral." That's not even Waldman's worst: Beliefnet posted an interview with Rev. Graham followed by an April 2 column from Waldman. The piece ran under a banner headline, "Who Does Bush Fear More?" accompanied by photos of Franklin Graham ... and Saddam.
This has to be one of the dumbest journalistic questions of all time. (Beliefnet must agree, because when World magazine exposed it, they pulled it off their Web site.) It is also so enlightening. It illustrates the worldview of a journalism community mired in the quicksand of moral relativism, where the anchors of the American experiment -- love of freedom, love of God -- are to be viewed at all times with the greatest of skepticism.