Republicans are far more likely than Democrats to be Christians according to decades of polling, and among those with no religious affiliation, 61% lean Democrat, the highest in over two decades of Pew surveys. Religious belief or lack of it drives worldview and thus political views in unalterably fundamental ways. And surprise: liberals are just as fundamentalist as Christians.
The division between the two factions on political issues is basically a war of the worldviews, getting daily more militant as their separation grows. This explains why the two sides differ so dramatically on life’s big questions: who are we, where did we come from, and where are we going.
It starts literally at the beginning. Christians believe God created man in his own image, “a little lower than the angels” but humanity has stumbled badly in turning away from God and can only be reunited with him through following the example of his perfect Son, Jesus Christ. God also gave man free will to make his own life decisions, and individual gifts which means taking responsibility for developing those talents in service to man and God.
But unbelievers think that all earthly life forms basically originated from rubbing together primitive organisms with water and striking them with lightning. No word on where the water, organic stuff and electricity came from. Nevermind. Because man developed by random mutations and survival of the fittest without any deity’s blueprint or blessing, humanity is essentially a result of evolutionary dice roll.
Minus God, man is the author of his own morality, and the fittest seize the crown allowing tyrants like Hitler, Stalin, Mao and Pol Pot to justify murdering 120 million of their fellow citizens for the “greater good” of the revolution. As an aimless bundle of cells buffeted about by haphazard environmental and genetic influences, man can’t ultimately be held accountable for his behavior because his actions are largely pre-determined by his DNA and his environment, not his free will.
President Obama in a recent garage podcast with a comedian hosting a show called WTF voiced liberal determinism when he said, “What is also true is that the legacy of slavery, Jim Crow, discrimination…that's still part of our DNA that's passed on. We're not cured of it.” Libs think we’re doomed by DNA.
This means that they’re more likely to view the disadvantaged as oppressed by circumstances beyond their control, be it limited education, profit-grubbing corporate taskmasters, or mean parents who spanked them. Conservatives, though, believe along with the Founding Fathers, that God has given everyone the power to pursue their own happiness, education and fulfillment through their individual efforts and abilities.
The very history of America disproves the liberals’ grim theories. Millions came here from European countries where their destinies were dictated for them by generations of family and class traditions. Rebels, they shattered the chains of determinism by taking a dangerous chance on a new nation that gave them the freedom to be whoever they wanted to be. Many became prosperous beyond their dreams as American free enterprise and opportunity allowed them to use their talents and determination to thrive.
My Swedish grandfather was one of them. Unhappily apprenticed to the butcher trade as a youngster, he shipped to America alone at age 15, arriving at Ellis Island speaking only Swedish. Though he had little education, he discovered he had mechanical abilities and eventually made a good living for his family as an engineer with a major elevator company. He and my grandmother (who also came here from Sweden in her teens, but on a different ship and worked as a maid until she married) adored this nation and saved their money to send their children to good colleges.
Studies by economists at Harvard and Berkeley have found that social/economic mobility in America hasn’t really changed in the last 50 years, and people tend to move up and down the economic scale as they always have despite increased welfare, food stamps and the Democrats hand-wringing about inequality. The biggest predictor of poverty and lack of mobility is the increasing problem of babies born out of wedlock mostly growing up fatherless -- over 40 percent in the population at large and over 70 percent in the black community.
Unmarried child-bearing was emphatically discouraged in my grandparents’ and parents’ era by such antique concepts as shame and guilt. It could be argued that banning shame and guilt has resulted in millions of Americans stuck in poverty.
Though Christians believe in helping truly disadvantaged Americans, they also think it’s largely up to individuals to choose through free will and good decision-making to change their lives. Democrats and unbelievers are convinced that only government aid can boost these helpless individuals up the harsh economic ladder.
Another disagreement between the religious and non-religious concerns the nature of man. Liberals, especially the radical greens, see humans as just another animal, but an animal infinitely more dangerous than the others because we are greedily exploiting and destroying our habitat, the Earth, by causing global warming. (Yet liberals manage to hold the paradoxical belief that man is basically good.) We humans certainly have a lot of power for random blobs of protoplasm.
But Christians lack the arrogance to believe man can control the planet’s temperature, any more than we can control floods, tornadoes, hurricanes or even predict next week’s weather. Despite Al Gore’s “An Inconvenient Truth” being exposed in British courts as packed with convenient lies, despite NASA scientists finding global temperatures have only increased 1.4 degrees Fahrenheit since 1880, despite the UN’s serious errors in predicting massive ice melt and other disasters, despite the fact (from the U.S. Geological Survey among others) that only .038 percent of earth’s atmosphere is actually carbon dioxide, liberals insist that carbon fuels must be eradicated to save the earth. Since those fuels drive economic prosperity both here and in desperately poor countries, “progressives” are in the most basic sense anti-progress.
Christians know that God makes provision for his creation, in ways largely unremarked upon. Such as how much of the earth’s surface provides a free, all-you-can-eat buffet for the herbivores that depend on it, while those animals in turn supply the carnivores with entrees. And all this bounty happened purely by accident! Could it be that God planned the dinosaurs to live and die to give us humans the carbon we need to run civilization, thereby improving our lives? What a crazy idea – that God actually wants the best for us.
Or consider the millions of deep marine microbes that went to work after the EXXON oil spill, actually devouring the gooky stuff, an everyday miracle that mostly escaped notice. According to Terry Hazen, lead author of the report in Science, “This is the only carbon source they have so naturally they’ve become adapted to using this well.” Well, naturally. But how do tiny organisms become “adapted” to gobbling floods of oil by the random process of trial and error that is evolution, without direction from a higher consciousness? Nevermind.
We can expect liberals’ continuing panic over “climate change” that has been occurring naturally through the eons, because woe finds a willing ear among those who refuse to believe that God, not man, is the overseer of the creation. Liberals look around the earth and try to change it. Christians, though also concerned with preserving and protecting the environment, say, “The earth is the Lord's, and the fullness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein.” Psalm 24:1