Contributed by Barry Dorman
According to Atlantic magazine (April 2017), growing secularization in our culture has led, perhaps surprisingly, to greater rather than less intolerance, polarization and incivility. From 1992 to 2014 the proportion of those having no religious affiliation rose from 6% to 22% (35% among millennials). The percentage of white Republicans with no religious affiliation tripled since 1990. To quote from the article:
"Trump does best among evangelicals with one key trait: They don't really go to church."
"When cultural conservatives disengage from organized religion, they tend to redraw the boundaries of identity, de-emphasizing morality and religion and emphasizing race and nation."
Continuing to quote:
"Secularization is transforming the Left too. In 1990, slightly more than half of white liberals seldom or never attended religious services. Today the proportion is 73 percent."
"African Americans under thirty are three times as likely to eschew a religious affiliation as (those) over fifty. The black church has been abandoned as the leadership model for this generation."
Reformists like Nelson Mandela and Martin Luther King, Jr. focus on persuading and forgiving those in power. Revolutionaries don't.
This is discouraging news for those interested in dialogue, discussion and civil conversation and does not bode well for the future. Is there anything you or I can do about it? Very possibly and here's how:
A group calling itself, Inklings, meets monthly in a home in order to delve into matters of faith and culture. We use the writings of C.S. Lewis as the basis for discussion as well as those of G.K.Chesterton, George MacDonald, J.R.R. Tolkien and others. There are only a few of us at present but we welcome all, no matter their denominational background or church affiliation or non-affiliation.
If you are interested in thoughtful conversation among kindred spirits, contact Barry Dorman at firstname.lastname@example.org.