On Easter Sunday, April 21, Sri Lanka suffered a devastating series of mass bombings that resulted in almost 300 casualties, including many international citizens as well. The attacks were carried out by a domestic radical Islamist terrorist organization with ties to ISIS, who later claimed responsibility and claimed that the attack was “retaliation for the Christchurch massacre,” which occurred this past March when a white supremacist opened fire and murdered over 50 people in a New Zealand mosque. The Sri Lanka bombings indicated that while the ground war against ISIS in the Middle East is effectively over, the organization still has the lethal capability to strike in the form of lone wolf attacks.
As the entire world mourned, leaders in the United States also sent their condolences to the victims of this act of hatred. President Donald Trump tweeted his support for the people of Sri Lanka, highlighting the violence against Christian worshippers on the holiest day in Christianity. Plenty of other political leaders also sent their best wishes as well, including Vice President Mike Pence, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-California). However, what was so strange was the cold and callous reaction of many top Democrat leaders towards this tragedy.
Former President Obama tweeted his thoughts and prayers for the “Easter worshippers” in Sri Lanka. Former Secretary of State and 2016 presidential candidate Hillary Clinton almost mirrored his response word for word, using the same exact term: “Easter worshippers.” Pretty soon other top Democrats, including former secretary of Housing and Urban Development and 2020 presidential candidate Julian Castro and current Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, followed suit using the exact same terminology.
What is so particularly mind-boggling and offensive about this purposeful omittance of the victims’ Christian identity is the illuminating juxtaposition of these remarks with the ones made by these same Democrats in the wake of the horrific massacre of Muslims in New Zealand just over a month ago. During that occasion, Obama, Clinton, Castro and Pelosi all made sure to condemn the “murder of Muslims” in their official statements and tweets. Notice how none of these same Democrats ever coined the term “Ramadan worshippers” to describe the Muslim victims of white supremacy.
The same exact characteristic can be said of the immediate response to the horrific anti-Semitic attack on a Jewish synagogue in Poway, California just over a week ago, also by a white supremacist. Again, national Democrats including Obama, Biden, Clinton and Pelosi all made absolutely certain to highlight the Jewish identity of the victims of the terrorist attack.
Democrats seem to cherry-pick which terrorist attacks to care about and which attacks to ignore. If the attack was carried out by a white supremacist or neo-Nazi, for instance, then Democrats are up in arms about the ferocity of the attack, since white supremacists and neo-Nazis are on the “far-right.” But if the attack is carried out by radical Islamist groups, suddenly there’s a stronger hesitance to call it out for what it is since, after all, Democrats are terrified of losing their massive support from American Muslim voters. The irony is, the vast majority of American Muslims are equally, if not more disgusted by the behavior of radical Islamists who are purposefully misinterpreting the Quran, and wouldn’t actually be offended at all if Democrats correctly called out radical Islamic terrorism for the evil that it is.
Similarly, when it comes to Christianity, Democrats have a very hostile relationship with this demographic cohort. A solid majority of Christians in America consistently vote for the Republican Party over the Democrat Party, primarily because of issues such as abortion and religious freedom. Additionally, American Christians tend to care far more about the plight of Christian minorities in the Middle East, where they continue to suffer tremendous abuse at the hands of local governments. According to several major studies, Christians, not Muslims or Jews, are the most persecuted religious group in the world. Yet according to the rhetoric coming out of the Democratic Party today, you would think that Christians are the most privileged religious group in the world.
There are a plethora of reasons why Democrats continue to exhibit insensitivity towards the Christian community both in America and in the rest of the world. However, at the end of the day, it really comes down to two main issues: policies and votes. The fact that the majority of American Christians are pro-life, oppose forcing bakeries or florists to officiate gay weddings and support the religious freedom of churches and Christian non-profits to opt out of funding birth control or abortifacients is entirely contrary to the Democratic Party’s platform of total secularism and emphasizing leftist ideology over religious freedoms.
Additionally, as the party moves further to the left on issues such as identity politics, especially with the current obsession in the Democratic presidential primaries to nominate a candidate from a “minority group,” is particularly off-putting to Christians, since they are always portrayed as being in the majority and experiencing “privilege.” This collective mindset is unhealthy and ultimately destructive to the social fabric of the nation, as it seeks to assess the value and worth of a citizen not by their deeds or actions, but rather by their cultural identities from a position of victimhood mentality, in which the history of your cultural or ethnic identity determines the amount of sympathy you deserve.
Democrats need to understand that the vast majority of Americans are and will continue to be proud Christians. Even within the church, there remains a diverse array of political viewpoints on hot-topic issues like abortion and religious freedom. However, Democrats must exercise a basic modicum of respect towards the Christian community. Ignoring the obvious Christophobia they face, especially in areas not traditionally part of the Western world, is totally unacceptable if America continues to claim to be the beacon of human rights and freedom for all. And most importantly, while we can all have peaceful and civil disagreements on political issues and choose to vote for the opposing party, that is never a reason to completely deny the pain and suffering of the Christian community.