A major expression of manhood manifests itself most Christmas mornings when dad, too smart and independent to bother with the directions accompanying Scott’s new toy, tosses them in the trash and begins the construction project employing his own superior knowhow. After all, why should men who don’t need to stop to ask for directions read them? Not only does dad manage to assemble Scott’s new toy (three hours later), but he displays his superiority by doing it with three or four parts left over. So what if it runs backwards.
Toys can be complicated, but the world, especially with its human occupants, can be substantially more difficult to put together so that it will function correctly. About a half-century ago America moved into the post-Christian era, throwing away God’s instructions and assembling our society in a way superior to the antiquated Christian approach.
Though we tend not to refer to this design as a “religion,” in effect that is what it is. I recall one of my classes at NYU in which religion was defined as anything having to do with “ultimate concerns.” Based on that definition, every society has a religion, those components to which it identifies as ultimate concerns.
What would that be for us?
I read an article recently which asserted, “For Western leaders, ‘human rights’ have become a kind of new religion.” In other words in Western countries “human rights” constitutes the one issue of ultimate concern—the one item in our doctrinal statement. In my book, Counterattack, I identify the sole doctrine of contemporary America as unconditional acceptance, which essentially expresses the same concept using different terms. By asserting that we should accept everyone unconditionally we in essence are saying that every human being has unlimited rights.
The human rights religion is an easy sell. You have a right to any sort of sexual orientation you choose, or to make up your own if you prefer. You have a right to discard the inconvenient outcomes of that sexual freedom. You have a right to enter our borders without documentation, and when you do you have a right to all the benefits that our country offers. Or, in terms of today’s news, if you are outraged because a white policeman shot an unarmed black man with his hands up, you have a right to riot and burn down homes and businesses, even if the narrative is not supported by the facts. Or using my template, you have a right to be accepted unconditionally as you indulge in all of these various behaviors.
One can see the superiority of this new religion that reduces the eight or 10 or 15 items on the traditional Christian doctrinal statement to one point. Like the dad on Christmas morning, they have parts left over. Their design must be superior.
Our new religion begins to run into problems, however, when one group in expressing their human rights violates the human rights of another group. The article I mentioned points out that the French government in its extreme care to protect the human rights of Muslims living in France has disregarded the human rights of non-Muslim French citizens.
We find our society encountering the same glitch not only with the Muslim issue (calling the Fort Hood shooting workplace violence) but in numerous other areas also. The right of transgender biological men to use women’s shower rooms violates the rights of the “rightful” female occupants. The quota system giving racial minorities the right to jobs conflicts with the rights of better qualified people who are rejected. The rights of women to unlimited sexual freedom conflicts with the right to life of the unborn baby.
How does our society’s new religion sort all that out? We come up with a pecking order, identifying whose rights receive priority. Recall the shooting by Omar Mateen at the gay nightclub in Orlando in which 50 people were killed and another 53 injured. Despite evidence to the contrary, the President and media bent over backwards to minimize the Muslim dimension of this massacre. In other words, in the pecking order gays must take a backseat to Muslims. The transgender bathroom issue reveals that the LGBT agenda takes precedence over the rights of women. In many ways our society assigns preference to women over men. At the bottom of the priority list we find unborn children who are granted no rights at all.
So we find that our new religion is not as uncomplicated as it first might appear, i.e. it entails more than merely granting human rights, extending unconditional acceptance, to everyone. Maybe some of those left over parts of Christianity that they discarded actually performed an important function.
The plot further thickens when we begin to ask who establishes and enforces the pecking order. Who asserts that the Fort Hood shooting was workplace violence or that the rights of transgender biological men supersede those of women and girls?
In those issues our President unilaterally determined and enforced those positions. Therefore, in essence what began as the religion of human rights turns out to be the religion of totalitarian dictatorship. The basis of our rights from a Christian perspective was verbalized in the Declaration of Independence with the assertion that all men are created equal and are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights. Under the human rights religion, we are endowed with certain rights by president Obama, which means that those rights now are in fact alienable—vulnerable to the whims of big brother.
Worst of all, this new religion is carrying our culture into chaos such as we have seen in Charlotte during the past several days.
Maybe we are not as smart as we thought we were. Perhaps we should root through the trash and find those instructions.