Comments on an article, because there’s so much more to say on the topic.
By Emma Rosenthal
When an article was recently posted on Christian “Privilege” and then circulated on Facebook, I added a few of my own observations and experiences. I kept coming back to the article to as more and more examples of Christian entitlement came to me. So I decided it was time to put them into my own list.
This sort of bigotry is very much rooted in white supremacy, manifest destiny, imperialism and conquest. This isn’t really about “faith”, as the article that inspired my list, suggests. It’s very much about culture and domination. Christian privilege extends to secular life and nonreligious practices. The article itself embodies Christian privilege, in asserting that non-Christians’ faith is the subject of marginalization. One often does not escape these marginalizing attitudes simply by converting. Often persecution is cross generational, ethnic and racialized.
1. Tests, classes, schedules, the beginning of the school year, programs will be considered in scheduling in academic calendars so as not to conflict with your holidays and important events.
2. Negative opinions of your faith aren’t translated into actual policy or institutions that limit you or your access to opportunities and services.
3. The cultural aspects of your faith, or the faith aspects of your culture won’t be minimized, conflated or dismissed.
4. You won’t be racialized and subjected to systemic racism (including government harassment, profiling, incarceration, genocide) because of your faith or lineage.
5. You won’t be assumed to be a 5th column, loyal to an outside entity.
6. Your religious identity or affiliation will be seen as an indication of virtue and not as dangerous, mysterious, magical, exotic, heretical, dishonest or untrustworthy.
7. If you are a teacher, you won’t be told “i don’t know how you can teach my child.” (i actually have had children pulled out of my class by their parents for this reason, and i’ve heard other Jewish teachers say the same thing. )
8. Your children won’t constantly be told by classmates that they are damned for all eternity and will burn in hell.
9. Because of your faith, you won’t be assumed to be good at some professions, dominating some and untrustworthy in others.
1o. (Despite evidence to the contrary, when it comes to global conquest) you won’t be accused of attempting world domination and imposing your values, beliefs and religious mandates on the whole world.
11 People who carry out violent acts, won’t be assumed to be from your religious group, even when they are, and when they are, even when religion is the motivator for the act, it won’t be held against you and your entire group.
12. You can use the word crusade like it is a good thing, a generic word simply in reference to an impassioned campaign, as if it has no historic reference to brutality, murder, conquest or genocide.
13. No one asks you where your horns and tail are. (yes. that.)
14. You won’t be seen as a foreigner or outsider, no matter how many generations your family has lived in a particular geography.
15. Your secular appreciation of your holidays, traditions and events aren’t considered superfluous, extraneous or insincere.