Defend Christians.org, a San Diego-based "ministry" of the self-styled Christian Anti-Defamation Commission, just-released a list of the "Top Ten Anti-Christian Events in 2010." The list is the result of an online poll "of Christians and people of good will" at the group's website. Though no numbers were published, Defend Christians' Chairman and CEO Dr. Gary Cass said in a press release that the poll results "demonstrate a double standard is being applied against Christians and their faith, values and liberty."
The poll asked: What were the top 10 most egregious acts of anti-Christian bigotry in the United States in 2010? Not unexpectedly, the offered list of suggestions included gay criticism of the Family Research Council's Tony Perkins after he offered "true hope to homosexuals struggling with depression and suicide, found through repentance and faith in Christ;" the appointment of "liberal law professor and open lesbian" Chai Feldblum to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission; and of course, the decisions by federal judges that Don't Ask, Don't Tell and Prop 8 are unconstitutional.
Nonetheless, given all the choices, poll participants picked the introduction of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) as the number one anti-Christian "event" of 2010. The group describes ENDA as "a proposed federal bill that would force ministries, including churches, to hire people who oppose their beliefs or who live in open defiance of their values."
Ironically, on the same day Defend Christians exposed "the shameful behavior of bashing Christ and biblical values for what it is, "Christophobia," law professor Nan Hunter of the Williams Institute, who also happens to be Feldblum's partner, exposed on her blog Hunter of Justice that the Obama Administration extended the Bush Administration's discrimination exemption for faith-based organizations that receive federal funding.
Hunter pointed out Monday that President Obama issued Executive Order 13559 last November that modified President Bush's 2002 Executive Order 13279, "establishing criteria for federal agency funding of social services provided by religious organizations." However, Hunter noted, Obama made no changes to Bush policies allowing federally funded faith-based charities to continue discrimination in hiring.
"Under both the Bush and Obama orders, religious organizations receiving public funds are allowed to discriminate on the basis of religion in their employment policies. Also under both orders, funding recipients are prohibited from discriminating against beneficiaries on the basis of religious affiliation or belief or the refusal to hold a belief or to attend services.
Under Title VII, religious organizations have long had the same kind of exemption allowing them to discriminate based on religion in their hiring and firing decisions. However, the Bush and now the Obama executive orders have extended that exemption to include organizations that are supported with government funds.
The Obama order did add provisions requiring federal agencies to provide alternatives for people who do not want to receive social services from religious groups and to list recipient organizations on agency web sites."
Contrast that to this press release from Defend Christians.org - which freaked out over even the prospect of Christian groups being denied the right to discriminate:
Top Ten Anti-Christian Events in 2010
SAN DIEGO, Jan. 3, 2010 /Christian Newswire/ -- Defend Christians.Org, a ministry of the Christian Anti-Defamation Commission, has just released its annual top ten list of anti-Christian acts in America for 2010. The surprising list is selected through an online poll of Christians and people of good will who are part of Defend Christians.Org.
"The poll results demonstrate a double standard is being applied against Christians and their faith, values and liberty," said Dr. Gary Cass, Chairman and CEO. "If these same types of actions were taken against other groups one would call it bigoted. We are exposing the shameful behavior of bashing Christ and biblical values for what it is, "Christophobia;" the irrational fear and hatred of Christ and His Word."
"Every year the list of attacks grows as godless secular values are inflaming the minds of many against Almighty God, Jesus Christ and Christianity. Most of the attacks are merely rhetorical. Increasingly they are becoming codified into policies that encroach on Christian's academic freedom and liberty of conscience. Freedom of speech is denied to Christians while they are slandered by radical organizations. In extreme cases the hatred boils over into violence," says Rev. Cass.
The 2010 Top Ten List include...
1. The Employment Non-Discrimination Act; a proposed federal bill that would force ministries, including churches, to hire people who oppose their beliefs or who live in open defiance of their values.
3. Julea Ward and Jennifer Keeton are two Christian students expelled from their respective Master's programs in counseling at two different universities because they wouldn't deny their faith and affirm the validity of the homosexual lifestyle.
5. Christians are denied their civil rights and falsely arrested for disorderly conduct at an annual Arab festival in Dearborn, Michigan for peacefully sharing the gospel. This happened the previous year, too. The Christians were acquitted both times of all charges.
9. The Southern Poverty Law Center, a liberal ACLU-like organization, has continued to label many mainstream Christian organizations that promote traditional marriage as "hate groups" and "anti-gay" in lists that include violent racists groups.
One last note on this curious group - the mission of which is to provide a "rapid response" to anti-Christian bias - is their commentary on the passage of the repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell. Here's an excerpt:
"What is God doing?
Ultimately, we must resolve that Providence has ordained the repeal of "Don't Ask Don't Tell" for now. It could not have happened if God had willed otherwise. But why?
In times like these when our nation defies the moral law of the living God, we must ask, "Is God hardening our heart like he did the defiant Pharaoh?" God did it to show His mighty power in the outpouring of ten plagues on the gods of Egypt and by destroying Pharaoh and his army.
Is God letting America ripen in her rebellion before He wields the mighty sickle of His wrath? It's worth considering as our nation's military now serves under a shameful, pink flag.
In the meantime Christian, humbly pray, boldly preach and persevere by the power of the Holy Spirit knowing that God is not mocked and one day His righteousness will prevail."