Opinion / Politics

Leftists Are Outraged That Religion Might Be Cool Again

AMAC Exclusive – By Andrew Abbott

Last month, a guest essay appeared in the New York Times that provoked panic across mainstream and liberal publications. The piece from Julia Yost, a senior editor at First Things magazine, was titled “New York’s Hottest Club is the Catholic Church” and revealed that in popular Manhattan neighborhoods, churches have seen a marked resurgence of followers. While Yost noted that many of the new congregants are more curious parishioners than full-throated converts, the left was quick to raise the alarm that religion and traditional values could be on the rise.

The Times piece implicitly suggests that the culture/counterculture paradigm has seemingly been inverted in recent years. Since the 1960s, the radical left has prided itself on being a challenge to the “mainstream.” Liberalism in this sense was a “romantic” battle to upend the established norms and mores imposed by what was viewed as the strait-laced conservative establishment. The Church was a central target in this crusade – religion itself was viewed as a relic of a bygone era.

Yet now, as the far left has come to dominate every major cultural institution – and as the drastic societal consequences of the left’s moral depravity become all too clear – the trend may be reversing. So-called “traditionalists” are now the disfavored group in the eyes of cultural elites, even if they still represent how the majority of the country feels. As Yost puts it in her piece, “traditional morality” has “acquired a transgressive glamour. Disaffection with the progressive moral majority — combined with Catholicism’s historic ability to accommodate cultural subversion — has produced an in-your-face style of traditionalism.”

As Yost also points out, many on the left and even some within the Church have been quick to dismiss this trend as little more than performance, a petty act of resistance against the dominant culture. But as Honor Levy, a Catholic podcaster points out, acting is often the first step to legitimate belief: “You just do the rituals, and then it becomes real, even if you don’t [initially] believe in it… That’s what religion is.”

At the same time as the country may be witnessing a nascent religious revival, however, the radical left is doubling down on its attacks on organized religion. Just weeks after the Times piece detailing the rise in church attendance in Manhattan, the proudly left-leaning magazine The Atlantic ran an article titled “How the Rosary Became an Extremist Symbol.” (Since the publication of the piece, amid widespread public backlash, the magazine quietly changed the title to “How Extremist Gun Culture Is Trying to Co-opt the Rosary.”)

From the featured image of the piece – bullet holes in the shape of a rosary (which has also been subsequently changed) – to its ahistorical account of the rosary’s meaning and significance, author Daniel Panneton attempts to make the case that religion, and Catholicism specifically, is somehow inextricably linked to the alt-right and Neo-Nazi groups. “Just as the AR-15 rifle has become a sacred object for Christian nationalists in general, the rosary has acquired a militaristic meaning for radical-traditional (or “rad trad”) Catholics,” Panneton says in the first sentence of the piece. “Militia culture, a fetishism of Western civilization, and masculinist anxieties have become mainstays of the far right in the U.S.—and rad-trad Catholics have now taken up residence in this company,” he continues.

Panneton’s article is far from the only left-wing attack on religion in recent months, however. Following the release of the Supreme Court’s decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization earlier this year, dozens of Catholic churches were the target of threats and vandalism from pro-abortion activists. “Christian nationalism” and “Christian fundamentalists” have suddenly become blanket pejorative terms for anyone right-of-center.

This steady rise in hostility toward Christians does not occur in a vacuum. Throughout the world – particularly in developing nations in places like Southeast Asia and South America – there has been a marked increase in individuals identifying with the Catholic faith. According to the Vatican Consensus, “The number of Catholics in the world grew by more than 15 million from 2018 to 2019.” This is all the more impressive, considering the number of European Catholics decreased by 300,000 in this same period.

Even among America’s elite class, some are returning to the faith. Actor Shia LaBeouf, for example, made headlines last week for publicly discussing his conversion to Catholicism.

To the left, the prospect of a resurgent Church in the West poses an existential threat to their grip on power. Leftism is in many ways a religion itself – complete with its own god (the state) saints (Dr. Fauci) and punishment for violating its dictates (cancel culture). Any hint of traditionalism is a mortal sin.

But with liberalism having failed to deliver its promise of a utopia, the left is suddenly facing the horrifying prospect of people turning back to traditional religious structures and institutions which have for thousands of years formed the bedrock of society. Left-wing politicians and outlets are thus left scrambling to quash any potential resurgence in traditional religiosity by labeling all who step through the door of a church as “backward” or “extremists.” But as the Catholic faith teaches, the truth cannot long be denied to those who seek it.

Andrew Abbott is the pen name of a writer and public affairs consultant with over a decade of experience in DC at the intersection of politics and culture.  


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Lover of America and GOD!
2 months ago

There are many ‘gods’ in this world, but only one GOD, creator of ALL THINGS! Nowhere in the Bible does it tell us to pray to Mary, or use her as an intercessor to Jesus, God’s only son! The rosary is a useless tool, because of Jesus and the fact that he died for us, now we can truly pray and talk with GOD!

Robin Boyd
3 months ago

While religious zeal can be as bad as having no spiritual faith, for the most part, those who come to understand that the Universe is of an intelligent design tend to understand that we live best by complying with nature, not defying it.

GTpatriot
3 months ago

“Religion” means many things. Christianity , to which I am totally committed, is a set of ethics.
I am so grateful for it. A clear, simple set of rules. A savior who provides forgiveness. Through the savior you can pray to god. Take it or leave it.

Mary
3 months ago

I didn’t want to add to the comments below because I pretty much felt most things had been said. Given that, I felt the following should be watched in it’s entirety – TUCKER CARLSON TONIGHT 9/2/22. Why? If we want to defeat evil, and not have our children suffer a miserable life, the Republicans have to start listening to We The People. They are losing races they should have won! NOVEMBER IS NOT A SLAM DUNK. There is too much mediocrity and complacency in several of the Republicans running for office. They need to listen and change their ways. We need strong candidates who know how to fight for us. I am a concerned Republican, and I pray almost every day that the Republicans wise up! One example- Dr. Oz on a video, in a market, showing different products and the high cost of the products. Is he kidding – seriously! We’re having trouble putting food on the table! Why not talk about the cause and what you want to do about the problem. Get off foreign affairs and concentrate on the United States of America. WE THE PEOPLE – hello! Forgive my rant, I am angry. And, while they are at it- be strong and positive, not negative. Pray/Pray the Rosary. Don’t talk-the-talk, Walk-the walk with Jesus.

Susan Miller
3 months ago

What I’ve seen is a big division in the church. The leftists have infiltrated and warped the Word to suit their sins. Recently the Methodist Church had a big split and I see this in the Catholic Church as well. This is prophesied. No surprise here. Many, many false teachers. They will lead many astray.Know the Truth, speak the Truth always.

Patriot Believer
3 months ago

I find it amusing when those whose belief system includes destroying and discarding innocent human life are aghast that many are openly returning to the God mentioned four times in the Declaration of Independence; and more directly inferred in the Constitution (“In the year of our Lord”). The simple truth is, Religion on BOTH sides never left. Those who follow the Christ on one side, and those who celebrate Satan and his ways on the other.

Marty
3 months ago

Religion is not a new and improved concept. There’s nothing that the left can do to stop God from doing His will. The Bible shows us how to navigate through the mud and blood, exiting at exactly the right time, before the wrath.
Those lefties are going to see justice, but they’re going to be on the opposite end of it than they think.
Maranatha.

Tag Geren
3 months ago

LORD! Send a revival!

Marcia
3 months ago

The Catholic Church is not Christian. Christians rely on Jesus for forgiveness of sins and salvation. There is no “middle man” necessary. No one can work their way or buy their way into heaven. After the body dies, no amount of well meaning prayer, candle lighting or begging and pleading by a loved one will get the soul to heaven if Jesus Christ was not accepted in life.

David
3 months ago
Reply to  Marcia

Marcia,
The Catholic Church is Christian! You truly have been lied to and brainwashed to believe the Catholic Church is something it isn’t. Who do you think produced the Bible? Many anti-Catholic preachers have converted to the Catholic Church after searching for answers! Do some research and seek the truth and you’ll find yourself there too.

Marty
3 months ago
Reply to  David

Catholics didn’t produce any of the Bible. They didn’t come into existence until centuries after the 66 books were written.
There’s saved people that are Catholic, but they’re now Christians.
You should read A woman ride’s the beast.

Theresa
3 months ago
Reply to  Marcia

You need to learn about God’s mercy. Also Catholics don’t believe we work our way or buy our way into heaven. Jesus saves. But faith without works is dead, as the Bible says.

Mary
3 months ago

Let the libs balk, we need Christian values back and God to be a major component of this country again. The moment it was taken out of schools, thank you Madeline Murray O’Hare (you demon beast), was the day our public schools lost respect for everything that was good.

Michael Lewis
3 months ago

Praise God.

CDR
3 months ago

This is not just a cultural war. This is a war between good and evil, between God and Satan. It is pretty easy to see who is on whose side.

David
3 months ago
Reply to  CDR

CDR
I agree 100% and we know who wins! There is going to be some rough times ahead for Christianity but God will prevail!

John
3 months ago
Reply to  David

Amen ???? ????

Philip Hammersley
3 months ago

I’ve heard preachers say, “You can ACT your way into feeling faster than you can FEEL your way into acting,” That’s seems to be the case mentioned here. In either case the MARXISTS hate ANY religion other than their own (humanism AKA atheism). They are so arrogant that they don’t need God. Of course, more millions have been slain by atheists than by any other “religion.”

Veteran
3 months ago

The Marxist religion that worships big government hates competition, especially one that improves the lives of people and is filled with love, while theirs ruins whatever it touches, impoverishes, and starves, while its proponents are full of hate and mistrust. Much like the government hates tax thieves, because it hates competition.

J Brown
3 months ago

If this issue propels more folks into knowing Jesus and having their lives restored, I am definitely in favor of more of this! Let’s open the church doors and welcome them into the love of Christ!

Patrice Murphy
3 months ago
Reply to  J Brown

Amen!!

Jack
3 months ago

All devout Roman Catholics should be outraged that their church hierarchy has not ex-communicated Biden and Pelosi, two of the most radical pro-abortionists and supporters of perverted sexual behavior around today! But not a peep out of the weak-knees in Rome!

Dee
3 months ago
Reply to  Jack

The Catholic Church is being destroyed from within. The Pope is an anti-Christ. It is the same as what is happening in the U.S. The U.S. is being destroyed from within.

Laurie Bee
3 months ago
Reply to  Jack

I agree, Jack. And I am outraged!

John
3 months ago
Reply to  Jack

There is the belief catholic church may be the anti-christ

Tim Toroian
3 months ago

Tell them I am outraged at atheists and positivists. Positivists are the second cousin to atheists

Eamonn Thomas Smyth
3 months ago

I was at a revival meeting last night and the preacher was very forceful and why the Christian faith is in a crisis. The reason is that we allow the left to make false statements against us. We as all Christians must stand up and face the Devil as he tries to destroy this country. For so long to many Christians are good at taking snipes at other denominations while theirs fall apart. This must stop we have an enemy who only gets stronger while we do nothing. I am proud Catholic and will stand with any who are willing to stay the course.

Jeanine
3 months ago

Yes, ALL the Christian faiths need to “stand up and face the Devil as he tries to destroy this country.” I am also a strong Catholic and the priest of our Church regularly meets with most all the different pastors of our city — so we can work together for the Lord. My daughter and her family originally chose to attend the Catholic Church, but they soon later decided to attend a non-denominational Christian church that is also near our home. My priest told me that that the preacher of that church was a good preacher and an awesome guy. We all need to join our hands together and believe in each other, together is the only way to bring down the Enemy.

Joearcher
3 months ago
Reply to  Jeanine

Jeanine you are right on! I was raised Catholic, but converted to Presbyterian. That is irrelevant. Catholics are as much Christians as any other denomination that upholds Jesus as our Lord and Savior. Now is NOT the time for petty arguments between Christians. Whatever your denomination, if you believe Jesus died for our sins and is Lord of all creation, you are a Christian. We must UNITE against Satan and his minions, They are the enemy.

Vilas Gamble
3 months ago

If you want to know what the Democrats have been up since the 1912 presidential election look at the party platform of the Socialist Party headed by Eugene V. Debs. A couple of things in that platform have been very good for the country, but the rest is what the Dems have been trying to put into practice since the days of FDR. In some respects, they have been successful, which brings us to where we are today as a nation.

Why have we come to this place in such a short period of time with “election” of Joe Biden? It is quite simple. The left thought they were going to win the 2016 election but were shocked that a true-blue capitalist Donald Trump won instead and over four years brought the country back to its roots. Therefore, all the hate and legal maneuvers they have directed his way were designed to get rid of him because he interrupted their march toward totalitarianism which would have been accomplished for the most part if Hillary Clinton had the 2016 election and spent eight years in the White House.
Now that Biden occupies the White House, they are racing full steam ahead to accomplish what they had hope for in a Clinton administration.

I say all this from a viewpoint of experience. So, this November you must vote as if your freedoms are at stack, because they are!

PaulE
3 months ago

As we get closer to the midterms, we’ll be seeing a whole lot of diversionary tactics thrown against the wall by the left to see what sticks and what fires up the Democrat voter base. The two articles mentioned in this piece by the NY Times and the Atlantic, both strong supporters of the extreme left, are simply examples of throwing something out there to see what sticks and what will fire up the left to come out in mass and vote Democrat.

Beyond that, neither article contained anything especially thought provoking or new. Actually most of both artciles were just conjecture by the authors of the pieces as to what they thought in might mean. So two articles that weren’t actually news, but rather just opinion pieces. Both authors simply churned out articles with provacative titles to get the Democrat voter base to think there was some new threat from religious groups that doesn’t exist. Standard fare for left-wing publications.

Next week, the left will move on to testing other topics to try and rile up the Democrat voter base to turn out in force this November. Don’t over think this people.

Max
3 months ago
Reply to  PaulE

Off subject, I noticed that AMAC deleted our comments from RBC’s article for the “A,B, C’s of China” article.

PaulE
3 months ago
Reply to  Max

Yes Max, I noticed that too. It seems AMAC has a problem with any comment that isn’t gushing praise for the viewpoint or narrative they advocate for. Constitutionally conservatives values NOT!

Honestly, I can’t say I’m all that surprised though that they have now started to simply remove comments they don’t agree with altogether. I’ve noticed a few others have their comments magically erased after a while as well. Less and less reason for me and others to bother with this site. Fortunately, there are real constitutionally conservative sites out there that don’t do this nonsense.

Carol
3 months ago
Reply to  PaulE

Dear Paul! I was so shocked to read what you wrote. Please see my email bekow. I have really been on the stupid end of the wanna be president and his ilk and have called AMAC repeatedly. I was told by them that x-finity was the culprit and that they had stated to the group in the AMAC IT department that they would not change. Now they are putting some of the things I receive from AMAC into my spam. Who is x-finify to decide what spam is and to put a lot of our good emails into SPAM? I have had such respect for what you write as I have for Mr. Charles. I shall call once again to AMAC and ask them for myself. We shall see what they do with this email as they have stopped requiring that my emails be checked. Take care and I shall keep in touch. Carol

Marty
3 months ago
Reply to  PaulE

How did you find out about that?

Max
3 months ago
Reply to  PaulE

Oh well, I will continue to state my views and support the ones I agree with despite what AMAC is doing to suppress FREE SPEECH.

Sara
3 months ago
Reply to  PaulE

Well I just lied. I told AMAC that I would never comment or vote on the comments ever again and I just have to one more time. I stated this because every time I clicked on to agree with you or others, AMAC said I had already voted, which I had NOT. So I just got tired of dealing with them. But I actually agree with absolutely everything you say PaulE and I just wanted you to know. So if I choose to check out the comments and I see your post (and some others that I agree with) please remember that Sara is mentally saying Right On! p.s. To Carol….we are having the same problem with our emails, but it is google taking our WND’s off and putting them in spam. Put it back into your inbox, but when you do, wait a bit, and go back to it, the big red box comes up and at the bottom of it, it will say “not safe” and over to the right, it will say “safe”. Click the safe and you’re back in business. At least that worked for us. (Google is trying to ban WND as dangerous read because they are conservative news and tell what’s really going on.)

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