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Is the War on Christmas Really a Proxy War for White Supremacy?

January 13, 2018 in Blogs

By Chauncey DeVega, Salon

A sociologist explains how Christmas became a battlefield and how white men lost the American Dream.

The war on Christmas is a myth. Yet so many Republicans, Donald Trump voters and other conservatives are apparently obsessed with it. Why is this?

Today's conservative movement is masterful in its ability to use emotional appeals to manipulate its public with the goal of achieving and maintaining political power. As Richard Hofstadter observed more than five decades ago, American conservatives are also anti-intellectual and especially prone to believing in conspiracy theories.

Movement conservatism also has a deep disdain for facts. Empirical reality is an obstacle and inconvenience that stands in the way of advancing a political worldview that operates more like a religion than an ideology based in reason and fact.

Republicans and the conservative movement also command Fox News and a right-wing echo chamber that function as one of the most effective propaganda operations in modern history. Republican voters have literally been conditioned and trained by their news media and other trusted voices to believe things that are not true.

There is the power of weaponized religion in the form of right-wing Christianity, whose adherents believe that they are oppressed in America by liberals, gays, Muslims, atheists, “secularists” and any other group identified as an enemy other. Of course this is not true: white Christians are the most powerful and dominant group in American society. But again, the allure of Christian fascism — and contemporary American conservatism — is rooted not in reason but rather in fantasy.

There is another dimension to the “war on Christmas” and the broader right-wing obsession with the culture wars. Both are examples of white identity politics and a deep desire (and effort) to maintain the cultural and political power of white right-wing Christians over all other groups. In many ways, the war on Christmas is actually a proxy war for white supremacy.

How is white supremacy advanced by the right-wing “culture war” narrative? How are Donald Trump and the Republican Party using the “war on Christmas” to advance their goals? Why are so many white Americans attracted to such fictions? …read more


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