New research examining cultural hostility toward American Christians shows that believers are incorrect to assert that animus toward them has increased. Yet they might be right in their claims that they face more problems such hostility causes than they once did, in light of how economics has changed.
The paper, authored by University of North Texas sociology professor George Yancey that was released on Wednesday seeks to answer the question, “Has Society Grown More Hostile Toward Conservative Christians?” and employs data from the American National Election Survey that allowed him to assess the level of warmth toward certain social groups. The study unpacks these attitudes and showcases how they have differed in the past several years versus previous decades.
“One thing that I hear from a lot of Christians is ‘it seems like things have gotten more hostile toward us,’ and so I was curious whether or not that was true,” Yancey said in a phone interview this week with The Christian Post.
Whereas with some research questions he has an inclination as to what the outcome will be beforehand, he was unsure of what he would find regarding whether the hostility toward Christians has indeed risen qualitatively.
“What I basically found is that, as far as just global hostility toward Christians in the United States, with a small caveat, it does not appear that it has really increased,” Yancey said.
“Yet what was interesting was whereas years ago people with hostility toward Christians were not any wealthier than anyone else, today that’s not the case.”
Anti-Christian animus has always come from the highly educated, he noted, and now they have more financial resources to punish them culturally more than they once did.
“So as of today, my conclusion would be not an increase in [overall] hostility but that the hostility does have more power.”
SOURCE: Brandon Showalter