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Tag Archives: uganda
Baltimore, Maryland (PRWEB) February 28, 2014 Summer programming for teens has become a very competitive industry.
Originally posted here:
Details Published on Thursday, 20 February 2014 15:27
Gay marriages are accepted in many parts of the Western world – shocking/Google ImagesTHE suggestion sounds ludicrous: How could Christianity be responsible for the all-but-assured triumph of the movement for gay marriage? Aren’t the most committed Christians the most passionate defenders of traditional marriage and hence the most ardent opponents of permitting gay couples to marry?
From the overwhelming support for traditional marriage among white evangelical Protestants in the United States to the Catholic Church’s definition of homosexuality as “intrinsically disordered” to the black (Catholic and Anglican) Christians of Uganda who have recently worked to pass one of the most draconian anti-gay laws in the world, the answer would seem to be yes.
But things aren’t quite so simple. Just flip through the opening pages of everyone’s favorite work of secular prophesy Alexis de Tocqueville’s Democracy in America (18351840) and you’ll find a provocative alternative interpretation of Christianity’s indispensable role in the creation of the revolutionary ideal of human equality. The stunningly rapid rise of support for gay marriage over the past two decades is just the latest in a very long line of victories for that consummately Christian ideal and it’s unlikely to be the last.
Tocqueville begins the introduction to his two-volume study of American democracy by noting that “a great democratic revolution is taking place among us.” The 700-page book is his attempt to make sense of this revolution, which was transforming life across the European continent during his lifetime, but which was already far more advanced in the United States by the time of his famous visit in 1831.
For Tocqueville, the march of equality was upending age-old institutions and moral habits “in all the Christian world.” It was a “providential fact,” by which he meant that there was nothing anybody could do to stop it.
The ultimate source of the democratic revolution the motor behind its inexorable unfolding is the figure of Jesus Christ, who taught the equal dignity of all persons, and declared in the Sermon on the Mount that the last shall be first and the first shall be last, and that the meek shall inherit the earth.
These are among the most subversive teachings ever uttered and according to Tocqueville, Western civilization has been working out their logic for the better part of two millennia, as political communities have applied Christ’s egalitarian teachings in stricter and stricter terms.
First, the rigidly hierarchical order of the Roman Empire assimilated and transformed Christ’s message, creating a series of stratified Christian aristocracies that ruled Europe for centuries. But by the 11th century, the clergy, which “opened its ranks to all, to the poor and to the rich, to the commoner and to the lord,” had gained political power. In this way, the principle of equality began to “penetrate through the church to the heart of government.”
Over the next 700 years, as Tocqueville tells it, “a double revolution” transpired: “The noble has fallen on the social ladder, and the commoner has risen; the one descends, the other climbs. Each half century brings them nearer, and soon they are going to touch.”
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