VICTIMOLOGY 101

 

What do Islamic terrorists, LGBT activists, and the rioters in Charlotte all have in common? One would think nothing at all, but dig a little deeper and you will find an underground stream running through our culture that nourishes all three.

Welcome to Victimology 101.

The Jihadist rationale for violence depends in part on a doctrine that paints Islam as the victim of infidel oppression. So let’s say you’re the editor of a satirical French magazine that publishes some unflattering cartoons of Mohammed; or you’re a priest of another religion operating in territory claimed by Islam; or you’re a passenger on a plane that represents the prosperity and freedom of an infidel nation. Bang, slash, crash, boom you’re dead and it’s your fault for insulting Islam. That’s Victimology.

The LGBT rationale for imposing its agenda on photographers, bakers, florists, wedding venues, and most recently every public school in the nation regarding who can use what bathroom, is the same. “We’re victims! We have the right to impose our views on everyone in the country!” That’s Victimology.

The rioters in Charlotte, and other municipalities where police have been forced to use force have destroyed businesses, property, and lives for the same reason. “We’re victims!” They cry, as they perpetrate their scorched earth path to power. That’s Victimology.

Adherents of Victimology have at least three things in common.

First, their pain is their fame. They glory in victim status and expect everyone else to comply. Any attempt to diminish their status is met with indignation, anger, or accusations of insensitivity or oppression. Any attempt to persuade them of a need to change behavior in order to change outcomes is met with multiple rationalizations and blame shifting.

Second, they count on cultural co-dependency. “Compulsive rescuing, called co-dependency,” said Robert McGee, “allows the dependent person (or group) to continue acting destructively and keeps him or her in need of habitually being rescued, so that the pattern continues.”[1] We are suffering from national co-dependence. We rush to fix the problem when stepping back, taking a second look, and figuring out how to help the victim help himself would be better.

Third, emotion equals truth. No one is totally objective. But the adherents of victimology have no objectivity whatsoever. Thus, any appeal to dispassionate reality has little to no authority and is often twisted in order to validate the victim’s outrage.

“Now hang on,” you reason. “Some bad stuff has happened to Muslims, Gays, and Blacks at the hands of bad actors.” Of course it has. Welcome to the fallen planet, where power corrupts, racism lives, and gender-disordered people are hated for something that feels out of their control.

Any society worthy of the title civilized would want to address obvious inequities and open oppression of the strong against the weak and marginalized. I for one am glad to have learned what I have about Islam, same-sex attracted people, and racism by the conflicts we’ve endured over the past two-decades. But the missing truth is that you do not help one class of victims by creating another. That path is as old as mankind and littered with the rubble of civilizations.

Thankfully, there is a better way.

The most successful reconciliations in history are those that adopted and adapted the doctrines of Jesus Christ. Why didn’t the American Civil War continue as a perpetual guerrilla battle after Appomattox, as Jefferson Davis commanded? Because Christian Generals like Robert E. Lee wouldn’t allow it. How did South Africa overcome the rancor of Apartheid? By applying the doctrines of reconciliation taught in the Bible and applied by men like Desmond Tutu. Why did Rwanda not continue in a blood-bath of retaliation after the Tutsi’s defeated the Hutu’s in 1994? Because Christians led the way in reconciliation.

What can we do when we see Victimology at work?

First, refuse to buy into its precepts. Don’t participate in the pain is fame game, cooperate in cultural co-dependency, or acquiesce to the myth of emotion as truth. But just as important, be a student of Reconciliation 101. Do not take revenge. Let God be the judge. Forgive your enemies, as you have been forgiven. Be kind to those who oppose and oppress you, and look for ways to serve the greater good.

[1] McGee, Robert S. The Search for Significance. Pg. 63.

WILL WE BELIEVE THEM NOW?

No one should be shocked by Paris.

Nothing has changed and no one should be shocked by what took place in France last Friday, least of all our national leaders. The catalogue of catastrophe caused by Islamists is long and only recently includes Paris, Charlie Hebdo, Beirut, Lebanon, and the Russian airliner downed in Sinai. While our hearts go out to our oldest allies we need to get our heads in the game. Perhaps now we will. Perhaps.

As K. T. MacFarland, who served in national security posts under the Nixon, Ford, and Reagan administrations recently wrote, “It is slowly dawning on the West that radical Islam is the existential threat of our times, as fascism was in World War II, as communism was in the Cold War. We can’t cooperate with it, we can’t convert it and we can’t contain it. We must defeat it.”

Like the Nazis and Communists before them, the Islamo-fascists of ISIS, Al Quaeda, Boko Haram, and all of the other iterations of Salafist-Sunni, and radical Shia have been and continue to be quite clear about their philosophy, their goals and their methods. They want nothing less than world domination, where everyone bows to Allah and lives according to Sharia, and they will commit mass murder, including mass murder against other Muslims, to achieve it.

Will we believe them now?

The problem for Western leaders, President Obama in particular, is that we cannot fight what we will not name. The president has resolutely refused to acknowledge, much less speak to the theological core that motivates these murderers. As my friend, former Muslim, and Islamic scholar Samer recently told me, “ISIS cannot be defeated by airstrikes. You could thin down their leadership but you will never kill their zeal and persistence. Solving this issue can not be solved by military action alone but by recognizing that there is something inherently wrong with Islam.” (For more on that see my post on the Charlie Hebdo massacre from January of this year at: https://daneskelton.com/2015/01/08/charlie-hebdo-and-the-keepers-of-quranic-islam/)

In other words, “It’s the theology, stupid.” Because the predominant western theology, which amounts to Moralistic Therapeutic Deism, is so thin and our commitment to God is so shallow we are shocked by people willing to sacrifice their lives as an act of worship in the slaughtering of innocents. We shouldn’t be.

The Islam preached and practiced by the perpetrators of these atrocities is the same land-grabbing, nation-swallowing political Islam that precipitated the Crusades. MacFarland presents a ten-point plan that would marshal the powers of Western Civilization to destroy it and I hope it receives serious consideration by our leaders. Of her recommendations one of the most important is stifling the ideology by stopping the cash flow that supports it. It is long past time to play hard-ball with the wealthy Saudis and other so-called Middle Eastern “allies” who continue to fund the Imams and mosques that preach this stuff. And take note: Syrian refugees aren’t all we need to be thinking about. Some of those mosques are here in the U.S. Further, the Council on American Islamic Relations (C.A.I.R.) is simply a front group for the spread of the same theology.

You might be wondering, “What can we do about all this?” Here’s what our church does. We support our friend Samer, whose work with Muslim seekers and Muslim Background Believers, and equipping churches like ours to understand the threat has a global reach. We also support the work of Wycliffe Associates which enables courageous leaders in some of the most dangerous parts of the world to accelerate the translation of the Bible into the languages of the Islamic world. Finally, we support Samaritan’s Purse, which provides emergency relief work in many of these same areas, as well as the phenomenal outreach known as Operation Christmas Child. In these and other ways we seek to supplant the darkness of Islam in the heart of the Middle East with the light of Christ. I hope you will continue to pray for and take part in those efforts.

No one should be shocked by what happened in France last week and until our leaders wake up and get serious about shutting down the theology of jihad we should expect and prepare for more of the same.