Archive for May, 2012

Christian Sociology—it’s the opposite of the Sociology of Religion


Religion is good for me, how are you likin’ it?

My laptop crashed, again, and I was busily trying to salvage my old files when I stumbled across something quite appropos given the militant Christianity that has infected the sociology of religion. This is part of the introduction to a paper which written in 2005 and was supposed to have been published in Sociology of Religion in response to Christian Smith’s apologetic claiming that Christianity is just the greatest religion ever.. His invited essay was published, mine was not.

“American sociology was profoundly influenced by the Christian social reformers of the late 19th and early 20th century. This group of ministers and lay scholars were dedicated to the cause of improving the lot of the poor and downtrodden, so that they might be saved by the gods of Christianity from a fate of eternal damnation—a fiery hell of eternal torment and torture, in most conceptions of the punishment deemed divinely ordained and appropriate for evil doers who reject Christianity. While the former goal is quite noble, the motivation and ultimate end for their cause was counterproductive for achieving that goal. The sociology of religion was forged among those lay scholars with religious agendas; and that hindered its progress and retarded its potential contributions to the discipline. Religious ideologues ignored the development of social theory, and failed to grasp the scientific methods that were pivotal in the institution of sociology as a discipline (Hadden, 1987). Research in the sociology of religion was pathetically underdeveloped in both theory and methods, and this forced our subfield into the backwaters of the discipline for most of the 20th Century. In a recent essay, Christian Smith asserts that the underdevelopment of the sociology of religion was a function of anti-religious biases among sociologists. However, more circumspect views of the history of sociology noted that most research that was done by sociologists of religion throughout much of the 20th century was substandard in its methodological rigor, and lacking the general theoretical insights that might make them relevant to social scientific discourse (Hadden, 1987).

What is equally clear is that the association of Christian sociologists with the sociology of religion had a dramatic and negative impact on the development and trajectory of the sociology of religion. Smith would like us to return to that golden era of sociological irrelevance, when Christian “sociologists” were important for Christian theology but unimportant for sociology. For scholars who are not committed Christians, Moslems, Hindus, Buddhists, Jews, Sikhs, Wiccans, or whatever, there should be less enthusiasm about such proposals. Indeed, the sectarian nature of his essay should give pause to researchers with non-Christian faith commitments, scholars who do not hold religious commitments and Christian scholars who have worked hard to establish legitimate careers as social scientists studying religion. The sociology of religion is once again being dominated by cadres of Christians with non-scientific agendas, funded heavily by quasi-religious foundations seeking to prove the superiority of their religious beliefs. Smith has been pivotal in this enterprise; producing a considerable number of likeminded students, placing them in prestigious universities, and ensuring that they, like he, receive large sums of grant money from foundations seeking to prove the superiority of their brand of Christianity. This is not ad-hominem; it is fact, and it is strongly influencing the direction of our field. Here we sit, with our nation in a religiously motivated war, with our social infrastructure gutted, with other religious wars raging or festering throughout the world, and the major questions posed by sociologists of religion (and touted in requests for applications for grants from Pew, Templeton, and others) are directed towards proving that religion makes you healthy, wealthy, and wise. Of course, there is some evidence that religious participation (Christian or not) makes you healthy (Ellison) , strong evidence that conservative Christianity makes you less wealthy (Keister, 2002, 2003), and strong evidence showing that conservative Christianity hinders educational attainment and cognitive ability (Darnell and Sherkat, 1997; Sherkat and Darnell, 1999; Sherkat 2005).

Religious Freedom and Religious Entitlement….er, establishment?


I want to be free! I’ve got to be free!

The Manly Bishops in control of the Catholic Church are squealing like stuck alter boys about the Islamic Homosexual Kendonesian’s commandment that all Catholic Churches put depo-provera in their communion wafers. Yes, if the child molesting priests have to fund insurance for the teachers and secretaries at St. Ignatius Elementary School to fund some slutty prostitute 3rd grade teacher’s fuck-me pills, then we’re pretty much the same as Nazi Germany.

But, let’s get ourselves a grip on why and how this matters to the “church”. First, not only are shitloads of your slutty third grade teachers non-Catholic, most of the employees of the giant megacorporation that is the Catholic Church work in the medical and social service sectors. Most of the bottom line funding for the hospitals, clinics, support facilities, and the like comes not from the child-rapers in Rome, but from the Communist Socialist Government of the United States of America. Medicare and Medicaid receipts alone fuel the entire health industry, and that is especially true for the Catholic health networks, which feed on those niches in rural areas and elderly communities. And, the Catholic Health Care Corporation also pulls down big money from all those non-Catholics who pay for health care (or have their communist homosexual insurance carriers pay) …Non Profit My Ass. At a minimum, the Catholic Church has developed a multi-billion dollar business with the infrastructure of hospitals and clinics. And, of course, most of their employees are non-Catholic, and there isn’t shit Catholic about a hospital you’re shipped into–nor do the Catholics pay a part of your bill, you know, like if they were a charity or something, instead of a for-profit hospital…..

The spitefulness of the child raping Bishops is what is really shocking. They’re willing to pull ALL insurance from employees and students to make sure that no slut receives contraception. It doesn’t cost them ANYTHING. Indeed, insurance companies will not issue policies for pregnancy coverage which do not include contraception. Duh! Insurance companies are happy to pay for a few pills if they can avoid paying for a childbirth and associated bullshit! So now, even good Catholic women who were virgins when they married a good heterosexual Catholic boy (hard to find!) will have no insurance to cover a pregnancy…just in case the horny little buggers were using the policy to prevent pregnancy—which over 90% of Catholics would.  So, Catholic families are also being denied access to birth control that they want.

But, raping boys is totally ok, or maybe just an unfortunate accident. Ooooops….

Race, Opposition to Same Sex Marriage, and the Obama Vote


Percentage voting for Obama by Race and Support for Marriage Rights: 2010 GSS

Oh boy, now that the Kenyan made gay marriage mandatory, we have lots of reflection about what “the Browns” might do. Anthea has a nice overview of the reaction of those who support marriage rights, and the closet case child molester “sexual rednecks” who don’t (gee, sounds like black people are just like white people….that’s just crazy!).  Obviously, “Fox News” thinks they’re going to run off and vote for some Mormon billionaire. Sometime, though, looking back gives a hint of what might be to come. In the 2008 election, culture wars issues like same sex marriage had a profound effect on the likelihood of voting for a Kendonesian communist islamic homosexual—but only among whites and to a lesser extent “others” (split about even between Asians and Latinos the crude way I look at it here). Only 19% of whites who oppose marriage rights reported voting for Obama. In contrast, over 95% of African Americans voted for Obama no matter what their views on same sex marriage. And, most of those other brown people voted for Obama even if they did think that gay marriage should not be mandatory.  Overall, since the trend is strongly towards making homosexuality mandatory in marriages, and forcing every church to have a gay marriage for every straight marriage (soon to be outlawed!), we can expect that Obama’s support for homosexual supremacy will ensure his reelection. Get ready for those FEMA camps, Christians!

Support for Same Sex Marriage in the 2012 Election


Support for and Opposition to Same Sex Marriage, 2004-2012 GSS Projections

That Kendonesian “President” of ours has just declared that he thinks that Adam should run off with Steve and leave Eve with the snake in the orchard.Obviously, the next step is that Eve will marry the snake and there will be mandatory homosexuality and black helicopters filled with United Nations Homos sent out to violate godly Americans to prevent Jesus from returning to kill everyone, and shit. Yep, mandatory Gay marriage. We all knew it was coming. Socialist, communist, Islamic Gay marriage.

Of course, pundits are now worried that Obama’s outing of his plan to gay marry us all will hurt his reelection chances. As if anyone who is against gay marriage would vote for a communist from Kenya in the first place, except for those gay hating black Christians…..but, what, they gonna vote for some worthless rich Mormon?!!!

Using a conservative and simple trend analysis on GSS data, I estimate that at the time of the November elections nearly 53% of the American electorate will be supportive of same sex marriage rights, while under 35% will be opposed to marriage rights. I’m thinking that most of those 35%, save for a black constituency who isn’t gonna go Romney, are never going to vote for an African Communist Homosexual for President.

Bristol Palin Loves Fake Sociology


Bristol Palin, wow, you must have loved that!

Ah yes, you gotta love being a big mouthpiece for the religious right, touting the benefits of heterosexuality and making the case for eliminating school breakfasts and lunches for kids who live in single parent households (or, who are poor with same sex parents! As if that ever happens….). Now, our conservative Christian fake sociologists have a regular gig spouting off complete bullshit in the New York Times, because that’s a liberal hamster cage liner. I really like how young Bradley is able to have some tool who is sucking off of his Institute for American Values and Templeton grants to pimp his research in a supposed “research article”. Of course, the “research” says that all people are better off heterosexually married before age 25, and women should be barefoot, pregnant, and unemployed, but swimming in that enchanted sense of gratitude that comes with Christian Patriarchy. And, now, what more could you want. Bristol Palin is pimping your research! I’m sure she also likes Mark’s stuff on how women are all whores and they hate sex and women who have sex devalue other women because all women are whores! I just love that. Can I have my letters of recommendation back?