Persecution Complex

(Submitted to Japan Times 6/29/08)

This note is in reply to the letter "What Attack on Christianity?" I have noticed that the more rabid Christians are only too ready to accuse people who disagree with them of persecution. They act as if disagreeing with them were tantamount to pulling them apart on the rack, a common punishment for heresy not so long ago in the Christian West. Can it be they have guilty consciences?

Part of the problem may be that much of the modern world is simply indifferent to them and their views. Fundamentalist Christians, after all, believe that this universe of billions of galaxies, each containing billions of stars, was created for human beings, and specifically for them. How humiliating to be ignored! Besides, if they claim persecution, they can use that claim to nurture and justify their own hatred. It's the oldest trick in the book.