Christian nationalism’s role in Capitol attack revealed in online Feb. 9 event

A major report (crafted by an unlikely pair) on Christian nationalism’s role in the Jan. 6 Capitol assault will be made public at a virtual event next Wednesday — to which you’re duly invited.

Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty (BJC) and the Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF) will be releasing the hard-hitting exposé, “Christian Nationalism at the January 6, 2021, Insurrection.” This report will be the most complete accounting to date of how Christian nationalism permeated and intensified the attack on the U.S. Capitol. The Feb. 9 release event — which will start at noon Eastern and last for an hour — will have analysis and commentary from the contributors.

The extensive 100-page document begins with a sociological explanation of Christian nationalism in America and the demographics that underlie this ideology. The report provides a brief history of Christian nationalism in the United States, which is followed by a thorough unmasking of the networks of power and money that prop up the ideology. The bulk of the report exposes the role this ideology played in fomenting the insurrection. The confirmed speakers (many of them contributors to the report) at the release event include:

  • Professors Andrew Whitehead and Samuel Perry, researchers and authors of Taking America Back for God: Christian Nationalism in the United States.
  • Andrew L. Seidel, constitutional attorney at Freedom From Religion Foundation and author of The Founding Myth: Why Christian Nationalism Is Un-American.
  • Katherine Stewart, investigative journalist and author of The Power Worshippers: Inside the Dangerous Rise of Religious Nationalism.
  • Dr. Jemar Tisby, historian of race and religion and author of How to Fight Racism and The Color of Compromise: The Truth about the American Church’s Complicity in Racism.
  • Amanda Tyler, executive director of BJC and organizer of the Christians Against Christian Nationalism initiative.
  • Annie Laurie Gaylor, co-founder and co-president of the Freedom From Religion Foundation.

During the live event, there will be time for members of the media to ask questions. When you register, be sure to list your media outlet. You will have a chance to submit a question in the Q&A feature during the live event. Members of the media will receive a copy of the report via email that morning if they list their media outlet when they register. The Zoom link to register is:

“The report is a product of an urgent collaboration between our two organizations, and leading experts on the rise of Christian nationalism,” says Gaylor. “We are proud to work together in defense of ‘E Pluribus Unum.’”

“Even with all that has been written about Jan. 6, we still have more to learn about the role that Christian nationalism played in the events leading up to the attack and on the fateful day itself,” says Tyler. “It is important that secular and religious organizations learn about the connections between Christian nationalism and threats to our country and democratic institutions.”

The Freedom From Religion Foundation is a national nonprofit organization with more than 35,000 members and several chapters across the country. FFRF’s purposes are to protect the constitutional principle of separation between church and state, and to educate the public on matters relating to nontheism.

BJC (Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty) is an 86-year-old religiously based organization working to defend faith freedom for all and protect the institutional separation of church and state in the historic Baptist tradition.

Launched in 2019, Christians Against Christian Nationalism is a project supported by more than 24,000 Christians who signed a unifying statement of principles about the dangers of Christian nationalism. It provides resources and brings together Christians from a wide range of denominations to call out the threat the political ideology poses to the faith and to the country.

Freedom From Religion Foundation

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