Author Bruce Lawrence, Defenders of God: The Fundamentalist Revolt Against the Modern Age, defines fundamentalism as " the affirmation of religious authority as holistic and absolute, admitting of neither criticism nor reduction; it is expressed through the collective demand that specific creedal and ethical dictates derived from scripture be publicly recognized and legally enforced ."
If Bruce Lawrence's expression is widely held, then indeed American democracy cannot abide such a sub-group in this nation.
1.religious idealism as basis for personal and communal identity;
True enough, I guess. We try to live by our beliefs and ideals which instruct us to be forgiving, loving, compassionate, unselfish, law-abiding, kind, honest,courageous, etc. We try to do this individually and corporately as families and churches. We believe in being good neighbors. That's not to say that all of us live up to our ideals all the time--but we know we should --and most of us try.
2. fundamentalists understand truth to be revealed and unified;
Revealed, yes. Unified? what does that mean. We certainly don't all agree on Biblical interp, roles of women --thus, many denominations and independent churches.
3. it is intentionally scandalous -- outsiders cannot understand it;
Scandalous??? what does THAT mean?
I think outsiders can understand it, they just don't share our beliefs.
4. fundamentalists envision themselves as part of a cosmic struggle;
I guess so. the battle between good and evil, people of faith and people who despise bht Bible-believing (so-called fundamentalist) Christians, don't believe in God, don't believe the claims about Christ. There is a battle between those who believe in religious liberty and those who want to shut up the Christians, seeing them as dangerous--when the real danger is the Left's desire to squelch the religious freedom and free speech rights of Christians.
5. they seize on historical moments and reinterpret them in light of this cosmic struggle;
Sort of. Some of us do. Some of us see natural disasters, enemy attacks, as possibly judgments from God --calling us to our knees.
The Bible implies this to be so --but also says the rain falls on the just and the unjust. We don't always know God's purposes in the evil He allows --when it is HIS random or purposeful allowance in a fallen world or when it is OUR doing. For sure, man's inhumanity to man is man's doing. But America's defeat at the hands of an enemy could result from our inner moral deterioration and failure to believe in God, hostility toward Christ and His followers. Hedonists fall asleep at the wheel, oblivious to the harm of immorality in a nation.
6. they demonize their opposition and are reactionary;
I think the demonization is worse on the left, frankly. We just define immorality Biblically and say so; you want us stopped, muzzled, eliminated because you claim we are dangerous. You sure aren't doing anything to bring us to your side intellectually with all the ad hominem attacks.
7. fundamentalists are selective in what parts of their tradition and heritage they stress;
Really? Some churches are hung up on the role of women, and there are Calvinists vs. Arminians in scriptural perspective --but we all know we should be busy about the Father's Business of proclaiming Christ to the world and doing compassionate deeds to "the least of these." Some are pentecostal; some are not; some are holiness churches; some emphasize more man's depravity and think he can't live a holy life even with God's help.
8. they are led by males;
Yes, but women have been very influential --through their children, and the teaching of children, missionary work, and their helpmeet roles and wise counsel and assistance to male leaders, including their husbands.
They have been influential in Bible study leadership --even Beth Moore's studies are admired and followed by men. Some TV women preachers have had effective ministries. They certainly are less run by men than the Catholic church.
9. they envy modernist cultural hegemony and try to overturn the distribution of power.
Huh? Maybe you mean they try to prevent the culture from going to Sodom, Gommorah and Hell in a handbasket? by resisting porn as "free speech," by resisting infanticide by abortion as women's right, by resisting the muzzling of the church by new laws preventing Biblical preaching and teaching if it "offends" someone, by resisting the change in marriage definition, undermining the strength of the traditional nuclear family.
I don't call our leftist critics "a clear and present danger" to the US, as UptheFlag and Mr. Rake call us, though left wing ideals ARE corrosive to decency in our culture --but when you start calling someone "dangerous," isn't the next step the denial of freedom to such a group? After all, we put dangerous people in jail or on a short leash --as they put Christians in jail in Korea and China and Muslim nations for speaking freely of Jesus Christ.
There is evil in the world --and danger --but it is not coming from the Christians.
"God is not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance and have eternal life."--the Bible