I am sometimes awed by the irony of having to oppose hostile religious zealotry and the paradox of needing to accept religious generosity. If we are to mount an effective opposition to the fascist movement in America, it seems that–given our history–we will once again need to recruit role models such as the Durham, North Carolina-based Baptist Evangelical minister Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove.
In Residual and Resurgent Protestantism in the American Media (and Political) Imaginary, Stewart M. Hoover examines the evolving moral culture in the US, and the Protestant vision for America. In this essay, he discusses relations between religion and media, in particular the recurring Protestant anxieties over the progress of modernity.
Domesticating the American private sphere under a Protestant moral regime, he notes, relies on an imagined past. As Hoover observes, that imagined past “provides a powerful symbolic framing of values and ideals for received, commonsense, traditionalist readings of American cultural history,” evident in the fact that 75% of Trump supporters saw the 1950s as the ideal decade, the one they wanted to bring back.