By Dr Wandia Njoya
The problems of Christianity ironically began with the conversion of Constantine about 300 years after Christ. That was good for Christians, because they stopped being burned on the stake or eaten alive by starving lions for the entertainment of the emperor. The problem is that once it became the faith of the emperor, it also became the religion of empire.
Rome gave way to London and later moved to Washington DC, where Christianity now resides. That means that Americans have become the dictators of what is Christian, and Christianity has become the religion of power, hate, denial and exploitation.
Take for example, the concept of forgiveness. If someone wrongs you, Christianity doesn’t take the side of you the offended. It takes the side of the offender. The offender will go into denial and never own up to doing wrong. In fact, if you persist on pursuing the matter, the offender will accuse you, the victim, of judging him or her and demand that you forgive the offender out of your Christian duty. The church will tell you not to pursue justice in the name of forgiveness. Christians show no remorse after doing wrong. They never apologize unreservedly. If they do apologize, they demand that you apologize as well and even demand that you forgive, after proclaiming they have forgiven you. And after all that, you’ll be told not to be bitter. Slavery and racism, misogyny and colonialism, are all denied by perpetrators, but when they do acknowledge it, they demand forgiveness from victims like it is their right. Christianity protects the offender; not the offended.
That’s how the Bannons of this world could turn Cambridge Analytica into a hate machine. For people like him, power and the capture of America was more important than the dignity of Americans, and it was worth manipulating them with fear. But all in the name of “Christian culture.”
The same thing in Kenya. Jubilee winning became more important than our humanity. Cambridge Analytica had such madharau for us, appealing to people’s worst denominator. And you know what? Jubilee will blast us for being offended, and Waiguru will get herself on another True Love cover to call herself an iron lady who resisted the haters. And I blame Christianity. Especially American Christianity. It has deligitimized taboos, banished shame, spared perpetrators from repentance, blamed victims for their own plight and demanded that victims take care that the offenders don’t feel bad about having hurt the victims. Christianity has not just been misused by colonialism; it is a fundamentally colonial faith.
And for the sake of those Christians who will rush to denial and say Christianity is not a religion but a relationship with God, I’m talking about both. In any case, “relationship with God,” seems to make no difference. In fact, “relationship with God,” is an escape route to avoid addressing the contradiction between the love Christians proclaim and the hatred they practice. “Relationship with God” has become an even a more neurotic obsession with self, because it is asking us to believe people who claim to be Christian based on internal feelings which nobody else can verify, and expect no action to prove it. Shindwe.