Views of God define 'Red State, Blue State' divide
March 27, 2007
The “red states” heartland and “blue states” coastal areas reflect two “radically different worlds” in the
United States, Michael Cromartie, vice president of the Ethics and Public Policy Center in Washington, D.C., told students during a special chapel March 27.
Speaking on the topic “Red God, Blue God: Politics, Religion and the Media,” Mr. Cromartie pointed out that the “gatekeepers of our society, the editors of major newspapers, the editors of major magazines, television, Hollywood” are admittedly ignorant of religious issues that people in the “Red States” typically accept as fundamental.
Much of the media’s misunderstanding of the role faith plays in daily life comes from the training of reporters which largely ignores the topic. The “Blue State” mentality with its mistrust or ignorance of religion, typical of many university professors, has been passed along to today’s reporters, leaving them “ill-equipped to understand religious issues.”
While there is a secularist bent that even some reporters have recognized there often is an openness to investigating the role religion plays in the news they report. “All across the spectrum there is news related to religion,” he said. “Terrorism motivated by religion, stem cell research, abortion, these all have religious elements.”
Understanding this void in reporters’ training gives evangelical Christians the opportunity to respectfully engage the media, offering relevant information and thoughtful insights to Christian perspectives on current events, he said. His experience in this area has made him a regular source when reporters need comments.
He said even some reporters and writers have recognized the secular mindset of reporters, calling for them to “beat the secular prejudice out of our minds every day.” But he quickly added for those in the religious heartland, “That is not bad advice for us as well.”