Category Archives: Postmodernism, Critical Race Theory, subjective truth,

Sheep and Wolves—How to Tell the Difference (DEI Series Conclusion)

In the previous essay I promised to explore three reasons why I do not believe that the principles of diversity-equity-inclusion philosophy as advocated by the academic champions of Critical Race Theory are mandated or supported by the Christian faith. I dealt with the first reason in the previous essay, arguing that DEI philosophy is a worldly political theory designed for governance of everyone within a sovereign state. Christianity is not a worldly political theory and does not obligate Christians to support any such philosophy. Today I will address the other two reasons and bring this series to a close.

Freedom versus Coercion

(2) DEI philosophy is not compatible with Christian ethics as taught in the New Testament. I can deal with this issue briefly because I addressed it already in the essay of June 4, 2021. As I argued in that essay, though Christianity is not a worldly political philosophy and does not obligate us to support any worldly political philosophy, some political orders are more compatible with Christianity than others. Christians surely want to live in a political order where they can freely embrace and practice faith in Jesus. Likewise, if Christians embrace Jesus’s Golden Rule they should also wish others to enjoy freedom to refuse or embrace Christianity. For this reason I argued that, if given a choice between classical liberalism and DEI political philosophy, clear thinking Christians will choose classic liberalism. I concluded the June 4th essay with these words:

Traditional liberalism embraces the truth of the saying, “The perfect is the enemy of the good.” In contrast, the philosophy of DEI aims at the unattainable goal of perfection and in doing so becomes the enemy of the good. DEI is not rational because it mistakes its utopian visions for politically achievable plans. It is not psychologically sound because it assumes people will in the long run acquiesce to having their property and positions taken away and redistributed to others in the name of diversity, equity, and inclusion. It is immoral in that it employs coercion, racial prejudice, theft, and injustice to achieve its goals. Hence DEI politics is most certainly not mandated by Christianity. And in contrast to liberal political philosophy, it is not even compatible with Christianity.

Ethical Incompatibility

(3) Diversity, equity, and inclusion, as understood in critical theory, are not Christian ethical principles. Nor are they compatible with Christian ethics. First, let’s get clear that the way of life set forth in the New Testament by Jesus and his apostles applies only to Jesus’s disciples, to his Church, that is, to people who claim to be and really are Christians. Now let’s take diversity, equity, and inclusion one at a time and assess their relationship to New Testament ethics.


DEI philosophy treats diversity as a positive value in itself. According to this viewpoint the racial, ethnic, and gender makeup of the personnel within an institution—college, business, government agency, or private club—should reflect the proportions of those identity groups within society at large. Disparities in these proportions signal racism, sexism, or some other ugly prejudice as their hidden cause.

Christianity as described in the New Testament does not view diversity as a standalone value. When the NT mentions diversity of gifts and offices within the church (1 Cor 12; Eph 4), it always sets diversity in the context of unity and harmony. And it never seeks to reflect the diversity of group identities within society at large. Diversity is not an end in itself to be sought at the expense of other qualities central to the identity of the church. If the DEI philosophy were applied to the church, it would destroy it by making something other than faith in Christ the principle of inclusion.


DEI views equity through the eyes of group identity and social conflict. It is political to the core. Members of different racial groups must be treated differently to correct the inequalities among them. The Christianity of the New Testament views human beings within a universal frame. The gospel is preached to all people. All are invited to believe and participate. Within the family of believers, there are poor, widows, orphans, aged, sick, imprisoned, and others in vulnerable positions. Christian ethics is unambiguously clear that those within the church who are able to help those in need are obligated to do so (Matt 25:14-46; 1 John 3:17; James 2:14-17). However, Christian ethics does not countenance treating people differently based on race. It views people as individuals with their own strengths and weaknesses, resources and needs. We should rush to help the sick and the poor. The well and the rich do not need our assistance. Compassion, love, generosity, and hospitality are Christian virtues. Equity is not.


DEI philosophy makes inclusion a central moral principle, as if excluding anyone from any group or institution is always wrong. Of course, this notion is illogical and impractical. Inclusion is meaningless unless the group into which you want to be included has an identity, and identity involves exclusion as well as inclusion. If everyone is included in everything, no one is included in anything! (For more analysis of inclusion, see the essay of May 29, 2021.) DEI uses the rhetoric of inclusion to urge inclusion of certain favored (not all!) previously excluded groups.

The Christianity of the New Testament invites and welcomes people from every tribe, tongue, and nation. But it invites them to believe the gospel, repent of their sins, be baptized, and take up the life of a disciple of Jesus. It welcomes all who do this. However, if you do not believe in Jesus, do not want to stop sinning, if you reject baptism, and want to live according to the flesh, you are self-excluded. You cannot be a Christian unless you believe and live as a Christian! Christianity does not exclude or include anyone based on race or economic status.

Conclusion to the Series

I felt compelled to write this seven-part series on the diversity-equity-inclusion philosophy not so much because it is a destructive, divisive, impractical, and irrational political philosophy—though it is that!—but because I have had to endure the little sermons of some who proclaim that DEI philosophy is plainly, even supremely Christian. It is extremely painful to listen to such displays of pious ignorance and virtue signaling. Even with the most generous interpretation I can manage, it seems they have allowed the superficial resemblances of diversity, equity, and inclusion to Christian principles and their over-charitable—not to say naïve—interpretations of these terms to blind them to their true meaning and destructive implications. But I am very clear that DEI philosophy is not a Christian way of thinking. It is rather a deeply cynical deification of the primitive forces of nature. And opening the door of the Christian fold to this wolf in sheep’s clothing is an act of treachery in which I will not participate.

“That is Your Reality” and Other Silly Expressions

The 2020/21 school year has ended. Exams have been checked and grades have been posted. I finally have time to write about some issues that have been on my mind for the past year.

No Nonsense Allowed

As readers of this blog know, nothing gets under my skin more than illogical, irrational, and unclear assertions presented as axiomatic truths. I do not like it when this type of speech is used to discuss any subject area or to communicate any message. It offends my aesthetic sense.  However, when such nonsense appears in theological or moral contexts, it awakens my prophetic ire. In my very first post on this blog on August 08, 2013, I made this clear when I said:

I really don’t like...

Dishonesty, hypocrisy, double-speak, self-deception, narcissism, cynicism, misrepresentation, confusion, ignorance, humbug, obfuscation, deception and other intellectual and moral vices.

I really like…

Clarity in thinking, precision in speaking, honesty, truth, common sense, intellectual humility, thoughtfulness and fairness.

So, at least for the first part of the summer I plan to unmask, deconstruct, and poke a bit of fun at some of the humbug, ignorance, and obfuscation that has plagued us for the past year.

“That is Your Reality”

Many expressions current in popular culture drive me crazy but none more than “that is your reality” or some variation thereof, such as “that is your narrative.” Like all catchy expressions, it contains a grain of truth. But it is the effect of combining that grain of truth with a bucket full of nonsense that gets to me. In any proper use of language, the words “real” and “reality” refer to the way things are in themselves apart from perceptual distortions, imaginary constructions, or wishes. Reality serves as the objective standard, the judge, and the reference point for all fact and truth claims.

All assertions are judgments about what is or is not. A judgment always takes the form X is Y. Hence to refute someone’s judgment that “X is Y” by dismissing it with “that is your reality” fractures language and insults logic! Instead of agreeing with the judgment or asserting the contradictory judgment, “Not[X is Y”], it says, “For you but not for me [X is Y].” What does that mean?

Is this just another way of saying, “That is just your opinion, so I am free to ignore it”? I think this is the effect. You get to dismiss the force of an argument without going to the trouble of refuting it. Strictly speaking, to assert that a judgment is an opinion is to assert that the judgment in question is supported only by probable arguments about which reasonable people could disagree. This is a sophisticated distinction. I doubt that most people rise to this level of logical sophistication. Most people use the word “opinion” to mean no more than a subjective preference, unexamined prejudice, or unformed impression.

Reality as Metaphor and Ideology

But why use the word “reality” in the current expression “That is your reality”? I can think of two possibilities. (1) Perhaps this expression is designed to escape the force of an argument without insulting the person making the argument. You can acknowledge the other person’s rationality, sincerity, and their subjective certainty without accepting the objective truth of their judgment. In this case you are using the word “reality” metaphorically to signify the practical certainty with which the other person holds the belief in question. For them it seems so real that they are willing to act on this basis. You are acknowledging their certainty as a sincere driving force in their lives. Still, it seems a bit condescending to soften your rejection of their judgment with a verbal pat on the head.

But there is another less benign possibility. (2) The expression could be a popular derivative of the postmodern theory that reality, truth, knowledge, good, and beautiful are merely conceptual instruments of oppression invented by the dominant class or race or gender to gain and maintain their dominance. According to postmodern theory, those who have power and privilege determine what is taught as real, true, and known. And these concepts by definition demand submission of mind and body. But these definitions are merely ideologies whose sole purpose is to express and preserve the power interests of the dominant class, racial, or gender.

When a thoroughgoing postmodern thinker says to you “That is your reality” they are charging you with living according to an order of moral and aesthetic values and assumed truths designed and constructed to reinforce your position of power and privilege. This order seems real to you because it tells you what you want to hear, and it tells you what you want to hear because you and people like you wrote the script to fit yourselves. And it is so persuasive that you think your own propaganda perfectly reflects reality, the way things are apart from perceptual distortions, imaginary constructions, or wishes

Why Silly?

Why, then, does my title label the expression “That is your reality” as silly? The word silly applies to judgments or behavior that sets forth absurdities so obvious that they evoke riotous laughter. Using the word “reality” metaphorically to mean “illusion” with a straight face is indeed silly to the point of the farcical. But using the word “reality” to mean an “illusion constructed for an evil purpose” presses irony into the service of sarcasm. And sarcasm unlike irony aims to destroy rather than instruct. It’s too serious, to be silly.