Can Social Darwinism and Christianity Co-Exist?

By Jerde, Lyn | Telegraph - Herald (Dubuque), June 2, 2012 | Go to article overview

Can Social Darwinism and Christianity Co-Exist?


Jerde, Lyn, Telegraph - Herald (Dubuque)


No matter how many times I watch the movie "A Fish Called Wanda," I always laugh out loud at this line: "The central tenet of Buddhism is NOT 'Every man for himself.' "

Neither is it the central tenet of Christianity.

If this opening line seems familiar, it might be because you've monitored a recent Facebook discussion of a lengthy commentary, originally published in the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, titled, "Is It Raining Libertarians or What?"

The writer, Stephen B. Young, is talking about Social Darwinism, which he defines in a nutshell as a belief in "individual self- reliance, free markets and limited government."

That sounds a lot like the politics espoused by many who would assert that such a philosophy is Christian - by some who, in fact, score the votes and positions of politicians on how closely they adhere to this world view, then hand those scorecards out at churches to guide Christians in whom to elect.

Young asserts that Social Darwinism comes not from Charles Darwin's theory of evolution, but rather from the philosophy of 19th- century Englishman Herbert Spencer.

"Especially annoying to Spencer was the argument that government should interfere with life's natural operation of weeding out the losers among us," Young wrote. "Spencer argued for the least government possible " Since animals had no checks on their power save natural selection and fate, why should we?"

I posed the question to my Facebook friends: Can a person believe that this is a dog-eat-dog world where the strong and deserving ones should survive, and the physically and spiritually weak should be weeded out naturally - can one believe that, and still call himself or herself a follower of Jesus Christ? …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Can Social Darwinism and Christianity Co-Exist?
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Author Advanced search

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.