UC Observer logo
UCObserver on SoundCloud UCObserver on YouTube UCObserver on Facebook UCObserver on Twitter UCObserver's RSS Feeds
Robert P. Jones. (Handout)

Award-winning scholar has a lot to say about Trump's America

Robert P. Jones has called the 2016 presidential election a "death rattle" for white Christian America.

By Emma Prestwich

The author of a book about the decline of white Protestant Christianity in the U.S. has won a $100,000 award.

Robert P. Jones, the author of “The End of White Christian America,” was awarded the 2019 Grawemeyer Award in Religion on Friday. It's an honour handed out annually by the Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary and the University of Louisville, Kentucky, to recognize "creative and significant insights into the relationship between human beings and the divine."

The book was released the summer before the 2016 U.S. presidential election, a vote that Jones has called a "death rattle" for white Christian America.

Jones explores the waning influence of white Christians on American society. This demographic has historically held the seat of power, but today the number of people who identify as Christian in the U.S. is dropping, as is the percentage of the population that is white. 

Jones wrote that President Donald Trump painted himself during the 2016 campaign as white conservative Christians' last chance to keep their power, and argued that white Christians' anxiety over their changing status is helpful to understand why many debates over cultural, racial and political issues in the U.S. have been so intense.

"He also offers an appropriate critique of how mainline Protestants have failed to address racism even though they have been a public voice for racial justice," Tyler Mayfield, an associate professor at the seminary, said in a press release.

Jones is the founder and CEO of the Public Religion Research Institute, a non-partisan, non-profit organization that researches topics related to religion, public policy and culture.


Readers’ advisory: The discussion below is moderated by The UC Observer and facilitated by Intense Debate (ID), an online commentary system. The Observer reserves the right to edit or reject any comment it deems to be inappropriate. Approved comments may be further edited for length, clarity and accuracy, and published in the print edition of the magazine. Please note: readers do not need to sign up with ID to post their comments on ucobserver.org. We require only your user name and e-mail address. Your comments will be posted from Monday to Friday between 9:30 a.m. and 5:30 p.m. Join the discussion today!

Editorials

Promotional Image

Editorials

The Observer has a bright future ahead

by Jocelyn Bell

Change is as vital to the publication's history as our founding Christian values are to our future, says editor and publisher Jocelyn Bell.

Promotional Image

Video

Meet beloved church cats Mable and Mouse

by Observer Staff

They're a fixture of Kirk United Church Centre in Edmonton.

Promotional Image

Ethics

January 2019

Where to donate your unwanted stuff so it actually goes to those who need it

by Glynis Ratcliffe

It may be tempting when you declutter to just drop off all your items at Value Village, but sticking with local organizations is a better option.

Faith

January 2019

Former fundamentalists describe the trauma of leaving their faith

by Anne Bokma

At a weekend retreat, participants find the strength to reclaim their lives.

Columns

January 2019

I worry the United Church doesn't want evangelicals like me

by Marilyn Myhre

While the church community says it accepts everyone, one woman wonders if that is still true.

Promotional Image