Liberal and evangelical Christians
A few years ago we had the doom preachers, but they were overblown by the atheist bringing the end of the world onto the Aztec agenda for the end of 2012.
Questions are asked if Christians who read the Bible arrive at a different place, but we better could ask if those Christians really take the whole Scripture to read and to compare the presented fragments or verses in the light of other verses in the Holy Scriptures.
According to Gary Tandy, Professor of English and English Department Chair at George Fox University, there is a cultural tendency in evangelical Christianity that does not leave room for “evolving” positions, complexity, uncertainty, or doubt. He is been discouraged with the nature and tenor of the conversation of Christians reacting in the wake of Obama’s interview stating his personal opinion on same-sex marriage. In Mitt Romney‘s commencement speech at fundamentalist, evangelical Liberty University, Romney only addressed the issue once, but he addressed it in tones of certainty: “Marriage,” he declared (to roaring applause), “is a relationship between one man and one woman.” Here’s what an audience member had to say in an NPR interview when asked about her position on same-sex marriage: “It’s wrong. There’s nothing else to say about it. It’s in the Bible.” This audience member’s attitude was pretty close to the old bumper sticker: “God said it. I believe it. That settles it.”
With it many questions were raised if people could accept that either their idea had to evolve with what is really meant in the Bible, or that the Bible would evolve with the times. We for sure know that many people would love to adopt the bile to their own ideas. Many would prefer that the world could progress and as such the Bible Words should have to interpreted according evolving times.
People do forget that it is not the Word of God that has to adapt to the time of the day. They also forget that often it are people who give it a certain strict meaning which is not exactly there black and white on the paper. Certain denominations do want to give it their interpretation because it suits their thoughts. America as such found a way to accept slavery and to not see any harm in using the black people do do all the dirty work for them at no special wage. We have seen a face in history that white people did not see any harm in ownership of a human being. Also poor white Europeans could find themselves in indentured servitude in the New World.
Historically, slavery was not just an Old Testament phenomenon. Slavery was practised in every ancient culture: Egyptian, Babylonian, Greek, Roman and Israelite. Slavery was an integral part of ancient commerce, taxation, and temple religion. For over 18 centuries Slavery in different forms has been imposed by Christians. But they did not see that they themselves also became slave of certain systems and ideas. In Catholic as well in protestant groups we can find defenders of slavery. Biblical verses pro- and against slavery, and textual argumentation were used on both sides.
The whole matter concentrates on the relationship of human beings against other human beings. It has been about colour, about sex and about age, that people tried to use or misuse Bible verses to get their right. Often the problem lay in the not understanding customs of the time and in the differences of forms of servitude, customary in ancient times, those condoned or cursed by the Torah.
The role of women in the human system has been also of a lot of debate.
And in the time of free sex, persons want to get to know the interpretation of the different denominations about the human relationship in a sexual context, between men and women, men and men, women and women, and also in relationship of different partners. All sort of mixes seem to be talk of the day.
We all want to be loved, appreciated and have pleasure and fulfilment in our lives. Today pleasure seems to receive first priority. And lots of people want to consider the Bible old fashioned.
Though we all should be aware that God gave us all the capacity to love and be loved, to have special friendships with others, but that it had to be in a way acceptable in the creation-system of the Almighty. From the first moment human was created God had foreseen that he could have a sexual nature, sexual desires and a will to create new human beings by coming close together. God want that people multiplied themselves.
In the United States some preachers teach that even an emotional tie is still considered adultery. They even consider it as a sin even when the emotional attracted people are not sexually involved. Naturally sin begins in the mind, and it is there that we do have to go to look for. In which way does our mind go strange?
Often people forget that God gives wisdom and also common sense. That last part is often put aside for doctrinal reasons.
Also cultural and language differences made that people wanted to adjust Biblical words, because they thought it would be better to adapt the language to the public. A decennia ago in the Dutch language we got for that reason a Prison Bible, a Youth Bible, a Bikers Bible, with modern slang words in it.
Because certain ideas seem to be offensive for one or an other group they have to be changed, the publishers think. In stead of putting a clear note of explanation of what is meant with such an expression. For example, today some publishers are wondering how they could cope with the words ‘son of’, because Muslims do have a problem with God who would have to have sex to get children. The idea of Jesus as Son of God is highly offensive to Muslims, therefore some of the Wycliffe Bible Translators prefer to use “Messiah” instead of “Son” in the translations and “Lord” instead of “Father.”
When we talk with Muslims about the Father – Son relationship, we do compare it to fosterparents, who also did not have to have sex, to be the ‘father’ or mother’ of the foster child. We also try to let them understand that any creation of a builder is a product and as such a child of the creator. We notice that many Muslims can find our way of thinking reasonable and not so wrong.
Naturally several Christians would encounter more problems when they say the son of God equals God the son, because then there is a real problem, for Christians like us, and for Muslims and Jews, who accept that there is only One God, who is the God of gods, but the Only One Almighty Elohim, Allah whose name is Jehovah. In such concept of the first mentioned Christians we do find the Trinity bias. For those trinitarians the Wycliff Translations are even a bigger problem than for us, who do not like the modern versions either. “Son of God” and “God the Father”, becoming God the Son and God the Holy Spirit are essential elements of the Christian concept of the Trinity, which is the Holy Core of Christianity according the Trinitarians. Many evangelical supporters of the Wycliffe organization find this very troubling, and are considering withholding support for the organization.
More “liberal” critics who see the Bible as a reflection of a particular people in history and their struggle with understanding their relationship to a deity argue that the historical contexts are a fundamental part of the meaning of the books of the Bible. Further, they suggest, reworking or changing the theology of these biblical texts will make missionary work among Muslims more difficult since Muslims claim that the Bible is corrupted and contains errors, and has therefore been abrogated by the Qur’an.
When publishers, for reasons to sell enough books, give preference to adapt the language to the times and culture of the moment, Muslims are very right that they charge Christianity with deformation of Gods Word. A pity they do not consider the main Bibles which stay in publication or can be found many years after they had been published for the first time. Even when certain changes where allowed and even the name of God had been taken away they stayed in the running, saying exactly the same thing as previous publications.
In that, having so many people working against the Holly Scriptures, but standing erect for thousands of years we see a much mightier hand than that of any human being. Even with some less correctly translated versions, people, who really read the whole Book, can find the Truth, because Gods Word is unchangeable.
Words are also part of passion. Which version you have in front of you, shall have a lot to do with your feelings and preferences. Wanting old language or modern language, being used to such a way of speaking or an other way of expressing oneself. It all depends on a matter of choice and ‘inner feeling’. Your love for words or love for telegram style messages. character of the person, his upbringing, schooling, formation on religious level, it shall all form the background to evaluate from a certain standpoint.
Several American Christians attempt to categorize the content of the Bible according to a pre-defined framework that is then passed on to others. The idea is to summarize and condense all Biblical teaching into a handful of topics, with a handy list of verses next to each topic, providing support for the idea. As a result, the framework becomes all-important when training students how to answer the question, “What does the Bible say about ?”
A big problem which we do encounter is that with many of those evangelicals, most often Pentecostals, many times, most of the verses in the list are being pressed into service on a topic to which they do not really relate. Or, perhaps, whether they are applicable depends upon other assumptions held by the person who created the list. Just because a person says something is true, and backs it up with a list of Bible verses, does not prove their point is true. Often the very framework that defines what constitutes legitimate avenues of inquiry, is up for debate.
A big problem we notice also that lots of them do not compare the verses and stories from the Old and the New Testament and do not take the whole picture in account.
The Trinitarian Christians want to place Christ Jesus dot in the centre. Mishkan David correctly observes: “There was a time when all astronomers held the premise that the earth was the center of the solar system. Working with that assumption, they concluded—based on very real and accurate observation—that the planets had some highly unusual traits in their behavior. It seemed that the planets accelerated at some points, and decelerated at others… and at different points on their orbit each time! The characteristic I always loved in high school science class was the notion of retrograde motion—the planets actually seemed to loop back in their paths, literally doing loop-de-loops as they moved along in their orbit!” though he seems to be a messianic Jew who does not believe any more in One God but in three gods, who are supposed to be one as well.
When people take the whole Book of Books, they shall see that Jesus is one part of Gods Plan, and that Israel is an other very important part of the Plan of World Peace. Jesus shall come on the throne in Israel, the municipal city of the Kingdom of God.
King James did like to have the full control of the Christian system in his country. In his edict number three he stated that his Authorised Bible was to retain the word “church” in the translation and it was not to be replaced with the word “congregation.” This he did because he had no jurisdiction over the congregation (people), but he did over the church (physical buildings). So you can see he never wanted the word “assembly” associated with the original meaning of the Old Testament which meant “congregation.” So he knew the correct translation, obviously, but he didn’t want it in there, that way they retain control over “the church.” (Read: Christ’s Ekklesia and the Church Compared, by Richard Anthony)
We always should be very careful what words we want to use and to which translation we want to preference. Having a preference for one or another version does no harm, and reading several versions can broaden the knowledge of every member in the community.
But all those members in the meeting, the ecclesia, should together, search the Scriptures to get to the Truth. This they should do in all openness for the Word of God, recognising that we are always living in a world which wants to give preference to certain ideas, which are not always according to Biblical Truth nor to the Will of God.
The Bible may be about vocation and election, but it is in the choice we do have to make our selves that we can become part of the elected or not. The Word of God gives the inhabitants of the universe the possibility to create a world where every creature can live in unity. The biblical emphasis, across the board, is on solidarity and love for each one and for everything around us.
In such a world we should not be tossed by political views but should stand firm in the Word of God which shall give us the necessary insight.
Please do find additional reading:
The Bible is an anti-libertarian document
People long to do whatever they want. They don’t want anyone to tell them what to do or what to say. But they also long to order their lives in accordance with a concept of right and wrong, and join forces with others who have a same or similar concept of right and wrong. People are in search of a constitution, a commonwealth, that suits them. The contradiction is blatant. The Bible clashes with a libertarian point of view. The Bible is a conglomerate of texts assembled at the intersection of ancient polities, movements, institutions, and traditions. It is full of liberty-restricting provisions and considerations in the service of the long-term viability of said polities and traditions. The Bible simply is an illiberal book. At times it takes an anthropologist to point this out. In her still important critique of Jacob Neusner’s The Idea of Purity in Ancient Judaism, Mary Douglas pointed out that the rule-making that is part and parcel of biblical exhortation and, specifically, of Torah, both in and beyond the Bible per se, is coercive in intent.
those who value individual freedoms above all will look elsewhere for a constitution and a res_publica. They will look for a framework that privileges and protects a more expansive concept of res privata than that found in biblical literature, Judaism, and Christianity.
Reimagining the Historicity of the Bible
It might also be important to try again to conceive of a history of the religion of Israel, a history of emergent Christianity and normative Judaism, insofar as they can be constructed from biblical, post-biblical, and non-biblical sources. Now is an inopportune time to walk away from the questions which have animated modern biblical studies from the beginning.
Historicism and scientism so defined are modern myths. In the diction of Bruce Lincoln, they are ideologies in narrative form. Both stand in contradiction to the narrative of the Bible in which everything hinges on a vital relationship with a singular principle of truth, justice, and goodness which occurs to people as a God of great power and beauty.
On the contrary, if a text presents itself to a reader as the sum of a variety of precursor texts, the whole is unquestionably greater than the sum of its parts, but an understanding of the whole is enhanced to the extent that a reader can take the text apart and put it back together again.
Moreover, if a particular textual component corrects or contradicts another, why is it irreverent or unloving to point it out? The point is obvious in the case of the book of Job. The truth it mediates lies at the intersection of not one contradittorio (cross-examination, debate) but many. It is no less true in the case of the Pentateuch, if one treats it, as one should, as a literary whole. For example, the treatment of specific topics across the various legal corpora, the Covenant Code, Deuteronomy, and the Holiness Code, embodies a debate, the sum of whose parts must be constructed beyond the bounds of the text. There is a strong sense in which the truth Torah tells inevitably resides, not in the text before us, but outside of it.
Which Kingdom Will You Serve?
What is systematic theology, you ask? It is the attempt to categorize the content of the Bible according to a pre-defined framework that is then passed on to others.
- My Growing Problem With Liberal Christianity (brucegerencser.net)
On one hand, I understand WHY many people adopt some form of liberal Christianity. They are tired of Evangelical (which is Fundamentalist) Christianity and its attendant certitude and black and white thinking. They are tired of the culture war. They are tired of being viewed as mindless, knuckle dragging Bible thumpers.
Liberal Christians are known for reinterpreting the Bible to fit their own agenda. They write book after book to explain why the Evangelical interpretation of the Bible is wrong, misguided, or outdated. Never mind WHAT the text says. All that matters is making the square peg fit in the round hole.
Look at Tandy’s questions. He desperately wants to believe the Bible is unclear on the matter of homosexuality. But , it is not. He is an English teacher. He values words and their meanings. What does the text say? What would an every day, non-original language educated person, in other words, 99% of the people sitting in the pew, think these verses mean?
- Pat Robertson: The Bible Is “Terribly Wrong” (slog.thestranger.com)
Apparently, we can pick and choose parts of the Bible after all, says Pat Robertson. When asked on the 700 Club today why some believe “America was founded as a Christian nation” even though it allowed slavery, Robertson said, “like it or not, if you read the Bible in the Old Testament, slavery was permitted.” But Robertson concluded that despite what the Bible says, “We have moved in our conception of the value of human beings until we realized slavery was terribly wrong.” Of course, when Dan Savage made a similar point about the Bible (albeit with saltier language), the Religious Right was irate.
We’re asking conservative Christians to ignore what the bible says about homosexuality just as they ignore what the bible says about slavery.
- Let’s Talk About Sex Part 2 (brucegerencser.net)
Christianity is a text-based religion. The foundation of Christianity is the Bible, the Word of God. From the most liberal Christian to the most strident Fundamentalist, every Christian, to some degree or another, accepts the Bible as truth, as the final authority.
I am sure that someone may suggest that everyone knows that the word touch used in First Corinthians 7:1 means to have sexual intercourse. Perhaps. All I am trying to do with this post is to show how a Christian, armed with the belief that the Bible is the literal Word of God, could come to the conclusion that the Bible teaches that before marriage a man or a woman should not touch each other.
As physical familiarity increases so does the risk of engaging in sexual intercourse. Every sexually-aware human being knows this.
- How to Witness to an Atheist (brucegerencser.net)
Many atheists were Christians before they became atheists. In my case, I was a Christian for 50 years and I was an Evangelical pastor for 25 of those years. Granted, most atheists are not like me but many of them were raised in the Christian church and know what the Christian gospel is and what the Bible teaches.
- People become atheists for a variety of reasons. Often there are emotional and cultural reasons why a person becomes an atheist but, at the end of the day, most people become an atheist for intellectual reasons.
- Most atheists are not atheists because they are angry with God, mad at the church, or hurt.
Be prepared to give evidence (proof) of the assertions you make. Saying the Bible says will not work since the atheist will likely not accept the authority of the Bible.
- Growing Pains, Pt. 6 | “Evangelism” (thereformedwesleyan.com)
Christianity is a religion of return. No one comes to faith in isolation. Faith requires a body of faith to give it to others. If you had never seen a church, a Christian or a bible you never would have known about Jesus. You may have thought about God, for Paul said that the world testifies of God, but what we need can only come through revelation and that gift and responsibility has been given to the Church of Jesus. If there has been any benefit or change in our lives, then we are charged with a great responsibility, to give what has been given to us.
Sharing your faith with someone else is like taking a vitamin. The more and the longer you share your faith the better you feel and the stronger your faith will become.
- Pat Robertson Discovers Cherry Picking (patheos.com)
What happened to all that “Bible is the literal word of God” stuff? Since we already eat shellfish and work on the Sabbath and wear cotton-poly blends, can slavery be dismissed just as easily? Because some of that stuff is so antiquated it is not only irrelevant in the 21stcentury but downright absurd.If Robertson has his way, we can let thousands of years of Bible-condoned slavery slide… but if someone dares question Leviticus (also in the Old Testament, let us not forget) and suggest that gay people should be allowed to legally marry, we are a nation full of sinners?! Really?!
- In Why I am an atheist – Libby Anne (freethoughtblogs.com) you can see the problem when fundamentalist religious people teach their kids certain things which are not in accordance with reality and not in accordance what is really written and meant in the Holy Scriptures. Once they become a person who can make up his own mind and find archaeological and historical scientific works the fantasies they were taught to them fall to pieces.
“I was raised on the line between fundamentalist and evangelical Christianity. I was homeschooled, and nearly every subject was related to God and the Bible. History was His story and our science textbooks were all creationists.” … “And then I went to college, where my young earth creationist views were challenged. I responded by fighting back. I argued with both students and professors, sure that I had some sort of truth they were missing.”
For such person the confrontation with other thinkings clashes so that they do not see any more the background of the words of the Bible. They even go out to read about where the Bible came from, written by people who are against the Word of God and distorting its words. Doing that the most of them are going to think the Bible is a book full of errors and contradictions, while there are not such contradictions, though good that they start seeing it is also a very human book.
Often it is because certain religions take away the humanity, like they want to make of Jesus the God, instead of accepting that he was a man of flesh and blood.
When they really start reading the full Bible and get themselves loose of the doctrinal teachings they start to become being pulled in two, for the both loose their grip with the divine and are becoming incredibly fascinated with the very human development of the very human book that is the Bible.
Normally you would expect that they would come to a better understanding and that finally, the Bible would make complete and total sense. Than arrives the problem, that most of them want to hold fast on traditions and the dogmatic teachings in which they were brought up. In such an instance they feel being forced to choose between holding onto the divine and the beauty of total understanding, thinking that that would mean to put God and everything sacred away, instead of coming to the Truth and taking God for what He really is and taking Jesus for what he really is.
- Gay for God? A Primer on How to Talk to Christians About the Gay Debate (theparish.typepad.com)
Until someone can give me a compelling reason—without citing Leviticus or Romans—that a class of American citizens are denied the same rights and privileges I enjoy, please just admit that the only real arguments you have are theological (i.e., god doesn’t like it) or aesthetic (i.e., it’s gross). Take away the Bible references, you got no argument save the one about old school conservatism and the wisdom of slow change.
It’s a Constitutional issue, not a theological one. Our legislators aren’t paid to parse Scripture and debate hermeneutics.
The Bible prohibits punching babies in Leviticus (it really doesn’t, but we’re pretending). 3000 years later, we learn there is a class of people who are born to punch babies, who actually enjoy punching babies. We call them pugilinfantos. They point out that when the Bible was written, the term didn’t even exist; therefore, the Bible can’t have their orientation in mind.
an honest read of the OT yields the idea that homosexual acts were considered part of the moral prohibitions, as were all the sex acts listed. The question is whether or not you want Bronze Age people defining allowable sexual ethics.
There is enough ambiguity in the Pauline corpus about words like arsenokoites and sodomite that liberal and evangelical scholars will continue to argue for decades. Again, the problem is that same sex issues made it into the NT; whether they are specifically about homosexual sex or economic exploitation or pederasty is one for the scholars. They don’t agree on it.
- Why do people fall for “old” Christian Fundamentalism? (unbiasedtruth.net)
- Stealing Jesus: How Fundamentalism Betrays Christianity(unbiasedtruth.net)
I am sending this to you to help those who have left fundamentalist churches that preach damnation, hatred, fear and “you’re not a Christian if you don’t believe like me.” Many have turned against the church and never came back, or just ran away from strict preachers, parents, teachers, etc. and never looked back to find a loving, caring church, group, club, etc. I like a church sign down the road from me that states:
“We Welcome Sinners and Backsliders Like Us.” You’ll find some good ideas from the summary and the reviews shared from others who have had a similar experience.
The time is past, says Bruce Bawer, when denominational names and other traditional labels provided an accurate reflection of Christian America’s religious beliefs …
- Government agency approves Christian fundamentalist exams as ‘comparable’ to A-Level(liberalconspiracy.org)
A Christian fundamentalist qualification which teaches that the theory of evolution has “no scientific basis” has been declared comparable to A-levels by UK Naric.
NARIC is the UK’s National Agency responsible for providing information and opinion on vocational, academic and professional qualifications from across the world.
The International Certificate of Christian Education (ICCE) uses a curriculum that was previously criticised for claiming the Loch Ness Monster “appears to be a plesiosaur,” and that the mythical beast is evidence against evolution.
In a training booklet for ACE staff, future teachers are told, “It’s interesting that in the African primitive languages there is no word for wisdom. We in the West find that surprising, but you see, the idea of wisdom came through the Biblical channels of the Judaeo-Christian religion and filtered into all of western culture and society.”
- How Many Christian Fundamentalists Are There in the UK?(leavingfundamentalism.wordpress.com)
Christian fundamentalism, also known as Fundamentalist Christianity, or Fundamentalism, arose out of British and American Protestantism in the late 19th century and early 20th century among evangelical Christians.
- Loch Ness monster cited by US schools as evidence that evolution is myth(scotsman.com)
Pupils attending privately-run Christian schools in the southern state of Louisiana will learn from textbooks next year, which claim Scotland’s most famous mythological beast is a living creature.
Thousands of children are to receive publicly-funded vouchers enabling them to attend the schools – which follow a strict fundamentalist curriculum.
The Accelerated Christian Education (ACE) programme teaches controversial religious beliefs, aimed at disproving evolution and proving creationism.
Mr Wilson believes that such fundamentalist Christian teaching is going on in at least 13 American states.
He added: “There’s a lot of public funding going to private schools, probably around 200,000 pupils are receiving this education.
“The majority of parents now home schooling their kids are Christian fundamentalists too. I don’t believe they should be publicly funded, I don’t believe the schools who use these texts should be publicly funded.” !!!
- In Will Smith Hits Back at Ex-: “Miss Holy Roller”(blackwriteandread.wordpress.com) you can see to which problems it comes when fundamentalism gets to one person in a family.
“ Will goes on to say that it is “fundamental Christians” like her who cause others to fall by the wayside … killing, denying, cheating, lying, stealing, depriving, living selfish lives, committing atrocious acts and heinous crimes in the name of their “god” (the ones listed before) and then coming back to rein people into their world of self-righteousness with a Bible that was used by Europe to put people in slave chains; and to destroy, kill, and steal from others.”
- How We’ve Infuriated Centuries of People(str.typepad.com)
It should come as no surprise that the individuals who abide by fundamentalist Christian and radical Islamic doctrines would be the first to cry out that they are being persecuted when their dangerous, damaging and disingenuous beliefs come under attack. Most of these people lack the maturity and intelligence to act in a socially acceptable manner. Many of them are sociopaths and quite a good number of them are psychopaths. All of them are clearly delusional….
Bigotry, discrimination, hatred, coercion, terrorism, slavery, misogyny and everything else that is part and parcel of fundamental Christianity and radical Islam should not be tolerated….
The truth is, what has infuriated people about Christians throughout the centuries is that they can’t get us to conform to them. From Shadrach, to Peter, to Richard Wurmbrand, no law, threat or torture can turn true Christians from loving and serving God or affirming what we know to be true.
it is often characteristic of humans to be most emphatically hostile to things that they themselves most deeply and secretly are guilty of; I wonder how many of the most hostile anti-theists are trying to wipe out god by denying him so strongly.
- The Egalitarian and Complementarian Divide (5) (allisonquient.wordpress.com)
Sacred and secular cultures have had massive impacts on Evangelicals, and as a result, have influenced the gender debate. It is common to hear how much secular culture and liberalism have influenced Egalitarianism or how Egalitarianism will inevitably lead Evangelicals down the path to liberalism or even the acceptance of homosexuality. Massive amounts of effort has been dedicated towards making this alleged reality known and warning the faithful of the danger of falling down the slippery slope.
We ought not to trivialize the issue by substituting rhetoric for substance. We ought not to marginalize the issue by obscuring the clarity of Scripture.
Many Complementarians believe Egalitarians have read back into Scripture what is at heart a secular ideology, even if Egalitarians do this inadvertently.
What is overlooked or underemphasized is the commonality between Egalitarians and Complementarians when it comes to the authority of Scripture and how Egalitarians are also influenced by culture in much the same way Complementarians are. In fact, when the Evangelical Woman’s Caucus became polarized between the liberal and conservative Christians over accepting a homosexual lifestyle, those who were liaisons to the Evangelical world found they could not in good conscience stay in their current organization.
In the article discussed earlier he mentioned that those in the Episcopal church did not feel the need to exit their denomination when a woman was made a Bishop in 1989 and so “advocates of homosexual ordination were not worried about a split in the church.” When a compromise followed just allowing individual churches to bless homosexual unions or not, Grudem wounders “As I am writing this chapter, it remains to be seen whether conservatives will finally leave the denomination.”
History serves as reminded that Evangelicals are heavily influenced by culture whether it is secular, liberal or our own subculture. For better or worse, we have been influenced to our detriment and are being influenced now. When it comes to the gender debate, fears of a liberal or secular takeover have colored and shaped how Egalitarians are perceived and biased the debate in the opposite direction even though it is unwarranted.