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Fox News pundit John Stossel is challenging his colleague Bill O’Reilly’s complaints that Christianity is under fire in the United States.
“Your ‘War on Christianity,’ you’re just a 10-foot-tall crybaby,” Stossel said in an interview on “The O’Reilly Factor” Tuesday night. “It’s not so bad. Christians aren’t being killed.”
Stossel, a secular libertarian, appeared on the show to promote his upcoming special on the Fox Business Network called “Church and State,” which argues Christianity is not under attack.
O’Reilly says that though Christians are not literally being killed in the U.S. for their spiritual convictions, he thinks they are “verbally being killed.”
“You shouldn’t be diminished because you believe a certain way,” O’Reilly said. “Aren’t you outraged by that?”
“What’s diminished?” Stossel responded. “Eighty-three percent of the country says they are Christians. You are the majority. You’ve won.”
O’Reilly said it is not a matter of winning but a matter of respect. He argued that secularists detest Christianity because the religion stands in the way of what he thinks nonreligious people want: abortions, gay marriage and legalized drugs.
Stossel countered that O’Reilly was generalizing about secularists — pointing to himself as an example of an agnostic who does not criticize religion.
“Well, I’m a secularist, and I don’t want unlimited abortion,” he said. “I think you paint with too broad a brush.”
O’Reilly backpedaled slightly, saying that his criticisms were intended for secular progressives.
In “Church and State,” Stossel argues that the United States is a Christian country where religion thrives. He cites polls that say 90 percent of Americans believe in God and 40 percent say they go to church weekly; whereas in France and Germany fewer than 10 percent go to church.
Earlier this month, O’Reilly dedicated a segment of his show to shining a light on what he considers the War on Christianity. He claimed liberal Americans have been the aggressors in demonizing those who “oppose their vision.”