According to Joseph Meslage, the editor of the Katy Christian Magazine, which for over two decades has supported and been supported by the Christian community in Texas, "Christian media is under attack. We have always been able to serve the community here in the Houston area and with going online to a much larger community, supporting the Christian businesses, ministries, churches as well as being there to support news and advocacy for the causes of the gospel, but suddenly there has been a dramatic drop in our support which has brought us to the verge of bankruptcy".
And Menslage is not alone, with pioneer of Christian online media Joseph Farah commenting, "Overnight, we had a nearly 90% drop in our income as a result of an organized campaign to bankrupt us using online programs to stop access to our site, using of algorithms to stop traffic. As a result, we had to lay off nearly all our staff, shut down our office and more."
What was originally a campaign aimed at conservative media has morphed into an anti-Christian media campaign that has driven many local Christian media outlets to shutter. And it's forced the few remaining to consider alternative means to survive at a time when the church is under nonstop onslaught, from churches being prevented from opining to Christians being persecuted in school, business, government and more.
"We need more Christian media—not less," says Menslage. "We need a nationwide consortium of Christian media to organize so we can share negotiation, support the church and collectively stand against the bullying of the tech companies with their decidedly anti-Christian bias."
Menslage is calling for a nationwide, ultimately worldwide network of Christian media to organize, disseminate and protect the Christian worldview and message. This thought is shared by Joseph Farah, who says, "I agree we need to organize and stand together; one media alone cannot stand against the onslaught, as has been so clear with us."
The Media Research Center's latest survey found out there is a 96% negative media coverage of President Trump. This is rolling over directly to Christian media, which is perceived as supporting and backing the president.
There is Christian media that is surviving, albeit under trying circumstances, such as Charisma Media, founded by Stephen Strang. Charisma absorbed the historic Christian Life magazine, which pioneered Christian media a generation ago under Bob Walker.
Strang, the bestselling author of God, Trump and COVID-19 and other books, says, "Many evangelicals believe religious liberty, protected by the First Amendment, is indeed under severe attack."
All agree that there is an organized, sustained effort, always conveniently denied as a "mistake" or "oversight" whenever brought to the forefront, that needs to be addressed and also that Christian media must better network, support each other and together stand firmly against the spiritual warfare attack of the high-tech social media giants.
"Therefore take up the whole armor of God that you may be able to resist in the evil day, and having done all, to stand" (Eph. 6:13) points the Scriptural way forward with the charge to withstand and stay firm, the core message of the struggling Christian media.
The tide appears to be turning, albeit too late for World News Daily and others, but with a recent invitation of tech leaders to the White House where the president signed an executive order on anti-conservative discrimination in social media and a recent Senate Judiciary hearing led by Senator Ted Cruz and Attorney General William Barr, formally proposing reforms to Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act of 1995. This protects media platforms from being held liable for any of their content and is viewed by many as being the core problem that allows the blatant anti-Christian discrimination.
Menslage is putting out a call to fellow Christian media to join together to share content, platforms and support each other a mere 80 days before an election, that if lost could be the death knell to Christian media with the departure of its strongest cheerleader in the White House. This is a clear, clarion call for believers who care about their ability to communicate to register family, friends and fellow church members and not let the terrible failure of 2016 in which 37 million Christians failed to vote to happen again, this time with catastrophic consequences for the church.
Amir George is the author of Liberating Iraq and directs The World Helpline at theworldhelpline.org.
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