The New Yorker has a piece out presumably about Doug Mastriano, a Republican state senator from Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. So what’s the big deal about a state senator? The New Yorker reports that he urged constituents to attend the January 6 rally at the Capitol, saying, “I’m really praying that God will pour His Spirit upon Washington, D.C., like we’ve never seen before.”

OK. So he’s a Christian and also a Republican. He’s also white, which has one sociologist hearing dog whistles.

[Mastriano] has come to embody a set of beliefs characterized as Christian nationalism, which center on the idea that God intended America to be a Christian nation, and which, when mingled with conspiracy theory and white nationalism, helped to fuel the insurrection. “Violence has always been a part of Christian nationalism,” Andrew Whitehead, a sociologist and co-author of “Taking America Back for God,” told me. “It’s just that the nature of the enemy has changed.”

The election of Donald Trump intensified certain strains of Christian nationalism. He fanned fears of pluralism with Islamophobic and anti-immigrant rhetoric. He often invoked Christianity, albeit in terms that were largely about ethnic identity rather than faith. “The greatest ethnic dog whistle the right has ever come up with is ‘Christian,’ because it means ‘people like us,’ it means white,” Samuel Perry, a sociologist at the University of Oklahoma and co-author of “Taking America Back For God,” told me.

So two sociologists who co-authored a book called “Taking America Back for God” think “Christian” means “white” to other Christians. Here’s the summary of “Taking America Back for God” from Amazon:

Why do so many conservative Christians continue to support Donald Trump despite his many overt moral failings? Why do many Americans advocate so vehemently for xenophobic policies, such as a border wall with Mexico? Why do many Americans seem so unwilling to acknowledge the injustices that ethnic and racial minorities experience in the United States? Why do a sizeable proportion of Americans continue to oppose women’s equality in the workplace and in the home?

Why do liberals ask so many dumb questions?

Prove him wrong.

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