What is Christian nationalism? According to 2 professors of sociology at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis and the University of Oklahoma, Andrew L. Whitehead and Samuel L. Perry, in their book Taking America Back for God Christian nationalism:
“includes assumptions of nativism, white supremacy, patriarchy and heteronormativity, along with divine sanction for authoritarian control and militarism. It is as ethnic and political as it is religious. Understood in this light, Christian nationalism contends that America has been and should always be distinctively ‘Christian’ from top to bottom — in its self-identity, interpretations of its own history, sacred symbols, cherished values and public policies — and it aims to keep it this way.”
It is important to remember that not all Christians are Christian nationalists, but a lot of the noisy ones are.
Katherine Stewart, in her book, The Power Worshippers: Inside the Dangerous Rise of Religious Nationalism, goes even farther:
“It is a political movement, and its ultimate goal is power. It does not seek to add another voice to America’s pluralistic democracy, but to replace our foundational democratic principles and institutions with a state grounded on a particular version of Christianity, answering to what some adherents call a ‘biblical worldview’ that also happens to serve the interests of its plutocratic funders and allied political leaders.”
Christian Nationalism in the United States does not acknowledge the legitimacy of the separation of church and state provided for the in the establishment clause of the American Constitution. Canada does not have a similar provision in its Charter of Rights and Freedoms, though it does provide for freedom of religion and freedom from religion. Christian Nationalism therefore is really an anathema to both the American Constitution and the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Both have been interpreted by the Supreme Court of each country to require that no religion can be imposed on citizens. Both are foundations of religious freedom.
Christian Nationalism is really not in favour of religious freedom for anyone other than Christianity and its observers and then only a particular version of Christianity–their version. It wants its principles and dictates to be law. Stewart also said, “This is not a ‘culture war.’ It is a political war over the future of democracy.” Stewart believes as do I, that Christian Nationalists do not want freedom of religion, they want the freedom to impose their religion and their interpretation of their religion on others. They want to make their version of their religion dominant in the United States and Canada.