In an interview with the New York Times, Rep. Steve King of Iowa asked, “White nationalist, white supremacist, Western civilization — how did that language become offensive?”
King’s been rightly denounced by both liberal Democrats and conservative Republicans like Senator Tim Scott of South Carolina. On Monday, he was even stripped of his committee memberships.
King has since called the phrases “evil,” but I don’t want King’s rhetorical question to go unanswered. What’s “offensive” about the words “white nationalist” and “white supremacist” is the idea behind them: that one racial or ethnic group is better than others.
And when did those phrases become offensive? They never became offensive. They’ve always been offensive… ever since the Garden when God created all humankind in His image and endowed each with infinite worth.
And finally, equating white supremacy with Western civilization ignores Christianity’s greatest contribution to that civilization and to the world: insisting on the dignity and worth of every human person.