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USA News

Almost half of evangelical leaders say they have been blacklisted over beliefs, new poll reveals

by Kelly Valencia

Nearly half of evangelical leaders in the US say they have been blacklisted, disinvited or excluded by others because of their views on complex issues such as abortion or LGBT rights, a new survey has revealed. 

A poll by the National Association of Evangelicals (NAE) revealed 48 per cent of those surveyed said they had experienced being "cancelled by others" as a way of expressing their disapproval for the leader or the leader's point of view." 

"Cancel culture is the practice of excluding any person, organization or work as a way of expressing disapproval," Walter Kim, president of the National Association of Evangelicals said. 

"While it is important to be clear about unacceptable behaviour and unorthodox positions, this phenomenon makes it difficult to have meaningful, vulnerable and open dialogue about the real challenges that we face," he added.

The survey, conducted in July and August, is part of a monthly poll of the NAE's Board of Directors, which includes the CEOs of denominations and representatives of several Evangelical organisations. 

Last month, pastor Ed Young of Fellowship Church in Grapevine, Texas, said Facebook removed a paid ad for his sermon "Woke or Awake."

"Well, I got cancelled this week," Young said, according to Church Leaders. "Our friends at Facebook just cancelled me. Our incredible media team put together these ads, and we showed these ads and for some reason, Mark Zuckerberg and his friends didn't dig them."

Meta, Facebook's parent company, said the ad did not comply with their advertising policies. 

Other respondents to the survey said they weren't aware of being cancelled because of their beliefs. 

Kim continued: "As a society, we need to find a way to hold individuals and organisations accountable for their actions, but not punish people for holding beliefs that may be different. 

"We need to encourage conversations across differences. Let us open our doors and ask those with differences to pull up a seat to the table. After all, that was the way of Jesus."

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