Progressives Aim to Incite Conflicts and Undermine Faith
An Interview With Dr. Carol M. Swain


Dr. Carol M. Swain

Dr. Carol M. Swain

Former tenured professor at Princeton and Vanderbilt Universities, and is a Distinguished Senior Fellow for Constitutional Studies with the Texas Public Policy Foundation. Dr. Swain is the author or editor of 11 books, including “Be the People: A Call to Reclaim America’s Faith and Promise.” She has appeared in numerous media outlets, including FOX News, and has published opinion pieces in The Wall Street Journal, and other U.S. newspapers.


──Today, I would like to ask you mainly about your prominent book “Be the People: A Call to Reclaim America’s Faith and Promise.” And, first of all, I would like to ask about the current situation in the US. Although President Biden promised “unity,” it looks like he caused more divisions since he took office. What kind of changes did the Biden administration bring to the U.S.?

Dr. Swain: Well, I can say first of all, my book “Be the People: A Call to Reclaim America’s Faith and Promise,” was written because our nation in America had moved away from a lot of faith principles. And so the book was trying to reinvigorate the people who profess to be Christians, and yet they were electing politicians that did not share their values. And your question about President Biden, President Biden has been a very useful tool of progressives, and I would argue that he has been instrumental in their being able to push a socialist agenda that makes America almost unrecognizable.

──So he caused divisions in the US and kind of destroyed the US tradition?

Dr. Swain: Well, the tradition was already in trouble, and so I would not say that Biden destroyed it singlehandedly. I would argue that America has been moving in the wrong direction for many decades. And that the Obama administration, that people celebrated because they thought he would bring people together, it did not happen. He did not bring people together. In fact, the divide started to grow wider during the Obama administration. And so, too, the US has been in trouble.

──I see. The US has been in trouble.

Dr. Swain: It’s been in trouble, I think, for many decades because it has been headed in the wrong direction. And I would argue that what made America the envy of the world, so many people were interested in coming to America, it was because of our freedoms and our Constitution, our freedom of speech, freedom of religion, freedom of assembly, the rights of due process for criminals. A lot of that has changed.

──As you mentioned to former President Barack Obama, the Democratic Party often promises to “fix inequality” and mainstream media praises it. Although those policies are ear-pleasing, we are concerned that they can weaken people’s spirit of self-help. On the other hand, although you were born into a financially challenged family, dropped out of school, and raised your children as a single mother, you still believed in the American dream and continued to work hard and study, then became a successful professor. Why did you not blame your environment and yet were able to continue your efforts despite these obstacles?

Dr. Swain: During the time when I went to school, the civil rights movement in America was at its height. And so I grew up during a time when there were lots of opportunities and that America as a nation was addressing its problems with race. And so I took advantage of the equal opportunity my government offered me to be able to get an education. And I was able to take advantage of the American dream, which in the past, if you were willing to work hard and you got an education, you were able to overcome the circumstances of your birth. And so I grew up loving my country, believing that it offered opportunities for me and people like me, for everyone, and that if I worked hard and got an education, it would make all the difference in the world. And it did.

──Regarding education, it is reported that the transgender agenda in public schools has become more and more aggressive and a huge number of parents are fighting to push back against those progressive movements. We are concerned that under the name of “diversity,” a human’s right to live as a creation of God is becoming limited. How do you see the current situation?

Dr. Swain: I agree with you that the situation today is very different from anything that was envisioned certainly for America. And in our public and private schools, there is less emphasis on hardcore academics, such as mathematics, reading, science, and English. Everything is about political correctness and about diversity and various things. A sexual agenda. Exposing children to inappropriate sexual material. All of that is a new normal that is affecting all of our schools, public and private. And that’s why so many parents are pulling their children out of school. They are fighting back because they don’t want their children indoctrinated. They want their children to be able to learn basic academic skills and to be able to go as far as they can go with knowledge. But too much of what they’re receiving is progressive indoctrination that’s not going to equip them to be successful students or citizens.

──It is also said that there has been a prevailing effort to drive God out of public education for two generations ―― for instance, abolishing prayer in public schools. Could you tell us how progressive elites have been working to erase religion from public space?

Dr. Swain: Well, I mean in America back in 1962 the supreme court ruled that you could not have prayer in school, and that was because of a complaint by the parent of an atheist student.

And then the next year they ruled that there could not be any bible reading in school. And so as far as religion in schools, that happened a long time ago. But what we have today is that there are many public schools where Muslims are allowed to pray in class, to leave the classroom to go to a special room where they can pray. And that when it comes to freedom of religion, it’s not equal across all religions. There are some religions that are treated more favorably. I would say that the Christian religion is the most disfavored religion today in America. Even though we have been the dominant, the Christians that are bible believing, that want to live by their faith, they tend to be more targeted. And that’s what progressivism has brought about in America. And we find that with Islam and religions like that, they tend to be more favored, I would say, when it comes to progressives. And it’s not because progressives love Islam or any other religion. They use one group, they pit one group against another. And so right now, because they have an agenda to undermine the American way of life, they see undermining Christianity as a core principle. I would argue.

──I see. So, they’re using Islam to attack Christianity, right?

Dr. Swain: That is what I believe.

──Given the current educational situation, it is reported that more and more parents are asking for a school choice system. What is the advantage to choose private schools or homeschooling instead of public schools?

Dr. Swain: I believe that parents want parental choice. They want to be able to decide whether to send their child to a private school, a public school, or to a homeschool, or to use a co-op or whatever educational model they feel best fits their child. And the battle is over whether or not the tax dollars that the government pays towards each child. If the parent chooses to homeschool, they choose to go to a private school or whatever kind of school they go to, they would want the money to follow the child. And there is a problem in America with the teachers’ unions and liberal school boards. They clearly have a progressive agenda that undermines the values of the parents. And what they seem to be doing is trying to indoctrinate all the children to think the same way when it comes to issues such as race or LGBTQ rights or just any number of issues. And we have situations where there are young people today that identify as furries. They may see themselves as a cat or a dog or some animal and their schools that are being encouraged to accommodate how the child self-identifies. So if the child self-identifies as a cat, there was one case where the child was allowed to have a litter box because the child identified as a cat. And there’s a lot of mental illness taking place in our world and in America in particular, that no one is standing up to.

And we have this issue with transgenders, and people that want to take hormones or want to change their sex or go through that process. It’s one thing if you are an adult, but if you are a child and you have an academic curriculum that’s encouraging you to question whether you were really born as a girl or a boy. And if you have teachers telling you that you can change your sex and encouraging you to ask for puberty blockers to prevent your body from developing, or surgeries to alter your body permanently, all these things are new to society. And it seems to be like a contagion in parts of America. And it’s being pushed in a way that to some children it’s cool now to say that you’re nonbinary or whatever the buzzword is. And the number of people that identify now as transgenders — I mean, the only thing that really explains it is that there’s been a political agenda to encourage young people to question their sexuality. And anyone that’s gone through puberty knows that as you grow and your body develops that you have a range of emotions. That’s being exploited by adults, who have adult agendas, who use our children as pawns.

──I understand. The U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade in June. Could you elaborate on President Trump’s nomination of conservative justices?

Dr. Swain: His appointment of justices?


Dr. Swain: The court overturned Roe vs Wade, but they actually sent it back to the states where it belongs. Thus individual states can make the decision about what kind of abortion laws they want. So there are some states that would be more restrictive than other states. And what President Trump ― what he did was appoint judges that were more conservative. And basically, they don’t believe in an activist court. And they sent it back to the states. And that’s where those issues belong because, under the US Constitution, we have a system of federalism where government is divided between state, local, and federal. Under the constitution, most of the powers are reserved for the state. The national government should never have been so involved in the kinds of issues that it interferes in today when it comes to people’s individual rights and liberties.

──The Supreme Court just gave the power back to the individual states.

Dr. Swain: Yeah. And so they did not end the woman’s right to get an abortion — that’s not what happened. What happened is it went back to the states. And women that want abortions, if their state prohibits abortion, they can always go to another state to get an abortion. And there are people selling abortion pills online. And so it really is kind of– I would say it’s kind of a fake issue that’s being used for political purposes to divide people.

──That totally makes sense. The Biden administration and Democrats praised the “defund the police movement”, and as a result, violent crimes have increased overall in the U.S. After President Biden took office, how tough has public safety became?

Dr. Swain: Well, I mean, what has happened is that law enforcement officials in the United States, many of them feel as if their hands have been tied behind their backs because, after George Floyd’s death, there’s been a campaign against law enforcement officers, especially when it comes to apprehension and detention of racial and ethnic minorities. And so that has made it more difficult for police to police. Meanwhile, crime is skyrocketing mostly in minority communities. And a lot of the deaths are black-on-black deaths, are racial and ethnic minorities killing each other. And it’s something that when you have movements to defund the police when you have cutbacks in police budget, you should expect crime to escalate because it is the criminals that benefit directly.

──That’s very hypocritical. Let me ask about the First Amendment. In response to the argument that religion should be excluded from politics because the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution calls for the separation of politics and religion, you pointed out that the Founding Fathers believed that the First Amendment aimed to protect religion from politics. Could you elaborate on this point?

Dr. Swain: I would say that the First Amendment of the US Constitution guarantees freedom of religion, freedom of speech, and freedom of assembly. And at the time the Constitution of America, of the United States was drafted and ratified, the 13 colonies, they were all Christian. And so what they wanted to do was to protect the American people from having a state-run religion where everyone belonged to the same religion.

And so everyone at the that time basically they were Christian And when we talk about America as being a Judeo-Christian country, that’s because Christianity could not exist without Judaism because the Christian religion comes out of the Jewish religion. And so that’s why we say Judeo-Christian. But most of the people that came to America for freedom of religion were people who were Christian. And if you think about religion more broadly, Jews, Christians, and Muslims, they all share a basic belief in God and first five books of the bible, that has not made us so united. But that is the fact that we share some beliefs in common. And I always thought that that would bring people together, that you would have a brotherhood of man that for Christians, Jews, and Muslims they could trace themselves back to father Abraham. It has not been the case that we have been as unified as we should be.

──So true. You also pointed out that “Many of America’s founders recognized that the nation was ultimately beholden to God and God alone.” Could you give us more details about the founders’ pledges and their awareness of God’s judgments?

Dr. Swain: Well, I mean, anyone that can get a copy of my book, “Be the People: A Call to Reclaim America’s Faith and Promise.” In it, there is a chapter, chapter two I believe, that talks about America’s religious roots. And so I would recommend that they read the chapter, that there were many people in the constitution itself, there’s no mention of God other than it was signed in the year of our Lord. And that’s the way things were signed back then. But that was a deliberate decision. It wasn’t anti-religion. It was because the people that actually came together to draft the constitution and pass the constitution, they believed in religion, but they did not want it so intertwined with politics that we would risk the situation where there would have a state religion. I would argue that today, atheism itself, and secular humanism operate like a religion. And it seems to be trying to push everything else out of the public sphere. And so that is one of the greater dangers.

There’re so many things that when the framers ratified the constitution, political parties were not like they are today. The media was not like another branch of government. And you did not have — there’s so many things that we have today that was not the case back then. And so today, you see that government can be very oppressive of religion, even in the name of freedom of religion, they can oppress religion. And I would argue that the Christian religion is one that is more targeted today in America in a negative way than ever before. But unlike other countries, we’re free to worship in our churches. We don’t have to hide. We’re not worried about someone breaking down the door, except during COVID. During COVID, there were some churches that chose to be open. And the government came after them very harshly. And I would argue that with freedom of religion if the pastor decided he wanted to be open during COVID, he should have been able to be open during COVID. The people that wanted to come to church, they came at their own risk. But we saw during COVID that the government can do just about whatever it wants to do and you’re not insulated because you are an American.

──What do you think liberals aim to realize by eroding people’s faith in God?

Dr. Swain: I think it’s all about power. And I would say progressives have their own religion — that atheism is like a religion; critical race theory is like a religion. And so they have ideologies that function just like a religion. But they would never admit that.

──All about power, okay. The next one is the last question. We also believe that Democracy must be based on faith in God. How do you see the relationship between democracy and faith? What do you think will happen when people lose their faith and just enjoy the fruits of democracy?

Dr. Swain: Well, first of all, in America, we have a democratic republic. So we don’t have a pure democracy. We elect our leaders, and they represent us. Democracy has been compared to mob rule, and no one wants to be ruled by a mob. And one thing that made America distinctive was the system that we had in place protected the rights of minorities. If the majority turned into a mob and they wanted to exterminate some group or if they wanted to do something that was driven by hatred, there were some constraints. And so I don’t think a pure democracy can ever fully function. And those people that want to remove the checks and balances and want to go by popular vote, it’s too easy to deceive the masses when you have media that distorts the news and people that actually get on newscasts and they report lies. And if the public they’re dependent on newscasters ― and in America, there’s some conservative outlets — there’s Fox, there’s Newsmax, there’s various podcasts that’re conservative. But the mainstream media: CBS, NBC, and all of those channels like that, they tend to be mainstream media. But once the government gains control of the mainstream, the people have great difficulty in getting true information. And I would argue that today, we don’t have a free press in America. I wish we did. And so what people know, they really know only bits and pieces.

If you tend to be a Democrat or a progressive, you may not even know about the controversy with President Biden having classified documents that he was not supposed to have in his possession since he was vice president. You might not know about the Hunter Biden scandal. You might not know the Russia hoax where they said that President Trump had colluded with Russians. If you listen to progressive media, you may be totally ignorant of all of those facts. And then if you are a conservative and you listen to conservative media, you may not get the information about some scandals or things involving conservative officials. You get bits and pieces. And the only way in America to be educated – this may be true in other countries too – is to try to get your news from many different sources. Try to get your news from many different sources.

And I don’t know what your audience is that you’re writing for. But I think that there’re some things that’re true, that’re true all the time, the universal, the global. And I think that some of the truth is that every human being is in God’s image, that we’re all in God’s image. We all have a conscience. And that conscience teaches us right and wrong, and that you ― I don’t believe you can go wrong with following your conscience. And sometimes you’re called to be brave, to stand up, and maybe you lose your life. In the Christian religion, we believe that if we lose our life for ― if we stay faithful and we lose our life standing on principle, that we will have everlasting life, that we will go to God, that we will be resurrected. We will live again. And so we’re not encouraged to compromise so that we can get a short-term benefit because we’re all going to die someday. I believe death should matter. It should count for something. We should have stood for something while we were alive.

──I totally agree with you. So you may say that if people lose their faith and just enjoy the fruits of democracy or a republic system……

Dr. Swain: There is no democracy if you don’t have these values and principles because so much is a lie. It’s a beautiful lie. It lures people in. And they think that they’re going to have all these wonderful things. But it’s a trap. And so when people compromise and they think that they’re going for something that’s going to be better, a lot of times, it’s a deception. It’s a lie. And so they need to follow that gut.

──So true. Thank you so much for allowing us this opportunity.

Progressives Aim to Incite Conflicts and Undermine Faith
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