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What's so Great About Christianity
What's the Matter
© Jack Cashill
In his elegant new book, What’s So Great About Christianity, Dinesh D’Souza makes a compelling case for belief in God from a Christian perspective. The book argues not against other faiths but against the absence of faith. It is so clear and comprehensive it should be required reading for all students in Christian schools.
In researching my own book, What’s The Matter With California, I had no intent in waging any such argument. In the California spirit, I shied from judgments like “good” or “evil” or even “just plain stupid.”
Instead, I looked at outcomes from a material perspective, namely how does a given phenomenon affect the economy and the ecology of the state and the well being of its citizens.
In doing so, however, I stumbled upon one very powerful rationale for Christianity and, in the stumbling, I stumbled upon one more powerful rationale still.
The stumbling began when I visited Michael and Deborah Grumbine and their family of nine children, now aged 11 to 31, in the Los Angeles suburb of Whittier. I wanted to see how a large family could live on a median income in an area where such an income can buy only 2 percent of the homes on the market.
In Kansas City, by contrast, a family of median income can buy 87 percent of the homes on the market.
What I saw was that a family, bound together by a deeply held belief in God, could live on almost anything, anywhere, even in Los Angeles.
Michael himself grew up in Whittier in a deeply Christian family of twelve children, eleven of whom survived to adulthood. I asked him if he would survey his siblings to see how their 47 children had fared, and he graciously obliged.
As I report in the book, 43 of the 47 have lived their lives with a father in home. Only two of the 47 receive any kind of public assistance. Of the 35 old enough to have graduated from high school, 35 have graduated. None has been to prison. And the many Grumbine cousins have all had to work their way through school and college doing the jobs Americans allegedly won’t do.
I concluded that material poverty does not seem to cause crime. Michael Grumbine grew up in the same metro at the same time as Stanley “Tookie” Williams, whose story I also tell. Tookie was the one with his own bedroom and eventually his own cell on San Quentin’s death row. Michael was the one with his own father.
Obviously, however, there is more to a God-centered life well lived than a civil, self-supporting society. This I saw clearly in reading Michael’s response to the chapter I wrote on the Grumbine family. It speaks for itself:
Dinesh D’Souza could not have said it any better.
Cashill’s newest book, What’s the Matter with California, is available in bookstores - or you can order your autographed copy online .
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