, 30 tweets, 19 min read Read on Twitter
1. Now that the 4chan-to-FOX fueled right-wing frenzy over the #ExposeChristianSchools hashtag has faded, it should be easier to have a needed public discussion about the deleterious impact of certain types of parochial schools on American society and politics.
2. I am a product of K-12 Christian schools--that is, evangelical schools, which usually call themselves "Christian schools" or "Christian academies." Hence, when I coined the hashtag #ExposeChristianSchools, I did not anticipate Catholic schools being a part of the discussion.
3. That point was lost when the hashtag became conflated with the Covington story. It's perfectly fine to expand the #ExposeChristianSchools discussion into one that includes not only fundamentalist/evangelical schools, but also Catholic and mainline schools, of course.
4. But in so doing, we should take care to keep in mind the fact that Catholic and mainline Protestant schools vary widely in quality and orientation in a way that evangelical schools simply do not. The latter range from extreme to, well, more extreme. #Exvangelical #EmptyThePews
5. In this thread, I'm going to highlight things I have written or said about evangelical schools, both K-12 and colleges/universities. Later, I plan on creating a thread with some of the materials I still have from my Christian school experience that I'll link to this one.
6. First off, if you want the backstory regarding why I started #ExposeChristianSchools and what trolls and right-wingers did to derail the resulting discussion, I've covered that on my blog, #NotYourMissionField. I recently lost the domain Chris Stroop dot com, however.
7. So my primary domain is now cstroop.com. Here's my initial piece on what the launch of #ExposeChristianSchools, which then went organically viral, was about:


#Exvangelical #EmptyThePews #ExposeChristianHomeschooling #MondayMotivation
8. Here's how America's rabid Right cooperated with the scum of the internet, 4chan trolls, to create a false narrative around #ExposeChristianSchools and spread disinformation. This would have been much less effective had the "liberal" media stepped up.

8-a. I do have to thank @CraryAP for covering #ExposeChristianSchools for @AP in a much more fair and accurate way than most of the (largely right-wing) outlets that covered it did. There was also good coverage at @dailydot and @papermagazine.

9. While the #ExposeChristianSchools and #ExposeChristianSchooling hashtags have not generated as much discussion in recent weeks as earlier, discussion of issues with evangelical education continues. And I think we should continue to use these hashtags to boost that discussion.
10. Explicit discussion of the #ExposeChristianSchools hashtag continues as well; see for example my latest podcast appearance on the brilliant @cindy_w_brandt's show Parenting Forward:


#ExposeChristianHomeschooling #Exvangelical #EmptyThePews #Resist
11. A key point to make before moving on: in line with the broad goals of the #Exvangelical community and movement, #ExposeChristianSchools is about sharing individual stories as a means of drawing attention to systemic abuses in North American evangelicalism.

12. These systemic abuses matter not just to those of us who lived through them, who have been coming together in the #Exvangelical community to foster our own healing. They also matter to the future of American democracy, because evangelicalism is anti-democratic and powerful.
13. Thus one of the goals we have in putting #Exvangelical social media savvy to work is to attain visibility and change the national conversation around conservative, mostly white evangelicals, America's most nativist and Trumpist demographic:

14. Over the last year, the #Exvangelical community achieved some noteworthy successes in changing the media's approach to evangelicals. They are no longer able to fully control their own narrative.


#ExposeChristianSchools #ExposeChristianHomeschooling
15. #ExposeChristianSchools went viral enough to be considered a serious threat, and so it spawned more extreme pushback than we'd faced before. Evangelical schools are indoctrination machines meant to produce compliant, conformist culture warriors. The public needs to know this.
16. Yes, they are also places where well-intentioned teachers genuinely care about their students and think they're doing the right thing. I have good and bad memories; I learned to write well in Christian schools. But evangelicalism is still authoritarian, and it traumatized me.
17. I said above that #ExposeChristianSchools is about sharing individual stories in order to gain collective visibility and start a needed conversation. I'll now share some of the things I've written about my own story, so you can see the experience that informs my views.
18. I should also note that this isn't just my anecdotal experience. My conclusions are backed by data andthe "witness," if you will, of a large and growing #Exvangelical community whose hashtags like #ChristianAltFacts, #RaptureAnxiety, and #HowToEvangelical are worth reading.
19. And now to my writings. Here's a piece @cindy_w_brandt invited me to contribute to her blog in which I discuss some of my Christian school experience in conjunction with the damage done by forcing children to try to convert others to evangelicalism.

20. Here's a piece detailing some of the horrendous ideas I was exposed to at Heritage Christian School in Indianapolis that I hope at the same time presents a relatively sympathetic portrait of the teacher who espoused them:


21. Here's a piece that examines the general anti-intellectual ethos of evangelicalism in conjunction with a contradictory emphasis in the middle- to upper-class evangelical milieu I grew up in on academic achievement. So. Much. Cognitive. Dissonance.

22. And here's a piece unpacking the literally sinister political implications behind the rhetoric of "the Christian worldview," which is pushed heavily in evangelical education:


#ExposeChristianSchools #ExposeChristianHomeschooling #Exvangelical
23. Here's a link to a little thread with pictures documenting some of my middle school career at Colorado Springs Christian School, where my teachers assessed me as exhibiting a "positive Christian attitude." Read on to learn why that's not a good thing:

24. Finally, my formal evangelical education ended when I finished high school in 1999. But in recent years I've been doing investigative journalism into the authoritarianism of evangelical colleges and universities. A lot of my friends and relatives went to schools like these.
25. I published my first exposé on evangelical colleges and universities for @RDispatches in 2016, looking at political faculty purges, student newspaper censorship, and the ways administrations strive to oppose LGBTQ equality:


26. I revisited this theme for @Playboy last September, noting that the way evangelicals run their educational institutions is the way they'll run this country if we let them.


#ExposeChristianSchools #ExposeChristianHomeschooling #Exvangelical #Resist
27. And then, in February of this year, I published another exposé with @PRAEyesRight, examining LGBTQ experiences and advocacy at evangelical colleges and universities and the schools' responses, past and present. This history should be better known.

28. After publishing the piece linked above, I learned that things are even worse than I thought at the two schools I focused the most attention on, @azusapacific and @GroveCityCollege. APU looks to be headed toward a faculty purge. Please spread the word

29. That's all for now. If you appreciate the work I do and can afford to, pledging a few dollars a month to my @Patreon to keep my efforts sustainable is a great way to say thanks! Much love to all my patrons! And please don't give if you can't afford to

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