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In 2009, before the age of 30, Douthat became the youngest regular op-ed writer the history of The New York Times. His recently released Bad Religion has been much discussed in the public religion media. In this hard-hitting conservative jeremiad, chronicling American Christianity from the mid-20th-century onward, he argues that the current state of economic, political, and social crisis in the United States is at heart a religious one. “America’s problem isn’t too much religion [as the secular Left and New Atheists would argue], or too little of it. It’s bad religion: the slow-motion collapse of traditional faith and the rise of a variety of pseudo-Christianities.” According to his thesis, Christianity, and thus the U.S., is in decline—when names likes Osteen, Ehrman, and Crossan are some of its leading public voices—and given his “own Catholic commitments” he argues that salvation lies in a more traditional orthodox Christianity gradually being renewed. (Free Press)

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