A recent survey showed that more Americans view the Salvation Army unfavorably following the organization’s publishing of a discussion guide about racism.
According to The Christian Post, in the survey from Rasmussen Reports and RMG Research with the advocacy group Color Us United, about 81 percent of voters in the survey initially said they had a “very favorable” or “somewhat favorable” view of the Salvation Army.
When those respondents were told about the Salvation Army’s “Let’s Talk About Racism” discussion guide, a document the Salvation Army has said will help facilitate “gracious discussion about overcoming … racism,” about 32 percent of respondents said they were either “much less likely” or “somewhat less likely” to donate to the Salvation Army.
Another 32 percent said they were “much more likely” or “somewhat more likely” to donate, and 28 percent said the discussion guide had no impact on giving.
The discussion guide, which has since been pulled for review, reportedly includes training materials that encourage their white members “to consider repenting for the ‘sin’ of racism” and establishes a new Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion program, which “presents the view that America is a structurally racist society.”
Respondents in the survey were also asked to re-evaluate their opinion after being told of the discussion guide.
The percentage of voters who viewed the Salvation Army as “very favorable” or “somewhat favorable” fell from 81 percent to 41 percent. The percentage of respondents who had a “somewhat unfavorable” or “very unfavorable” view of the Salvation Army jumped to 41 percent from 11 percent.
A statement from the Salvation Army said that the guide wasn’t meant to encourage people to “apologize for the color of their skin, or that The Salvation Army may have abandoned its Biblical beliefs for another philosophy or ideology.”
“That was never our intention,” the statement concluded.
In a short video, Salvation Army Commissioner Kenneth Hodder also assured donors that the organization endorses “no social theory or philosophy” and “never will.”
Photo courtesy: ©Getty Images/Tibrina Hobson/Stringer
Amanda Casanova is a writer living in Dallas, Texas. She has covered news for ChristianHeadlines.com since 2014. She has also contributed to The Houston Chronicle, U.S. News and World Report and IBelieve.com. She blogs at The Migraine Runner.