As the mass shootings in El Paso, Texas and Dayton, Ohio dominated U.S. headlines this week, the hashtags #ChristianNationalism and #ChristianPrivilege trended on Twitter. There was no clear evidence that either gunman espoused Christian faith as a motive, but many posts implied it was somehow linked to their violence. The Dayton shooter even promoted atheism on Twitter.
So what is Christian nationalism, and why are people talking about it?
The hashtags appeared before the shootings, shortly after a statement released on July 29 by Christians Against Christian Nationalism (CACN), a loose coalition of 6,000 mostly liberal signers from various denominations.