[The Living Church] 6 July 2007--Fundamentalist: That abominable “f word;” so inimical to polite society in The Episcopal Church; the most offensive term of opprobrium the liberal religious establishment can use to demean its adversaries. It would seem that one may be almost anything in The Episcopal Church today except a fundamentalist.
Even in centers of American Anglican conservatism, this appellation is taboo. Calling someone at Ambridge or Nashotah a “fundamentalist” quite likely could result in your being regarded as a persona non grata on campus.
Over the course of my ministry, I began to notice that whenever my revisionist colleagues were not able to refute an orthodox argument, they could reduce their opponents to embarrassed stammerings of protested innocence, and thereby regain the upper hand, merely by declaring “You sound like a fundamentalist.”
After personally enduring this supercilious putdown on a number of occasions, I turned the tables on my antagonists by responding, “Yes, you’re right. What’s wrong with that?” This retort reduced opponents to stunned silence and forced the debate back to a reasoned discussion of the issues at point. The other side could no longer carry the argument by dismissively stigmatizing the traditionalists with a pejorative label.