Why Do We Idealize the Persecuted Church?

Worldwide, Christians are the single most persecuted religious group worldwide.  This fact was confirmed by a Pew Center report issued just last week that focused on government restrictions and social hostility against religious groups. What I have noticed about US Christians is that we tend to idealize, or paint an unrealistic picture of the persecuted church in places like China.  Why do we persist in idealizing them?  Why do painful torture, social ostracism, long imprisonments, and, sometimes, often-cruel death lead to rhetorical exaggerations like those behind this story on the number of Christians executed each year for their faith?