I understand the viewpoints of some who feel politically, economically, and socially marginalized. I understand their desire to tear up the existing playbook, cast the die with someone who represents as dramatic a break as possible from politics as usual. I understand that inequality is an ever present and increasingly glaring blight on the American dream. I understand their concern for a country they believe has veered seriously off track. This is a widely held view from those on the wheat grass drinking Left to to the Confederate flag waving Right. Populism has reared its head in a way not seen since the start of the last century, itself a time of tremendous change and upheaval.
For the life of me though, I cannot understand why Evangelicals have turned that sense of disillusion into support for Trump. I cannot think of a major candidate in my lifetime who has even been as UN-Christian (including candidates who aren't even Christian). For those whose religious beliefs inform every part of their lives, it simply does not make sense. As just a basic primer: Trump cannot even quote a verse in the Bible, claims to have never asked for forgiveness, called communion wafers "those little crackers", does not believe in the sanctity of marriage, is the walking embodiment of greed, and demonizes the poor which, (if you belong to one of the Abrahamic faiths) should be a big deal. He is dishonest in his business dealings, routinely slanders anyone he doesn't agree with or likes, gives practically nothing to charity, and yet Evangelicals continue to believe he is a MORE moral choice. I can't think of someone less able to, as in the words of Jesus, "love thy neighbor" and "turn the other cheek."
As a person of faith myself, the actions we make and how we treat others matters. I understand that no person (obviously including politicians) is perfect. However, to see a man who is so self-centered, so self-absorbed that women are just mere objects is beyond troubling. Trump thinks of nothing other than his own appetite and whether women view him as disgusting, much less consent to his advances doesn't even register. It isn't locker room talk, it is criminally predatory behavior. It is utter insanity that some women are still defending him, and desire to place him in the most important job in the world. For all the hysteria surrounding Transgender bathroom usage for the sex of their choosing, women of all ages have far more to fear from documented predators like Trump. And no, it is not a valid argument to excuse Trump by redirecting the accusatory finger at Bill Clinton. If you haven't heard, he is NOT running for the Presidency, Hillary is. And while she isn't perfect either, she has done more in one day to advance the economic, social, and political equality of women than Trump has done in a lifetime.
Moreover, to paint entire nationalities and faiths with such a broad brush is amoral. We forget how easily rhetoric turns to actions, and that there is a thin line between Islamophobia and Anti-Semitism, or any other religious bigotry. Even as the spectre of terrorism is real, we can't forget that (since 9/11) there have been more deaths caused by domestic terrorists (who happen to be overwhelmingly white, male, and Christian) than "Islamic" terrorists. The notion that some religious groups are untrustworthy, are un-American, must be surveilled, and must be identified should scare all Americans who love and respect our Constitution. There is a huge difference between wanting a more stringent immigration policy and employing wholesale racism and fear-mongering. Even if we believe that America is uniquely blessed by God, most Christians also believe we are all God's children. The lack of understanding, compassion, and sheer animus towards anyone who isn't white and male (and even then a narrow spectrum among that group) displayed by Trump should run counter to anyone who believes that God is a God for all nations and all people. Claiming a religion does not make someone more moral or more decent; it is entirely whether that faith when put into action yields positive results. However, I feel that anyone of faith who genuinely loves their country, loves their fellow Americans, and hopes for a brighter future cannot in good conscience vote for Trump.
Latest on ChicagoNow
from The Chicago Creepout by Kristin Wicks
posted today at 12:17 am
from The Beeronaut by Mark McDermott
posted Thursday at 11:29 pm
from Tomfoolery: Eyes Wide Open by Tom Byelick
posted Thursday at 9:21 pm
from Between Us Parents by Shannan Younger
posted Thursday at 9:00 pm
from Chocolate Diapers by David Telisman
posted Thursday at 8:58 pm
Read these ChicagoNow blogs