Readers: this blog is set in the future (sometime after the year 2020). Each entry assumes there has been a 5th revolution in the US — the Revenge Revolution. More about the Revenge Revolution, a list of earlier revolutions and the author, Entry #1.
Periodically I write a “sense check” to assess whether in the next few years, a revolution in the US is still possible or whether the entire exercise is based on a statistical aberration — i.e., a roughly 50-year cycle between major upheavals in the US. Most recent sense check, Entry #332.
Entries the past several months have been an intentional diversion from the craziness in Washington. Starting with Entry #352 put us back inside the Beltway.
A headline this past week in the Charlotte Observer read, “Evangelicals to Trump: They’re Trying to Impeach Us.”
I am completely baffled by this headline. Fair to assume that not all Christians agree with the headline.
According to the article, 25 faith leaders from around the United States recently attended an unpublicized meeting at the White House. Robert Jefferies, senior pastor at First Baptist Church in Dallas, claimed a recent poll indicated 99% of evangelicals are opposed to impeachment.
Jeffries stated, “Many evangelicals like myself believe this impeachment inquiry is more than just political skirmish. …to impeach Trump would be to impeach closely held values.”
Pardon me? Look, I’m no one’s even remote expert on Christianity. But, let’s just take a look at one of the widely publicized tenets of Christianity – the Ten Commandments. Could the Trump-supporting evangelicals please explain their support when Trump grossly and repeated violates such Commandments as “do not lie,” “do not steal,” “do not commit adultery,” and a number of others? While you’re explaining compliance with the Commandments, could you please explain how Trump, “Treats thy neighbor as thyself,” another bedrock tenet of Christianity?
One more issue: What about making the earth a better place? How does Trump’s denial of climate change and how do Trump’s Executive Orders that EPA reduce emissions standards for coal-fired plants, allowing arsenic, cadmium and a host of other carcinogens make the earth a better place? (For an interesting and insightful perspective on climate change, you might want to read an opinion piece by an evangelical who is also a climate scientist, 19 11 03 Climate Scientist and Belief in God.)
If you can rationally explain his behavior violating the various tenets of Christianity, then I guess you can justify your support for him.
Religion aside, please explain to me how an inquiry into his behavior as president that clearly negatively affected the national security of all US citizens, should be considered an impeachment of closely held values of evangelicals? National security is not the sole purview of evangelicals.
Let’s turn the situation around. Pretend Trump is a Democrat. As a Democrat all of Trump’s behavior, tweets, policies, lies, indiscretions, insults to allies and compliments to known enemies, and other behaviors are the same.
But rather than a Democratic-led House there’s a Republican-led House of Representatives conducting an inquiry into Trump’s behavior (an inquiry is not a trial). The inquiry focuses on the use of the presidency for personal gain and efforts by Trump to obstruct the House of Representatives in exercising their Constitutional-power to investigate.
Would all the evangelicals who currently support Trump and think the impeachment inquiry is an affront to evangelicals’ closely held values, please stand if they would support Trump as a Democrat? Gee, I’m looking around but no one seems to be standing.
Of course no one is standing. Instead of standing and supporting Trump as a Democrat, the same group of so-called faith healers likely would be leading the chant against Trump, “Lock him up! Lock him up!”
So what we seems to have is a bunch of people whose behavior is extremely hypocritical. Trump’s behavior is the worst exhibited by an American president. Even worse however, is the behavior of faith leaders who claimed that an impeachment inquiry is an attack on their core beliefs. Seems to me did these faith healers have sold their soul to Trump, and it’s not apparent what they’re getting in return. Based on how Trump has treated parties in other deals, they’ll likely get nothing of value from Trump in return.
And the faith leaders wonder why an ever increasing percentage of younger people when asked about religious preference are declaring “none.” The type of self-centered behavior exhibited by the 25 self-proclaimed faith healers may not the only reason for the decline in religious preference but it is likely a notable contributing factor.