Longtime readers of this blog know that I have mostly tried to stay clear of overtly political statements. Nobody could read what I’ve written here and not have some inkling as to where I stand, but I’ve tried to avoid the direct partisanship that characterizes all too much religious discourse in America. Events leading up to, and since the U.S. election of 2020 compel me to be a little more direct. This is a short post because frankly, I don’t have either the time or energy to go into deep detail right now. But there are a few things I just have to say for the record, right here and right now.
- Anyone who is surprised by the actions of those who stormed the US Capitol last week, hasn’t been paying attention. The rhetoric of those who loudly advocate for the 2nd Amendment has been all about reserving the “right” and capacity to overthrow what they consider “oppressive” government for a long time. I wrote about that too … here and here.
- Anyone who is surprised by the assault on the Capitol also hasn’t been paying attention to Trump and his supporters. They spent all of last year screaming that the election was going to be “stolen,” and even the means — absentee ballots and “rigged” software — by which they expected the “steal” to take place. Nobody from that group did anything they haven’t been promising for a very long time.
- The close ties between the so-called Christian Right and Republican politics are a huge part of what caused the violence of last week, as well as the violence perpetrated by the Trump administration for four years. This article in the Atlantic should trouble anyone who is actually concerned about the reputation of the Prince of Peace and his followers. Do not be misled … the Evangelical Church in the United States is guilty of bald-faced idolatry, having traded political influence for the cause of Jesus. Not just recently, to be sure … everything reprehensible and hypocritical in the support of Christians for Donald Trump is merely what they’ve been doing ever since the “Moral Majority” of the 70s, dialed up to 11.
I may dig into this in greater detail when I have more emotional energy. Right now, I grieve the destroyed witness of the faith I love. And to those who look at Christians, then look at Jesus, and ask “how could they?”, I’m right there with you. I’m sorry.