Living Large In Carson City: Choosing The Lesser Of Two Evils, Is Still Choosing Evil (Jerry Garcia) Edition

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The one thing that truly puzzles me about Donald Trump, and there is a lot to be puzzled by, is why do religious people have such a love affair with this jerk who is obviously amoral and one of the most ungodly people to ever walk the face of the earth. I am a recovering Southern Baptist, and I can tell you from my upbringing Trump is definitely not a saint. The pious among us in my youth would have called this guy out long ago assigning him to a brief footnote in history. Not so today’s religious leaders. Here is how Trump measures up to the Christian gold standard of how one should live their lives, the 10 Commandments:

The 10 Commandments

  • I am the Lord thy God! Thou shalt have no other Gods but me!

Hmm . . . let’s see. Trump’s god is money, power, and himself.      Busted

  • Thou shalt not take the Name of the Lord thy God in vain!

Personally, I can’t verify this myself, but I wouldn’t be surprised.  Toss up

  • Thou shalt keep the Sabbath Day holy!

If God calls 18 holes of golf  holy, Trump’s good.                                 Busted

  • Thou shalt honor father and mother!

Again, I can’t say for sure.                                                                        Toss up

  • Thou shalt not kill!

We just don’t know.                                                                                    Toss up

  • Thou shalt not commit adultery!

Ha! This one is a no brainer.                                                                    Busted

  • Thou shalt not steal!

Ask people who have done work for Trump through the years.      Busted

  • Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor!

On Hillary alone, Trump would burn in hell for all time.                   Busted

  • Do not let thyself lust after thy neighbor’s wife!

Let’s turn to that muse of the porn world, Stormy D.                            Busted

  • Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor’s house, nor his farm, nor his cattle, nor anything that is his!

Trump’s Weird Love Affair with Eminent Domain                                 Busted

Seven out of 10 sums up my consternation. Even with giving religious people the benefit of the doubt, it still doesn’t square the fact that Trump is a sinner of monumental proportions. I mean bigly. Still, the question has to be asked, “Why does Donald Trump get a Get Out of Hell Free card” when the rest of us would be crispy critters from the get go? I can think of several reason; none of them good for America or encouraging that things will get better.

First of all, America knows that the religious right is at the core of support for Trump. Their worldview includes ending Roe vs Wade, removing the walls between church and state, supporting Israel, and protecting the president from moral outrage that should have long ago ended Trump’s presidency. All the big names in religion are represented  Graham, Falwell, Jeffress, Bachman, Reed, Perkins, and that old wackadoodle, Pat Robertson. They along with a multitude of lesser names and congregations across America (mostly white frightened Christians) are reveling in the fact they think they have one of their own in the president’s chair. Sure, they may have to hold their collective noses to assuage their consciousnesses, but hey, they believe God put Trump in office for a purpose. Who are they to judge?

Of course, power is by far the most important perk to many of the leading religious groups today. The separation of church and state as delineated in the First Amendment has always been a burr under these people’s hides. Trump saw the opportunity to play these rubes to the hilt. One of his most controversial acts was, not just placate the religious, but to enhance their access.

Trump expanded the role faith-based agencies play in the federal government in several important ways. First, his executive order creates a new office within the White House to oversee this religious expansion. That office will be staffed by an adviser to the White House Faith and Opportunity Initiative, a new position. The adviser will be “supported by experts and various community and faith leaders from outside of the Federal Government,” according to the White House.

The initiative also directs all executive departments and agencies that do not currently have a faith-based office to designate a liaison from that agency to the White House. Rewire

In the personality politics of today, access defines power. It should be noted that there are evangelicals and then there the crazy evangelicals. What is upsetting is Trump doesn’t seem to have a filter on which is which. Take Kenneth Copeland, one of the scariest men in the universe. He is one of the prosperity evangelicals who believes he can milk Christianity (read his parishioners) for all they are worth. For instance, Copeland is adept at getting his congregations to buy him airplanes. He had this to say about the new world of Trump and religion,

Copeland said that if God puts something on his heart that needs to be delivered to the president, he’ll now have a direct line to deliver that message.

“I have no doubt,” he said, “if something were to really strike my heart, if God really showed me something that I felt like and that the Lord would say, ‘You deliver this,’ I have no doubt that I could deliver it, and that was not true in presidents past even though we had influence in some areas in some ways.” Faith

Copeland is also a proponent of a National Sunday Law. Honestly, I never heard of such a thing. Well, Texas did have Blue Laws that restricted selling of certain items on Sunday, and supposedly, the Sunday Law is an extension of the old Blue Laws making it a law that Sunday is a day of rest and worship. Legislating this idea into a federal law is scary on so many levels. At this point people either believe a Sunday Law is coming soon, or that it is simply a conspiracy theory that is only a wet dream of evangelicals in their chest of wants and needs. But there is this.

Access and power are all well and good, but do they answer the question of why evangelicals are so willing to support Trump even in light of his notoriously reprobate behavior? This is where Israel comes into the equation. Christianity’s last ditch stand against the Satan and the wickedness of man comes down to Judgement Day. This is when Jesus is supposed to return the earth and smite all non-believers. Where will this confrontation occur? Israel, of course, the Holy Land. This fact makes it incumbent on believers to protect Israel’s “homeland” at all costs. After all, Judgement Day marks the day that all Christians will be taken up to heaven where they will live happily ever after.

Trump is no fool when he sees a mark ready for fleecing. Moving the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem was a poorly disguised sop meant to give the rogue state of Israel more credibility and American evangelicals the belief that they wield power to instruct the government in matters of policy.  Israel will never be anything but a terrorist state until they give back the land they illegally occupied after the 1967 war per international law, and consequently, evangelicals are complicit in the ongoing apartheid military action that Israel is visiting upon the hapless Palestinians.

So, the upshot is that evangelicals have made a deal with the devil and are stuck with the consequences and loss of any moral objectivity they once had if they ever had any at all. Think about it. They openly choose to support a known philanderer, a pussy grabber, a stupendous liar, cheat, and a morally bankrupt narcissist to secure a few repressive laws and policies that will be wiped away once the Democrats take control of the White House. Yet, the cost of laying down their vaunted Christian ideals seems to be a bothersome as a sore thumb or a paper cut. However, as the old saying goes, “If you lie down with dogs, you get up with fleas.” They should be careful what they ask for.