The Religious Right’s Devotion to Donald Trump Will End the Movement As We Know It

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by WarHeadz, Oct 14, 2016.

  1. WarHeadz macrumors 6502a

    WarHeadz

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    #1
    Good riddance. We've always known these people were hypocrites, but their unwavering support for Donald Trump just confirms that. It's amazing how a group of people who claim moral superiority have no issue supporting a serial adulterer while also claiming to support "traditional marriage". They now have no credibility left whatsoever.

    Link
     
  2. rdowns macrumors Penryn

    rdowns

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    #2
    Likely the only good thing to come out of this election. Bunch of fake Christians only concerned with money and power.
     
  3. citizenzen macrumors 65816

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    #3
    The religious right is a very resilient and entrenched group. They may need to engage in a little soul searching after the election, but I doubt it's going to be significantly weakened or affected by their brief infatuation with the small-handed, angry oompa loompa.
     
  4. webbuzz macrumors 65816

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    #4
    Agreed. They aren't going anywhere.
     
  5. zin macrumors 6502

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    #5
    No more hypocritical than the anti-war liberals steadfastly behind Clinton.
     
  6. LizKat macrumors 68040

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    #6
    There may be a (generational?) effect that is accelerated by Trump's candidacy, however. More examination of the boundaries between political and moral engagement. For example more than a thousand of the students at Liberty University have publicly called Jerry Falwell Jr. to account over having supported Trump and having continued to do so even now. While it's a distinct minority of students who have been willing to sign the petition, students interviewed on campus acknowledged there's a much larger divide in the student body over supporting/denouncing Trump.

    http://www.wsj.com/articles/donald-trump-denounced-by-liberty-university-students-1476396686

    Savannah Barry, a 21-year-old senior at Liberty University, said that the campus is indeed divided over Mr. Trump. She hasn't signed the petition, but also said that she couldn't support the Republican nominee, and was unsure who she would vote for.

    “I’ve been very disappointed to see a lot of evangelical leaders who, even if they’re supporting him, haven’t necessarily denounced his comments,” she said. When asked if she included Mr. Falwell in that list of evangelical leaders, she said, “Yes, I do.”

    Dustin Wahl, a 21-year-old junior who wrote the statement against Mr. Trump, said Mr. Falwell’s outspoken support has inexorably tied to the school to the candidate—a connection that, several students said, has led people outside Lynchburg to assume the students were backing Mr. Trump.

    ====

    ... misgivings about Mr. Trump are widespread on campus. He received only a fraction of the vote in the precinct where Liberty is located during the Republican primary, months after Mr. Falwell’s endorsement.

    Even the head of university’s College Republicans organization wouldn't commit to supporting Mr. Trump after the video, though he wouldn't rule it out.
    You could be right about this being an exceptional situation. No one including the RNC expected this blowback from their rules changes made in 2012, which had aimed to funnel support behind a single candidate early in the season to reduce public intraparty strife. The intersection of their revised primary schedule and the rise of Donald Trump is surely one of the all time black swan events in modern American politics.

    I'd say Mr. Cruz would have done well to stick to his non-endorsement of Mr. Trump though. Cruz might have been quite the shoo-in for evangelicals next time around. Now it remains to be seen who has a short memory and who takes away from this debacle some questions other than just "loyalty". Maybe next time the religious right looks harder at the corrosive effects of celebrity culture on its own better judgment

    Mr. Trump's rise was not actually a matter of traditional populism. He came on as a TV star in an age hell bent to find the lowest common denominator of mass entertainment. How the religious right's leaders got past this fact in their assessment, and managed to endorse his candidacy, suggests it's time for them to repent!

     
  7. IronWaffle, Oct 14, 2016
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2016

    IronWaffle macrumors 6502

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    #7
    Speaking as a secular Jew I'm genuinely (not hyperbolically) flummoxed by how the Christian Right has come to seemingly wrap their arms around Trump. Best I can tell it's a cocktail of dire fear over the Supreme Court (expedient re-branding for 2nd Amendment & Abortion) and long-held, gut-level didlike/distrust of the Clintons. Immigration is a significant issue, but from what I've read that seems to be more targeted at a different constituency.

    I came of age in the Clinton era and remember well Ralph Reed and others lamenting the abject moral depravation of the Clinton era, so it's doubly strange to see him, Falwell, Jr., and their ilk (as I perceive it from the outside) backing Trump. I can't square that circle, no matter how much Trump concocts Playskool-level interpretations of Bible verse and says Obama smells of sulfur. I may not care for views espoused by Reed et al. but they aren't stupid. Unlike Trump, I can't see into others' hearts and see hatred, so I don't know the purity of their souls. I suspect that, like anyone, there are some good motives and bad ones. I wonder what the sincerest corners of their theological training makes of their current political commitments, especially when having to espouse support. W It's got to hurt, no matter how much you want your representative in office, to support someone so outlandishly immoral in his apparent behavior and amoral in his other practices.

    Considering the stakes and my own faithful devotion to recognizing cognitive dissonance, I simply can't fathom it. Yes, I know. Some people are as viscerally put off by Clinton as I am by Trump. But there's a difference between insinuating someone's duplicity and having someone who broadcasts it. That's got to be some long-held, non-turning of the cheek hatred. You know, Old Testament-style. I have some very religious family who, if they still lived here and were connected to our political environment would probably be avidly supporting Trump. Luckily for them, they moved to someplace more divisive, so they can (and do) shrug at our current political circus and wonder, "what is wrong with you people?" I'm not too into deflection so I don't point out their own religio-political leadership. ... I was going somewhere with this but now I'm not. Too earnestly confounded.
     
  8. citizenzen macrumors 65816

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    #8
    First, I applaud you for being devoted to recognizing cognitive dissonance. I believe that is one of the most valuable endeavors an individual can work on throughout life.

    But I don't see why it's so difficult to fathom why people fall for it. It's a very common human tendency to focus on the traits we agree on while ignoring or waving off areas where we disagree. Conversely, the opposite is true as well, where people will focus on small areas of disagreement despite agreeing on a subject overall. It's a very delicate balance, one where gut feelings overwhelm any logical or rational reasoning. And each and every one of us is prone to it.
     
  9. IronWaffle macrumors 6502

    IronWaffle

    #9
    Thanks for the reply. Likes are cool; responses are edifying. Below will be many words... hopefully they aren't gibberish; I'm a little gibberishy.

    You're absolutely right in how you represent my personal quandary. Part of the answer is that I test my own inconsistencies pretty regularly. Always have. I think it's important and helpful in self-balancing. In theory, it also helps empathize with views that on a gut level are contrary to mine -- in practice, well, it works -- even if not as well as I'd like. Another part is more personal than suited to the topic so my shorthand may be clunky. Suffice it to say that several dissonant facets of this particular election are striking an odd combination of personal chords.

    In terms of the religious aspect, it seems like a particularly rich vein to examine. His populist block makes sense to me even if only at an observational level (it helps that I have a family member for whom immigration is the only issue). It seems that segment of his supporters are able to wave off inconsistencies and questionable behavior and presentation. It makes him relatable. Above, I mentioned that I have some very Orthodox family, so that is my most intricate exposure to religion isn't Christian. That said, there is a lot of common ground in traditional views expressed by a variety of Christian-bases observant people I've known and what I've learned here, there and in between. What I've walked away with is an assiduous commitment to core values that are in line with the mythical white picket fence America. Trump exploits that with his trucker-hat slogan but his well-documented invective is counter to that. His very demeanor seems the antithesis of the sanitized past it claims to champion.

    When thinking of religious leadership, men and women who are conversant with their guiding texts, his lack of knowledge and inept attempts to cover it up are the very sort that are often derided in those communities. Signs of an interloping charlatan. (Says the person who might be as blind to Clinton's version of this). His ostentation is self-focused, he's self-aggrandizing as opposed to having others build him up. It's unseemly, it seems, and not strictly from my stance. I don't really adhere to either side of that equation. I know enough people who vote how their pastors or, yes, rabbis, tell them to. They cede their critical thinking to the leader within their personal sphere. That person is versed in texts and analyses in which it seems Trump cannot figure positively.

    Anyhoo, that is a puzzle to me. I'm drawn to puzzles. I'm not great at finishing them, though. You know how it is. I always want to understand more about people. I have never followed reality TV, so maybe a lot of what throws me off is because I'm completely disconnected from that prevailing current. That's probably a lot of it, actually. I don't care for sports, competitions or fights. This is the first election in 25 years where it's hard to find the meat because I'm too busy picking gristle out of my teeth. The drama isn't new to me, but the writing used to be better, he says, ending on one more mixed metphor.
     
  10. juanm macrumors 65816

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    #10
    They're going to Heaven
     
  11. LizKat macrumors 68040

    LizKat

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    #11
    Among the religious right having to bend their compass are those who support Trump while desiring Supreme Court picks that will eventually make the country adhere to their view of "moral values". Consider Trump's behavior in the light of... oh, let's take Galatians 5:22-23

    But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness,
    faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such there is no law.
    There's a lot to overlook there if you're an evangelical leader putting it all on Trump for President in 2016.

    Now don't get me wrong. The liberals who support Clinton, if they are anything like me, are not supporting Hillary Clinton for her exemplary devotion to that bit of a letter from St. Paul. After all, I have already said I figure some of Clinton's misguided way of dealing with email was out of impatience and a willingness to cut corners to get on with her day. I am anti-war in most cases and hope Clinton's hawkish tendencies in foreign policy will be tempered by better advisors than the neocon crew she'd probably be most comfortable assembling around her. I acknowledge she's a hawk. I can live with her vigilant attitude and still be heartened by her ability to help negotiate solutions that extend peaceful coexistence. I can live with her wavering attitude on how generously to acknowledge that banking still has a place in our economy, because I trust the progressives to hold her feet to the fire, and because I know that banks figure in any economy. We live in a world of compromise and consensus building when we live in the frameworks of American democracy. I don't view the world as offering just binary choices. I see Clinton as flawed and her whole bubble there as occasionally blind to how some of their moves are perceived, even though the actions lie within letter of law. But compared to Donald Trump in 2016, Hillary Clinton is a paragon of excellence in potential to run the world's last superpower without trainwrecking the planet in a moment of self-centered aggrandizement.

    So, Clinton will likely get my vote. She might even get the votes of the evangelical leaders as well, if they had an ounce of the Christian humility they profess to value. Let them render unto Caesar what is in that realm. This is a secular democracy. Their vote needs to be based on American interests, not whether the candidate will cooperate in parking a Trojan horse for an ultraconservative "Christian" theocracy down the road from the houses of Congress.

    I'm barely a Christian in Jerry Falwell Jr.'s view, I'm sure, but I'll take the word of Pope Francis that Christians don't build walls, they build bridges. The evangelical leaders who endorse Trump build a wall in their brains, between their burning desire to convert our rule of law into that of a Christian theocracy, and the broadly degraded, base human behavior of their candidate, one Donald Trump.

    What I cannot vote for is Donald Trump's sheer ignorance of how our democratic system works, his incompetence in governing even his own temper, his gratuitous cruelty to anyone who either gets in his way or who serves the purpose of a dog underfoot when he needs to flash us a little insight into how Donald Trump would use power. I'm not voting for a man who thinks first and evermore about himself and assumes all's for the taking (and discarding). Everything about his campaign is about Donald Trump. The stuff he says "for" us is a projection of his imagined ability to be the greatest thing we've ever seen since the parting of the Red Sea. Donald Trump wants to be our voice. He has never heard my voice, nor likely yours. How the evangelicals figure he's heard the word of God is just beyond me.
     
  12. BoxerGT2.5 macrumors 68000

    BoxerGT2.5

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    #12
    Evangelicals have exposed themselves as COMPLETE hypocrites on this one. Pro-choice 3 time married philanderer that peddles flesh on TV, supports homosexuality, isn't even pretending to care about religion, is the opposite of everything the Christian Right claims to support, but they support him, because "God told them to." They had zero credibility in my eyes before this, because I have the ability to detect fraud and bull****, but this is amazing. They're completely inconsistent in their beliefs. God < Politics, now its out in the open, we can see what they are and what they really stand for.
     
  13. MadeTheSwitch macrumors 6502a

    MadeTheSwitch

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    #13
    I love the pushback by students. My favorite quote from them is this part:

    http://www.cnn.com/2016/10/13/politics/liberty-university-jerry-falwell-jr-donald-trump/
     
  14. hulugu macrumors 68000

    hulugu

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    #14
    You can't actually make an argument of support anymore. Instead, you attack the other side with false equivalencies and red herrings.

    Of course, most "anti-war liberals" aren't single issue voters, but instead look toward the spectrum of classical liberal ideas and have found that despite their distaste for Clinton's role in Libya, she's still a far better candidate than the guy who hopes to deport 11.2 million people from the United States, has called for a religious ban against Muslims, and has said he "bomb the ****" out of ISIS, indicating that he's just as likely to broaden the war in Yemen, Syria and Iraq as anyone else.

    Only deluded souls think of Trump as a peace candidate. With the exception of people like jkcerda, who thinks that the politics of a Democratic Congress and a Republican president will stymie Trump's war-making, most people have realized that the Pentagon will easily convince Trump to continue the worst aspects of the Obama administration, while creating the potentiality for new horrors.

    Trump will continue extrajudicial assassinations, he wants to expand the use of torture and will likely encourage more black sites, and he will likely continue PRISM, especially since he seems to think that Stop and Frisk is such a brilliant idea.

    Juxtaposed against this nonsense, "anti-war liberals" have no choice but to swallow their fury at Clinton, because the real enemy is an orange buffoon who will double-down on the worst aspects of the American Empire.
     
  15. zin macrumors 6502

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    #15
    Just goes to show you haven't been paying attention.

    The "American Empire" is one built by the foreign policy supported by Hillary Clinton. Iraq. Iran. Iraq (version 2). Libya. Syria. Yemen. Haiti. Afghanistan. Pakistan. Honduras. Arming terrorists. Regime change / nation building. Kissinger the mentor. Extrajudicial assassinations.

    I always find it amazing how these anti-war liberals can 'swallow their fury' at Clinton (who is worse than George W. Bush) but have yet to realise that the reason for this fury is Clinton herself.

    But yeah, Trump said he'd bomb the **** out of ISIS, something we're already doing, and he's an 'orange buffoon'. Very persuasive argument. :rolleyes:
     
  16. hulugu macrumors 68000

    hulugu

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    #16
    This is an argument sufficient for people who fell out of bed this summer after being comatose for a decade after suffering a massive allergy against history and context.

    Clinton isn't the spear of the modern American empire, instead, she's a player in a much longer game going back to Alfred Mahn's time and she's played her part, but you're deluded if you think that Trump is the answer. He believes in all of this stuff too. Moreover, while Clinton at least pretends to be against torture for example, Trump wants more of it.

    And, he doesn't want to fight Russia because he's an apparatchik, but he's still going to fight the war in Yemen and Pakistan. And, Honduras? Trump doesn't know where Honduras is, much less has any idea about the murder of Berta Cáceras, or how the U.S. pushed for elections in the country, allowing for the "unity government" to take power.

    If you want to change the American Empire, Trump isn't the guy to do it. Neither is Clinton, but at least she won't accelerate Honduras' crisis by suddenly sending thousands of children and families back to the country.
     
  17. 5684697 Suspended

    5684697

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    #17
    Eloquently stated Lizzy, but I think the segment of the "Religious Right" that supports Trump is doing so because of a singular issue - Abortion. Clinton is not mainstream on abortion, and that explains the strange bedfellow meme.
     
  18. zin macrumors 6502

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    #18
    Very weak response to what Clinton has done. Instead, you are concentrating on what you think Trump will do.
     
  19. hulugu macrumors 68000

    hulugu

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    #19
    Well, as Trump has never run for government office before, we all only "think" we know what Trump will do. This cuts both ways, you're guessing that Trump won't make everything worse, in which case a vote for Trump to punish Clinton might kill more people.

    Further, most of what you've got that Clinton has "done" is nothing but an accusatory list. Libya? Sure, if you totally ignore that the French and British were also involved. Iraq? You mean when she was the wife of a governor? Or, do you mean the second time, when she joined 76 other Senators after the White House lied its collective ass off? Or, Syria? You mean the place that fell apart because of the Iraq War and has become a beachhead for Russian power? And, Afghanistan and Pakistan? Apparently, these places were all peace and love until 2009.

    Blaming Clinton alone for these situations is to act completely without context or history.

    You want to talk about Honduras and Clinton, there's an argument worth having.

    But, Trump shows no interest or knowledge of Honduras. And, neither do his advisors. So, in the absence of a forceful argument against the unity government there, I suspect that Trump will just blunder along.
     
  20. MadeTheSwitch macrumors 6502a

    MadeTheSwitch

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    #20
    But that's what this election is about, isn't it? The future? You think putting an unstable leader into power who has demonstrated knee jerk reactions is somehow going to be a man of peace. I don't know where you possibly would get that notion from. People that say they would like to punch someone in the face and see them carried out on a stretcher aren't the peaceful type. Trump is an erratic time bomb always waiting to go off.

    Even from a financial standpoint the man is a mess. Stock markets do not like volatility. Yet that is what Trump would bring to the table. Our markets would be all over the place. Worse, he wants to increase spending while reducing revenue....a recipe for disaster.

    And on top of that, yes, more fake Christianity. The man is just bad for our country all the way around.
     
  21. Lord Blackadder macrumors G5

    Lord Blackadder

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    #21
    Right wing media outlets have spent decades cultivating a hatred among conservative voters for Hillary Clinton. Some of their criticisms are wholly justified. Others are valid, but massively oversold. Still others are outright lies.

    What we are seeing in this election is the result of this campaign - many people just hate Hillary, and when asked about it they regurgitate the talking points spoon-fed to them by Rush Limbaugh, the Fox news crowd, the Drudge report and others since the 1990s. She's far from squeaky clean, but nobody in American politics today has been subject to a longer, more intense campaign of character assassination than Hillary Clinton.

    And that is why Trump's campaign has gotten this far. People know he's a dreadful candidate, but they have been exposed to twenty years of anti-Hillary propaganda that tells them that Hillary Clinton is literally the worst person in the entire world.
     
  22. zin macrumors 6502

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    #22
    Hang on just a second, where did I single handedly blame Clinton for those disasters? I said she has supported those things one after the other. One could be tempted to label this as something more malicious than bad judgement given how frequently she seems to make the wrong call.

    And you're right, I am guessing he won't make it worse. But it's an educated guess, given that he has shown zero desire to engage in this imperialistic nation building / global policeman role.
    --- Post Merged, Oct 14, 2016 ---
    I always find your posts entertaining. Trump is an "erratic time bomb". Then what, pray tell, is Mrs. Clinton? Sure as hell seems her bomb has already gone off numerous times, yet you don't seem to ever want to talk about that.
     
  23. ActionableMango macrumors 604

    ActionableMango

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    #23
    I don't understand how hypocrisy means the movement will end.

    If hypocrisy ended movements, both the two major political parties would be long gone. In fact, any sufficiently large group would end, as hypocrisy is so incredibly common among humans.
     
  24. Lord Blackadder macrumors G5

    Lord Blackadder

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    #24
    Trump is or has been against almost every he stands for, and is or has been for almost everything he stands against.
     
  25. aaronvan Suspended

    aaronvan

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    #25
    Why the surprised looks? Trump is more popular than Jesus.
     

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