Tag Archives: American politics

Evangelicals & Seduction

Following the previous posting, we continue to look at how Stephen Best looks at the American Evangelicals & Seduction, which may for us Europeans something very weird and incomprehensible wondering if those Americans are not better at using their own mind to make up their own ideas.

How is it possible that the majority of white US evangelicals were seduced into Trump’s dangerous political schemes?

When they heard so many bad things that he had done in the past and could see how he had treated women, plus how he had created all sorts of ‘untrustable businesses, showing clearly he would not be the best one to run properly a business or to become a respectful leader.
We wonder how their followers could come to trust his lies, and could wipe away his malicious and criminal behaviour.

How is it possible that those who call themselves Christian could go for a man who clearly showed no respect to others and carried a lot of racism in his heart. They now share the responsibility in encouraging racism, division, and sedition within the USA, and instead of making America great again they choose for someone who could break America and creat division as never before.

*

To remember

  • American evangelicals their complicity in Trumpism > testimony + leadership = unreliable + negligent going forward.
  • interweaving of God + country = evangelical’s Patriotism > Christian Nationalism.  Christian Nationalism.
  • concept of ‘Manifest Destiny’ (John Louis O’Sullivan) = mission to expand its influence across all of North America => America’s wars with Mexico + the Indians+ expansion into Alaska.
  • Manifest Destiny > mission of promoting + defending democracy throughout the world > bias American ideology and politics. – growing ideology => Christian Nationalism
  • American vision >  fascination with the ‘New Jerusalem’ <=  early Puritans left for America with the sense of being an oppressed people.
  • Puritans aimed to build the Kingdom of God or their version of a Christian society = blending of religion + politics.
  • Christian nationalism = political ideology about American identity  => idealizes + advocates fusion of Christianity with American civic life
  • Christian Nationalism = collection of cultural myths, traditions, religion, + historical interpretations.
  • Evangelicals in a struggle with liberalism / socialism that threatens their way of life –  feel mocked +  dishonored, unheard + marginalized.
  • perceived risk: immigrants, LGBQT , law enforcement weakening, abortions persisting, support for Israel declining, + Evangelicalism diminishing, => Evangelicals feel their backs are up against the wall.
  • alliance of American Evangelicalism + Donald Trump =>  restoring  USA > conservative Christian society.
  • patriotism, Christian Nationalism, traditionalism, evangelicalism, denominationalism, + spiritualism =/= sustainable foundations in life =/= biblical foundations.
  • Christian foundations = spiritual realities  understood through Scripture, taught with faith + wisdom, received with sincerity, + realized through inward working of Holy Spirit in life of a Christian.  => secure + define new life while not depending on Christian governments, economies, religion, or social norms.
  • need to re-examine our foundations

Stephen Best

By Stephen Best

How is it possible that the majority of white US evangelicals were seduced into Trump’s dangerous political schemes? How is it possible for so many of their leaders to have encouraged their followers to trust his lies, and enable his malicious and criminal behaviour? How is it possible that they now share the responsibility in encouraging racism, division, and sedition within the USA?

For at least 60 years, evangelicals throughout the world have appreciated the contribution and leadership that the US has brought to the global work of God. Yet today, because of their complicity in Trumpism, that testimony and leadership is for the most part unreliable, if not negligent going forward.

If we are honest most Christians outside the USA have found the US brand of Evangelicalism a bit different to begin with. And that’s mostly due to it’s interweaving of God and country.

The blending…

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U.S.A. Investment in a demagogue

From some old article, we want to select the thought about the businessman and television personality Donald Trump. For many Americans this man in charge is their half-god or their golden calf. Most of them who voted in favour for the extravagant man could not have brought some more dangerous man into government, for their nation, but also for the whole world. More than once he brought many out of the United States to sit on the edge of the chair, fearing he would push the “Red button”. He promised to make the nation great again. For sure, he managed to divide it more than ever and to bring it back down, to many years before Obama.

The people who voted for Trump invested in a demagogue who claimed he alone could solve their problems. There is a never a quick fix to a truly complex problem. And yes everyone knew that health care was this complex. What will we need to do to clean up from this mess? Trump has been up on the Hill for over 40 days. If he wants to clean up this mess he has to do it quickly. He alone can determine if he is going to be Moshe, Augustus, or a Golden Calf. Like the Golden Calf- Trump is a product of an ignorant and impatient group yearning to be heard. If only it was as easy as breaking a couple of Tablets to get them to shut up and listen for a moment. {from: Golden Calf and Trump, by Rabbi Avi Katz Orlow}

The populist, protectionist, and nationalist entered the 2016 presidential race as a Republican and was elected in a surprise victory over Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, although he lost the popular vote. The people have got many years now to listen to this businessman who has no empathy with the peoples of ‘his country’.

This man of “Fake News” has not recreated a fake world neither a real good world, but made the world even more turbulent than before.

Trump said:

What I worry about is that when problems are not addressed, people will not know who is responsible. And when the problems get bad enough, as they might do, for example, with another serious terrorist attack, as they might do with another financial meltdown, some one person will come forward and say, ‘Give me total power and I will solve this problem.’… That is how the Roman republic fell. Augustus became emperor, not because he arrested the Roman Senate. He became emperor because he promised that he would solve problems that were not being solved. {Golden Calf and Trump}

Trump has become emperor, though many thought he would never come so far. Surprisingly he became the oldest first-term U.S. president and the first without prior military or government service. How he got so many votes and where he got associated with, is something we shall to uncover in 50 years time, but it does not look very kosher. Continually this boaster has made many false or misleading statements during his campaign and presidency. In Europe lots of people do not understand how it could be that so many people really believe everything what this man says, and even do not see how he changed like the wind many times. Even after fact-checkers made it clear that the so-called facts of Mr. Trump were false, the majority of the American people still wanted to believe their god. The journalists who wanted to question Trump moreover his allegations and about his ‘sayings’were chastised and ridiculed towards the other press people. The media in the United States as well as out of that nation, have widely described the phenomenon as unprecedented in American politics. Many of his comments and actions have been characterized as racially charged or racist.  That way he is the first president who was able to create more division in that ‘great nation’ than ever before.

In case Trump was a product of an ignorant and impatient group yearning to be heard, we can only hope that group has come to its senses and have seen and understood now, how this man is such a fraud and someone is who one can miss as a toothache.

Yesterday former first lady Michelle Obama’s speech at the Democratic National Convention hit the nail on the head whilst she sought to strike that balance between a message of hope and a condemnation of Trump. Obama spoke as the wife of a former President who has seen “the immense weight and awesome power” of the presidency up close. She spoke as a mother trying to teach empathy and instill “a strong moral foundation” in her daughters. And she spoke as an American pained “to see so many people hurting” at a time when the coronavirus has claimed more than 170,000 lives in the US and cast millions into unemployment. She tried to appeal to voters who are frustrated and anxious about the chaos that the President has created, arguing that the America is underperforming

“not simply on matters of policy but on matters of character.”

she said convincingly.

“I know that regardless of our race, age, religion, or politics, when we close out the noise and the fear and truly open our hearts, we know that what’s going on in this country is just not right. This is not who we want to be.”
She warned the Americans:
Donald Trump is the wrong president for our country. He has had more than enough time to prove that he can do the job, but he is clearly in over his head. He cannot meet this moment. He simply cannot be who we need him to be for us. It is what it is.”
“If you take one thing from my words tonight, it is this,”
she continued.
“If you think things cannot possibly get worse, trust me, they can; and they will if we don’t make a change in this election. If we have any hope of ending this chaos, we have got to vote for Joe Biden like our lives depend on it.”

 

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