For most of us, Donald Trump seems to do something every day that should disqualify him from the presidency. And yet conservative Christians seem to ignore all of it. As long as he keeps nominating ultra-conservative judges across the country, critics argue, there’s literally nothing he could do that would unnerve his white evangelical base. No amount of blatant racism, awful treatment of women, misguided policy decisions, multiple marriages, payments to a porn star, or appointments of equally corrupt cronies to positions of power will convince white evangelicals that they’re backing the wrong horse.
And now Jerry Falwell, Jr. (who else?) has confirmed that argument.
In an interview with Joe Helm for the Washington Post, the Liberty University president admitted that absolutely nothing Trump does would shake Falwell’s support:
Is there anything President Trump could do that would endanger that support from you or other evangelical leaders?
That’s the shortest answer we’ve had so far.
Only because I know that he only wants what’s best for this country, and I know anything he does, it may not be ideologically “conservative,” but it’s going to be what’s best for this country, and I can’t imagine him doing anything that’s not good for the country.
He can imagine Jesus walking on water, but Trump doing something bad? Impossible! (Meanwhile, those of us who check Twitter in the morning find ample evidence of Trump hurting America before the Sun is up.)
At one point, Falwell says his support is based on Trump’s “business acumen.” Either Falwell doesn’t know or doesn’t care that Trump’s entire business life has been a failure. Being rich when you got a multi-million dollar head start and constantly lie and cheat with people you work with doesn’t make you a good businessman.
It’s no surprise that a man who runs a joke of a university sees success in a man who ran a fake one.
But what else should we expect from a man whose religious life is dedicated to ignoring critical thinking? Falwell sees what he wants to see. He cherry picks his favorite parts of Trump’s life, distorts the rest, then pretends like those of us looking at the full picture are being unfair. It’s the same way he treats the Bible.
What’s sad is how many millions of other white evangelicals are following his lead — and driving our country off a cliff. They don’t give a damn. They only care about a fictional afterlife, and if that requires sacrificing the entire world to get there, so be it.
This is how cults operate. Always obedient to the Glorious Leader. Never critical. No matter what.