As part of the unnecessary trade war he’s creating with various countries, Donald Trump has said he wants to impose a $300 million tariff on Chinese goods… which, whether he understands it or not, would mean Americans have to pay more for Chinese products.
As it turns out, a lot of Bibles are made in China. A lot of publishers get their holy books from China because the country uses “unique paper” and has special “printing technology”… and if Chinese goods become more expensive to buy, Trump is effectively imposing a tax on Bibles.
“We believe the administration was unaware of the potential negative impact these proposed tariffs would have on Bibles and that it never intended to impose ‘a Bible tax’ on consumers and religious organizations,” Mark Schoenwald, chief executive officer of HarperCollins Christian Publishing, told a panel of officials at the U.S. International Trade Commission.
A 25% tariff would make it difficult to continue printing some formats and raise prices, leading to a Bible shortage that would hurt the Christian bookseller market, as well as ministries, churches, nonprofits and other religious organizations that couldn’t afford them, Schoenwald said.
It’s possible Trump exempts Bibles from the tariffs, but it’s more likely that he’s completely unaware this is happening. Of all the ways Trump is damaging Christianity, this may be the most unintentionally hilarious.
Knowing his supporters, though, they’ll inevitably spin this as a win. Give it time and Jerry Falwell, Jr. will thank Trump for raising the price on Bibles because people need to realize they’re worth every penny.
(Image via Shutterstock. Thanks to Drew for the link)