Monday, April 10, 2017

On Metacrock's log

New Republic Ran an article about the religious right, "Amazing Disgrace."[1] It talks about a young evangelical minister who cared about the religious right (RR) but was also someone who took Jesus seriously. Russell Moore a leader in the Southern Baptist convention. He was initially like so many convinced Trump's presidential hopes were not serious and would fizzle. He knew Trump was no Christian, but when the evangelicals supported the Foux President by 81% Moore was agast.

The church of Jesus Christ ought to be the last people to fall for hucksters and demagogues,” Moore wrote in Onward: Engaging the Culture Without Losing the Gospel, a book he had just published at the time. “But too often we do.”
As Trump continued gaining ground in the polls, Moore began to realize that the campaign represented nothing short of a battle for the soul of the Christian right. By backing Trump, white evangelicals were playing into the hands of a new, alt-right version of Christianity—a sprawling coalition of white nationalists, old-school Confederates, neo-Nazis, Islamophobes, and social-media propagandists who viewed the religious right, first and foremost, as a vehicle for white supremacy. The election, Moore warned in a New York Times op-ed last May, “has cast light on the darkness of pent-up nativism and bigotry all over the country.” Those who were criticizing Trump, he added, “have faced threats and intimidation from the ‘alt-right’ of white supremacists and nativists who hide behind avatars on social media.”

The article goes on to make the point that the religious right was really more motivated by the the quest for temporal power than by any Gpsoel message or love of Jesus. First it was not abortion that triggered the founding of the RR initially n the 70's, "... the movement was actually galvanized in the 1970s and early ’80s, when the IRS revoked the tax-exempt status of Bob Jones University and other conservative Christian schools that refused to admit nonwhites. " Posner argues that "Moral Majority co-founder Paul Weyrich has acknowledged."[2] By openly embracing the racism of the alt-right Trump drew out the latent racist tendencies that lay dormant or disguised in the RR. Moore tried to steer the fundies away from Trump in the beginning but he was reduced to ineffectual status by Trump's mocking.

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