WHY DO EVANGELICALS SUPPORT TRUMP?

A recent article in The Nation entitled “How Martin Luther Paved the Way for Donald Trump,” by Michael Massing, provides a possible explanation.

There are at least three beliefs of Martin Luther that evangelicals follow.

Luther chose to attach himself to the militant Jesus described in Matthew: “Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth; I have not come to bring peace but a sword to set against …” He was prepared to hurt those who did not see him as the only way to come to God. Luther was just as uncompromising in his day as are many evangelicals today.

With right-wing control of the Supreme Court, they seek to foist their religious ideology on the rest of the country.

Additionally, Luther was opposed to social change. Even though he was in part responsible for inspiring the peasant uprising in 1524, he never supported the peasants’ fight against their oppressive overlords, clergy, and royalty.

He backed down because he was not in favor of social change. He endorsed the slaughter of peasants, saying, “Let everyone who can smite, slay, and stab” the peasants. He felt the role of government was secular not spiritual and, as curator of law and order, the government must be obeyed.

The evangelicals are driven to fear change, change that might mean darker-skinned people (who also might worship differently) ruling over them at some point in the future.

Thus, we have white supremacy in all its ugly manifestations. Luther also believed it was not the place of government to show compassion or mercy.

As the first “born again” Christian, he brought himself to believe salvation rested upon faith in Christ alone and not in doing good works.

Therefore, he and the evangelicals stress government ought to be absolved of supporting the poor, the ill, the aged, and the afflicted. Those folks must develop self-reliance and personal responsibility for their own lives.

No wonder the evangelicals hate the liberals, most of whom have evolved over time to a more inclusive view. Most liberals, religious or not, embrace the ideals of the Sermon-on-the-Mount Christ, the merciful Christ who loved, cared for, and supported the less fortunate, rather than the stance of the militant, unforgiving Christ.

They realize the most practical way to help others in need is through their own good works as well as those of government, Luther be damned.

Karen L. Minto

Mount Cory

CRONY CAPITALISM IS ALIVE AND WELL

In reading the many letters to The Courier, it seemed a good time to look up terms that people are talking about and define them.

Tory, an American colonist who supported the British side during the American Revolution.

Socialism, a political and economic theory of social organization that advocates that the means of production, distribution, and exchange should be owned or regulated by the community as a whole. Synonyms listed are leftism, welfarism, radicalism, progressivism, social democracy, and communism.

Capitalism, an economic system based upon private ownership of the means of production and their operation for profit. Characteristics central to capitalism include private property rights, capital accumulation, wage labor, voluntary exchange, a price system, and competitive markets. No synonyms listed.

Crony Capitalism is a term describing an economy in which success in business depends on close relationships between business people and government officials. It may be exhibited through favoritism in the distribution of legal permits, government grants, special tax breaks, or other forms of state interventionism. No synonyms listed.

Examples would be Too Big to Fail bailouts, “Obamacare,” Pay-to-Play, propping up solar and wind energy by the government, lobbyists, etc. Crony Capitalism goes on at every level of government, even in Findlay, from local to national levels because many people, businesses, and politicians lack a moral compass.

The political parties work hard to make sure we work against one another for their benefit only. George Washington warned the American people against the negative impact that opposing political parties could have on the country, and Benjamin Franklin said, “Only a virtuous people are capable of freedom. As nations become corrupt and vicious, they have more need of masters.”

It is up to you to decide what we have and practice in the USA, but it seems to me that we use a combination of all of the above.

Linda Bishop

Findlay

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