“Finally,” reads a viral tweet with 4,600 likes and 1,300 retweets, “Evangelical Christians are rejecting the immorality of Donald Trump. This is it. He’s finished.”
Wow, I guess that’s it, huh? Evangelicals have rejected Donald Trump. Our long, national nightmare is over.
I mean, no. No, it’s not. It’s like that @BronzeHammer tweet where it’s like “Well I’d like to see ol Donny Trump wriggle his way out of THIS jam! Trump wriggles his way out of the jam easily Ah! Well. Nevertheless,”
Okay so yeah what happened is that Christianity Today declared in an editorial that “Trump Should Be Removed from Office;”
“It’s time to say what we said 20 years ago when a president’s character was revealed for what it was.”
Christianity Today is, of course, the publication founded in 1956 by Billy Graham, the Southern Baptist minister, not the rock promoter and let me tell you, that was a very confusing situation when I moved to San Francisco and attended my first show at the Bill Graham Auditorium. The magazine previously supported the impeachment of Bill Clinton and the resignation of Nixon, so it shouldn’t come as much of a shock that they have also just published an editorial supporting the impeachment of Donald Trump, despite the fact that Trump got about 80% of the evangelical vote in the 2016 election. I mean, it wouldn’t come as much of a shock if evangelicals weren’t known to be hypocritical morons, which Billy Graham’s own son has reminded us by posting on Facebook that his dad definitely would not support Trump’s impeachment, because his dad voted for Trump and Trump is pro-life and defeated ISIS (which is weird and I wonder if anyone has informed ISIS). Trump is obviously not evangelical, or even Christian by any definition considering he’s clearly an atheist sociopath who, according to several women including his own ex-wife, also happens to be a rapist. But he is a useful idiot for evangelicals, as he proved by helping them take control of the Supreme Court, and so why would an evangelical want a president that Jesus would have liked if they can get one that helps them usher in the end times a little faster?
And so now Twitter is full of people celebrating. Trump is finished! Christianity Today dealt the killing blow! Even Trump is angry, replying that starting right now he is definitely not going to read “ET” anymore. You know he had a subscription to Christianity Today and read it every month (week? However often it came out) and is definitely not confusing it with Entertainment Tonight.
Look, I know we are in the worst timeline and we need every tiny spark of hope we can find. But please know that this does not matter. At all. Yes, Christianity Today has done the absolute minimum of recognizing reality, and maybe they should be applauded for that. Baby steps, after all. But they’re a magazine. No magazine is important today, in 2019. I guarantee that the majority of Trump’s base, whether they are evangelical or not, do not give a flying shit what Christianity Today has to say about the impeachment process.
Liberals’ celebration over this reminds me of atheists like Richard Dawkins who believe that all the world’s ills are caused in some way by religion, and that by destroying religion we can live lives free of superstition, hate, and war. We can’t. Humans are just too good at those things. Trump’s base may still consider themselves “Christian” but they are slavishly devoted to a new messiah, and they will defend Trump regardless of what he does, and regardless of what any authority figure tells them. QAnon is an actual cult that has formed around Trump and will persist despite a lack of evidence for their conspiracy. Trump was not being hyperbolic when he said he could shoot someone in the middle of 5th avenue and his supporters wouldn’t bat an eye. They wouldn’t. Their support of him is not based on reason, or compassion, or logic, so you can’t use those things to change their minds.
No editorial will ever be the end of Trump. The House passing an impeachment will not be the end of Trump. We can only end Trump, and stop future fascists, with direct, collective action. We need to vote him out. And yes, we need to vote for his opponent regardless of who the Democrats put up which, god help us, is probably going to be fucking Biden. You can whine all you want about the “lesser of two evils still being evil” but that’s something you have the privilege to think because you’re either blissfully ignorant or you’re not the one who is at risk of being driven from your home, shoved into a cage, made homeless by rising sea levels, or just straight up killed for being Jewish, or gay, or brown. Because the greater of evils is so much more evil than you think.
And then we have to vote for progressive change-makers at every level of government. I don’t care if your ballot asks you to vote for the fucking municipal dog-catcher, you research those assholes and don’t let the fascist win.
Finally, we have to start building guillotines. Uh, metaphorically. We have to fuck shit up. We have to make our politicians scared. Make the rich scared. Protest. Scream. Agitate for change. Don’t leave it in the hands of evangelicals to wake up and suddenly care. They won’t.