The Fox and His Flock, an Inconceivable Presidency

It is hard to believe it has been two years since that defining Wednesday morning when America and the world awoke to an inconceivable truth – that the man who had almost 3 million less popular votes than his rival won the Presidency. As one of those millions, I was initially in a catatonic state…disoriented, in disbelief, denial… feeling doomed and damned. Dwelling in the pit of my stomach was an overwhelming feeling of shame…ashamed for who we had become as a nation…not because the ‘victor’ was a Republican or ‘politically unseasoned’…but because he had violated every minimal code of conduct, decency, and morality always required of individuals seeking the highest office of the land. Still, deep within my core as a woman of faith, and one who knows you judge “a tree by its fruit”, my mind and spirit were reeling over the staggering Christian support displayed on behalf of a man who embodied not one ‘Godly’ characteristic. WHO were those 35-45% of evangelicals overall, or the estimated 80% of white evangelicals reported in exit polling, and how did such a significant portion of professed ‘believers’ support a man whose life manifested everything contrary to the faith they profess? It was mind boggling on every level, and on every issue. Immigration and foreigners… the poor and less fortunate… the paying of taxes… honoring women, and the grand staple pillar of every major world religion “loving thy neighbor”. Two years later, I am equally dismayed and disturbed.

WHO, I ask are these “Christians” who continue to find good fruit pre and post Presidential ascension? What good did they see displayed in a penchant for stiffing honest, hardworking contractors while imposing multiple self-serving bankruptcies which left a wake of financial ruin for small businesses and individuals, and unapologetically utilizing tax loopholes for self gain? WHAT screamed ‘Jesus’ that summer day in the revelation of reprehensible sexual banter on a bus?..from a man who has mocked and insulted the disabled, immigrants, Muslims, revered POWs because they got “captured”, beauty queens because they gained weight, and journalists seeking only to fulfill their own role in upholding and defending the constitution? What is “Christ-like” in bullying, insulting, or ousting every contender and source of opposition? A lifetime of dishonorable business practices, unapologetic racist, sexist, narcissistic, and depraved behavior were not merely an indicator of character… they were without question the blueprint and final stamp of the man about to take a most solemn oath. And STILL many “believers” spiritually discerned to vote for him then and support him today. And now here we are. A ‘head’ of a nation who has become the ‘butt’ of a world-wide joke….a head of a nation whose arsenal of insults could prove as fatal to our democracy as a North Korean dictator’s nuclear pursuits or a Saudi Prince’s death squad.

WHO ARE you “believers” who find the building of ‘The Great Wall of Mexico’ part of God’s grand design while having no moral conflict to employ the ‘illegal’ element to mow your lawns, clean your house, pick your crops, bus your tables, and raise your children? You distrust a black man wearing a hoodie or a Muslim woman wearing a headscarf but would you notice a young white man donning white supremacist emblems, soon on his way to murder African American church-goers in North Carolina?

WHO are you? The truth is, “You” are closer than the objects in the rear view mirror”. “You” are the neighbor down the hall…”You” are co-workers. Some of you are family members…and even old friends. You go to church on Sunday, serve in any variety of “ministries” while often ignoring the very ministry outside your door step. You bless the organic food before you in mealtime yet cast no judgment upon corporations whose GMOs compromise the health of those who cannot afford WholeFoods or alkaline water. You tout scriptural tenants of honoring the earth which God created and the temple of your body, while fervently raising a fist for more coal and more oil drilling, and against the “hoax” of global warming or our responsibility for it, even as some of you live in states most affected by an influx of hurricanes, wild fires, and floods.

You seethe at those who kneel at sporting games as an act of defiance and disrespect of fallen soldiers, while forgetting the spirit and cause of the very first “rebels” who themselves fought against those they saw as their oppressors – our forefathers. The truth is that while ‘Patriots’ are indeed those who defend our nation in uniform every day, whether on foreign ground or first responders on our own soil, it is also any individual who embodies courage and selflessness in the midst of great trials on behalf of the greater good of all, not merely themselves. And whether standing or kneeling, hand over heart, reciting the words, “One nation, under God”, we cannot omit “with liberty and justice (not for some but) for ALL”. Simply put, standing for what is right does not mean we always ‘stand’. Rosa Parks didn’t stand, she sat. Martin Luther King did not merely stand, he marched… Ghandi and Caesar Chavez fasted. Malala Yousafzai simply kept going to school. And today, a caravan of vulnerable, tired, desperate fellow human beings …seeking only to find refuge from their crime, terror, and poverty-ridden native lands, they too ‘stand’…by simply continuing to walk northward.

Now that I’ve asked you, so you too perhaps are asking me, ‘Who am I’? What makes me a qualified voice to write this article? I am one who does not check the box ‘white’ nor am I evangelical. I am neither a theologian nor a Bible scholar. I am certainly not one who can spontaneously quote scripture. I am one raised with a strong Catholic foundation who evolved into purely a non-denominational Christian, or as I often convey, simply a “perfectly flawed yet perfectly made work in progress”. Whereas I have experienced most of my life as “one of the few”, lacking nothing, well cared for by my family, well traveled, well read, well bred, and well fed, I am now one of the 7.6 million Americans who hold two jobs, working six days a week and still unable to afford health care. I am one of the 65% of College educated Hispanic women and one of the 63% of single women, who voted for Hillary Clinton. Not because she was a woman. Not because she attained every single quality I seek in a leader, and not because I worked for her husband’s administration after college. I did so from a place of principle…Christian principles. And thus two years after that polling day, I remain baffled at how the millions who say they too voted their ‘Christian’ conscience, could have seen the very same words upon the pages of the same sacred book so differently:

“A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of.” – Luke 6:45

“So I will come to put you on trial. I will be quick to testify… against those who defraud laborers of their wages, who oppress the widows and the fatherless, and deprive the foreigners among you of justice…” says the LORD Almighty – Malachi 3:5

“‘When a foreigner resides among you in your land, do not mistreat them. The foreigner residing among you must be treated as your native born. Love them as yourself, for you were foreigners in Egypt” – Leviticus 19:33-34

“‘Now this was the sin of your sister Sodom: She and her daughters were arrogant, overfed and unconcerned; they did not help the poor and needy” – Ezekiel 16:49

“Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.” – Matthew 25:40

These are but a handful of the words engraved not merely upon biblical pages but my own heart. But for those who seek a way to mask or justify their fears, insecurities, assumptions, anger, and personal and social prejudices… I guess even the ‘Good Book’ is for the fox and his flock – just more Fake News?

Trackback from your site.