Scriptorium 2

11 Oct 2020

Why Trump?

Early voting in Texas starts this week. I will be voting for Donald Trump, and I would like to explain why.

Politics from an Eternal Perspective

I will start by saying that I look at the world from a perspective formed by my Christian beliefs. I was taught as a young man to have an “eternal perspective”, realizing that this life is a tiny part of human existence, and that we should make judgments about how to live based on how it affects our eternal destiny rather than gains we may make in this life. As Jesus said, “For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?” (Matthew 16:26 KJV) Therefore, I think politics is of limited value because it is primarily concerned with this present life. Nonetheless, I live in a country where every citizen has an opportunity and responsibility to take part in the political process at some level. Therefore I do take politics seriously and try to be informed, even though it is not a major interest of mine.

I have always tried to be fair-minded and listen to both sides in politics, but since my first time to vote in 1980, I have almost always voted for the Republican candidate, and the overriding issue has been abortion. I know that many people are sick of the abortion debate, but I cannot leave it because I consider the legalization of abortion to be one of the worst institutional injustices in human history. It is up there with genocide, and I think it is worse than institutional racism and slavery. The victims of abortion are always innocent and are always killed. The most wicked part of abortion is that the mother is involved in the killing of her very own child in her very own womb. This goes counter to the nature of motherhood as the care and nurturing of children, and of the womb as a place of safety for the developing child. I use the word wicked because it indicates a twisting of God’s design, plan, and direction for our lives. God loves these mothers and wants the best for them. When our society legalizes abortion and implies that it is a valid option, it tempts women in a crisis pregnancy to take what seems to be the easy way out, but it is destructive not only of the child, but of the mother. God will certainly forgive these mothers, but the pain will stay with them.

Third Party in 2016

However, in 2016, despite Hillary Clinton being arguably the most pro-abortion presidential candidate in history, I did not vote for Donald Trump because I was afraid he would be a disaster of a president, and I wanted to be able to say that I didn’t vote for him. Instead, I voted for a third party candidate.

Why was I afraid to vote for Trump? I didn’t take him seriously in the primaries, and I voted for Marco Rubio. After Trump surprisingly got the nomination, I was influenced by writers like P. J. O’Rourke and others who predicted that Trump in the White House would be like Hitler with nuclear weapons. However, the last four years have shown me that such fears were extremely overblown, even though the media gives us monthly, if not weekly predictions that a presidential disaster is right around the corner.

Past Predictions of Trump Evils

When Trump placed restrictions on entry from certain countries that sponsored terrorism, it was called a Muslim ban, despite the fact that not all of the banned countries were Muslim and not all Muslim countries were banned. It looked to me to be exactly what he said it was - an attempt to protect against terrorism. However, his opponents said it was the beginning of a purge of Muslims from our country. That purge never happened.

Or how about when Trump was accused of locking children in cages at the border and creating concentration camps? Again, this was portrayed as the beginning of a holocaust-like purge of immigrants from our country. However, I learned that the policy to separate parents from their children actually came from the Obama administration and even some of the pictures of “children in cages” were taken during the Obama Presidency. If Trump really created concentration camps at the border, why is no one on the left today continuing to call our attention to this Hitler-like behavior? Why didn’t Biden bring it up during the debate? I think it’s because it was a really a non-issue.

Next was Trump’s negotiations with North Korea. Whenever Trump was firm with Kim Jong-un, he was accused of wanting to start a war, but when he was friendly, he was accused of being friends with dictators. Well, North Korea stopped their missile testing and we didn’t get in a war.

When Trump took out Iranian terrorist leader, Qasem Soleimani, everyone was sure that we would end up in a war with Iran. That didn’t happen either.

Then there was the impeachment accusing Trump of a terrible abuse of power. Nancy Pelosi led the process in the House in an attempt to save our country. The Republican majority Senate, however, did not convict him. I would expect this to be continued to be proclaimed as a major injustice perpetrated by the Republican party. If Trump really did commit such a terrible abuse of power, why isn’t the Biden campaign hammering that home now? I haven’t heard that come up in the debates or in Biden campaign ads. Could it be that the charges are not credible and too many people know the impeachment was a sham? Or maybe Biden doesn’t want people to look too closely at his own involvement in Ukraine?

And then there is the Russian collusion accusation that went on for two years and fell flat. I won’t say anymore about that.

Present Criticisms of Trump

All of these disaster predictions and accusations of evil throughout the last four years came to nothing, and they are not being used by the Biden campaign against Trump now, showing me that Biden even knows they are not credible. What is being used against Trump today? He’s mean, he’s sexist, he’s racist, and he has mismanaged the pandemic response, causing the deaths of hundreds of thousands of Americans.

The pandemic death count in the US is much higher in proportion to our population than in most other countries. Early in the pandemic, again, there were disaster predictions of overrun hospitals and not enough respirators. Trump was criticized for not doing more to force companies to build respirators. Well, we didn’t run out of respirators or hospital beds. Some ICUs have been strained at certain times, but I haven’t seen the disaster scenarios that were predicted. Trump was also criticized for there not being enough tests, and that was being blamed for all the cases and deaths early on. There are plenty of tests now, so that can’t be the complaint anymore. The primary accusation now is that Trump doesn’t take masks and other precautions seriously enough and is setting a bad example for the country. People are following his example, and that is the cause of the high death count. Well, the topic of masks and how best to respond to this pandemic is controversial, and I don’t know that a president who makes a big deal about masks would change that a whole lot. The fact is that Americans tend to react against being told what to do when the rationale is not clear, so this alone might be the reason for the death count disparity. I remember when mandatory seat belt laws were put into place. It took many years for it to sink in to a lot of people that seat belts are a good idea. I don’t think we can blame Trump for that.

Finally, this whole case of pandemic mismanagement is based on a statistic that I have never seen carefully analyzed. Statistics can easily be abused. Are we certain that the United States is counting COVID deaths the same way that other countries are? What I am hearing is that when someone dies, if the coronavirus is detected, it is put down as a COVID death. I’m not convinced that leads to an accurate assessment of the deadliness of this pandemic. If a person dies and a cold virus is found in his bloodstream, is the cause of death said to be the common cold?

How about the accusation that Trump is sexist or a sexual predator? He was a playboy figure in the past, and there are some past inappropriate things he has done to women, but I’m not aware of anything during his presidency. I do not approve of his past lifestyle, and I don’t approve of what Kennedy and Clinton did while they were in office. Sadly, wealth and power are often accompanied by sexual immorality. However, the Donald Trump I see today appears to be a faithful and loving husband.

Now lets look at his meanness? I admit that this is something that did bother me for a while. I don’t like name calling and other rhetorical devices; I prefer rational discourse. However, it was recently pointed out to me that progressives with their political correctness left the realm of rational discourse years ago. Political correctness and wokeness is all about emotional manipulation and name calling, so I can’t really blame Trump for fighting fire with fire. Trump certainly seems to do a better job standing up to this stuff that other conservatives that try to play by the PC rules, and that is because political correctness has stacked the deck against conservatives, so playing by the PC rules means that conservatives lose. Maybe a more noble leader could raise the discourse up to a higher plane, but I see no such person in presidential politics right now.

Racism

Finally, what about Trump being a racist? I never saw any evidence that Trump is an actual racist, but I thought it was bad that he would not distance himself from white supremacists. I didn’t think this meant he was actually racist, but that he didn’t want to put off groups that might vote for him. However, yesterday I saw this video, and it made me angry. I have repeatedly heard newscasters like Chuck Todd on Meet the Press say that Trump refuses to condemn white supremacists, and this video shows him doing it repeatedly, even in an interview with Chuck Todd. It is ridiculous how many times Trump is asked to disavow white supremacy and he does so. In fact, he displays incredible patience on this topic. I don’t blame him if he refuses to play this game eventually.

This tactic being used against Trump reminds me of what I was taught in high school World History class when studying dictators like Stalin and Hitler. My teacher said they discovered the technique of the “Big Lie”. It is possible to convince people to believe a big lie that is obviously false if you just keep on repeating it. This is what the media is doing today. Oh, and Trump is often ridiculed because he often calls mainstream media “fake news”, but this video shows they totally deserve it.

Is there anything wrong with Trump?

I do not claim that Donald Trump is perfect. There are still things about him that I don’t like. I wish he would not exaggerate his successes and always talk about how great he is. I am told that is a New York thing, but I feel like it just gives his opponents more ammunition against him. I would like him to be more honest about his mistakes. I would also like him to be more careful with conflict of interest situations.

Why Trump, then?

So, I’ve told you why I don’t believe most of the bad stuff about Trump. What is good about him? I will admit that he is a flawed character, but in the United States political realm, he is currently the best defense against the global progressive juggernaut that threatens to dismantle the Christian Western tradition. Abortion is the acute symptom of a much broader ideology that rejects Christian sexual morality, family structure, and God’s created order, including the very concept of male and female that is at the core of the human person. Extreme progressives are inflaming racial conflict as a means to tear down all structures that provide the stability needed for human flourishing. By exalting freedom to do as one pleases as the ultimate good, this ideology is creating lost generations of lonely people who have no meaning in life, and are ill equipped to handle the problems that come up in life, resulting in poverty, despair, suicide, and ultimately eternal destruction.

Trump has done more to oppose this movement than anyone else in politics today. That is why I am convinced that people are going to such lengths to get him out of office. His willingness to not play the PC game and to catch flack for it is one of his greatest attributes.

The True Hero

I will be voting for Donald Trump because I think it is the right thing to do, but I do not place my hope in him. He is only a flawed human being, and as I said at the beginning, political power is limited. I believe there is a demonic force behind this progressive ideology, and that the battle is ultimately spiritual. Ephesians 6:12 says, “For we are not contending against flesh and blood, but against the principalities, against the powers, against the world rulers of this present darkness, against the spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.” (RSVCE) Reelecting Trump might slow down the juggernaut for four more years, but it also might ignite such a demonic fury that extreme chaos will be the result. Honestly, I am bracing myself for apocalyptic events no matter who wins the election, and I am doing that by seeking the only hero that can save us, and that is Jesus Christ.