It happened. Pretty much this whole time I’ve been telling myself that it couldn’t possibly happen. Even as I watched the electoral votes pile up I couldn’t believe it. Then I woke up this morning and somehow the world was different. I’m assuming I’m not the only one to whom it felt like the air outside was even somehow different. Maybe heavier. As I try to swim out of my bewilderment and gather my thoughts, I thought I would write a little follow up to those who might consider themselves my brother or sister.
I beg you to find it within yourself to understand that a great many people are hurting today. My wife, a person of color and also a woman, felt like somehow her world was less safe today than when she woke up yesterday. We are left to wonder what kind of a world the next few years will shape for our daughter. I know a great many people who I love and consider themselves followers of Christ who voted for Trump, and so, for them, today has a markedly different vibe. Furthermore, I know why a great many of them voted the way they did.
For most, the balance of who to vote for comes down to one issue: abortion. And so you stood on the side of a man whose racist, bigoted, hateful rhetoric would seem to be the antithesis of Christian values. So keep in mind that by pursuing the human rights of those yet to be conceived, plenty of people already living feel that their rights have been trampled and dismissed.
Furthermore, having made your stance clear, offering up cliche platitudes such as “God is in control” or “God is on the throne” (especially with any sort of tone approaching gloating or celebration), as well-meaning and even as true as that may be, does not come across to others as this:
It comes across as this:
That may seem harsh, but you know who else viewed Trump’s election as a triumph of their moral values – the KKK.
Speaking personally, I do believe abortion is inherently murder. I can almost hear a hearty “Amen!” Having a daughter of my own has only affirmed that notion for me. However, as I mentioned in my previous article, I believe also that our responsibilities as believers cannot be so narrow minded as trying to enforce legislation but must be far more encompassing. If we shame some poor young lady into giving birth, but that baby ends up in a dumpster two weeks later, have you really accomplished anything? Be prepared to examine for yourself if your views are truly pro-life – meaning the entirety of life – or if your concern only extends as far as the delivery room.
If pro-life, again, please understand that so many lives feel threatened today. The emboldening of hate during this election process is astounding. The results of an election that would seem to validate that hate brings me to physical anguish. Victims of sexual assault who know that their voices have been discarded. People of different beliefs that now fear for their very lives. Families of different races afraid of being ripped apart. Canada’s immigration site crashed y’all! And sadly, so many of you have simply wished them good riddance.
I was not pleased with my alternative. Hillary may very well be the corrupt career politician. Had this been a more normal election year where the big issues up for debate were tax cuts and foreign policy then I could understand being more dug in on an issue like this. This year though, there was so much more at stake. Even the Republican leadership abandoned ship by the end. Despite your distaste for the Clintons (and dare I say the Obamas), to prop this up as a victory for morality is a farce. Honestly, how does a man who called his own daughter a “piece of ass” become the face of family values?
I could not bring myself to stand by a man who insulted and degraded pretty much every minority class imaginable, who stood against tolerance and love and stood for violence and fear and hate. I have been pained to hear the undertones today that echo a victory for “my country” vs “our country”. How can that possibly be the example of Christ not only to our brothers and sisters who find themselves in one of those “other” categories, but to the world watching around us? Christ did not come to establish a political throne, his revolution flew in the face of the establishment of the church. They killed him for it. We celebrate Christianity as we know it today because one man called into question the corruption he saw in the church. We don’t have to have someone else read the Bible to us in Latin because of it. Know that this vote has caused many to question the validity of the religious establishment today. Because if Trump is God’s candidate, what does that say about the God I serve?
And please, for God’s sake (pun intended), never again say that “everything happens for a reason.” The theology of that statement is so poor that it pains me. The Bible does say that God can work everything for good, but the reason that he so often has to do that is because of something stupid that we did. Yet I digress…
It is possible that I have not done my best work of gathering my thoughts here – at least as it pertains to putting together a completely coherent article – but I hope you can hear my breaking heart in the midst of my discourse. Please be careful as ambassadors of the Kingdom of Heaven that you represent your position well. We are told in scripture to “mourn with those who mourn.” Again, I beg you, please recognize that many are mourning in a way which you may not be able to understand, but mourning none the less. Don’t attempt to dismiss or belittle that grief.
One day perhaps the shock will fade and we will simply hope for the best. But not today.
Thank you for your time, I’ll talk to you soon.
This post originally appeared on the Arbitarian