Thursday, December 13, 2018

As Polling Data from 2018 Elections Shows Quite Specifically White Evangelicals Are Trump Base, Valuable Recent Commentary


As an exit poll conducted by the Edison Research group in the 2018 elections shows that Donald Trump's base of support is not white working-class people in general, as is often suggested, but white evangelicals quite specifically, and as Sarah Huckabee-Sanders, daughter of a Southern Baptist pastor and graduate of Arkansas' Southern Baptist university Ouachita declares that she will be remembered by history as "transparent and honest," an assortment of statements I've read recently about these issues:

Constance Hilliard, "Huckabee Sanders-Poster Child for Something even Uglier than Racism that Arose from Antebellum South":

What could be worse than the soul-shredding evil of racism during the era of human bondage? My answer would be creating a world of make-believe so fortified by lies that those who lived within it could believe that slaves didn't mind it in the least when their children were sold from their trembling arms or when their wives were sexually assaulted by the plantation owner. While the institution of forced labor was dismantled after the Civil War, the peculiar mindset that defined reality as whatever the patriarch said it was, regardless of the evidence of one’s own senses, escaped the confines of the South and spread to other areas of white working class America. 
It was a worldview built on an invented moral authority. Southern evangelicals had fought the abolitionism of their northern evangelical counterparts by creating a new hermeneutics — Biblical literalism. It proclaimed that anything theologians found in the world of 2,000 years ago as having made its way into the Bible could be declared sacrosanct and God-inspired. Critical thinking skills, even personal observation were disdained for the proclamations of the patriarchal leader. In that context, lies were whatever liberals said, and the truth was the patriarch’s mumblings. White House press secretary, Sarah Huckebee Sanders, thinks of herself as a good Christian because she is faithful to the truths of Donald Trump. If this poison isn't worse than racism, then it certainly runs a close second.

It's not surprising that this kind of white Southern Baptist preacher would run a campaign that sought to steal the right to vote from black citizens in Bladen County. Preventing black Americans from voting is perfectly congruent with his theology.

In an essay entitled "The Heresy of White Christianity," Chris Hedges remembers theologian James Cone:

"I write on behalf of all those whom the Salvadoran theologian and martyr Ignacio Ellacuría called 'the crucified peoples of history,' " Cone writes in his memoir [Said I Wasn’t Gonna Tell Nobody: The Making of a Black Theologian]. "I write for the forgotten and the abused, the marginalized and the despised. I write for those who are penniless, jobless, landless, all those who have no political or social power. I write for gays, lesbians, bisexuals, and those who are transgender. I write for immigrants stranded on the U.S. border and for undocumented farmworkers toiling in misery in the nation’s agricultural fields. I write for Palestinians in the Gaza Strip, on the West Bank, and in East Jerusalem. I write for Muslims and refugees who live under the terror of war in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Syria. And I write for all people who care about humanity. I believe that until Americans, especially Christians and theologians, can see the cross and the lynching tree together, until we can identify Christ with 'recrucified' black bodies hanging from lynching trees, there can be no genuine understanding of Christian identity in America, and no deliverance from the brutal legacy of slavery and white supremacy." 
The cross, Cone reminded us, is not an abstraction; it is the instrument of death used by the oppressor to crucify the oppressed. And the cross is all around us.

No comments: