From our American correspondent, Esteban:
A common editorial page question of late is “how can Evangelical Christians support President Trump?” Some of these challenges are based on policies, for example arguing that securing the Southern border is somehow racist or immoral. Others challenge this support on the basis of style or personality. A recent column by Mary Sanchez (who writes for the Kansas City Star) is typical of the second variety. The entire 15-column article never delves into policies at all, strictly his personality or style.
She declares that President Trump is “the least Christlike president this country has ever had”. I’ve seen other letters making similar arguments, that the Bible calls on Christians to be humble, etc. OK, for the sake of argument let’s agree that Trump is a braggart, lacks humility, is often bellicose, etc., even more than other politicians. So, how do Evangelicals look the other way?
Well, let’s consider abortion, just for one example (there are other issues, but this should suffice). Evangelicals as a group are staunchly Pro-Life. They’re not monolithic, they have a range of positions – the vast majority support abortion if the woman’s life is in danger. Likewise, if her health is truly endangered. But as a group they believe that abortion for the sake of convenience is the killing of a human being. And they’re not down with the whole “it’s no big deal, just a bit of meaningless tissue” thing – at best it’s a necessary evil.
The Democrat Party in the U.S. today has a slightly different view: they support any abortion at any time for any reason. If a baby somehow survives an abortion, it is completely outside the woman’s body, the Party does not support saving the baby’s life. The Governor of Virginia said on camera that “the baby would be set aside and kept comfortable while the woman and her doctor decided what to do”.
So, if you’re an Evangelical, how do you weigh these two issues: Trump is a rude braggart, but the other party supports killing babies? Hmm, that’s a real toughie. A frequently told story claims that during the Civil War Abraham Lincoln was frustrated by his generals’ unwillingness to press the fight, Ulysses S. Grant being a notable exception. When someone complained to Lincoln that Grant was a heavy drinker he said find out what he drinks and send a case to all the other generals – one of these things is more important than the other.
For the moment put aside your position on abortion, or Mary Sanchez’s for that matter. For the moment we’re just trying to figure out how those crazy Evangelicals can support Trump, and it’s their position that matters. I’m pretty sure that Ms. Sanchez has a clue where Evangelicals stand on abortion. And yet, she can’t figure out how they overlook this SOB’s ego and rudeness.