Why would a professor of ethics support Trump?


160128_stainedglassrightpolitics-jpg-crop-promovar-mediumlargeWhat Trump is all about is well known …

  • His gross dishonesty in almost everything he says has been robustly established by the fact checkers again and again
  • His xenophobia and racism
  • The observation that he is a sexual predator – he said it and women have been coming forward to confirm it. This is a he said/she said scenario where they agree. Yes he has expressed sorrow, clearly he is quite sorry that it has been caught.

… and yet millions still happily support him.

Norman Geisler

Mr Geisler is an 84 year old well-known evangelical theologian, philosopher, apologist, and author of over 90 books. Prior to the latest Trump revelations regarding Mr Trump being quite open about being a sexual predator that happily molests women, Mr Geisler was a vocal Trump supporter.

Ed Stetzer over at Christianity Today decided to interview Mr Geisler to find out if he had changed his mind, and if not, then why not.

Basically the driving force is the supreme court. Mr Geisler’s original stance was this …

The last word on all our rights is decided by the Supreme Court which is now split down the middle. The next President will tip the scales on the liberal / conservative divide on the High Court. Our next chief executive officer may very well appoint two to four justices who, when elected, will form the court for a generation or more. 

Mr Setzer then proceeds to ask if he still adopts that stance given the latest revelations …

there is less chance that Hillary will change her views and become a pro-life supporter than that Trump will become pro-abortion after he is elected. So, if you want to save unborn lives, your odds are much better with Trump.

The problem with that specific stance is that the facts reveal it to be seriously flawed. The Friendly Atheist pointed this out within a recent posting …

Are You Pro-Life? Then You Should Vote for Hillary Clinton, Says Christian Writer

Want to guess which political party is more effective at reducing poverty and unwanted pregnancies? I’ll give you a hint. It’s not the “pro-life” Party that in this last Congressional session alone fought to cut medical care for poor mothers and children, food programs for kids, and contraception coverage and access for women.

Abortions rose steadily during the tenure of the first “pro-life” Republican President, Ronald Reagan. They reached their highest level under President H. W. Bush. Abortions then dropped dramatically under President Clinton, falling to 60% of the high under his pro-life Republican predecessor. That downward trend stalled during most of President W. Bush’s tenure, and remained basically flat until the final two years of his term when Democrats retook Congress. And then abortions plunged again under Obama, falling to their lowest point in 40 years.

The point is well made because if you actually quite seriously care about this issue and want to vote Trump because of it, then you are backing the wrong candidate

Mr Geisler does carry on during the Q&A to make some quite silly comments. This gets deployed …

Whether we like it or not, when we vote for president we are not voting for Pastor-in-Chief. Rather, we are voting for Commander-in-Chief. The qualifications for the two jobs are different.

If you wish to pick the individual who is most qualified for the job then it is most certainly not Trump. It is the opinion of most leading Republicans and every single living individual who ever held the job that Trump is not qualified in any way at all for the job. (I’m being polite there, stronger words have been deployed by some).

Further, Trump has expressed regret for offensive things he has said. Hillary has not shown regret for the numerous lies she has told—many of which the FBI has reported. 

The quip about the FBI reporting that she lied is pure fiction as is the quip about her numerous lies. The fact checkers confirm that the most honest candidate is Hillary Clinton and the most dishonest is Trump. If he wishes to quibble about that and deny it, then his argument is not with me, nor with the fact checkers, but with reality itself.

Finally, we have aborted nearly 60 million unborn human beings under Roe v. Wade since 1973—a decision that Hillary ardently supports. Reportedly, Hitler only killed about 12 million people

Once again another gross distortion pops up. The claim that a few cells is equivalent to a living human being is not a factual claim, and tossing Hitler into the mix is done to manipulate emotions. He might believe specific things, but belief alone does not equate to what is factually correct.

Rather strangely he also states this …

when I am sick, I choose the most competent doctor who may or may not be the most Christian doctor. Likewise, the most competent political leader may not be the most Christian one.

How precisely does he determine that Trump is competent and Mrs Clinton is not, what measure is he using here?

As was pointed out by the Friendly Atheist in another posting …

Geisler is too blinded by his Jesus-tinted glasses to admit that Hillary Clinton, the Methodist who taught Sunday school classes, and running mate Tim Kaine, who attended Catholic schools and served as a missionary in Honduras, are really better representatives in public office for Christians. Not only that, their policies could go a long way to advancing many of the Religious Right’s supposed goals — helping those who struggle the most, fixing our broken criminal justice system, and (yes) further reducing abortion rates.

So why is Trump the go-to-choice, how is it possible for a professor of Christian ethics to reject a life-long Methodist and Catholic and prefer an individual who has a long history of sexual assault, racism, religious bigotry, ignorance, and deception?

It is perhaps his emotional commitment to his pro-life mantra being coupled with the belief that a seat on the supreme court will settle it that blinds him to the horrendous ethical mistake he is making. What is most probable is that if Trump were actually elected then he would come to deeply regret the decision as the consequences of a Trump presidency played out.

Not everybody is this wrong?

I should add that while many evangelicals and doubling down in their support for Trump, some are not. Deborah Fikes resigned from various evangelical leadership positions to endorse Hillary Clinton and explains in detail why. She makes a far more rational reason-based case for her stance.

Leave a Reply