It’s meme time again. Suddenly politics is becoming a Rorsharch test. Wearing mask is a Rorsharch test. You can tell where people stand a lot easier these days. There is less and less that unites us. The following meme has been used by people on both sides. I even used it on Facebook.
“Some people probably think we should keep our months shut about politics. Let me tell you something. If Christians don’t take a stand against this evilness going on right now and speak up, we ain’t going to have an America.”
I give you the Rorscharch test. Is this a conservative meme or a liberal meme? Well, it obviously can be both. You obviously start envisioning what the poster is thinking based on what you know about them. When I see it from conservative friends I know exactly what they mean. When I see it from liberal friends I know exactly what they mean.
So, let’s break it down to the heart of the matter. What evilness is going on right now? Well, let’s attack this from another way. What is being a Christian all about? The greatest commandments listed in the New Testament state to love your God with all your heart and strength, and love others as you love yourself.
As Christians, our thoughts, our words, and our deeds should reflect that love. We often fail. That’s the downside of being human. Sometimes we act out of anger and hate. It is probably fair to say that both anger and hate are at the heart of what is evil in this world. Those that we most associate with evil we link very closely to hate and anger. Cruel dictators, serial killers, and those that use their power to meet their selfish needs.
As a cradle Catholic we are seaped in this stuff. Out church probably has more rules and procedures than most. All the rules come from a good place, but we have to keep the focus where it is supposed to go. Does enforcing the rule bring us closer or further away from that purpose? Some are more focused on the rules than what is rendered.
One of the things that has boggled my mind is the support of evangelical Christians for Donald Trump. I just don’t get it. This isn’t just about a sinful lifestyle. George W. Bush was an admitted alcoholic and accused drug addict. He cleaned himself up. He made good and did the best he could do redeem himself. I always disagreed with him politically, but always respected him personally. He is a good man.
Bill Clinton and Barack Obama have done good things as president. Clinton obviously has done bad things in his personal life. We probably don’t know the depths of depravity that he has done personally. So no, the fact that Trump has been married three times, slept with porn stars (and paid them off) and been accused of sexual assault by more than 20 women is not the only thing I’m thinking here. Personal behavior is one thing. Public behavior is something else.
He bullies people online and treats his political opponents with as little respect as possible. The juxtaposition between Trump and Bush is the most fascinating. Bush turned his life around and became a devoted Christian. He hosted Bible studies in the White House with those in his administration. For whatever he believed politically, he treated just about everyone with dignity.
Trump can’t name a single Bible verse. He rarely if ever attends church services and had that infamous photo op with his the Bible upside down. The fact that he violently cleared out a crowd to get there probably fits somewhere in the irony top ten. You had the neglect of Puerto Rico. You had children in cages. You have his lack of empathy during the virus and during numerous other tragedies. In other words, if you are looking for the evil in the world, you might not look much further.
Does this mean that those that follow him are also evil? I don’t think things are that simple. Conservatives that post the meme above believe firmly that they are on the side of good. I respect that. They believe in following rules and it is important to stand for the importance of law and order. I respect that too. They believe in the importance of loving their country and treating it with respect. I respect that as well. I just can’t help but think that the greatest commandment got lost in there somehow. It is hard to be a good Christian when you hate so many people around you.