Thursday, October 20, 2016

Prof. Anthea Butler Goes on Tweetstorm: "For American Evangelicalism, Trump Has Severed and Destroyed Their Message, Movement, and Future"

I fear I'm being verbose this morning. But there's just so much to be said after last evening's debates, isn't there? Anthea Butler, who is Graduate Chair of the Department of Religious Studies at University of Pennsylvania, has gone on a marvelous tweetstorm this morning, and because her tweets are about matters we've been discussing here (white evangelical support for Donald Trump), I want to point you to them (#1 is at the head of the posting): 

Trump and Dismantling of U.S. Democracy: "Movement of White Evangelical Southerners into Republican Ranks Was Fueled Initially by Civil Rights"

This should not escape our attention, though the mainstream media persistently and conveniently choose to play games about this matter: a noteworthy  percentage of our fellow citizens are perfectly willing — let's be honest: they're deliriously happy — to cast their votes for a man whose stated objective is to dismantle the American democratic system as it now exists. Which must mean that this is precisely what these citizens want . . . .

Donald Trump and the Attempt to Dismantle American Democracy: "Running Against Our Democracy Itself"

Commentary on the "revelation" (not a surprise to anyone who has been paying attention) from last night's debates, that Donald Trump and his supporters and the political party that has put him forward want to dismantle the American democratic system as it is now configured: 

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Hot Off the Presses: More Valuable Resources Discussing Interplay of Religion, Race, Gender in U.S. Election Cycle

The valuable articles about the "religion" vote in the current U.S. elections keep coming out, and I'll keep sharing them with you as they come across my desk. Here are items I've noticed in the past day or so, dealing with issues of religion, race, and gender as the election is being discussed:

Friedrich Reck-Malleczewen's Diary of a Man in Despair on Hitler: "Is There a Nation Today So Lacking in Perspective As to Deny the Possibility That Such a Mass Psychosis Could at Some Time in Its History Occur?"

Reading Friedrich Reck-Malleczewen's Diary of a Man in Despair, trans. Paul Rubens (NY: Macmillan, 1970), as Donald Trump campaigns for the American presidency is a minatory, instructive experience. Reck-Malleczewen was a conservative writer from an East Prussian family of high social standing. He kept a journal from May 1936 to October 1944 chronicling Germany's descent into hell under Adolph Hitler and the Nazi party. The diary ends with his account of being arrested by Nazi officials. Though he was acquitted in October 1944 of charges of undermining the morale of German troops, he was arrested again in December and sent to Dachau, where he died the following February.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Trump, "Ugly Witness" of Religious Right, and Impossibility of Going Back Now That Mainstream Media Are Talking Racism, Misogyny, and Religion

For someone whose educational background is in the area of social ethics (with an historical bent), the current U.S. election cycle has been fascinating. In blogging for some years now about the religious right and its historical roots in resistance to racial integration, I've often felt as if I've been casting words to the wind, especially when I've called on the leaders of the Catholic community in the U.S. to acknowledge the deep racism of the white evangelicals with whom U.S. Catholic bishops have made a religious and political alliance that continues to the present (see the award just presented by Mormon leaders to the former USCCB president Cardinal Dolan, for his "visionary leadership"). Acknowledging the racism of white evangelical Southerners would require American Catholic leaders to begin to take a critical look at the extent to which racism also strongly informs the thinking and political choices of white American Catholics — something they, the Catholic media, and the mainstream media have not been willing to do.

Sunday, October 16, 2016

David Gushee on Why Christian Right Still Supports Trump: "Character Counts, They Said"

David Gushee draws on his experience observing the Christian right movement from the 1970s forward to comment on the movement's support for Donald Trump: