One might wonder why it would take Evangelical Christians so long to denounce a presidential candidate who not only embodies greed and braggadocio as the highest values, but who also has been married three times out of convenience and demeans women at every opportunity. Finally, writing in the opinion pages of the New York Times, Russell Moore, President of the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, has pointed out that supporting Donald Trump’s bid for the presidency conflicts with basic Christian values.
Evangelical Christians, as a mostly conservative group, have long opposed abortion rights for women. Moore points out that until recent years, Trump has supported abortion rights and even now will speak of the good work done by Planned Parenthood. Another factor Mr. Moore finds inconsistent with Christian values, is Trump’s long history in the gambling industry, an industry that preys on moral vice and, in his words, is “an economic swindle that oppresses the poorest and most desperate.” As so well stated by Moore, “When Mr. Trump’s casinos fail, he can simply file bankruptcy and move on. The lives and families destroyed by the casino industry cannot move on so easily.”
Trump obviously thinks he can pull the wool over the eyes of Christians by saying he is for “traditional marriage” and that his favorite book is the Bible, all the while being unable to name even a single Bible verse. It is simply hard to swallow that a man who sees no need to ever ask forgiveness, because he never makes mistakes, has any concept of Christian values or culture. In sum, Moore has decided that Evangelical Christians should not join the other side in the culture wars and should not embrace the idea that “image and celebrity and money and power and social Darwinist ‘winning’ trump the conservation of moral principles and a just society.” Many conservative Christians may find making a break with Trump a hard thing to do, having embraced so many of his right-wing ideas and having shown so much enthusiasm for his recent theatrics.