Like so many Americans (but sadly not enough) my heart sank yesterday as I witnessed Trump supporters crawling all over the Nation’s Capitol building and then breeching its hallowed halls because Donald Trump is a sore loser. January 6th, 2021 will be remembered as a sad day for this Republic. But not just for America, but also for Christianity in America that has been so closely associated with it. To be clear, what we witnessed yesterday was not representative of Christ or His Truth, but was the logical end of the AntiChrist spirit that is already at work in the world. This conflation of white Nationalism, pseudo-Christianity, and Trump worship has led us to this moment.
Today, many who supported Trump for the past four years under the misguided notion that a few Supreme Court Justices were worth any cost, are recanting, back peddling, and attempting to mitigate their support. It is too little, too late. Donald Trump repeatedly showed us who he was, his rhetoric, his actions, his ineptness as a leader, was ignored because too many believed the lies peddled by media charlatans and demigods. These lies catered to the white identities of superiority and privilege. A privilege that was put on full display yesterday for all the world to see. Don’t ever try to tell me again that white people aren’t treated differently by law enforcement, when we all saw police retreat at the sight of the Trump inspired mob. Compare how the Capitol Building was protected on January 6th with how it was fortified during Black Lives Matter protests over the summer. Compare how quickly Donald Trump was inclined to dispatch the National Guard and launch tear gas canisters into the crowd of peaceful protesters to clear them for his Bible photo opportunity with how reluctant he was to do the same on his own inspired mob.
Yesterday the Confederate Flag breached the Capitol, something it failed to do even in the Civil War. I also witnessed many “Jesus” flags. What a travesty that the convergence of White Nationalism has now desecrated the Name above all Names. This is the legacy of Trump and his supporters. Four people lost their lives as people cheered waving those flags.The ends never justify the means, and for at least a generation the “Christian witness” in this Nation has been tainted.
Trump tweeted in response, “This is what happens when a landslide victory in an election is stolen” There was nothing stolen. There was no ‘landslide’ supporting him or his cause. Even in the face of violence he continues to lie.
This is my lament for the Nation that I love. This is my lament for my Black brothers and sisters who continually to viscously abused and condemned and lied about. Ever notice that any time their is any violence that takes place in a “protest” that Antifia or BLM is immediately blamed? It is symptomatic of the continuing systemic injustices perpetuated in the name of patriotism. What happened yesterday wasn’t patriotic, it was the antithesis to patriotism. True patriots tell the the truth, they don’t perpetuate lies.
Senator Mitt Romney got it right when he spoke from the chamber floor late last night, “What happened at the U.S. Capitol today was an insurrection, incited by the President of the United States.Those who choose to continue to support his dangerous gambit by objecting to the results of a legitimate, democratic election will forever be seen as being complicit in an unprecedented attack against our democracy.The best way we can show respect for the voters who are upset is by telling them the truth. That is the burden, and the duty, of leadership.We must not be intimidated or prevented from fulfilling our constitutional duty. I urge my colleagues to move forward with completing the electoral count, to refrain from further objections, and to unanimously affirm the legitimacy of the presidential election.”
We need to start telling the truth. Not only about this election, but about our Nation. We aren’t a “Christian Nation” with any kind of exceptional status, we are a deeply flawed nation in need of repentance. We don’t hold any kind of privileged status in God’s economy, we are held to the same standards of His purposes and aims of His glory as any other nation that has occupied the face of this planet throughout history. Our hubris has brought us to this moment. We are being humbled and chastised by a Holy God for our sins. The original sins of our founding. The enslavement of Black and Brown bodies to enrich ourselves. The unresolved animosities of a Civil War. The resurgence of racism during Jim Crow resulting in innumerable lynchings of Black people, innumerable because of a justice system that is unconcerned and unequal. The evils of systemic racism continuing to this day. The insistence of those who call the Name of Christ to only be resolute of their defense of life, if that life is segregated to the womb, with little to no concern for the poor, the marginalized, the down trodden, the destitute, the wayfaring stranger. So many quick to condemn the respectful taking of a knee but have yet to raise one voice of condemnation to the vitriolic rhetoric of Trump. Our nation must repent.
May God have mercy on us all.