Living in Trump country

Bruce Gerencser writes a piece for the Clergy Project that describes living in Trump country.

In 2016, Donald Trump easily won the counties surrounding my home in Ney [Ohio]. Come November he will carry these counties again, likely by a higher margin than he did in 2016. The same will happen with the elections of local and state Republican candidates. Democratic candidates,

[ … ]

The aforementioned letter writer doesn’t say anything that I don’t hear locals say at ballgames, restaurants, or other public places, or write in letters to the editors of local papers or post on social media. I shoot photos upwards of a hundred local basketball/baseball/football games, volleyball matches, and track meets every year. I am retired, so I do this as a way to give back to our local school district and provide student-athletes and their families with quality photographs. Keeps me busy, allows me to meet new people, and takes my mind off the unrelenting chronic pain I battle each and every day. Doing so, however, exposes me to far more Trumpist Christian bullshit than I care to see or hear.

This rings true. I have family who live near Gerencser in Ohio, and I live in a Southern Baptist-dominated seminary town in North Carolina.

Remember: Christianity’s indispensable metaphysical claim is Original Sin, the claims that …

  • You’re no damn good.

  • You were born no damn good, and …

  • You can never be any damn good, and …

  • The only way to avoid the eternity of torture that you deserve is to join our club.

If you don’t believe those things, Christianity has nothing on offer.

Nobody alive has ever attended a Christian worship service without hearing some variation of that teaching. You probably heard it couched in more pleasant language, but it was there; after all, that’s the “Good News” that Christians are always bragging about.

Degradation and authoritarianism are baked into Christian thought; they are, ontologically, part of what Christianity is. Of course evangelicals love Donald Trump.

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