Thought for the Day: 

“We are more concerned with the freedom to choose than in making choices that set us free. “

Erwin McManus

Question for the Day:

Are we better for Trump’s election?

In November 2016, I still remember the sick feeling I had when, as a God-fearing woman of color, I watched our nation elect a man who was caught on camera bragging about “moving on a married woman like a bitch.” Dear 2016, Have a Seat! This self-proclaimed “pussy grabber” somehow managed to win over blue-collar whites and the rural poor who, I suppose, expected their vote would earn them a cut of his deceitfully earned millions. Even as he vowed to cut the very programs that support families living below the poverty line, his supporters proved they would rather starve and lose life sustaining benefits such as universal healthcare if it meant erasing the memory of a Black man and his family from the White House.

I scratched my head as this person was deemed the “Christian candidate” even despite full knowledge of his multiple pending allegations of sexual misconduct against women, documented discriminatory practices against minorities, and a history of defrauding the public with a glorified ponzi scheme of a university. God Don’t Like Ugly: Trump and the Christian Vote As if we’d somehow slipped into an alternate universe, a man who had been unfaithfully married multiple times was being held up as the moral standard. Some folks even boldly proclaimed “Jesus was coming back to the White House” albeit in the form of a Big Mac loving, Twitter trolling, adverb misusing, reality game show host.  Yet nevertheless, this was to be our nation’s new savior.  However, for me and and the other people of God I knew, I remembered when this candidate demanded the execution of five falsely accused black boys framed as the perpetrators of a brutal rape in Central Park. I hadn’t forgotten how he led the “birther movement” with his audaciously privileged demands.  He thought himself somehow entitled to see the president’s birth certificate as if America just don’t make Black men like  Barack Obama. It should have set off more than a few alarms for us “good Christians” when the potential leader of the free world was endorsed by the Ku Klux Klan and called white supremacists “very fine people.” We should have suspected his race baiting would have consequences and acknowledged the risk of resurgent hate crimes and growing intolerance.

When this candidate mocked a disabled reporter, advocated for a police officer’s right to “stop and frisk” anyone who looked suspicious, raged against Muslims and Mexicans, and decided Omarosa and sisters Diamond and Silk were the best people to talk some sense into us black folk, we should have known then that we were dealing with a special brand of stupidity.

Yet, here we are on June 1, 2020 in the midst of the worst civil unrest many of us have seen in our lifetime. In the four short years since this man’s election, he’s been nearly impeached over credible evidence that he abused his power and obstructed Congress in an effort to steal his election. In addition to possible treason, children have been separated from their families and caged, gun violence continues to escalate, he’s appointed an alleged rapist to the Supreme Court, relationships with other world leaders has declined, he’s become best buds with right-wing dictators, and encouraged a revolving door administration reminiscent of the last ten minutes of an episode of Celebrity Apprentice.

As we speak, we are in the throes of an embarrassingly mismanaged pandemic that’s claimed over 100,000 lives and eradicated approximately 20.6 million jobs.  Cities across this nation are erupting in protest as Black citizens like Atatiana Jefferson, Ahmaud Aubrey, Breonna Taylor, and George Floyd continue to die senselessly at the hands of a corrupt police force.  We are quite literally on the verge of a race war while the president sidesteps his responsibility to lead and unify in favor of antagonizing and inciting more violence.

This man has cheapened the office of the presidency and lowered our collective IQ by using words such as “bigly” on the world’s stage.  He’s tainted our reputation and global influence by discrediting the press, undermining the right to free speech, using his position to threaten, extort, and punish  detractors, stoke racial tensions, demean women, and create policies that support his personal interests above the common good.

As we peek out of our windows from behind locked doors and pray that we don’t contract coronavirus, get shot by a hate mongering zealot or “fit the description,” I also hope we take a minute to intentionally examine what we as a country were thinking in 2016 when we allowed an unfit, unqualified, uneducated, and unscrupulous charlatan to take the reins.  Please look around, take those tired blinders off that you’ve been rockin’ since 2016, and retire the “fake news” mantra long enough to acknowledge the truth.

Digging your heels in deeper in the name of pride won’t help you keep a job, feed your family, stay alive or even locate a roll of toilet paper these days.  So, as we move into the 2020 election season, I beg of the America that elected Donald Trump to the highest office in the land to ask themselves one question, “Are we great again yet?”

“But I tell you that everyone will have to give account on the day of judgment for every empty word they have spoken. “

Matthew 12:36

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