Recently tapes were released in which Donald Trump made very crude comments. These comments infuriated many, feminists(who normally would be enraged) as well as Republican leaders. It’s true Trump’s comments are deplorable: the reason is he displays an utter disregard as to what the women in question want; he says he’ll just kiss them. Also, who wants to be grabbed by their genitals!? This is why people say these comments promote sexual assault, because consent is absent, which is dehumanizing. I know some people will say freedom of speech. Well, freedom of speech means I can say Trump is wrong and that his comments are deplorable! I’m not going to rehash all the issues with these comments, as they are everywhere on the internet. What I will say, however, is that there have been issues with Trump long before now on many issues.
First, the misogyny. Human rights documents such as The Universal Declaration of Human Rights specifically recognize the dignity of all people, regardless of race, sex, nationality, country of origin, etc. Many human rights documents specifically say that women have the same rights as men. Furthermore, there is absolutely no reason to assume women have less dignity; favoring men over women is arbitrary.
From a Christian perspective, Genesis says, “God created humankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them, male and female he created them.”(Gen. 1:27) and it is written in Galatians, “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female – for all of you are one in Christ Jesus”(Gal. 3:28). Furthermore, in a highly patriarchal society, Jesus treated women with a countercultural dignity: He gave a woman a spot of studying at His feet, just like the guys. He broke a taboo by talking with the woman at the well, also breaking down the walls of tribalism. He stopped a mob from stoning the woman caught in adultery, this rejecting slut-shaming. (I plan on doing another post on egalitarianism/feminism.)
The human rights documents also call for promotion of friendly relations among different nations, races, and religious groups, and the guarantee of human rights regardless of race, national origin, or religion is incompatible with racism and other bigotry. Also, there is no way a rational person can conclude that certain people shouldn’t have the same opportunities merely due to their religion, race, or nationality, especially if ingroup/outgroup bias is questioned.
To return to the Bible, as I mentioned before, humans are made in the image of God. This was before nations existed, which indicates it goes beyond borders. In addition, Now the Lord said to Abram, “Go out from your country, your relatives, and your father’s household to the land that I will show you. Then I will make you into a great nation, and I will bless you, and I will make your name great, so that you will exemplify divine blessing. I will bless those who bless you, but the one who treats you lightly I must curse, and all the families of the earth will bless one another by your name.”(Gen. 12:1-3). This teaches that God was calling Abraham beyond his tribal gods and loyalties to the God of all peoples and nations. It is written in Ephesians, “But now in Christ Jesus you who used to be far away have been brought near by the blood of Christ. For he is our peace, the one who made both groups into one and who destroyed the middle wall of partition, the hostility, when he nullified in his flesh the law of commandments in decrees. He did this to create in himself one new man out of two, thus making peace, and to reconcile them both in one body to God through the cross, by which the hostility has been killed.”(Eph. 2:13-16). This teaches that in the Kingdom of God there are no outcasts; and that God is interested in reconciliation, as is also mentioned in Colossians, “and through him[Christ] to reconcile all things to himself by making peace through the blood of his cross – through him, whether things on earth or things in heaven.”(Col. 1:20).
All this is utterly opposed to the message of the Donald. Even if he doesn’t actually build a wall, he builds walls between people by perpetuating negative stereotypes. He encourages us vs them mentalities. Whereas the Bible says, ““Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called the children of God.”(Matt. 5:9) and “Do you want to really live? Would you love to live a long, happy life? Then make sure you don’t speak evil words or use deceptive speech! Turn away from evil and do what is right! Strive for peace and promote it!”(Ps. 34:12-14). Trump has done the exact opposite of this passage, with his repeated lies and his call for war crimes and nuclear proliferation. His behavior towards women is also contrary to what I listed above, in that he depicts women as mere objects of his pleasure(what Martin Buber called “I-it”) rather than people with their own desires, dreams, aspirations, with inherent dignity and endowed with reason and conscience(article 1 of the UDHR; also, what Buber called “I-thou”). Also, the lack of regard for consent and boundaries is a four lane highway to abuse.
I consider this unacceptable.The Qur’an says, “O mankind! We made you from one man and one woman into nations and tribes so that you may know each other.”(Surah 49:13) and the Ahmadi Muslim sect has the slogan, “Love for all; hate for none.” Another ayah in the Qur’an says, “Be steadfast for God, bearing witness to justice, and let not the hatred for a people lead you to be unjust. Be just; that is nearer to reverence. And reverence God. Surely God is Aware of whatsoever you do.”(Surah 5:8). The verses from the Qur’an show, contrary to what many say, there are Muslims and people in Islamic countries who promote peace and justice, and that painting the whole of Islam as violent is inaccurate. Anyway, what I listed above is stuff I believe in.
Also, a lot of people who accuse Islam of promoting hate are themselves full of hate, and they promote the very violence they criticize Muslims of promoting. (I think criticism of Islam is fine; I’ll do a post on this.)
I believe in peace over war; in love over hate.(Ethiopian philosopher Zera Yacoub said that everyone can agree on love, but not on hate.) The Bible says, “They were singing a new song: ‘At the cost of your own blood you have purchased for God persons from every tribe, language, people, and nation. You have appointed them as a kingdom and priests to serve our God, and they will reign on the earth.’ ”(Rev. 5:8-9). In the Kingdom of God the Good Lord cares about all humanity, not just one tribe or nation. It’s important for me to promote peace among nations. I agree with the psalmist, “For too long I have had to reside with those who hate peace. I am committed to peace, but when I speak, they want to make war.”(Ps. 120:6-7). For all these reasons, for the sake of peace, justice, and integrity, I cannot support Trump and thus, I am #NeverTrump.