Business leaders and educators have abandoned Trump. Conservative Christians may have to choose between jumping ship and jumping the shark.
In the wake of President Trump’s waffling on white supremacy, his supporters and advisers have abandoned him in droves.
After a wave of prominent CEOs defected from the president’s Manufacturing Council and Strategy & Policy Forum, Trump decided to disband both. On Friday morning, the entire President’s Committee on the Arts and Humanities resigned. As their joint letter to Trump declared, “Ignoring your harmful rhetoric would have made us complicit in your words and actions.” The first letter of each paragraph spelled “resist.”
Amid the mass exodus, one group is somehow standing by its man: evangelical Christians. Pastors and activists on Trump’s informal faith advisory council have stated their unwavering support of a man whose statements and behavior consistently clash with the convictions they claim to hold. One has to wonder what, if anything, it will take for these evangelicals to finally dump Trump.
Evangelicals are one of the most socially conservative groups in America, which has made for unlikely allies for Trump since the beginning. They’ve historically opposed pornography and gambling, but Trump once performed a cameo in a soft-core porn film and appeared on the cover of Playboy magazine, and one of his erstwhile casinos even housed a strip club.
Evangelicals have often advocated for abstinence education in public schools and the “sanctity of marriage,” but the thrice-married Trump has repeatedly bragged about his loose sexual exploits. The group has widely lamented the secularization of society, but Trump doesn’t regularly attend church.
Consider Trump’s stance on gay marriage. While evangelicals have long fought against rights for the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community, the president has repeatedly stated his unwillingness to overturn the legalization of same-sex marriage. When Trump invited Peter Thiel, the openly gay founder of PayPal, to speak at the Republication National Convention, nary a peep was heard from evangelicals. One can only imagine how conservative Christians would have criticized…