SO DONALD TRUMP WON. NOW WHAT?

These paintings by Gerard David (c. 1460 – 13 August 1523) depict the arrest and flaying by a corrupt judge. Cambyses, a Persian King sentence this judge, Sisamnes, for accepting a bribe.  Then he used the skin to cover the seat Sisamnes' son used when he sat as a judge. (from here)
These paintings by Gerard David (c. 1460 – 13 August 1523) depict the arrest and flaying by a corrupt judge. Cambyses, a Persian King sentenced this judge, Sisamnes, for accepting a bribe. Then he used the skin to cover the seat Sisamnes’ son used when he sat as a judge. (from here)

Donald Trump’s election victory has almost everyone amazed.  When I look over the situation, however, I am relieved, but not sanguine.  Republicans don’t do either victory or defeat well, but that’s why WE THE PEOPLE chose Trump. We want a leader with some fight in him, someone on our side.

So what’s the problem? As WE THE PEOPLE, we must remember the objective, a government that protects everyone’s God-given rights. Revenge of the Deplorables, for example, is all true except for one thing. Vengeance belongs to God. Therefore, writing this paragraph was a bad idea.

What comes around, goes around; the revenge of the pissed off deplorable has come to fruition. Life as a liberal in the USA is about to get very unpleasant, and I’m gleefully looking forward to being one of the reasons why. Last Tuesday’s election was only the beginning; we are going to screw them over every chance we get. Can you hear me now? (from here)

Believe me. I think the author of Revenge of the Deplorables writes thoughtful posts. Believe me. I too have an itch to screw the Democrats over. Using “good intentions” as their excuse, Democrats have dreadfully abused the power of government, and their leaders have deliberately sown dissension and division. Nevertheless, I have plenty of brothers and sisters who voted for H. Clinton. So I know from personal experience that Democrat voters are not devils. So I don’t want revenge. I just want them figure out big government creates many more problems than it ever fixes.

When we use government to make our neighbors do things our way or to just make them miserable, we have just created a monster that makes everyone endlessly angry. Civil war is the worst kind of war. Hence, we must look for Biblical guidance. Consider this timely verse posted at Settled In Heaven on the day after the election.

John 14:27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. (from here)

As Christians, we are not supposed to let the world trouble us or make us afraid. We must strive for peace by following Jesus Christ.

Jesus told us and demonstrated for us just how dishonest and conniving the world can be. The Bible shows us just how dishonest and conniving we can be. Nonetheless, the Bible predates American politics. So something more specific to our situation might be helpful. Here in Common Sense Rules for Following Elections the author provides a more rational perspective than what most in the news media want us to have.

I know that’s hard to believe sometimes, but the other candidate and the other party aren’t evil because they see things differently than you do. It sounds silly to even say that, doesn’t it? Yet in the heat of a tough campaign, all of us need to remind ourselves of this obvious fact. When the other side wins, it seems like life is about to end, but it isn’t. Those checks and balances that you might like to do away with at the moment, will keep any president from going too far; even Mr. Obama found that out. Remember four years ago when he went around the country telling us he wouldn’t wait for Congress to legislate and promised a slew of Executive Orders instead… until Courts started throwing them out? Well, maybe you’ve forgotten that, but I haven’t; those checks and balances are pretty awesome. (continued here)

Whether we voted for Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton, we did not vote for a saint or against the devil. We just voted for another human being like ourselves, someone who needs the saving grace of Jesus Christ, particularly if that candidate won.

So what should we hope for? America Trumped–what comes next? reviews the limited powers of our president. Since the national news media and most of the members of Congress — including Republicans — regard Trump as an outsider, they will be looking for opportunities to take him down. Hence, we must not forget we too have a role.

Donald Trump has a mandate from the voters to try to fix what is wrong with the American government, but not many solutions can come out of the White House. The obligation returns to the voters to send honorable men and women into the government, to advise those elected or appointed to government positions, and to honor and respect the government we have created for ourselves. When we are better citizens, then we can produce a better government. Until then, we can only pray for the government that we have made. (from here)

Never stop praying, not even when you “think” we have the government “we” should want.

29 thoughts on “SO DONALD TRUMP WON. NOW WHAT?

  1. Amen, Tom, well said.

    I was one of those people who really wrestled with this election and I did some serious research and endless prayer, month after month. I marched all through the internet Alt Right, and even spoke to some genuine racists. I wanted to get a real feel for the worst… and the best of what lurked in the heart of Trump supporters. In the end, what was good about those supporting Him, what was really on their heart, won out.

    God kept telling me I could trust in the nature of Christian values, I could rest assured that any darker elements, things like revenge, racism, extremism, would never be allowed to come to actual fruition because they are so contrary to what Jesus Christ taught. In a democracy it really isn’t so much about who our leaders are, but about the intent and desire of the people supporting them. They truly do serve at the pleasure of the people.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. @insanitybytes22

    I don’t believe Chris, the blogger who wrote “Revenge of the Deplorables”, intends anything malicious. The problem is that his post more malice than I think he intended.

    We should and will (I hope) fight tooth and nail for our agenda — nothing wrong with saying that — but our agenda has to be about what is best for the country, not screwing over our friends, neighbors, and countrymen.

    There is the moral issue, and you nailed in your comment. So long as we pursue Christian values, we will do what is right. There is also a practical problem. In order to bring much of our agenda to fruition, we must win over lots of Democrats.

    Trump may have won a victory in electoral college, but he lost the popular vote. So he is going to have a tough time getting Congress to pass the legislation he wants. The donor class still has more clout with Congress than Trump and his supporters (people like us) can muster. So we have to convince some Democrats, issue by issue, that what the donor class wants is bad for the country. Telling Democrats we intend to screw them over every chance we get is not a persuasive argument.

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  3. The world just witnessed the clash of the titans:

    THE Donald vs the Democrat and GOP tyranny (aka the establishment).

    THE Donald kicked their teeth in – politically speaking of course.

    Christians, for too long have made being polite, the coin of the realm.

    Well, Christians nearly lost everything being too polite.

    When it comes to the Democrat Party and its leftist drones and minions, kicking a$$ and taking names is the only thing they understand.

    Out here in the hinterland, we are left having to reason with them.

    But government is a power game in which the loser is totally destroyed.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. @silenceofmind

      The victory is highly important, but it was hardly a resounding victory. What it was is remarkable. What he started running, nobody expected Trump to win. Then some in the news media decided to give him lots of publicity hoping he would disrupt the nomination process. They probably also hoped that if he got nominated he would be easy for H. Clinton to beat. Then, surprising almost everyone, he actually beat H. Clinton by the width of a hair.

      Note that the authors of the “Common Sense Rules for Following Elections” and “America Trumped–what comes next?” voted third party. Lots of those who did vote for Trump voted for him desperation. Most people are sick of the power games in Washington DC. Most people are sick of the Democrats. Hence, what Trump needs to do what George Washington did. He needs to stick to the principles stated in the Declaration of Independence and give life by our Constitution. He needs to try to keep his promises as best he can.

      Does that mean Trump needs to be “reasonable” with the leaders of the Democratic Party? No! He should sound defeat those power mad @#!@!$$%%^. What it means he needs to be the president of all Americans. In fact, the only way he can defeat the power mad @#!@!$$%%^ is to appeal to the people who voted to put them in office.

      When Trump started appealing to black voters, for example, he was on to something. The Democrats have never kept their promises to black voters. They have just held them down and used them. Now Trump has the opportunity to make that crystal clear, and it is about time someone did.

      Liked by 2 people

    2. SOM

      Nope my friend. Not destroyed yet. If our faith is in love and in a loving God, we can never give up hope. 😇

      And it is exactly because “the Donald” is not really the standard bearer of any genuine Christian virtue that, within a year, I predict that you yourself (and perhaps even Tom) will be calling for his impeachment on graft and corruption charges. You appear to be too smart and too well meaning a Christian to do otherwise. How much graft, corruption and tyranny is a Supreme Court pick worth? What dishonorable means by an obviously corrupt Trump will Christians endure to justify that end?

      The exclusive “identity group” that calls themselves Christians may sacrifice every Christian principle for the sake of having the facade of a little governmental power, but I think that you are better than that. I think that Christians that believe that Jesus is not a tribe, but a set of universal values based upon love, will hold a President Trump accountable, and I believe Trump will fail that test. I hope that I am wrong, but the evidence thus far seems otherwise, and he hasn’t even been sworn in.

      While basking in the Trump victory, Christian humility should also have Trump supporters ponder three relevant facts:

      1. While, because I believe in our institutions, I accept the results, Trump supporters should be sobered by that fact that Donald Trump did not win the popular vote by a far more hefty margin than George W. Bush lost the democratic vote to Gore. Much as Trump may applaud and preen himself in his own narcissistic glory, this is hardly a mandate for anything Christian, conservative or Republican. It is also certainly not a mandate for populist Trumpism.

      2. Donald Trump did not win Citizen Tom’s own home state of Virginia.

      3. The Democratic leaning states that voted for Hillary Clinton are the most prosperous in the nation. They are the current engines of our economy by a wide margin. (California alone, if it were its own country, would be one of the largest economies in the world). On the other hand, the states that voted for Trump are the ones that are struggling the most economically. The states that voted for Clinton are the ones who pay the highest percentage of federal taxes and the ones least dependent upon federal largest by a considerable margin, whereas the states that voted for Trump are the ones that most suck off the federal teet. Who needs who the most do you think?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. @Tony

        You want to criticize silenceofmind? Have you considered your own behavior? Look at what you just wrote.

        If you want to cast stones, you had better move out of that glass house. You support a political party that specializes in character assassination and revels in its successes. Unfortunately, the news media also thrives on such crap, and we know how they vote.

        I considered writing a more detailed rebuttal, but I just don’t see the point. If you don’t know by now the difference between discussing issues and personally attacking an opponent, I have no idea how to explain it to you.

        In my next post, I will discuss the strategy and tactics that I believe Conservatives should adopt over the next four years. Will it be about screwing people over? No. It will be about saving our constitutional republic. It will be about keeping alive a political ideology, ideas about limited government and God-given rights that the Democratic Party abhors.

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        1. I am not going to play stupid word games. What you basically said is that if someone does not agree with you, then they are not a good Christian.

          The election is over, but you guys are still attack mode, trying to destroy our new president elect and undermine his support. And I don’t think there is anything noble about your motives.

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  4. Thanks for the insightful and level headed post. As the author of the article you reference, yes, I can verify that no genuine malice was intended. As for what it “sounded like;” I’ll leave that for others to decide.

    When someone is pushed around and crapped on for so long, they are not inclined to give any breaks once the shoe is on the other foot. I’m not alone on this one.

    I could plausibly say that Trump’s victory IS the revenge, and let it go at that. Time will probably soften the anger, but for now, the liberals/Democrats will have to accept that a very big chunk of mortal America, myself included, is not quite done with them yet.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. @Chris Warren

      Thanks for your comment, and thank you for not taking offense. None was intended.

      Like you I am quite angry with the leadership of the Democratic Party. I am also frustrated with the leadership of the Republican Party. However, I think we are all to some degree at fault. The Tea Party movement was a hundred years later than it should have been. If we had not allowed ourselves to become so ignorant, we would not have let the Federal Government become the problem it is.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Good post Tom. I agree it is tempting to shove things back in Liberals faces, but it defeats the grander purpose of living as Christ would want. I agree too that Chris’s post was not malicious.

    Oh and yes, the Republicans never do victory or defeat well! 😉

    Liked by 2 people

  6. I’ve been struggling to write another response after this one: LifetimeOfForgiveness.Wordpress.com. But I’m just in shock and amazement at the George Soros funded riots, the lack of obama and Hillary doing anything to shows their conciliatory words were honest (I don’t think they know what honest is-they are out for their own egos and $$$ imho). But today, this post got me – and I do like what you said – but here’s what we need to do and why: https://mariomurilloministries.wordpress.com/2016/11/16/the-king-cyrus-crisis-if-we-blow-this-it-will-be-disaster/

    Liked by 1 person

      1. @Debbie L

        Thanks for the comments and the links. Interesting ideas.

        I agree the election of Donald Trump is an opportunity for respite from the ravages of the Obama administration. I also agree that most of the work belongs to us, not Trump. God willing, we will turn back the waves of corruption that have so weakened the moral fiber of our nation.

        Unfortunately, I have to hit the sack. Had a little traffic encounter (got rear-ended), and that took of most of this evening. Please forgive me for not saying more.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Oh so sorry to hear about your accident! Hope your neck is ok. I’ve been rear ended 3 times!
          Anyway no apology needed to not say more! Appreciate your comments and we’re on the same page!

          Liked by 1 person

  7. I think there is a lot of overenterpreting of the results going on. I like your cautious approach.
    Personally, I don’t like Trump, I don’t trust him, I didn’t vote for him. I’m not sure he’s truly in charge either. (Is Ivanka calling the shots? Pence? Ryan? — I’m fine with the later two.) He will be our president, but his election is so narrow that he doesn’t have much of a mandate. The Left will put intense pressure on him. I’m ready to oppose him from the side of Liberty on day one.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. @edge of the sandbox

      Thanks for your comment.

      I gathered early on you could not stand Donald Trump.
      😀

      I seriously doubt the proposition that The Donald is not in charge. Leadership, how requires the ability to delegate to subordinates and to give those subordinates enough latitude to establish their own capacity to make decisions. That’s why Trump’s appointments will tell us what to anticipate. If he picks good people and puts them in suitable positions, we will have something to celebrate.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Tom wrote:

    “I am not going to play stupid word games. What you basically said is that if someone does not agree with you, then they are not a good Christian.

    The election is over, but you guys are still attack mode, trying to destroy our new president elect and undermine his support. And I don’t think there is anything noble about your motives.”

    You crack me up Tom. If I actually were saying that, because SOM disagrees with me, he is not a good Christian, then you of all people feeling that that is wrong is a bit of the pot calling the kettle black don’t you think? Didn’t you say when President Obama was reelected that many Virginians voted “sinfully”? 😄

    But no, if you carefully read what I wrote, I was actually saying just opposite of what you think. I believe that as Christians we can all believe in certain universal truths, such as humility, virtue and love, while still disagreeing vehemently politically as to whether a given elected official or a given policy best exemplifies those truths. It is only you here who seems to think that he has God’s mind about such uncertain things and sees any disagreement to the immutability of your opinions as an affront to your integrity, and it is you who impugns the other person’s motives. 🙄

    And as for my being in “attack mode” on President Elect Donald Trump, exactly when did you roll over after Obama’s reelection and stop trying to “undermine his support”? Were your intentions ignoble or just consistent with your long standing opinions and principles? I disagreed with you then and I disagree with you now, but I don’t question your integrity because you strongly believe what you believe? I think you are wrong to question mine. You absolutely should know better. 😕

    Besides do you yourself really intend to be uncritical of Trump or his administration just because a minority of Americans elected him President? I don’t think so, and your own post above says as much. Trump has not even taken office yet and he already is organizing his next presidency to be one of unprecedented nepotism, cronyism and conflict of interest. Why on earth do you think Democrats, Independents and even Republicans should not calll him out on that? “Drain the swamp” indeed. Trump is flooding it further.

    I am not bitter with you or the election. I tend to be optimistic in the long run. I mean no personal malice or incivility, and if you are finding such simply because I disagree with you, then you are the one deceiving yourself. I will not apologize for the oversensitivity of someone who wants to publicly blog his opinions but cannot handle any opposition in return. You certainly can block me if mutual back slapping is all you want on your blog. I enjoy the repartee, and I learn a lot here about how the other side feels here, but I’ll get over it with no hard feelings. 😊

    Anyway have a happy and blessed Thanksgivings. I love you brother. Please forward my love to your wonderful bride and your lovely family. 🦃

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    1. @Tony

      I crack you up? Then I suppose this should be a humor blog.
      🙄

      Put your yourself in Donald Trump’s shoes. I suspect the man is developing a thicker skin. Nevertheless, I still think he would find the notion that comments such as yours do not contain personal malice or incivility preposterous.

      Here is the first post in a series I wrote about Obama’s victory in 2012. => https://citizentom.com/2012/11/08/finding-peace-in-the-aftermath-of-2012-election-part-1/

      I did not attack Obama personally, but yes, I did call voting for him sinful. You want to call me a hypocrite? Fine. I don’t care, but it is your political party that insists our personal religious beliefs belong in a private closet, not mine. According to your party, we have the freedom to worship as we please (in a private closet), but we don’t have the right to the free exercise of our religious beliefs. After all, that might interfere with the efforts of certain politicians trying to change our beliefs.

      Did I try to undermine Obama by throwing out unsubstantiated personal accusations against him and his supporters? No, I refrained from throwing mud. I took a stand on specific issues. In your eyes, perhaps that is the same thing, but it is not.

      Anyway, I love you too. Thank you for the Thanksgiving blessing. May you and yours also enjoy that fine holiday with the blessings of our Lord, Jesus Christ.

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      1. Tom – I’m sure that we both view our own criticism of the other’s candidates and elected officials as being only issue oriented facts and we each also sincerely believe we ourselves are not just throwing out ad homonyms when we call the other side a bunch of corrupt liars. Well, at least you can imagine that that is what you are doing while you see me oddly as only hurling substanceless invectives at that model of Christian virtue, Donald Trump. And yes, this really does kind of tickle me because I don’t see this as hypocracy on your part so much as just a very wide blindspot in a person that I know to be highly empathetic and loving in all the personal ways that really matter.

        What you don’t seem to understand Tom is that I can still admire you and be appreciative of you even though I disagree sometimes with you on some pretty lofty matters. The funny thing is that our agreement on the things that count, such as on compassion and love, should help us see the other person past our own ideological blind spots, but the rhetoric has gotten so toxically Manichaean that we often don’t. And before you point out all the instances of my own hypocracy in this regard, I will readily admit that have made my share of mistakes, but the fact that I’m an imperfect model of such virtues does not mean that I don’t believe in the Christian virtues that we are both espousing.

        I readily admit that am not a good Christian. I am not even a good Catholic. However, I am trying to be. And yes, despite my imperfections in this regard, my Christianity does inform my ethics and my political beliefs. And this knowledge that I am not holier than others makes me particularly reticent of using Christianity as a weapon to tell others what they are doing wrong, but I would be lying if I said I had never done it. I can’t speak for all Democrats anymore than you can speak for all Republicans, however, I think it would be a mistake to say that ALL Democrats are not informed by their religion just because many of us share this same reticence about using religion as a weapon of political war rather than a dove of reconciling peace. I do think that this is changing in positive ways, however. In fact, the Democratic Convention this year seemed like a religion fest compared to past years and even compared to the Republican one.

        I’m not sure that seeing me or the Democratic Party as somehow anti-Christian therefore really works that well anymore, especially after the Republicans just elected someone who is not particularly known for a life informed by the teachings of Jesus. That of course when I say this it is not meant as an attack – it’s just a fact.😉

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        1. @Tony

          I have no interest in making this blog about me or a defense of my innumerable virtues. I also have no interest in any further discussion of Donald Trump’s virtues. I suppose I could gloat, but sooner or later I would regret it. Sooner or latter Trump is going to do something I don’t like.

          Citizen Tom is about politics and religion. Is it a reflection of my opinions? Yes, of course. Nevertheless, I try my best to base what I write on fairly careful research. Even if I were filled with deceit, my primary audience consists only of me, myself, and I. What would be the benefit of filling me’s, myself’s, and I’s head with a bunch of rubbish and speculation?

          You think I have a big blind spot? Well, the problem with my blind spot is that I cannot see it. So regardless of how big it is, pointing out that I have one works pretty well as irrefutable criticism. You win. Of course, for exactly the same reason you also lose.

          You think I use the Bible as a weapon? Has it occurred to you that when I refer to the Bible, my arguments only work with people who are willing to read the Bible and believe what it says. For example, when I call redistributing the wealth stealing and cite the commandment against stealing, how much does that bother you? If it doesn’t, then what are you worried about? Don’t I and the people who share my opinions about the Bible (and my blind spot) have a right to discuss what we think?

          What about abortion or same-sex marriage? If I think God’s Word condemns abortion and two people of the same-sex going through the motions, am I using the Bible as a weapon to say so? What if I just claim the right to refuse to participate in the sins of others? What gives you the right to force me or anyone else to become an accomplice in your sins or the sins of your friends. The fact you don’t think you or your friends are sinning? Really?

          When I refer to the Bible, does the mere fact I have referred to the Bible imply I think I am better than others? Well, I could go on and on about how humble I am, but that does not have anything to do with humility. All it means to be humble is to do our best to submit to God’s will. Since I believe the Bible is God’s word, that is why I refer to it and try to obey it. Since I have misinterpreted the Bible on occasion, I am happy to receive comments and to debate my interpretations (which I must base on scholarship better than my own or choose to remain ignorant).

          Augustine of Hippo thoroughly condemned the Manichaean philosophy long ago. Nevertheless, each of us sometimes chooses to do evil, and some of us prefer evil to good. There is no evil God, but within each of us there is war. What is good within us can only win that war by turning to Jesus Christ.

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  9. I wrote:

    “I readily admit that am not a good Christian. I am not even a good Catholic. However, I am trying to be. And yes, despite my imperfections in this regard, my Christianity does inform my ethics and my political beliefs. And this knowledge that I am not holier than others makes me particularly reticent of using Christianity as a weapon to tell others what they are doing wrong, but I would be lying if I said I had never done it. I can’t speak for all Democrats anymore than you can speak for all Republicans, however, I think it would be a mistake to say that ALL Democrats are not informed by their religion just because many of us share this same reticence about using religion as a weapon of political war rather than a dove of reconciling peace. I do think that this is changing in positive ways, however. In fact, the Democratic Convention this year seemed like a religion fest compared to past years and even compared to the Republican one.

    I’m not sure that seeing me or the Democratic Party as somehow anti-Christian therefore really works that well anymore, especially after the Republicans just elected someone who is not particularly known for a life informed by the teachings of Jesus. That of course when I say this it is not meant as an attack – it’s just a fact.😉”

    You do tend to misinterpret things Tom. I wasn’t pointing out your faults. I was explaining mine. I was not saying that you have to change your beliefs so much as I was saying that mine too (rightly or wrongly) are informed by my religious beliefs. I was searching for some mutual understanding and you saw accusation. If you see my words above as an attack on you personally, then you are inclining yourself to see any disagreement as a personal affront. Instead, my statements were an (obviously failed) attempt at a thoughtful response to what you wrote here:

    “it is your political party that insists our personal religious beliefs belong in a private closet, not mine. According to your party, we have the freedom to worship as we please (in a private closet), but we don’t have the right to the free exercise of our religious beliefs. After all, that might interfere with the efforts of certain politicians trying to change our beliefs. ”

    I don’t accept the broad brush that ALL Democrats’ political beliefs are not informed by their religious principles, or that Republicans are always somehow the victims of some dark conspiracy by Democrats to take their religion away. Besides these being ridiculous assertions, now that Republicans are about to be firmly in control of all three branches of government, playing the victim card just won’t Trump every discussion anymore. You might want to find a new tactic.

    Eventually both Democrats and Republicans are going to have to figure out how to discuss an issue, even issues involving strongly held religious beliefs, without their default response being hurt and anger and without their both drawing Manichaean battle lines. After all, this country was formed to a great extent on the idea that their could be a pluralism and a freedom of religious belief and that their still could be compromise on practical governing.

    Same sex marriage is a good example. I understand the arguments against it. My denomination is against it. However, I also know that there is a good deal of theological Christian disagreement. The Natural Law argument is convincing but I don’t know that Thomist Natural Law’s fundamental truths flow to the perfect determinism on these issues that we Catholics always want to claim.

    Fortunately, however, I don’t want to get gay married so my lack of pefect religious understanding on this topic does not preclude me from being Catholic or force me to preclude others who don’t share my faith’s dogmas in this regard from practicing their own religious ethics by legally marrying who they love. Much as I may not completely share my church’s views on this, I would also fight anyone who tried to use the force of government to make my church perform the sacrament of marriage on same sex couples in violation of the Church’s current dogmas. I know you see a slippery slope here whereas I see a constantly changing compromise between competing rights and competing religious ethics.

    Do you even see what I am saying? Or have you already decided that you are somehow being insulted and just closed yourself down from meaningful discussion? 😏

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    1. @Tony

      Nobody likes their sins pointed out. If a slave complains to his slave master that his master has enslaved him, what does the master do? The historical norm is a whipping for the slave.

      You supposedly want compromise. You want us to be all lovey-dovey. That’s nice, but Democrats have made it logically impossible.

      What does a compromise involve? People meet. They discuss their objectives and their differences. Then they reach an agreement that sorts out their objectives and their differences so that each party to the agreement gets most of what wants at the cost of some objectives it cedes to the other parties.

      What is the key to a successful compromise? Well, good negotiators help, but the main ingredient is usually honor. Each of the parties to a compromise has to be willing to honor the agreement as written.

      The Constitution is a compromise. It is not a living document. It is just a piece of paper that captures an agreement that the people of the United States have agreed to honor. Unfortunately, that is not either your view or the view of your party.

      I know you see a slippery slope here whereas I see a constantly changing compromise between competing rights and competing religious ethics.

      How can I compromise with you? How can I make an agreement with you? We could put an agreement on paper, but after a period of time what would it mean? We could discuss how you think the agreement has changed, but all I would learn is what you think it means today. Tomorrow? Who knows? Yesterday? Well, it seems history is just so beyond us. Only highfalutin experts can rightfully have an opinion.

      Consider what you chose as an example.

      Same sex marriage is a good example. I understand the arguments against it. My denomination is against it. However, I also know that there is a good deal of theological Christian disagreement. The Natural Law argument is convincing but I don’t know that Thomist Natural Law’s fundamental truths flow to the perfect determinism on these issues that we Catholics always want to claim.

      The Bible is unambiguous. There is not any room for doubt. Consider just this passage. Since it is rather infamous among the same-sex sex crowd, I suspect you are already familiar with it. But have you seriously considered what it says. The whole of it, not just a few verses.

      Romans 1:18-32 New American Standard Bible (NASB)
      Unbelief and Its Consequences

      18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, 19 because that which is known about God is evident within them; for God made it evident to them. 20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse. 21 For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God or give thanks, but they became futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened. 22 Professing to be wise, they became fools, 23 and exchanged the glory of the incorruptible God for an image in the form of corruptible man and of birds and four-footed animals and crawling creatures.

      24 Therefore God gave them over in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, so that their bodies would be dishonored among them. 25 For they exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.

      26 For this reason God gave them over to degrading passions; for their women exchanged the natural function for that which is unnatural, 27 and in the same way also the men abandoned the natural function of the woman and burned in their desire toward one another, men with men committing indecent acts and receiving in their own persons the due penalty of their error.

      28 And just as they did not see fit to acknowledge God any longer, God gave them over to a depraved mind, to do those things which are not proper, 29 being filled with all unrighteousness, wickedness, greed, evil; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, malice; they are gossips, 30 slanderers, haters of God, insolent, arrogant, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, 31 without understanding, untrustworthy, unloving, unmerciful; 32 and although they know the ordinance of God, that those who practice such things are worthy of death, they not only do the same, but also give hearty approval to those who practice them.

      When we refuse to love God, God honors our request. He allows us to follow our own inclinations. Of course, when we follow our own inclinations to their inevitable conclusion, we make our own Hell. And because the whole of Creation speaks of its Creator, we are without excuse. We each know in our heart God exists, but like Adam and Eve we too want to be God.

      Serious Christians don’t hate homosexuals or anybody else. We pity other sinners, and we empathize with them.

      There but for the grace of God, go I. — attributed to John Bradford (http://quoteinvestigator.com/2014/07/06/grace/ and http://www.phrases.org.uk/meanings/there-but-for-the-grace-of-god.html)

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  10. Ha. I had no idea that I was so powerful that I could be held responsible for so much history that you consider dishonorable and evil. I must answer for every change in the Constitution, most of which happened either before I was born or before I started grade school, whether I agreed with those particular changes or not? John Kerry was the first Democratic presidential candidate that ever voted for, but I must answer for ALL Democrats, past and present, and it is of course ONLY Democrats that are responsible for every change in the our constitutional deal that has happened throughout a juris prudential history of stare decisis that began evolving the Constitution all the way back to Marbury vs Madison? And because of this massive historical straw man that you have made out of me and all Democrats living today and in the hundreds of years of American history, I cannot be trusted to discuss issues much less to come to any agreement or compromise? 🤔

    Don’t you realize that the seeds of all the things that you in your deep knowledge of the law now dislike were dicided by our parents and grandparents all the way back to the founding? I can see how you might want to unwind some history, but don’t you see that saying that you will not participate in governing the country with half the country today based upon blaming them for all the things that you do not agree on throughout the history of our nation is just a little extreme?

    Let’s stick with the same sex marriage example. You say that it “unambiguously” violates God’s law which makes it sound like it is not even controversial among Christian churches. If it is so “unambiguous” then why does the formal church structure or elements of the United Methedist Church, the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America (ELCA), the Presbyterian Church (USA), the Reform Jewish Movement, the Quakers, the United Church of Christ and the Episcopal Chuch all completely or to some degree sanction same sex marriage? Jesus said a good deal about marriage and the evils of divorce. If same sex relationships were such a terrible evil, why do you suppose Jesus does not mention it even once in the New Testament? I have no idea if same sex relationships actually violate God’s will but because scholarly Christians more erudite on the Bible than either you or I seem to disagree, then can’t you see how by definition there must be at least a little ambiguity?

    However, for the sake of discussion, let’s assume that your view of God’s will as you “unambiguously” interpret it in your version of the Holy Bible is indeed correct. Can’t you see how this is a particularly “religious” prohibition? In other words, like working on Sunday or other blue laws, another person doing it does not effect you or the rest of the community in harmful ways that overcome that consenting adult’s freedom of will to be left alone to even do things that may be wrong, especially if that action may not even be believed to be wrong under that person’s honestly held concepts of religious ethics?

    This is what I mean about competing rights and interests that must be weighed by the courts that, by law, have to make a decision when those courts have the jurisdiction and the parties have the standing to bring cases and controversies before those courts. This is what the Rule of Law is all about. And yes, thank God, it changes constantly in both good and bad ways, but hopefully ever arcing toward greater liberty and justice for all. For better or for worse, but I think mostly for the better for average Americans, we are not the same country that we were in the 18th Century.

    I realize that I am monopolizing your time here and I apologize for that. I have many avenues where I can find people who agree with me on everything, but your blog here is a wonderful source for understanding the other side of so many issues. I think that it is important that we all get out of our information bubbles and challenge even our most basic beliefs by understanding and even empathizing with those we don’t ageee with. I dont say it enough, but I really appreciate you and your amazing work here – it is obvious that you put a good deal of time and scholarly effort into it. I also know that you have deeply held and sincere beliefs so that this is often very personal to you, but as vehemently as I may argue, I assure you that it is never personal in any malicious way to me. Perhaps on some things, it is particularly hard to disagree with someone’s strong beliefs without at least appearing disagreeable to that person, but not being disagreeable is always what I intend to do even when I get carried away with the rhetoric.

    In any event, it is the holidays coming up and I have some studying to do for my job, so I’m sure that you will be happy not to have me monopolizing your blog for a while. Until later, God bless you and yours brother.

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  11. @Tony

    I wrote this in response to your comments => https://citizentom.com/2016/11/22/without-honor-there-can-be-no-peace/.

    Jesus spoke about marriage in Matthew 19. He referenced Genesis 2. In Genesis 2, marriage is described as a relationship between a man and a woman.

    Read all of Matthew 19. The notion Jesus would have condoned homosexuality is so silly only someone unfamiliar with the Bible would believe it.

    To best understand understand history, we must read historical documents. The Bible is the most significant of all historical documents.

    The New Testament is full of references to the Old. That includes what Jesus said in the Four Gospels. You want to be a Red Letter Christian? Have at it. No one will stop you, but it is just plain stupid.

    People are stupid, of course. We all disagree, and we all cannot be right. That’s why commonsense dictates we should avoid, when we can, trying to run each others lives. What the powerful do, however, is decide how stupid everyone else must be.

    Anyway, enjoy the holiday and your studying. It has got to be more fun than commenting on my blog.
    😆

    Send Sylvia’s and my love to the Kate and your children.

    Like

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