Evangelical Identity in the Age of Trump


Neil J. Young offers his perspective on the meaning of evangelicalism in the age of Trump.

Here is a taste:

On Tuesday night, white evangelicals set fire to what remained of Reagan Republicanism and overwhelmingly endorsed Trumpism, a toxic brew of white ethno-nationalist populism spiked with heavy doses of misogyny and xenophobia. In doing so, they may have also destroyed their witness to the nation.

According to exit polls, 81 percent of white evangelicals voted for Donald Trump. That number should stun on its own, but its historical outrageousness becomes clearer when considering it represents higher support than George W. Bush received from white evangelicals in his two election bids.

Despite that enthusiastic endorsement, some conservative Christian leaders are already trying to distance evangelicals from their complicity in the results. On his blog at Christianity Today, Ed Stetzer wrote that evangelicals needed to “accept the outcome and what it means,” as if evangelicals had to struggle to come to terms with a result they had in fact created.

Other evangelicals, in an attempt to separate themselves from the full meaning of what they have done, have been busy recirculating a Washington Post article from earlier this month that detailed how “deep disgust” for Hillary Clinton drove evangelicals to vote for Trump, a desperate attempt to pretend this election was about rejecting Clinton rather than backing Trump.

But “votes against Clinton” is not what history will record.

Instead, white evangelicals will forever be associated with Donald Trump in the minds of the American people. And they will pay the price for that association.

Read the rest here.