Like many Americans I have found this election disheartening and demoralizing. As a Christian, I felt that I had no good option to choose on election day. As Penelope Lumley says in The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place, “Sometimes there are no right choices. There are only wrong ones and one must choose the one that seems the least wrong.” I voted for the choice that to me seemed the least wrong: Mrs. Clinton. I could not in good conscience vote for Mr. Trump. I’m sure many people who filled out the ballot felt the same way, regardless of what name they ended up putting down.
Since the election I have been especially saddened by the fact that so many evangelical Christians voted for Mr. Trump.I know many people who voted for Mr. Trump because they felt he was the lesser of two evils. They are not racist or hate-filled or sexist. At the same time, I feel like the much of the evangelical leadership seemed to support Trump’s policies in a way that I find abhorrent.In some ways, it feels like my tribe has betrayed me. Or maybe that my tribe isn’t who I thought it was.
In the light of all that I found this Washington Post op-ed by Michael Gerson particularly encouraging today:
First, Christian belief relativizes politics. The pursuit of social justice and the maintenance of public order are vital work. But these tasks are temporary, and, in an ultimate sense, secondary. If Christianity is true, C.S. Lewis noted, then “the individual person will outlive the universe.” All our anger and worry about politics should not blind us to the priority and value of the human beings placed in our lives, whatever their background or beliefs.
Christianity teaches that everyone broken, sick, and lonely — everyone beneath our notice or beneath our contempt — is, somehow, Christ among us. “He is disguised under every type of humanity that treads the earth,” said Dorothy Day. I suspect this also applies to Trump supporters — or never-Trumpers, depending on your political proclivity. “Those people” are also “our people.” We show civility and respect, not because the men and women who share our path always deserve it or return it, but because they bear a divine image that can never be completely erased. No change of president or shift in the composition of the Supreme Court can result in the repeal of the Golden Rule.