Ruptured beyond repair

Campaign 2016 | Donald Trump’s destruction of the American conservative movement
by Anthony Bradley
Posted on Thursday, October 27, 2016, at 12:05 pm

America’s conservative movement is going down in flames, thanks to the Republican Party and its nomination of Donald Trump for president of the United States. As I watched the heated and offbeat exchange between former Republican House Speaker Newt Gingrich and Fox News host Megyn Kelly Tuesday night, it demonstrated to me that the American conservative movement is ruptured beyond repair and Donald Trump is the cause.

At the end of what seemed to be a normal Fox News interview about election predictions, Gingrich accused Kelly of being “fascinated with sex” for over-reporting the sexual misconduct accusations against Trump instead of reporting more about Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton’s recently revealed interest in open immigration borders and Bill Clinton’s sexual misconduct past. The interview ended with each personally attacking the other with the mutual suggestion that each seek professional help for “anger issues.”

But Trump-related fractures go beyond television pundits. Solidarity among politically conservative evangelicals has been destroyed because of Trump.

On the one hand, even after grave concerns about Trump’s moral character abounded, evangelicals like author and radio host Eric Metaxas, Liberty University president Jerry Falwell Jr., Faith & Freedom Coalition founder and chairman Ralph Reed, former GOP presidential candidate Ben Carson, and Focus on the Family and Family Talk founder James Dobson remained committed to Trump.

On the other hand, evangelical leaders like Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention president Russell Moore, megachurch pastor James MacDonald, and prominent Christian authors and speakers like Jen Hatmaker and Beth Moore (although she never mentioned the GOP candidate by name, it was fairly obvious who she was talking about) have made very public statements encouraging evangelical Christians to relinquish their support of Trump.

Evangelical and conservative leaders who were once allies in the culture war to promote moral, social, and political righteousness in America are now adversaries and enemies.

Perhaps the most bizarre of prominent evangelical voices is well-respected Reformed theologian Wayne Grudem, who initially wrote about Trump as the only viable “moral choice” for evangelicals and then rescinded his endorsement and called for Trump to withdraw—after the videotape of Trump’s lewd comments was released—only to later re-endorse Trump after the third presidential debate with some sort of gnostic distinction between supporting Trump the man and supporting Trump the policymaker. My initial response was, “Say what?” In the end, Grudem suggested that the character of a president is less important than a president’s policies. Since when are Christians not called to care about the character of the leaders they support?

Evangelical and conservative leaders who were once allies in the culture war to promote moral, social, and political righteousness in America are now adversaries and enemies. And the divisions are deep. The Republican Party is split, with many leaders distancing themselves from their party’s nominee. Long-standing relationships and alliances among evangelicals and conservatives are severed, with partnerships likely ended and friendships destroyed because the pragmatism of being anti–Hillary Clinton mattered more than the time-tested principles that modern conservatives—Christian and non-Christian alike—believed held their movement together since the rally cries of William F. Buckley and Russell Kirk in the 1950s and Francis Schaeffer, C. Everett Coop, and Harold O.J. Brown in the 1970s.

Perhaps the greatest tragedy in the destruction of American conservatism is that many of its leaders gave up everything for a man who fits every description of clinical narcissism and has lived a life characterized by moral relativism. Even if Trump wins, the aftershocks of his campaign will leave conservative evangelicals rummaging for a new strategy for shaping society, because the old strategy of using national politics has failed, leaving a trail of destruction in its post-Trump aftermath.

Anthony Bradley

Anthony is associate professor of religious studies at The King's College in New York and a research fellow at the Acton Institute for the Study of Religion and Liberty.

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  •  Brendan Bossard's picture
    Brendan Bossard
    Posted: Thu, 10/27/2016 12:30 pm

    The rifts are sad, but I would not call them tragic unless no healing and growth occurs.  I see good people all over the place on this issue.  God simply tore down the idol of Conservatism, and now we need to re-orient ourselves.

  • Cyborg3's picture
    Cyborg3
    Posted: Fri, 10/28/2016 03:03 am

    I don't see any idol in Conservatism, but we are seeing our society become less Christian. As Christians compromise on ideology, where they push forward agendas such as "inclusion" and "multiculturalism" we see what we get.  Here I mean an inclusion which tones down our opposition to sin (WITHIN THE CHURCH) and embracing the cultures sins. With "multiculturalism" we are supposed to embrace not only cultures but moral relativism, with the chief goal to not offend.  If a minority finds the gospel offensive, then we are told to shut up. No concern is made about our religious liberties!  The liberalism also says that we should be neutral about politics, where we bless the liberal "Christian" as morally comparable to conservatives -never mind about abortion for capitalism is just as bad! "We should not get worked up over politics because how dare you fight!  And oh yes, we need to discard young earth creationism, the worldwide flood and other doctrines which make us look anti-intellectual! And we should look to the 'real science' of climate change and environmentalism!"  I hope you are able to discern my views compared to the liberal views which I find offensive.    

  •  Brendan Bossard's picture
    Brendan Bossard
    Posted: Fri, 10/28/2016 01:31 pm

    Cyborg3, I share your concerns.  Whether anything--let alone Conservatism--is or is not an idol depends on one's perspective.  All I know is what I see:  a lot of people losing composure over whether or not Christians should vote for Trump in the name of Conservatism.  Just look at some of the posts below.  Look at the beating WORLD is getting over its stance.  These are not well-considered behaviors.  When one is so afraid of losing something that they abuse people who try to let God take care of it instead of crying out to God about it as Peter did when he started sinking, something is amiss.

  • Cyborg3's picture
    Cyborg3
    Posted: Sun, 11/06/2016 10:46 pm

    Brendan, I also think World stepped in the doo doo by turning on Trump a few weeks before the election  when a political "hit job" was done on him.  Certainly, he did say the crude words, but it happened 11 years ago, where he was making brovado talk in what he thought was off air. I am not condoning the talk but it is similar to what other unbelieving guys often say in the locker room or in the Army - guy to guy.  Men are wired to be attracted to women, desire women, and pursue women, which in the church environment is often pretended to not exist.  Godly men bring this under control and channel it into their marriage where God uses it to build solid and lasting marriages and healthy families.  Now unbelieving men often don't even attempt to control their thoughts and it can be seen by their words and actions.  So, we should not be surprised by it and act like it is the most dispicable thing imaginable.  Many a man will talk bravado sexual talk and not actually go out and do what they say.  It is a form of bragging and showing dominance - often seen in strong worldly men. Now in no way am I saying this should be in the church, but when believing men sanctimoniously pretend they have never had such thoughts, when they do, it can be a problem.  World should have held out God's standards, but not have overreacted by abandoning Trump, when our nation is hanging in the balance.  World should have acknowledged the predicament they were in in supporting Trump but supported the greater good over a false piety grounded more in appearances and sustaining subscriptions than in preserving our nation.  Here I don't believe World directly or maliciously did this, but subconsciously acted: I have the highest regard for World Magazine. How could they support Trump when they had called out president Bill Clinton?  Would they not look like hypocrites?  But I don't think they thought this through, for there were some glaring differences.  Furthermore, I think World was concerned how this would look for women.  

    Also, turning on Trump brings our loyalty into question. From a practical point of view, can we be depended on in the thick of the political battle?  Why should anyone align with us politically when we are so easily manipulated, like sheep, by the opposition? We seem to have a lust for our own demise!

  •  Brendan Bossard's picture
    Brendan Bossard
    Posted: Sat, 10/29/2016 09:49 am

    Cyborg3: again, I share your concerns about the direction of the country.

    I ask you to re-read your post, and show me some Biblical support for the following:

    1.  Implying that WORLD may have been "disloyal" by "turning on Trump."  (Disloyal to whom?)

    2.  Accusing WORLD of being "falsely pious."  (Based on what Biblical standards?)

     

  • Cyborg3's picture
    Cyborg3
    Posted: Sun, 10/30/2016 08:48 am

    Brendan, you ask some good questions. I think the heart of the matter is how we are suppose to treat those outside of the church. Are we supposed to hold them up to God's standards when they are not even Christian? I don't think this is necessarily an easy answer for I believe there are 3 main spiritual environments or states that a nation can be under. There is actually a gradient of states, which the three states help define. The first is when the population is predominantly Christian.  During these times we should hold up the Christian standards because society benefits when God's standards are applied, but we should always hold forth the gospel message and realize that there are those that are not redeemed living in our midst. I am reminded of Edward's radical sermon, "Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God."  He lived during such a time and was trying to wake up those who were pretending to be Christian.  The second environment or spiritual state is when Christians are not in the majority, there is light persecution, and there are some enemies in society.  During these times, we need to work politically with allies who may not be Christian, but who may have similar political goals or objectives.  We should not hold up a hyper-Christian standard and only vote for them as long as they act Christian (see 1 Cor. 5:9-13).  Our voting for them does not mean we endorse everything they say or do. Sometimes we would be wise to publicly state our differences, especially when their actions or statements are in significant contradiction.  We should not refrain from voting because nobody holds our Christian standards, but we should wisely vote for what will best favor Christianity and most prevents evil. Anything else is not wise.  The third environment or spiritual state is when there is complete persecution, where the state and the culture our out to destroy Christians and the Church. During these times the church will need to go underground and hide slowly working to bring others to faith and to preserve itself without denying the faith.   I think today we have slid solidly to state two so our manner of working politically should change too.  Maybe somebody who is more articulate then me should write a book on this. Possibly they could come up with a better term than "spiritual environment or state".  I'll respond more later.  Blessings to you my brother.

  •  Brendan Bossard's picture
    Brendan Bossard
    Posted: Sat, 10/29/2016 10:09 pm

    Cyborg3, I look forward to your follow-up post.  I would just like to point out that 1 Cor. 5:9-13 is saying that we should not avoid contact with "untouchables" in our everyday walk, as the Pharisees did.  It is not a comment on whether we should ally ourselves with "untouchables" when they may be given the controls of the machinery of power.  So if you can clarify your application of this passage in your follow-up, I would appreciate it.  Thank you!

  • Cyborg3's picture
    Cyborg3
    Posted: Sun, 10/30/2016 09:23 am

    Brendan, I am not sure where you are reading because the NKJV says, "9 I wrote to you in my epistle not to keep company with sexually immoral people. 10 Yet I certainly did not mean with the sexually immoral people of this world, or with the covetous, or extortionist, or idolaters, since then you would need to go out of the world." The passage I referenced , 1 Cor. 5:9-13, is telling us that we should judge those inside the church but we should let God judge those outside the church.  Many here are telling us that we should judge Trump by biblical standards when he clearly is outside the true church - I have never heard him give a credible testimony of his faith.  Now, the passage I quote above shows the irrationality of shunning sinners, including sexual sinners, in regular society because we would have to leave the world if we did!  This is the same irrationality that we face with voting for unbelievers. If we hold unbelievers to Christian standards we could never vote for anyone, because unbelievers are sinners, oftentimes glaringly so!  So when the two viable candidates are unbelievers, we should use wisdom (see Eph. 5:15,16) and vote for the one who will benefit Christians the most and are the least evil. 1 Peter 2:13,14 says we should submit to ALL leaders.  The implication is that we can support unbelieving leaders even if we don't agree with all they do.  I Tim. 2:1-2 says we should pray for Kings and all who are in authority that we may lead a quiet and peaceful life in all godliness and reverence.  It seems logical we should vote for the same, where we choose the viable candidate who will best promote our welfare as Christians so we can live a quiet and peaceful life fruitfully for Christ.

  • Steve SoCal
    Posted: Thu, 10/27/2016 12:57 pm

    Christians only make up a percentage of the Republican Party.  The rest just support economic conservatism or some other platform of the party.  I'm not sure almost any of the Republican Christians believed Trump to be a great moral light in our society even before the infamous video.  There were a lot of primary Republican candidates dividing up the votes, and even some of the supposedly great Christian lights among them demonstrated issues of arrogance and questionable ethics, and they were just too much part of the system. 

    In the end we are stuck with Trump, who is far less likely to support and push almost everything immoral... as does his opponent, HRC (and that is important... she really does push a horribly anti-Christian agenda!).  It's a simple issue.  Either vote for the better of two options or sit it out and watch the worst option step into power.  If God intervenes and gives us another option, that will be great (we really must be serious about praying for our nation!).  I don't think this election will cause any real rupture between true followers of Jesus... although it might help us look more realistically at the Republican Party and make a better effort to stand for Christian values and try to live them out in our own lives every day.

  • Slava Tebje Gospodi
    Posted: Thu, 10/27/2016 12:55 pm

    Trump is simply the lesser of two evils. I don't support him but, as it is my duty as a citizen to vote, I only have two viable choices, I am going to vote for him. The alternative candidate is much worse.

  • SNelson
    Posted: Thu, 10/27/2016 01:11 pm

    The problem is the word "conservatism" itself? What are we conserving? When a person, nation, or culture stops growing, it dies. "Conservatism" implies a holding on to the past or dragging one's feet into the future. That's not the way Christain people, whether individually or corporately, are supposed to live. We should be striving forward, moving toward a future that reflects the promises and righteousness of God everyday. THAT is why the Republican party has splintered and is dying. Trump represents a tired, ugly past that has no future. 

  • Cyborg3's picture
    Cyborg3
    Posted: Sat, 10/29/2016 03:23 pm

    You are putting too much into the word "conservatism", but it is true we are trying to maintain the Christian values that made the nation great.   If you don't conserve those values, you are left with a mess like what we see today.  So yes, I am dragging my feet the best I can even if I have to vote for Trump to maintain those values.  Either Clinton or Trump will be president so I choose to vote Trump with his warts and all, for he is far better than Clinton!  Not all new growth is good - just look at cancer.  We need to fight for the Christian standards that made us great! 

  • Scotth
    Posted: Thu, 10/27/2016 01:13 pm

    Very well put, sir.

  •  Neil Evans's picture
    Neil Evans
    Posted: Thu, 10/27/2016 01:50 pm

    Anthony Bradly uses some very certain terms.  i.e.: "ruptured beyond repair," "Donald Trump is the cause," "solidarity among politically conservative evangelicals has been destroyed because of Trump," "committed to Trump."

    With God is anything "beyond repair?" Was the "conservative movement" actually that effective anyway?  Or was it Biblical? (which should be our primary question.)

    The cause of the rupture of the conservative movement is much more nuanced than one man.

    If solidarity among politically conservative evangelicals has been destroyed because of Trump then it wasn't built on very solid ground in the first place.  I suspect that their unity in Christ is much stronger than their divisions over politics.  If not, they need to reevaluate their theology not their politics.

    I don't hear a swell of commitment to "Trump" but to a stop HRC.

    "The old strategy of using national politics for shaping society" failed long before Trump's campaign.  Bible believing people need to rummage in the Bible for our strategy in what ways to best be God's lights in our dark world.  Trump's behavior misrepresents us. Clinton's behavior opposes us.

  • Marilyn Jean
    Posted: Thu, 10/27/2016 09:14 pm

    That is a much more intelligent assesment!

  • JerryM
    Posted: Fri, 10/28/2016 01:33 am

    I would suggest (based on a read of his other articles as well) that Anthony likes to write for effect.  There is much more nuance here than is written about in this article.

  • DWayne
    Posted: Thu, 10/27/2016 01:57 pm

    We've had the higher echelon of World push this same idead down our throats. Now you? Does this mean you are a Clinton supporter too? Must be, because a vote against Trump is a vote for Hillary. Or perhaps you're a Democrat finally coming out? I sure hopw this is not the way of the whole magazine. Surely anyone can examine just one issue and see the difference: how to solve joblessness, poverty, etc. Historically the Dems love to make people dependent upon the government with handout programs. That's party chat, and then we have a woman and her husband who have developed the art of criminal behavior over 30 years at least, and who could return the the White House with Bill suting up again for - as Newt said yesterday - his role as sexual predator. Please.

  • hawaiicharles
    Posted: Thu, 10/27/2016 08:02 pm

    Clearly you are passionate about the issue, but I really think that accusations of being a Clinton supporter or being a Democrat-in-disguise are uncalled for.  Please remember that these are your brothers and sisters in Christ that you are talking to.  We are well aware of the issues and what is at stake.  I have read many comments in World and elsewhere over the past few weeks, and I can tell you that for many of us who cannot support Mr. Trump, we didn't come to that decision lightly.  I take umbrage at being branded a turncoat or a fool.  My trust is not in politicians or parties, but rather in Jesus Christ, who remains in control of world affairs.  While I realize that He delegated the responsibility of choosing our leaders to me, I do not feel called to give my support to someone so morally bankrupt as Mr. Trump.  When the world sees Christians compromising their core principals for a political victory, I think it will conclude that Christians are no different from anyone else. That thought grieves me more than 4 years of a Clinton presidency.

     

  •  William Peck 1958's picture
    William Peck 1958
    Posted: Thu, 10/27/2016 06:30 pm

    @Hawaii - your umbrage will usher in Hillary the butcher. I can certainly understand your disdain for Trump. But the left is slapping their knees that you're sitting this one out. If Hitler were running instead of Hillary, would you still sit it out ? If so - you're actions are treasonous.

  •  Neil Evans's picture
    Neil Evans
    Posted: Thu, 10/27/2016 07:23 pm

    Hawaii Charles,
    While I disagree with your conclusion, your comments are respectful, thought provoking and worthy of respect.

  • Cyborg3's picture
    Cyborg3
    Posted: Sat, 10/29/2016 03:24 pm

    Amen, Mr. Peck.  Ideas that will lead to the destruction of the US - which the devil is gleeful to see - are not in my view praise worthy.  Otherwise, in a multicultural world, where moral relativism reigns, we should just scream out "We are all right!" and go home!

  • DWayne
    Posted: Thu, 10/27/2016 02:01 pm

    Oh yes. Then there's Wayne Gruden who has, by the way, actually listened to the various counsel he's received and made the only same decision to endorse Trump, given both of the candidates are repprobates. World doesn't seem have have the humility to actually consider its millions of words of feedback since it "Unfit" ranting - theability to say, "Oops. We were wrong. We really do not want Clinton as President." (Of course, may they do really want her in office.)

  •  HeJets's picture
    HeJets
    Posted: Thu, 10/27/2016 02:18 pm

    It's pretty plain that the Republican Party was fractured far before Trump came along. The Rep Party did/does not like Trump and was forced to nominate him due to raw popular demand....even if he is unpopular in so many ways by so many people. Trump is the reaction to the fracture, not the cause of it.

    Hillary, on the other hand, is the iconic example of our government today. Big, "huuuge" government that wants only to bloat more. Whereas both parties want big government, the Dems are just overt about it. People sense the problem and price of the corruption, incompetance and lack of accountability and have had enough. Hence, Trump.

    Again, twice now in two weeks, you and Olasky have said similar things suggesting that Trump is the problem. Trump is the problem?! Trump is a symtom! And, I believe, part of the beginning of the solution. He is the only credible one that speaks of shrinking government and...AND!...TERM LIMITS. You want to see a fight? Try telling the political class to get out of Dodge. Maybe...MAYBE...that could go under the banner of "conservativism." Maybe that's why he has passionate support of so many.

    Explain your and Olasky's call to separate yourselves from Trump and, thereby, FOR the status quo of an evermore corrupted government. Explain what fighting that corruption looks like if not what we have today? Explain that nobility to your kids and grandkids as they live under that form of government as opposed to fighting against it.

    I consider World Magazine to be my friends and my brothers and sisters in the Lord. I am, however, discombobulated lately when I see World columns speaking out against something while (if offering a solution at all) suggesting that it doesn't matter who wins this race or that it's okay if the corruption wins. How irresponsible is that?!

    In all this, not a single word of policy. In a news magazine. Whew!

    Conservative and Republican are not the same. I'll choose the conservative. 

  •  William Peck 1958's picture
    William Peck 1958
    Posted: Thu, 10/27/2016 06:30 pm

    @HeJets - very good. "Trump is the symptom" - bingo !

  • Marilyn Jean
    Posted: Thu, 10/27/2016 09:20 pm

    I'm discombobulated also!  (That's a very interesting word)  It's like there is a sect of the evangelical movement that just cannot entertain what God has put on our plate.  I hear comments like "I'll just write someone in."  Or "I'm setting this one out."  What kind of self-righteous ego can escape from the mandate that God gives us to be salt and light?

    In our workplace, do we set this one out when we are given an ungodly boss?  Come on, People, let's get real.

  • Lizzy's picture
    Lizzy
    Posted: Fri, 10/28/2016 12:34 am

    Actually, if you are choosing Trump you are not choosing a conservative.  You are choosing a big government populist - even some of his most staunch supporters admit that he isn't conservative.  And as a policy example - witness his response when it became clear that his disdainful treatment of women was a problem, his solution was to have his daughter trot out a brand new government giveaway program for women.

  • DWayne
    Posted: Fri, 10/28/2016 09:47 am

    HeJets: Indeed. Extremely well put, and yes I too object to the insinuation that to be a critic of Worl'd myoptic or obstinate view on our candidates means I have no love for the Magazine and its staff. I may get overheated, but will always point to God's irresistable grace. I also object to the very overused view that God is in control as a cop out - who could EVER dispute His supreme controlt? Equally true, however, is the fact that God expects us to muddle through our fallen mess and buck up for the tough decisions. So buck up: choose between Trump's sexual sin, and Clinton's unbelievable bold-faced corruption and other criminal behavior, plus her equally unbelievable poor decision-making.

  •  phillipW's picture
    phillipW
    Posted: Thu, 10/27/2016 02:20 pm

    Never supported or endorsed Trump, and never will.  Never supported or endorsed "Clinton", and never will.  We have a vacuum of morality in this country, mostly caused by the Church's inability to discipline it's flock, and the flock's inability to honor God's word with their lives.  Greed and hedonism will be the downfall of this country.  They actually already are.  The economic reckoning is coming soon, that will make the Great Depression look like a footnote on history.  We are three generations removed from people with decency and a fear of God.  What's left of our chuches is a traditional people who are using the church as a social club, to make themselves feel good about themselves, without showing any reverence to a Holy God whatsoever.  It's entertainment, pure and simple.  The political candidates are merely the evidence of what I type above.  A narcisccistic hedonistic serial adulterer pitted against a serial liar.  You reap what you sow, America.

  • TimJohn
    Posted: Thu, 10/27/2016 02:58 pm

    World is no longer interested in the news. This article is nothing but a hit piece on Trump.  I don't understand why World has lost its way over Trump.  World seems to be committed to using its influence to attack Trump with nothing but a joking conversation he has in the locker room 10 years ago.  World continues to try to make this stick, to shame Christians away from him, regardless of the policies they represents and the Christian leadership he would bring into the office with him.  World should retract and appologize for this article and others. 

    Former Republican House Speaker Newt Gingrich was correct to call out Megyn Kelly in that interview for trying to focus on sex rather than the critical issues of our nation - and World has done the same thing.  This claim is absolutely false. "Solidarity among politically conservative evangelicals has been destroyed because of Trump."  Reality is just the opposite.  Trump has helped expose the false conservatives that where pretending. Trump has forces Christians off the fence.  Trump is what many of us have been praying for for years.  Trump is turning the nation upside down, even exposing World mag.

  •  William Peck 1958's picture
    William Peck 1958
    Posted: Thu, 10/27/2016 06:32 pm

    @TimJohn - very good.

  • Marilyn Jean
    Posted: Thu, 10/27/2016 09:22 pm

    Very well said, TimJohn!

  • Woodman
    Posted: Fri, 10/28/2016 11:29 am

    Totally agree. World like CT is inching towards irrelevancy.

  • JJ's picture
    JJ
    Posted: Fri, 10/28/2016 12:00 pm

    Nice post Tim. 

    I had decided to stick with WORLD after the "Unfit" article...we all make big mistakes and WORLD made a whopper with that article.  But following "Unfit" up with this aggressive attack against Trump is piling on a bad decision, and working to elect what will be the most corrupt, most anti-freedom, the most anti-liberty, most anti-Christian regime  in our history.  A regime that will ramp up the murder of babies and lock me in jail if I refuse to pay for these murders.  A regime that will embolden the mobs (university student mobs, BLM mobs, homosexual/trans mob, etc.) with its support.  A regime that will put most all of us in prison if we walk in a straight line, living by our respective conscienses, talking per our respective conscienses.  Jail is what awaits Americans of conscience who are not willing to play the game, who won´t be willing to go underground.

    So WORLD (and others) in effect support the Clinton - Obama - Virulent Left movement all because Donald Trump has a big mouth and has been recorded talking like 90% of American males have talked in their past.  Go figure.  Maybe the final straw was where I read Mindy Belz stating that Hillary Clinton´s fitness for power was questionable, but Trump was unquestionably unfit for power. Her statement was worse than what I´d see on CNN,  in the New York Times, etc. I come to WORLD to get away from that kind of lie.  A horribly irresponsible statement by her, IMHO.

    I have loved WORLD.  I have shared WORLD with friends and family.  Some have become subscribers.  But this latest attack is hard to live with and support.  It´s likely time for this reader to look for another source for his news. 

     

  • LizzieAnn
    Posted: Thu, 10/27/2016 03:41 pm

    If some 58 million aborted babies were to rise up and vote November 8, they would vote Trump. Lives depend on it.

  • JJ's picture
    JJ
    Posted: Fri, 10/28/2016 11:49 am

    Exactly.

  •  Bruce's picture
    Bruce
    Posted: Thu, 10/27/2016 03:46 pm

    What resonates the most with me about what Mr. Bradley has written is that I feel like I have no party that represents me as a social, Constitutional, and fiscal "conservative". In the midst of the most recent Republican administrations, I could see that my Reagen-esque expectations of the Republican party were far from satisfied.  In this election cycle, I feel like an outsider in the two-party system that dominates the political muscle of the USA.  I understand why Trump resonates with many people, and had I different expectations of Presidential character, wisdom, and vision, he would probably be the non-establishment outsider I could support.  Without knowing him personally, though, and even after trying to wipe away the scum thrown about in the opposing candidate's campaign, I see a narcissistic business man with a materialistic world view, one who sees an opportunity for great personal gain in the capital investment of demagoguery and saber-rattling.  I can't understand how the details of his vision align with his campaign rhetoric simply because he doesn't explain much of those details, and when he does, the discontinuity with reality seems rather stark.  His wisdom and character are also in question because of his simplistic retorts and personal attacks.  He seems to have fomented more division than any candidate I've know in my voting years.

    Some have pointed out that his policy statements do align more with social, Constitutional, and fiscal conservative principles.  However, I cannot ignore his character simply to vote based on his stated policies, and I think that is critical because it is an issue of trust.  I do not trust that he will hold to his campaign policy statements once he sees a higher value in other choices.

    That said, I'm not voting for Hillary.  My disagreements about the values undergirding her political vision are deep, and I believe that, despite official conclusions to the contrary, she is guilty of a serious crime that would cause someone else to be incarcerated.  Those kinds of issues should have consequences, but they haven't for her.  That is unjust.

    I agree with the comments that have pointed out that Trump is more a symptom of a fractured society and a confused Conservative segment in the USA.  I'm not afraid of the outcome, though.  Whether Hillary or The Donald are elected, I think the the Church in the USA will continue to grapple with what it means to really be living and doing God's Kingdom work in this country.  Either one is likely to cause us more heartache in the future, but the Lord will continue proclaiming His Kingdom and pressing forward.  And maybe if the USA gets darker, the Light of His Spirit will intensify as we find what it really means to stand against our spiritual enemies.

    ~Bruce

  • Lizzy's picture
    Lizzy
    Posted: Fri, 10/28/2016 12:38 am

    Agree!

  • Paul Petry's picture
    Paul Petry
    Posted: Thu, 10/27/2016 03:54 pm

    America’s conservative movement is going down in flames, thanks to the Republican Party and its nomination of Donald Trump for president of the United States.

    Hardly. The conservative movement went down in flames thanks to the Republican Party, long before Donald J. Trump threw his hat in the ring.

    Trump did not damage the Republican party. The party has been doing all it could to damage itself, and the country, without any assistance from Trump. He is a symptom of a party that is damaged and out of touch with its conservative base. People have just reached the point where they are fed up, and saying, "We're mad as hell and we're not going to take it anymore!"

    Just look at who the last two lackluster Republican candidates for President were. The grassroots Republicans were so disillusioned with the party they have faithfully supported that they stayed home on election day. This year's Republican debates turned out to be a parade of clowns, arguing like juveniles as Trump baited them and they took the bait.

    The grassroots are going for Trump, warts and all, because he is the only one who offers hope: straight talk about "draining the swamp" in Washington DC, and turning over the tables of the moneychangers.

    Trump's opponents in the primaries? He picked them all off - a field of 17 of the cream of the Republican crop - one by one. Trump won the primaries fair and square because he struck a nerve with the common folk, the working classes that inhabit "flyover country." And his primary win was by historic proportions. Unheard of numbers. For whatever reasons, his opponents either could not get traction, or they showed themselves to be inept, or immature. One candidate, with the stature and comportment of a Ronald Reagan, could have beat Trump. There wasn't one. You cannot blame that on Trump.

  •  William Peck 1958's picture
    William Peck 1958
    Posted: Thu, 10/27/2016 06:33 pm

    @Paul Petry - excellent.

  • Cyborg3's picture
    Cyborg3
    Posted: Fri, 10/28/2016 04:38 am

    I think the conservative vote was split by all the candidates but a large pocket who were fed up, less Christian, and ready for change, jelled together.  Had there been an effort early on to limit the field, I don't think Trump would be in. Now that Trump is in, we have no other choice but to vote for him given how bad Hillary is - she is like Jezebel.  If she gets in to be president, I do not see how our nation will recover given the Supreme Court judges she will appoint.  They will rule in favor of illegal immigrants having the right to vote and many other radical rulings making the Democrats the dominant party. Our churches will be highly regulated where if "hate speech" is found, they will be shut down!  The buildings and funds of the churches will be confiscated and used to pay for government programs.  Over time, you will see our rights taken away and Christians will be jailed.

  • Michael Eichler
    Posted: Thu, 10/27/2016 04:20 pm

    Mr. Bradley - The fortunate situation is we, who live in the United States, have been placed where we are and blessed with the means of glorifying God by our actions, inactions, and thoughts. This includes thinking about how we as a people can glorify God and then go vote glorifying God again for giving us the opportunity to do so.

    The unfortunate situation is our candidates which the particular political parties have nominated are a reflection of the culture to which we live in. If blame is ever being sought then we should look to ourselves first, always, prior to looking outward. The candidates consist of people who normally would never be people we would have ever entertained the thought of supporting in past years but we are now forced with a decision as to whom we are to give our vote toward or to neither. Each action and thought we are to hold captive so that we may glorify God in what we do.

    So at the end of the day, do we glorify God by showing the direction this nation should go by voting for Trump, Clinton, some other candidate, or by voting for none of the above?

    This will require thought, reason, and an enormous amount of prayer for each of us before we make a decision, a decision that is to glorify God and love both Him and my fellow man/woman, no matter what age or condition.

    I have already come to the conclusion as to whom will receive my vote. My vote is small but it is just one voice in the choir that alone would go unheard by those around us but together creates a sweet sound that can move more people to join in the song.

    So the three questions I suggest to everyone is:

    How will my vote glorify God?

    How will my vote love God?

    How will my vote love my fellow man/woman, no matter what age or condition they are in?

  • Beth
    Posted: Thu, 10/27/2016 04:25 pm

    I am deeply ashamed of having Donald Trump as the Republican nominee.  That being said, I could never vote for Hillary Clinton because of her despicable character and evil policies.  I could never vote for someone who enthusiastically endorses abortion through all 9 months, giving threats to anyone who dares to stand in the way.  Besides, as the wife who has stood by her husband for decades through many affairs, as well as numerous credible rape and molestation accusations, we are looking forward to having a deeply immoral man, and probably a sexual predator, in the White House either way.

    So I have sympathy for evangelical leaders as they are compelled to endorse one candidate or the other.  Both candidates' characters are in the gutter, so all that distinguishes them is their policies, including their probable Supreme Court nominations.  And I've heard a number of evangelical leaders who endorse Trump acknowledge that.  Some have condemned Trump's actions more strongly than others, but neither candidate has acceptable character so that's not a choice in this election.

    It is important, for those who would endorse Trump as the lesser of two evils, to not whitewash any of his egregious and shameful actions and words.  Only by doing that can we move forward after this election.

    We as a nation desperately need prayer - starting with repentance for having gotten to this horrible place.  Lord help us.

  • Nat Manzanita
    Posted: Thu, 10/27/2016 06:06 pm

    Hillary Clinton: Celebrates killing babies. This is very bad.

    Donald Trump: Boasts about exploiting women. This is very bad.

    Gary Johnson: Needs remedial course in Middle Eastern geography. This is not so bad, and is easy to fix.

    I'll take option 'C'. I know he's pro-abortion, but at least he doesn't celebrate it like Hillary. I know he's going to lose, but by voting for him I can send two messages I really want to send to both major parties:

    1. For goodness' sake find a way to nominate candidates who aren't horrible. If you don't, I won't vote for them. I will vote for somebody else. Period.

    2. Support freedom, repeal laws that reduce it unneccessarily, and make the government smaller and less intrusive at all levels. Only the Libertarians seem to understand how desperately important this is. They go too far, but I want to see BOTH major parties move somewhat in their direction.

     

  • hawaiicharles
    Posted: Thu, 10/27/2016 06:17 pm

    Nat, if you're going to vote third party, why not vote for Darrell Castle of the Constitution Party?  He's firmly pro-life, and a professing Christian (though I should note that he does have strangely libertarian leanings on sexual ethics).

     

  •  Neil Evans's picture
    Neil Evans
    Posted: Thu, 10/27/2016 07:17 pm

    The choice is well intentioned, but it is very unlikely the message will be heard above the victory chants of the winner and the blame shouting of the looser.

  •  William Peck 1958's picture
    William Peck 1958
    Posted: Thu, 10/27/2016 06:36 pm

    Anthony,

    I once highly respected you, having read many of your articles, which I remember as well written and biblically sound.

    I'm sure you're a nice guy, earnest, God-fearing, etc.

    But you have gone completely off the rails with this. This article could have been written for any of a number of left-wing blogs, and the commenters would have loved it. In fact, I'm sure it will be LINKED TO by many left wing blogs.

    Let's start with your own conclusions . . . 
    "Solidarity among politically conservative evangelicals has been destroyed because of Trump."

    "America’s conservative movement is going down in flames, thanks to the Republican Party and [] Donald Trump []."

    "the American conservative movement is ruptured beyond repair and Donald Trump is the cause."

    So do you actually believe that all of this is "beyond repair" ? and that Trump is the cause, having entered politics a mere 15 months ago ? This is just an unfathomable conclusion. 

    This article is even more dismaying than World's blowing a gasket with the "Trump Unfit for Office" COVER ARTICLE.

    I think it should be noted that Conservatism (and Christianity) is actually alive and well, they just HAVE NO INFLUENCE ON THE ELECTORATE. And NONE OF THIS has ANYTHING to do with Trump.

    But the left, and I will say this with complete sincerity, the devil, is laughing their heads off because they got you. And World. Or perhaps Joel-Marvin got you, but the end result is the same.

    And in this entire article, not ONE MENTION of Hillary the butcher. Not ONE MENTION of the Project Veritas videos. For readers who don't catch what's really going, I suggest you watch collusion and corruption of the Democrats, leading straight to Hillary (and this is separate from her email scandal, Benghazi, Vince Foster, Travelgate, Whitewater, and etc.). Watch Project Veritas Videos One, Two, Three, and Four. They are shocking and disgusting, yet the media yawns.

    BUT, according to World, the known evil of Hillary Clinton does not put AMERICA "beyond repair" ???

    So now you, along with the Joel-Marvin axis, have blown a gasket in regards to Trump.

    Wayne Grudem (who I had never heard of) first was a governing voice in the Joel-Marvin demolition of Trump - yet now he is bizarre for coming to his senses ?

    Consider this:
     
    About a year ago the United States became "fractured beyond repair" with the Obergefell decision (same sex marriage). A mere 12 months later the entire nation cowers in fear as NO ONE can say that a boy who thinks he's a she is wrong ! And this is Trump's fault ????

    Your conclusion that Trump is the cause of "America’s conservative movement [] going down in flames" is pathetic and shows an amazing naivete into both history, politics, and movements. What is happening with Trump is the Tea Party telling Washington, the GOPe, the media, and all the sniveling cowering Christians that "We the People" have had it with DC and the left.
     

  •  Deb O's picture
    Deb O
    Posted: Thu, 10/27/2016 10:29 pm

    "Treasonous", "sniveling cowering Christians".  If you're done throwing stones, here's a quote for you.  "And they'll know we are Christians by our love, by our love; yes, they'll know we are Christians by our love."  

    Thanks for letting us know that Trump is the Tea Party's fault.  I used to respect them.  I've always known that the left wants me to shut up and pay taxes, but now I see that the right just wants me to shut up and vote.  When I choose neither, I'm not a traitor nor a sniveler nor a coward.  But if you're my brother in Christ, I'll be with you for all eternity, so you may want to re-think how you speak to other believers.  And I know it's hard to contemplate, but there will be some Democrats in eternity too (you mean those baby killers??)  And they'll be equally shocked to see some Republicans there as well (you mean those racist nazis??).  And such were some of you ...

  •  Brendan Bossard's picture
    Brendan Bossard
    Posted: Thu, 10/27/2016 11:13 pm

    I do believe that WP58 has just suffered a gasket explosion large enough to level New York City.

  • Cyborg3's picture
    Cyborg3
    Posted: Sat, 10/29/2016 07:36 pm

    Deb O, we may see Hillary elected, not due to liberals, but the Evangelical Conservatives!  Does this not get you angry?  Are you all so pious that you will let the greater evil into the White House?  Does this sound rational to you?  Are we supposed to overlook your naive piety, even though it well might result in millions of more babies killed?  This is why many are so upset, for everything we have been fighting for over the years, may well be lost!

  • JJ's picture
    JJ
    Posted: Fri, 10/28/2016 01:27 pm

    Great post, William.

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