“In the “lynching era,” between 1880 to 1940, white Christians lynched nearly five thousand black men and women in a manner with obvious echoes of the Roman crucifixion of Jesus. Yet these “Christians” did not see the irony or contradiction in their actions.” ― James H. Cone, The Cross and the Lynching Tree
Conservative people have historically fused together their belief in Christ with their patriotism. The Christian-right sees Jesus from a place of privilege, they see him as a nationalistic, patriarchal mascot, Aryan; and not a reformed Jewish rabbi. There lies a question, would they recognize Jesus if he walked through their church doors.
The Christian-right does not see Jesus as a dark-skinned, curly haired, Palestinian Jew who liberated the poor, and stood up to religious and Roman leaders. In 2016 Donald J. Trump was elected to be the 45th President of the United States of America. This shocked some people but for some of us it did not. Trump added more coal to an already burning fire rooted in racism, sexism, homophobia, xenophobia and pigmentocracy which is the basic foundation conservative social theology and American society as a whole. This then sets the precedent of the conservative view of President Trump in 21st century American politics. President Trump, in his first 100 days in office not only deemed himself an evangelical Christian, but also created an anti-christian manifesto which led to the building of a wall along the Mexican border with a concentration of immigrants who are Latinx descent. This led to a travel ban which vehemently focused on West African, North African and Middle Eastern countries which are predominantly Muslim.
By putting fourth anti Latinx and anti-Muslim rhetoric we see the rise of conservative nationalism which puts into perspective the american view of terriorism, without realizing that xenophobia is a type of terriorism itself. This xenophobic ideology propelled itself into conservative theology especially with its most “profound” voices such as Franklin Graham and Pat Robertson in an article by the Christian Daily spoke highly of Trump’s Armed Forces trans ban and immigrant detention centers. Now, when we read the gospel of Christ it calls us to be rooted in love across religion, orientaion, sex, gender, and skin color. Jesus in nature expanded his ministry by engaging people deemed unfit for his time. Trump, if he is truly a Christian, a student of Christ, he should destroy walls not construct them.
Furthermore, when Trump enjoins that Haiti, El Salvador, and an assortment of African nations are “Sh**thole countries’’ he has then radicalized, tribalized, and verbally recolonized these places which allows his followers to re-assert their whiteness in everyday life. Whether it be telling Spanish speaking folks to speak English or telling Black people to go back to their country these types of behaviors are cruel and rooted in whiteness. In the Garden of Eden when God tells Cain that his brother’s blood cries out to him from the ground, asking him if he has realized what he has done by killing his brother, calls us to question if Donald Trump and his conservative cronies realize the impact of their legislation and usage of biblical philosophy.
This has been the central issue of their theology. In the words of the Rev. Dr. Ottis Moss III, when we look critically at the gospel, it is a political manifesto of liberation and change. When Jesus tells Peter to drop his fishing net and follow him in the gospel according to St. Luke, Rome the Oppressor was without fish, Jesus then places the power back into the oppressed people under the rule of the Roman government.
Since then, I have been basing my critiques of this movement from my Judaeo-Christian background as a Theologian, Pastor and African-American man. It is safe to say that Donald Trump has appropriated a neo-slavocracy in America, being that this rhetoric seems to be rooted in Jacksonian philosophy regarding people of color. This said philosophy is problematic, because the appropriation of Jesus Christ as capitalist is false. Jesus Christ is a socialist, because his whole work was centered around taking from Caesar to restore life back into Lazarus, not just in the form of liberation, the gospel, but alms for survival. The truth is that in order for America to be cleansed of its past he must realize that racism, sexism, homophobia, xenophobia and pigmentocracy is demonic in nature. America must define itself once and for all as either an Anglo-Saxon nation or a melting pot for all people. Then and only then will this land be the land of the free and the home of the brave.