Trump, White Supremacy, and the Christian Right

The Global Policy Institute at Loyola Marymount University welcomes guest blogs and encourages our friends and supporters to submit them to the President of the GPI. In an effort to stimulate the conversation relating to global issues and problems, some of the submitted essays will be published on our website. Thank you.

We are pleased to publish this guest blog written by Irene Fowler, a lawyer based in Lagos, Nigeria. Ms. Fowler has a degree from the Harvard Law School, and her work appears in The Hill and other publications.

Michael A. Genovese
President of the GPI

Trump, White Supremacy, and the Christian Right

To his critics, Donald Trump is an equal opportunity racist who has once again demonstrated his draconian vise on individual rights and global democracy. The world has barely had time to exhale after the gruesome mass murder at a US synagogue located in a calm, leafy Pittsburgh suburb. The wanton acts of depravity claimed the lives of eleven Jewish worshipers, several of whom were in their twilight years. As justification for his killing spree, the perpetrator cited Trump’s false and hateful anti-immigrant rhetoric, which had saturated the air waves. The world is yet again in the throes of collective grief and trauma as the miasma of human carnage permeates the ether. This latest orgy of violence took place in Christchurch, New Zealand, claiming the lives of fifty innocent Muslim men, women, and children whilst they were at worship. Given the size of the country, the mosque massacre has a similar impact as 9/11 on the population. In his warped manifesto, the assassin paid fealty to Donald Trump, appreciating him as a bulwark of white supremacy, noting however that he falls short as a leader.

Trump’s divisive rhetoric is deliberately programmed to whip up rage in damaged and hate imbued individuals. He is getting his “return on investment” as the handiwork of his robotic and soulless acolytes is now on full display on the global stage. These events are most certainly harbingers of more acts of mass killings to come, as the white supremacy movement grows in influence and membership. Trump, who is a self-identified “nationalist,” is yet to publicly distance himself from the “raison d’etre” of the subculture. He has intractably refused to use the “WN” words, and yet again proves he shares common cause with the ideology. He has a pattern of overtly triggering buttons tacitly approving of ensuing bloodshed, by under-playing the monstrosity of actions of extremists, if they are white. In commonality with the legendary vampire Count Dracula, created by author Bram Stoker and based on the life of Vlad III, Prince of Wallachia (modern-day Hungary), Trump causes life to be sucked out of innocent victims. “Once again…welcome to my house” is a quote from the fictional account if Count Dracula. The world is now hostage to Trump’s White House and witness to the dangerous farce of his role as the leader of the free world, which is causing life to ebb slowly, but surely, out of global democracy. In contrast to the political leadership in the US, Prime Minister Jacinda Arden, a woman of substance, courageously and squarely shouldered the burden of the after of the aftermath of the massacre. Employing the full weight of the government of New Zealand and in plain sight of a worldwide audience, she donned a hijab, and forcefully condemned the heinous acts as “acts of terror.”

Trump publicly stated that he does not want any immigration into the US from Africa, South America or Haiti, using an epithet, which any decent member of the human race and family of nations, should recoil from. For the avoidance of doubt and to drive his point home, he went on to make it known that he hankered after immigrants from Christian Scandinavia, a region of the world populated by people of the Nordic race, characterized by their Teutonic ancestry and generally with physical traits of pale skin, blue eyes, and blond hair. Trump has strenuously disparaged and vilified non-Aryan racial groups at every turn. By stitching together the effects of his racist pronouncements and actions, an ugly, jagged, structureless tapestry emerges. It is devoid of reality, light, beauty, or harmony, and it is traversed with distinct crimson-red yarns, which represent the blood of the innocents. Our universe is being led dangerously close to the edge of civilization, as we are not far from the devilry of racial cleansing and eugenics, which Trump has introduced into the global body politic. Lest we forget, he issued an edict banning all Muslims from entering the US.

As Trump continues to stir up antipathy against certain populations, which will be seized upon by the bottom-feeders in the ranks of white supremacy protagonists, there will be more horror, tragedy, and bloodshed. This seems to be inevitable as the lines between the white supremacist subculture and white evangelical Christians, also an integral part of the Trump base, can be described as clouded and fluid, if not out-rightly murky. There is an undeniable level of mutual sympathy and symbiosis, as the white Christian evangelical leaders are radio silent following the massacre of innocent Muslims. The terrorist attack was propelled by scorn and hatred of fellow human beings and is an unambiguous repudiation of the teachings of Jesus Christ which eschew violence, promote peace, and are founded on love, mercy, and compassion. This leads one to draw the shocking and unfortunate conclusion that there is little daylight between the two groups and leads one to wonder if the violent wing of white supremacy is now the “militant” arm of white Christian evangelicals.

Chris Hedges is an American Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, renowned author, and nationally acclaimed political and social commentator. He writes prolifically about the Christian right and is the author of the spectacular and prescient 2007 bestselling book American Fascists: The Christian Right and the War on America. In a commentary for Truthdig, an on-line news website, he states “Donald Trump’s ideological vacuum, the more he is isolated and attacked, is being filled with the Christian right. This Christianized fascism with its network of mega-churches, schools, universities and law schools, and its vast radio and television empire, is a potent ally for a beleaguered White House. The Christian right has been organizing and preparing to take power for decades.” Hedges believes that the Christian right is chomping at the bit for a race war and that their rank and file are victims of personal impoverishment and despair and consequently welcome an apocalypse. Speaking of their leadership, he avers “They prey on the despair of tens of millions of Americans, who have been completely disenfranchised and shunted aside with the creation of this American oligarchy. That is the engine of the movement. These people, their lives have been train-wrecks… They’re lonely, and they’re alienated, and they’re lost. And that’s the fodder that demagogues use to amass totalitarian movements.”

Following the New Zealand atrocity, ISIS has called for retaliatory attacks. ISIS affiliates, including a terror group active in Nigeria, Boko Haram, may likely deem such a clarion call to arms a means to solidify their links with the guardians of their ideology. Meanwhile, Erdogan, President of Turkey, a Muslim majority country and NATO member, has issued a public death threat to any national of Australia or New Zealand considering carrying out acts of terror on Turkish soil. The triumvirate of Trump, White Supremacy, and White Christian Evangelicals is one which should alarm every peace-loving individual on earth and surely represents an Unholy Trinity. The world braces for impact.