Debate night!

In 2011, only 30 percent of white evangelicals said that a candidate’s personal morality shouldn’t disqualify them from public office. In 2016, 71 percent of evangelicals say this. Plus some Aimee Mann. (Consider this post your discuss-the-debate and/or avoid-the-debate open thread.) [Read more…]

Where are the white evangelicals for McMullin?

For many conservative Republican Mormons, Trumpism is a deal-breaker. For most conservative Republican evangelicals, it’s not. Mormon Republicans are balking at Trump’s misogyny, bigotry, white-nationalism and ignorance. White evangelicals are not. That’s why Evan McMullin’s long-shot campaign is up-ending the polling in Utah but not in the Bible Belt states where white evangelicals dominate Republican politics. [Read more…]

The past is gone but something might be found to take its place

For a change of pace, here’s a post about something other than Donald Trump. Let’s talk about Sketch Erickson. Longtime readers here may remember some of my stories about Sketch. He was a regular on the white-evangelical/fundamentalist speaking circuit back in the 1970s and ’80s, who spoke to parents and to “young people” about the [Read More…]

Consent is necessary. This is not complicated.

Consent is necessary. This is the first, unavoidable aspect of any sexual ethics or ethical sex. It starts with consent. But every time we repeat that simple, modest claim, we get denounced by so-called “conservatives” who go off on mighty rants condemning us as though we had said something very different. Those rants all rail against the idea that consent is sufficient — that it is the whole, and only, aspect of any sexual ethics or ethical sex. [Read more…]

LBCF, No. 103: ‘Antiheroes’

This is part of what makes this book so deeply strange. It presents us with seemingly familiar figures: the arch-villain seeking to destroy the world, the heroes who oppose the arch-villain. In most such stories, the heroes succeed in thwarting the villain’s plot — they dismantle the bomb, re-seal the Hellmouth, fend off Galactus or save the cheerleader to save the world. That’s what makes them heroes. But here, the heroes do not — cannot — succeed, because the end of the world is divinely preordained. [Read more…]

‘This is disgraceful. It is intolerable.’

Nothing I could write today would be as timely, wise or eloquent as the speech that First Lady Michelle Obama gave this morning in New Hampshire. So let’s just look at that. [Read more…]

Team Because vs. Team Despite

My framework for viewing Donald Trump’s campaign in the 2016 general election involves seeing his supporters in two distinct groups: Despite and Because. Some people are still supporting Trump despite all the awful things he has said and done. But it was the Because voters who carried Trump through the primaries, and those voters — the ones who love him because of all the awful things he says and does — are the ones Donald Trump intends to serve as president. [Read more…]

Donald Trump, dungeon master

Donald Trump s less a candidate for president than he is the dungeon master of a national fantasy role-playing game. That’s the appeal of Breitbart and Alex Jones for their readers and listeners. All the conspiracy theories and falsehoods he promotes aren’t lies intended to deceive the enthusiastic players of Trump’s base. They’re just part of the game. [Read more…]

A re-run of the Cosby show

The remaining weeks of the already foundering Donald Trump campaign may very well turn out to look like a repeat of the Cosby show — not the once-charming ’80s sitcom, but the heart-breaking 21st-century spectacle of woman after woman, victim after victim, coming forward day after day to tell her story — an avalanche of courageous testimony heaping inescapable disgrace on a deplorable man. [Read more…]

The Salt Lake Remonstrance: Mormons are out-Baptist-ing Baptists (in a good way)

Mormons identify as a people who value missions, religious liberty, and sexual morality. And they are condemning Donald Trump and distancing themselves from him because they value missions, religious liberty, and sexual morality. Southern Baptists identify as a people who value all those things, but we’re not seeing any evidence of that. [Read more…]