I wondered how long it would take and it didn’t take long. Jeff Iorg is the president of Gateway Seminary, my alma mater. It is a Southern Baptist, evangelical school. In a recent blog post, after watching the Golden Globe ceremonies and Oprah Winfrey’s speech, he wrote:
“…But while Oprah is calling for moral leadership by men in power, she models immorality by a woman in power. She has openly acknowledged multiple sexual relationships in the past and has lived – without being married – with the same partner for more than 30 years.”
And, of course, what he is concerned about is the possibility that Oprah might run for President.
Here is the problem: I have no idea how Dr. Iorg voted, but I do know that 81% of white evangelicals voted for Trump. I also don’t know if Dr. Iorg has been critical of Trump while in office. A cursory Google search did not reveal much either way. In that regard, let’s give Dr. Iorg the benefit of the doubt. I like and respect Dr. Iorg. My sense however, is we will hear similar sentiments regarding Oprah and others like her from the 81%, or from those evangelicals who have remained silent, complicit, tacitly, during Trump’s first year in office. In that context, let us now consider Dr. Iorg’s words regarding Oprah and then take the measure of the current occupant of the White House:
Here is a man who has been married three times (hey, at least Oprah has been with the same person for 30 years!). Here is a man who bragged about his affairs. He bragged about sexual harassment and assault. He bragged about grabbing women by their…privates. He clearly has little regard for women (understatement anyone?). He made millions in the gambling industry (while still going bankrupt), which included strip clubs. He has graced the cover of Playboy magazine. There is a story out as of this writing by the Wall Street Journal that this man paid off a porn star, right before the election, to be quiet about a tryst he had shortly after he married Melania. During the campaign, he openly mocked a person with disabilities. He has stirred up, and continues to stir up, religious and racial bigotry. As of this writing, he’s referred to countries such as El Salvador and Haiti as “shit-holes” not wanting their people to come here. Here is a man who can’t seem to open his mouth without lying about something. Finally, he is a shallow, narcissistic, bully. He is not fit, in-any-way to be POTUS. He isn’t fit to be the mayor of a small town. And yet, 81% of white evangelicals voted for him. Many of them either still support him overtly, or tacitly, through their silence.
Quick point: I am not judging Trump here. We will all answer to God in the end. I pray for him, just like I prayed for Obama and the Presidents before them. I am simply using the metric evangelicals have been using to judge, whether President Clinton, or any other “liberal” politician since, in matters of morality and ethics. I am using the metric applied here to Oprah. I am using their own metric.
Let me be clear: To have either supported Trump overtly or remained silent in the face of his dumpster fire of an administration means one no longer gets to tell us which possible presidential candidates are moral, ethical, or “fit.” Unless of course one doesn’t mind being a complete and total hypocrite.