I’m barely familiar with Alex Jones. I know he has a radio show and a crackpot news website called Infowars. I know he is alt-right. I know he believes all sorts of completely insane conspiracy theories–including some really offensive things about some of the recent mass shootings, like his claim that Sandy Hook was faked. But I don’t keep up with his day-to-day blather, why would I? It’s just complete nonsense–except…it’s dangerous nonsense because so many far-right people buy into it. Jones has an audience of millions and he says that 90% of his followers are Trump supporters.
Today, I saw a story about a big unveiling of a portrait of Michelle Obama. I clicked the link and skimmed the story. Then I made a terrible mistake–I began to read the comments. I was flabbergasted to see so many people chiming in with claims that Michelle Obama was actually a man! It wasn’t one–it wasn’t two–it wasn’t three–it was many–way too many. I couldn’t believe my eyes. So I had to learn more about this lunacy. A quick Google search revealed the source immediately–Alex Jones. Of course…I should have known. How I had managed to miss this “news story”, which actually isn’t very new at all, I’ll never know. I guess it shows you how much attention I pay to Alex Jones. In a way, I found it comforting that I hadn’t heard this dumb story before. It shows that real news outlets don’t allow such rubbish to the see the light of day. But millions of knuckle-dragging Infowars followers saw it, believed it, and spread it.
What bothers me far more than the idiotic garbage the Alex Jones continually spouts is the fact that President Trump seems to find him a more valid source of news than most of the mainstream media. Trump has a long history of citing Jones’ “news” in his tweets. There are even reports that Trump occasionally calls Jones and seeks his advice. President Trump, who loves to call major mainstream news outlets fake, seemingly has no problem with a nut job who thinks Sandy Hook was faked and believes Michelle Obama is a man.
And we just sit here and take this stuff as the new normal.
The alt-right fringe of conservative Christians are too far gone, they are all in. But I wonder about those millions of other Christians who are more reasonable. I know there are many good Christians who voted for Trump out of a sense of their understanding of a faith-based moral obligation–folks who were, perhaps understandably, turned off by Hillary Clinton–who now find themselves very disappointed in Trump. Many of them likely don’t know much, if anything, about Alex Jones and his connection to the President. Many of them have lost faith in the mainstream media under Trump’s constant barrage of “fake news bombs”–but do they know that Infowars is fueling the delusions of many of their fellow Trump supporters? If they did know, would it make a difference? I still want to believe that it would.
I have quite a few Christian friends who I believe are only reluctantly maintaining some degree of support for President Trump. They aren’t proud of him, but they’re still holding out hope that he will turn things around or at least grow up some. Many of them, I believe, are also secretly hoping that someone better will come along and rescue the Republican Party before 2020.
I can’t imagine a single one of my more conservative Christian friends who would want to be even the least bit associated with the insanity of Alex Jones and his Infowars psychedelic circus. I believe that they would be horrified to be associated with that ideology.
I believe that down deep in my soul–it has to be true–it just has to be.
If my impressions turn out to be wrong, then my patience will be gone.