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The Impeachment: Plenty of Religion / No Principled Outcome

The Impeachment: Plenty of Religion / No Principled Outcome February 17, 2021

In this article in the Religious News Service posted February 15 writer Jack Jenkins pulls together a nice synopsis of the influence of religion during the second impeachment trial of Donald Trump.

Whoever said religion and politics don’t mix? Evidently these two ingredients made up a tasty cocktail during the latest impeachment trial. / Image by dabelynn from Pixabay

Among the examples the article offered were the following:

Democratic Rep. Eric Swalwell’s references to New Testament scripture, specifically Matthew 5:9, “Blessed are the peacemakers.” A photographer who witnessed lawmakers huddled in prayer led by Rep. Madeleine Dean, who is quoted as beseeching “May God grant success to the work of our hands.” And then there were the mannerisms of Trump defense lawyer David Schoen. He was observed to be “. . . seen repeatedly covering his head when he paused to drink water in the Senate chamber.” (This action might represent a possible nod to a Jewish custom in which Jews recite a blessing and mention God when drinking and eating.) Another example was Republican Rep. Bill Cassidy’s citing of a biblical proverb, which seemed to persuade him of the wisdom in hearing both sides of an argument. Interestingly, and notably absent from the trial, are references to the religious motivations of the insurrectionists.

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The presence of these kinds of religious overtones during the trial may be obvious to freethinkers, who have cultivated the mental acuity to observe how faith taints virtually every aspect of our lives.

What’s interesting to note, however, is that despite the abundance of faith among those present at the trial – to include the religious zealotry of the insurrectionists – the “RIGHT” outcome did not prevail. Justice was not served. Virtues such as honesty and integrity were not exemplified. Abuse of power reigned.

At the end of the day, religion itself failed; if for no other reason than its inability to lead people towards a correctly principled course of action.

About Scott R. Stahlecker
Scott Stahlecker is a former minister and now writes for Thinkadelics about the joys and benefits of living as a freethinker. You can read more about the author here.

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3 responses to “The Impeachment: Plenty of Religion / No Principled Outcome”

  1. A lot has been written lately about Illinois Rep. Kinzinger, who was one of the 7 Republicans who voted to impeach Trump. One of his cousins wrote a completely unhinged, misspelled, and vicious letter to him and sent it to his father (in the hopes of getting his nuclear family to shun him). Through the illiteracy, the letter rants that he had turned his back on God and insists he didn’t hear an imaginary Christmas message to the American people where he supposedly revealed a plan of salvation so people could repent ask the Jesus into their heart to be Born Again.

    Anyone who knows even the littlest bit about Trump knows this can’t possibly be true–the man who has been a public figure since the 1980s regularly breaks all 10 of the Commandments, has no observed faith, and has no time for the little people. But the important thing is that Kinzinger’s cousin clearly believes in something that never happened, and she’s using this belief as a weapon to inflict harm on Kinzinger for behaving in a sane way.

  2. What I left unsaid in this post, and which you are getting at, is that there are some principles in life that should lead people to knowing the truth. I know how abstract this sounds, which is probably why I didn’t want to deal with in the post. 🙂

    This cousin of Kinzinger seems to be mentally function on an autopilot guided by hatred, a lack of empathy and compassion, distrust towards others, an inability to value the ideas of others, self-interest — and a radicalized belief system with no basis in reality. The one thing that I’ve always thought about Trump is that he exemplifies many of the worst of these human traits. He is a person who is completely unprincipled.

    And these are the kinds of principles that destroy the human connections, which are required to know the truth about things. And I mean this on a practical level. Kinzinger did the right thing while acting on good principles. Kinzinger’s principles allowed him to see the potential harm by not impeaching Trump.

  3. It seems that the more fundamentalist Christians are becoming more and more tribal and more vicious to the out-group. It also seems that there are more fundamentalist Christians than there used to be. I’m not sure if mainstream, “plain-vanilla” Christians are leaving the faith or becoming more radicalized.

    Unfortunately, the same group of Christians has decided to tie up their egos in worshipping a man who embodies the exact opposite of what they say they value…and as the saying goes, you can’t reason someone out of a believe they didn’t use reason to get into.

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