Religion and the United States is a topic I have written about several times in past blogs. In particular, I have discussed the fact that the U.S. is one of the few secular societies that has not, specifically, instituted laws that separate church and state. One can say the U.S. Constitution alludes to the idea of separation, but does not specifically separate the two.

      One might ask why other societies have considered it necessary, almost unanimously, to separate these two entities. It comes down to power and control. Church, and I define the word here as any man-made religion, which they all are, has an enormous advantage over secular power, and that advantage is “Faith”. Secular power cannot possibly compete with the power of faith. Faith defies, and overrides, any sort of logic, education or science.

      Over the centuries, in every corner of the world, those that lead religious groups have understood the power of faith, and the power it gives them in using it. Equally, most secular rulers, whether they be kings, emperors, dictators, or even representational government have recognized that, in a straight fight for control of the people, they will almost always lose to faith. In some instances, secular rulers have tried combining the two roles to retain control by declaring they are gods as well as rulers. In other cases, they have simply legally prohibited faith leaders from having direct influence over secular affairs.

      The other aspect of this discussion that is more relevant in today’s world is the influence of faith/religion on democracy. In previous history, the fight between secular rulers and the church was of one dictatorial system against another, with the general population having no say in either. Democracy is a different issue. Democracy, in its true sense, is control of the people, by the people, which is the total antithesis of faith and religion. And, therein, lies a major problem in today’s United States. The rise of the evangelical movement into a major national player is eroding democracy in many subtle, and many no-so-subtle, ways. Some evangelical groups are calling openly for a religion-controlled country (They mean controlled by their interpretation of Christianity). This goal would result in the destruction of democracy just as effectively as any communist autocrat: The people have no say, they just have to have faith….in the leadership, of course – whatever god they invoke has nothing to do with it.

      The fact that Donald Trump has managed to champion this movement is a travesty for both evangelicals and democracy. The evangelical movement has been so desperate, for so long, to gain the influence that they think is their god-ordained right, that they have been willing to subordinate their principles to their power-hungry goals. There is no other explanation for their endorsement of a charlatan like Trump. In doing so, they have not only relinquished the foundations on which their faiths have been based, but they have put the country in severe danger of abandoning the principles on which it was founded as well.

      The evangelic leadership are also extremely naïve in the sense that they think Trump has any loyalty whatsoever to them, or anyone else. He will send them back to where they came from – in other words, totally out of political/secular influence – as soon as they cross him, which they inevitably will. In the meantime, they will have actively destroyed American democracy by supporting an avowed dictator.

      Faith comes with enormous responsibility, since it has more potential power than any secular institution. The current evangelical movement – actually a bewildering array of movements, each with its own ideas of Christianity – has totally forgotten that responsibility in their quest for power and control.

      It will also be an enormous shock to these idealistic leaders if they actually achieve their goals of governmental control. They have no idea, nor the remotest skills, to deal with it. They will have created a monster, not only in Donald Trump, but also in an America that is ungovernable. Iran would be a good example of the catastrophic result of religious control of government.

      Its time to call out this regressive, idiotically naïve, and dangerous rush to American oblivion, courtesy of Donald Trump and the evangelical fanatics.

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