Reason #1 for Not Supporting Donald Trump: He is Clueless About Religious Freedom
It seems Donald Trump will be the Republican nominee for the 2016 presidential election. While many are extremely happy about that possibility, I am more concerned than ever about the future of our country.
First of all, let me say that I believe God is alive and well and continuing to be sovereign over all that takes place. As the Bible clearly indicates, God uses rulers (presidents) to bless and to punish nations. How Donald Trump will be used by God should he become president is not for me to prophesy about; I’ll leave that in God’s hands.
However, statements by Trump from a few months ago give me little reason to be excited by his nomination and possible presidency.
It was reported a few months ago that Trump wanted a “total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States” until elected officials can “figure out what is going on.”
Trump went on to say that he would like to stop all Muslims from entering the country due to their “great hatred toward Americans by large segments of the Muslim population,” which was supported, Trump said, by a recent Pew Research poll. Trump went on to say that until it could be determined why Muslims hate Americans so much that they should be refused entry into the United States:
“Without looking at the various polling data, it is obvious to anybody the hatred is beyond comprehension. Where this hatred comes from and why we will have to determine. Until we are able to determine and understand this problem and the dangerous threat it poses, our country cannot be the victims of horrendous attacks by people that believe only in Jihad, and have no sense of reason or respect for human life. If I win the election for President, we are going to Make America Great Again.”
This is a touchy subject, I get it. But what we are talking about is the foundation of America: religious freedom. If Trump refuses to allow Muslims into the country he can (and will) refuse to allow other groups. If Trump can refuse to allow Muslims to freely practice their religion in America he can (and will) refuse to allow other religious groups to freely practice their religion.
Le’s start at the beginning of this statement and work through it logically.
How exactly would “President Trump” stop Muslims from coming into the country? At absolute best, all that could be done is to ask someone if he/she is Muslim. And once a person answers the question there is little more that can be done. Would Trump seek to keep people from entering the country based on their looks? Or based on how they dress, where they are from, or any other factor? If that is the case then we are talking about a dangerous plan that undermines the freedom of every US citizen.
And while this statement from Trump garners cheers at rallies with patriotic Americans that are angry and fed up with a government that is more interested in special interests than it is the American people, it’s quite deceptive. Trump knows there is no way to prevent Muslims from entering America. Muslims, like people that practice any religion, come in all shapes, sizes, and colors. Preventing any Muslims from entering the US would mean keeping anyone from entering. But well-meaning and patriotic Americans are too angry to evaluate this statement with any political savvy. So the cheers continue.
Beyond the cheers however, is a freedom-crushing idea that could mean the end of religious freedom as we know it. Consider, if Muslims are not allowed to enter the country and to practice their religion in peace, what about the rest of us?
In a recent article for The Blaze, John Stemberger, a conservative social leader in Florida pondered on just how Trump would carry out such a plan:
“How would he do this? Would it include Muslims that converted to Christianity? White Muslims? Would they have to profess they aren’t Muslims before getting into the country? Is it going to be based on how they dress? If they are terrorists, they will dress like cowboys and lie about being Christians…If the government can ban Muslims, it can have the power to ban Christians. If the government can shut down mosques, it can shut down churches.”
Stemberger has pointed out the glaring problem with Trump’s statement. There is no full-proof way to ban Muslims from entering the country. At best, at very best, any attempt to ban Muslims will result in banning only the peace-loving Muslims seeking shelter from war-torn countries. That leaves nothing but evil-minded Muslims entering the country. Unfortunately, a lot of well meaning Americans and Christians cannot see this and continue to support Trump.
The argument might be made that at various times in national history people were barred from entering the country. Sure, that’s true. But never in American history has anyone been banned from entering the country based solely upon his or her professed religion. Restricting immigration from certain countries for national security reasons makes sense at times. Restricting people simply based on their professed religion is a dangers deviation from historical precedent.
A far better policy would be to enforce our laws and refuse to acknowledge Sharia law as a viable option for Muslims living in America. Any Muslim not willing to live under the Constitution of the United States can simply return to their homeland. As well, enforcing current immigration laws and tightening border security are good options. The media would have us believe that conservatives don’t want anyone coming to the country. Nothing could be further fro the truth. Very few people are opposed to immigration. We simply support legal immigration and refuse to support illegal immigration.
This issue is not peripheral. Immigration is a major factor in current politics and needs careful consideration. So far, Trump has shown little intelligence on how to handle the issue currently facing the country. I would just as soon vote for Roger Rabbit as I would Trump given his lack of experience in dealing with sensitive political issues.
Frankly, at this time, I am more in favor of a third party candidate than ever. Perhaps Ben Sasse, the Senator from Nebraska, would be willing to be that candidate. Sasse is a life-long, principled conservative that has more character and moral acumen in his little finger than both Trump and Hillary combined.
One thing is for certain. I simply cannot support Donald Trump. A Hillary Clinton presidency would be shocking. A Trump presidency would be shocking and disappointing. I understand being angry at the establishment and wanting an “outsider” in the White House. But voting for Trump is little more than cutting your nose off to spite your face; or throwing the baby out with the bathwater (pick your favorite comparison). At this point in American history we need principled leadership that is willing to stand up to the PC police running amok in our country. Trump is not that man.