Donald Trump is in my hometown of Phoenix, AZ tonight. And Phoenix Police are out to try to quench any of the political hate fires that are likely going to erupt. There is a lot of rhetoric that has been thrown around, and this rhetoric is often amplified by social media as well as the news media.
But numbers, facts, and statistics matter. You can look this kind of stuff up. About 63 million people voted for Trump, and there are an estimated 5 – 8 thousand active KKK members in U.S. So, if Trump actually had any KKK support in the election, they made up .008% – .013% of his votes, roughly. Of course, if the KKK is spreading and gaining members, that is more than just a cause for concern.
I suck at math, but consider that 5 – 8 thousand active KKK members means less than 1% of Trump’s votes possibly came from these awful, awful people. People Trump has condemned many times. But is it possible that less than 1% of the people that voted for Obama could be considered awful? Is it possible that some of Obama’s words could have motivated some to do violence? Is it possible there are violent people in Antifa?
I’m not even condemning violence. In a fallen world, it is sometimes necessary.
I didn’t even vote for Trump, but this is getting ridiculous in so many ways. As far as D.C. is concerned, Trump is a party of one, now more than ever. He’s alienated himself from Republicans (which he never really was to begin with) and has made the media his sole enemy. He’s an egomaniac. He’s not an eloquent speaker. He’s divisive. But he has disavowed and condemned the KKK.
And much to the chagrin of many, he’s condemned the violence that has absolutely come from both sides. I mean, “Assassinate Trump” was trending on Twitter for a while. Algorithms aside, that doesn’t sound like peaceful and tolerant rhetoric to me. The claim from many has been that Trump’s words incite violence and hatred. So, words matter, right? Words can cause violence, right?
The man has a family, but let’s call holding up his bloody head “art” and pine for his death on a social media platform. I’m 100% for taking down Confederate monuments, even if to put them in a museum. I’m for it because they represent treason. Division. And slavery. (Yes, the Civil War was about slavery, not states rights.) But when people say that Trump’s words give the KKK, Nazis, and White Nationalists cause to be violent, and then give a pass to people like Kathy Griffin because she is a “comedian,” it discredits them. Either words can cause violence, or they can’t.
On our recent podcast episode, we discussed authority as it pertains to Christians, according to Paul in Romans 13. We found that Paul was likely referring to the office in which an individual holds and not necessarily to the individual. It pains me to think that our government might be appointed by God or that government is part of God’s design, because there’s this weird, punk rock side of me that always wants to push back against authority.
And right now, sound bites, headlines, and group think are very authoritative.
Turn off the news. Stop getting swept up in sound bites and chopped up video. Slow down and think. Do some research. And love your neighbor. I’ve noticed that it’s easy for political evangelicals to talk about “all authority being God appointed” when a bif, fat, capital R is in the White House. (Oooo, sorry… can I still call it that?) And if you’re honest with yourself, isn’t it a lot easier to love your neighbor when your neighbor looks like you?
And it’s easy for leftist democrats to talk about “tolerance” when it’s their specific brand of tolerance in which each and every little niche market is represented… with a capital “D” trailing behind their respective bureau administrator. As long as that tolerance is legislated and as long as some bureaucrat is telling all of us how to actually be free, than all is well. And if we’re talking about diversity and tolerance, what if the first female president is Republican? What if the first female president is black? Is that progress? Tolerance? Or just identity politics?
My goodness. You folks made me do math. All of you are awful.