Racism

Evangelical megachurch pastor defends Trump’s racism: ‘His sentiment is right on target’

Evangelical megachurch pastor Robert Jeffress thinks Trump’s racist comments about African and Haitian immigrants is dead on.

If you’re wondering when Trump’s most prominent evangelical Christian supporters will come forward and defend for his racist tirade against immigrants from “shithole countries,” Pastor Robert Jeffress has unsurprisingly put himself front and center.

“Unsurprisingly” because why wouldn’t he? If the most vocal leaders of evangelical Christendom can throw their hats in the ring with an admitted sexual predator (Trump) and an alleged pedophile (Roy Moore), there’s nothing to say that they’d see blatant racism as worthy of condemnation either.

Jeffress is the head pastor of the First Baptist Dallas megachurch and a “spiritual adviser” to President Trump. This Friday, he said that Trump was “right on target” in his comments regarding immigrants from Africa and Haiti during a bipartisan Oval Office meeting on immigration.

“Apart from the vocabulary attributed to him, President Trump is right on target in his sentiment,” Jeffress told CBN’s David Brody. “As individual Christians, we have biblical responsibility to place the needs of others above our own, but as Commander-in-Chief, President Trump has the constitutional responsibility to place the needs of our nation above the needs of other countries.”

“I’m grateful we have a President like Donald Trump who clearly understands that distinction and has the courage to protect the well-being of our nation,” he added.

Jeffress’s defense of Trump is despicable for a number of reasons, but most notable is its endorsement of the very essence of racism: that human beings are not individuals to be judged based on merit, but on the preconceptions of their ethnic places of origin. Shithole countries equal shithole humans; that’s the message Jeffress is endorsing.

Writing for the conservative outlet RedState, Susan Wright says that dismissing Trump’s rhetoric as simply uncouth wording that describes a hard truth is a cowardly dodge of the obvious.

Let’s be clear: Some of these nations are absolutely wretched, driven into the ground by corrupt governments.

Some of these nations are ravaged by natural disasters and have no infrastructure or leadership in place that would help them recover.

They lack opportunity in many of these areas, for various reasons.

What Trump said, however, reflects on the people, and his attitude that there can be no good coming from those nations he deems “sh*tholes.”

As an alleged pastor, Jeffress is called to have a heart for the suffering. Maybe he has no time to keep up on his Bible study, since he’s more interested in reading Trump campaign propaganda.

While there are no doubt honorable Christians who have disavowed themselves from Trump remarks, Jeffress’ statement only confirms what many of us have known for a long time: evangelicals leaders who claim to have a monopoly on morality are frauds.

Update: Jeffress clarified his statement to focus on Trump’s “policy” rather than his “sentiment.”

Still despicable.

Featured image via screen grab/YouTube

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