A Very Cracked Kristol Ball

To see the speck in your brother’s eye, to see your brother as guilty of the highest crimes and the lowest deeds, to see so little and condemn so much, to hate to see your brother make war, to accept war until your brother sees the wrongness of the oldest hatreds, to see yourself as the savior of the presidency, to see President Trump as the enemy of the greatness of America—to see these things is not to notice the beam of hypocrisy in your own eye.

And yet the president’s enemies see themselves as a bulwark of virtue against a bastion of vice.

The president’s enemies see treason, and demand death; they see evil, and warn of damnation; they see their warnings as just, and damn their critics as evil.

They see, as Bill Kristol does, a time for choosing.

What Kristol fails to see is the absence of choice: a false choice of opposing the president, of denying him renomination by the Republican Party, or consigning oneself to political exile and spiritual ruin; of giving the whole world a new birth of freedom, or losing one’s life and forfeiting one’s soul; of refusing to render anything unto Trump, neither an ounce of support nor an iota of approval, or entering the gates of hell; of having the hardness of conscience and courage, or succumbing to the smooth and easy descent into perdition.

To not see this choice as an invitation for a war of words, to not see that we are already in the midst of a civil war, to not see this conflict as a war of ideas, to not see that we fight the worst ideas with the best intentions, that we do not intend to meet forceful ideas with physical force, that those who intend to do otherwise—that those who have done otherwise—do not act in our name, to not know these things is to choose to not see the truth.

Merciless in their judgments and malicious in their comments, our enemies impeach no one but themselves.

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About Bill Asher

Bill Asher is a writer and retired executive. He lives with his family in Massachusetts.

Photo: Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

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