The Times Trashes Trump and Christianity 

On Monday, Michael C. Bender, a political correspondent for The New York Times—who, according to his bio, covers “the Make America Great Again movement,” penned no fewer than 1,600 words—in an article titled, “The Church of Trump: How He’s Infusing Christianity Into His Movement,” in which he warns readers of the Times that Trump is supposedly using Christianity to pander to evangelicals in order to dupe them into supporting him.

As an aside, I’m not aware of any threat the Times hasn’t already warned its readers about as it relates to Trump over the past nine years. I’m also not aware of any evangelical Trump supporters who read the Times religiously, but maybe I just haven’t ventured out far enough.

Bender begins the piece by unironically articulating the grave danger that playing soothing music towards the end of a Trump rally poses—especially when such a calming melody can cause people to enter a tranquil-like state that not only makes them want to close their eyes, but dare I say, open their palms.

“Soft, reflective music fills the venue as a hush falls over the crowd. Mr. Trump’s tone turns reverent and somber, prompting some supporters to bow their heads or close their eyes,” Bender writes. “Others raise open palms in the air or murmur as if in prayer.”

In reading the Times description, one would think Trump was offering his supporters a pint of Kool-Aid at a rally somewhere in Jonestown circa 1978.

According to Bender, Trump’s appeal to evangelicals has nothing to do with the policies he enacted during his first term, which saw a roaring economy, a booming stock market, tax cuts for the middle class, a reduction in anti-business regulations, a secure border, a rebuilt military, no new wars, increased national defense spending, an aggressive posture towards China, Iran, and North Korea, the destruction of the ISIS caliphate, new trade agreements, and a strong pro-Israel stance. Yes, unlike Bernie Sanders, AOC, Rashida Tlaib, Ilhan Omar, and the radical left, evangelicals not only vehemently support Israel, but they actually believe in the Jewish state’s right to defend itself.

But apparently all of that is irrelevant to the Times. Instead, somehow, by invoking God and extolling the Judeo-Christian values on which our country was founded, Trump is deceiving his evangelical base.

As Bender writes, quoting Trump at his rallies, “‘The great silent majority is rising like never before and under our leadership,’ he recites from a teleprompter in a typical version of the script. ‘We will pray to God for our strength and for our liberty. We will pray for God and we will pray with God. We are one movement, one people, one family and one glorious nation under God.’”

Oh, the horror of prayer!

In Bender’s warped view of reality, by extolling God, Trump is somehow asking his supporters for fealty to himself. That sounds more like a ​​sophomoric conclusion to a thesis paper a political science student at Columbia University would reach—which seems to be more of what the Gray Lady goes for these days.

But Bender wasn’t done with his psychoanalysis just yet.

“The meditative ritual might appear incongruent with the raucous epicenter of the nation’s conservative movement, but Mr. Trump’s political creed stands as one of the starkest examples of his effort to transform the Republican Party into a kind of Church of Trump,” Bender writes. “His insistence on absolute devotion and fealty can be seen at every level of the party, from Congress to the Republican National Committee to rank-and-file voters.”

It’s not exactly clear what praising the Almighty One at a rally has to do with how Trump treats “Republican” members of Congress who act against the interests of their constituents while using left-wing airwaves to bash the Republican standard bearer at every turn. But given that Trump is in fact the Republican nominee for the third time in a row—a feat that hasn’t been accomplished since Richard Nixon—it might make sense to try to unify the party heading into the general election. That is, unless, of course, you’re a lame duck senator from Utah who is not seeking reelection—or those who work for the Times and whose full-time job entails damaging Trump and the GOP every single day.

When Bender wasn’t truculently writing about Trump’s use of the word “God” as some sort of sleazy elaborate motive to sway evangelical voters, he then absurdly hinted that Trump is secretly giddy about the prospect of receiving a maximum prison sentence of Moses’s life span three times over.

“His success at portraying those prosecutions as persecutions—and warning, without merit, that his followers could be targeted next—has fueled enthusiasm for his candidacy and placed him, once again, in a position to capture the White House,” Bender wrote.

Newsflash: a new POLITICO Magazine/Ipsos poll revealed that only 14 percent of Republicans think Trump is guilty of falsifying business records in the Manhattan prosecution case. Most Republicans feel similarly about the other indictments, all of which just happen to have been brought by Democrat prosecutors.

I know this is difficult for people in the left-wing media to grasp, but Republicans didn’t come to that conclusion because Trump convinced them he was being persecuted. It’s fairly obvious to most rational individuals who don’t work in the Times newsroom to see what’s going on. Also, given that plenty of Trump supporters who were at the Capitol on January 6th have been handed overly harsh sentences for non-violent offenses or that simply standing with a smile in front of the Lincoln Memorial with a MAGA hat on can cause CNN to smear you, I can’t imagine why Trump would make such “meritless” accusations about his supporters being targeted.

But that didn’t prevent Bender from revealing that he also lacks any sense of humor.

“On his social media platform in recent months, Mr. Trump has shared a courtroom-style sketch of himself sitting next to Jesus and a video that repeatedly proclaims, ‘God gave us Trump’ to lead the country.”

How could he do such a wretched thing?

Perhaps the only accurate assessment Bender makes in the entire piece is when he acknowledges that Biden does not actually have any real supporters.

“Much of Mr. Biden’s support comes from voters deeply opposed to Mr. Trump, and the president’s advisers see an opportunity to spook moderate swing voters into supporting Mr. Biden by casting Mr. Trump’s movement as a cult-like creation bent on restricting abortion rights and undermining democracy.”

In other words, another reason evangelicals support Trump is because he is pro-life, while Biden, who claims to be a Catholic, does not. They also love Trump because he is authentic with whoever he speaks to—unlike the current commander-in-chief.

And while we’re on the subject of pandering and authenticity, Bender curiously made no mention of the time in 2012 when then Vice President Joe Biden told an audience with a large black presence in Danville, Virginia, that if Mitt Romney was elected president, he was going to “put y’all back in chains.”

Nor did he mention the time this past January at Mother Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, South Carolina, when Biden told a large black crowd that Republicans were supposedly trying to erase their history, ban books, prevent them from voting, and “harboring hate and replacing hope with anger and resentment and a dangerous view of America.”

If that’s not divisive and a cheap way to win votes, then I don’t know what is.

Maybe the Times should spend fewer resources on smearing Trump 24/7 and more energy on reporting why the Biden White House thought it was appropriate to put out a tweet about Transgender Day of Visibility on the holiest day of the year for Christians.

Then again, if I wasn’t writing this on April Fool’s Day, I would never pen such an absurd idea.

David Keltz is the author of “The Campaign of his Life” and “Media Bias in the Trump Presidency and the Extinction of the Conservative Millennial.” His writing has been published in The American Spectator, RealClearPolitics, American Greatness, the Federalist, the American Thinker, and the New York Daily News, among other publications.

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