Trump’s Religious Liberty Executive Order is causing major backlash from atheists, the LGBTQ sector, and even some religious conservatives. All the while, is the actual issue of persecuted Christians being overlooked.
Atheist groups are trying to sue President Trump, saying that the new executive order giving religious organizations more political freedom an advantage over non-religious groups. Parts of the LGBTQ community are speaking out against the order, saying that it does not protect gay people from religious persecution in the United States.
However, the people speaking out may surprise you – most of the noise is coming from gay Republicans, not leftists. Perhaps most surprisingly, conservative religious leaders are calling the order a political play rather than a religious one.
It is worthy to note that left-leaning publications are having a field day publicizing this conservative dissent. Of course, they have a political agenda as well, so any opinions that are taken from the comments of the conservatives they interview should be taken with a grain of salt. However, there are some aspects of what our conservative brothers say that was simply printed verbatim, and that we cannot ignore as responsible Christians, citizens or conservatives.
Conservatives must first recognize there is a growing contingent of power in the gay sector of the Republican Party.
Before the unearthing of his huge gaffe defending pedophilia, many conservatives seemed quite fine with consolidating support behind Milo Yiannopoulos, the openly gay former Breitbart tech editor who followed directly in the footsteps of Steve Bannon. Milo’s popularity took a hit after getting his book deal canceled and seeing his touring schedule harshly reduced. But, there are many people who are looking to take his place, and they will likely be able to consolidate similar types of support.
The very existence of anti-gay organizations like the National Organization for Marriage means that there is a gay consolidation of power that must always be considered. Regardless of what the traditional conservatives may think of the gay lifestyle, their political power is such that traditional conservatives need them to retain power in government.
In truth, Donald Trump has many many opposing promises to gay and anti-gay Republican groups, so the way that this political competition will play out has yet to be fully realized.
Combined with traditional conservative leaders who do not trust Trump in the first place, there is actually a great deal of energy against what one would think is a slam dunk for the right. Many smaller religious organizations see Trump’s Religious Freedom order as a purely political play.
Part of the order allows for religious organizations to begin donating to political campaigns, something they were not allowed to do in the past. This puts a great deal of new opportunity on the plates of large religious organizations that may have an ulterior motive politically, while leaving out smaller organizations without the ability to raise that kind of funding.
As large religious organizations argue with smaller organizations over money, and gay Republican organizations argue with anti-gay conservatives over lifestyle, the actual purpose of the executive order seems to have been lost in the shuffle.
None of us arguing about any of these political topics are facing the very real, physical persecution that Christians are facing in other parts of the world. On its face, Trump’s executive order was meant to open the doors to further receive these persecuted Christian immigrants, and allow them to speak out politically against the regimes they were fighting.
However, this discussion about life and death has not been in the forefront of the discussion about this executive order. No matter which side of social or economic issues you fall on, we should all agree that every conservative should be alive to discuss these issues.
In the tradition of strong conservatives before us, let us use the political structure to bolster the message of justice and love around the world. Let us return the discussion to the issue of saving our brothers and sisters in other parts of the world from religious persecution. This was, after all, the underlying onus of both of the executive orders that Trump has signed on behalf of religious organizations.
We owe it to Christians around the world to ensure the connotation of these orders moving forward remains in line with our moral compass.
~ 1776 Christian