Evangelicals For Trump: An Intervention Love Letter

You deserve so much better than him.

Dear Evangelicals for Trump,

I’m probably the last guy you want to hear from. I know I’m an imperfect messenger, having so publicly left the fold years ago, but somebody’s got to say something: Please stop.

I’m not sure how else to say it. Just. please. stop.

You can’t love him. You can’t. This guy is only going to leave you with a hangover and an overnight bag full of bitter recrimination. I know it’s difficult to hear from me, who walked out on you all these years ago. And I’m not going to insult you by saying that it wasn’t you; it was me. Clearly, I had some problems (I know I can be a jerk); but just to start out on an honest footing, a lot of it was you.

But I’m not writing to rehash our old quarrels. You see, the thing is, as infuriating as you are to me, I still love you—not in the can-we-get-back-together-and-share-housekeys-again sense—but in the sense of the nostalgic fondness old lovers sometimes share for simpler times. It may not seem like it, but I still care about what happens to you.

Enough is enough. We can’t bear the thought of seeing you debase yourself, selling your soul to this scam artist.

And I’ll be honest, I don’t want to see you headed down the aisle with this half-wit. You deserve so much better than him. For all our differences, I still believe that you and I shared a common love. That we chose to express it differently doesn’t mean we don’t still have some important history together. That’s why I feel like I have to say something before you find yourself at the altar with someone who doesn’t really want you, but only wants something from you.

Oh sure, he says he loves you. He says he cares about all the same things you care about. But I know you—or at least I thought I did. The you I remember had a set of convictions that animated your passions, convictions that not only doesn’t he share, but convictions, the largest portion of which, I suspect he couldn’t even name. It’s one thing to have your beloved forget your birthday or anniversary; it’s another thing to have your beloved not even care enough to find out the kinds of things that make you tick, the things that give you the strength to get out of bed and face another difficult day.

He knows enough generalities to fool a casual onlooker. But he doesn’t fool me. He’s got a few hackneyed pick-up lines, but have you ever really tried to carry on a conversation with this guy? I bet he doesn’t even know your favorite book; or if he does, I bet he’s never read it. Just because he’s put in an occasional appearance at a family reunion doesn’t mean he knows anything about your family or its history. He’s just a guy on the make.

You’ve been jilted in the past—like systematically dumped by others who made big promises they never had any intention of delivering on. That’s this guy! He’s using you!

There, I said it. He doesn’t give a damn about you. He’ll say whatever he thinks he needs to say to get you to jump into bed with him; but when you wake up in the morning, you’re going to find him nestled comfortably, remorselessly in the bed of some new mark.

I get the feelings of betrayal and vulnerability you carry around with you. But the strength and security he’s promising is cartoon strength, only the illusion of security. You deserve so much better. I promise, he can’t do what he says can do. And worse, he won’t do what he promises he will do.

Some of us have been talking—yes, the old gang. We still care about you. So, this is an intervention. Enough is enough. We can’t bear the thought of seeing you debase yourself, selling your soul to this scam artist.

First it was old man Reagan, and he sold you a bill of goods about things you cared about, but then failed to deliver on them. Then there was raffish George W. Bush, who talked the talk, but couldn’t give you what he promised either. Now this guy. 

So please, for Christ’s sake, just stop. There are a lot of people counting on you to wake up and remember who you are.

What would your mothers and fathers say if they knew you were running around with a guy who plays footsie with the KKK?

How would you even begin to explain his reflexive lying, his cheating on you with Vladimir Putin and Howard Stern?

How will you hold your head up down at bridge club when the little old ladies ask about your new love interest, and you have to admit that he can be charming … at least when he’s not defrauding the unwitting and the vulnerable—pretty much little old ladies?

What are you going to tell your children about him stealing money from charity, then taking credit for being a philanthropist?

How are you going to look the rest of the family in the eye and tell them that, sure he calls many of your sisters and brothers “rapists” and “murderers” and “pigs” and “terrorists,” but so does drunk uncle Frank from Schenectady—so he’s not that much different?

You’re headed down a road that’s going to break your heart. But that’s not even the worst of it; the road you’re headed down is very liable to break the world—at least the one we’ve known. You’re the one who always used to talk about “universal absolutes”; the only absolute this shape-shifter recognizes is the one that allows him to do absolutely as he pleases, for whatever reason amuses him at the moment.

Do you really want to hook up with a guy who doesn’t know how to say he’s sorry, who never thinks he needs to ask for forgiveness? That doesn’t sound like your true love, the brown Middle Eastern guy you’ve always claimed to be so attached to.

If I remember correctly, your ideal guy was always about humility and sacrifice. This jackass is proud in his belief that getting rich is a sacrifice.

The guy you always used to go on about spent his time on the wrong side of the tracks, hanging out with the loan sharks and hookers. Your new flame has made his money assiduously avoiding the “riffraff” at best, and actively sticking it to them at worst.

The original desire of your heart used to talk about turning the other cheek, about loving your enemies and blessing those who curse you. This fella’s personal creed revolves around revenge for even the most passing of slights.

Seriously, if you told this guy to take up his cross, he’d probably think you meant for him to gold plate it.

So please, for Christ’s sake, just stop. There are a lot of people counting on you to wake up and remember who you are.

I’ll always love you, but I also want to respect you.

Love,

Derek

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