Morality vs. religious freedom in the 2016 election

All people of faith need to awaken and speak up now, or they may “forever hold their peace!"


SAN JOSE, Calif., October 31, 2016 — The 2016 presidential election will be remembered as one of the strangest, most turbulent and politically contentious of modern times. And the strangeness keeps coming.

In addition to the striking turn in the Hillary Clinton email saga, linked bizarrely to Anthony Weiner’s sexting, there has been an inexorable descent into the gutter. That descent has been punctuated by the three most astonishing presidential debates in memory. But the Weiner angle underlines the moral dimensions of this race.

The Democrats hold no moral high ground here. Morality only truly matters to those with deeply held values. Morality is not a real issue to the Democratic leadership. Neither are the actual issues. Rather, its issues are to conceal the growing evidence of corruption and to maintain power in spite of it.

If the GOP establishment intends to vote for Clinton out of moral outrage, it should make its own values clearer. Given its history, the outrage seems like the opportunism of a professional political class in an incestuous relationship that approaches oligarchy.

It is often the Democrats and their cheering section in the media who, smugly and self-righteously wade into morality issue, usually when they want to use sin to smear political enemies.

If the voters care about morality, it’s worth noting that the Democratic Party has evinced less concern with morality and faith-based values than the Republicans. The idea that the party that rallied around and still loves Bill Clinton are genuinely outraged over Donald Trump’s treatment of women is risible.

The glaring inconsistency and hypocrisy among the elites of the major parties makes it certain that they have no clear definition of nor proper respect for morality.

Republican elites who claim outrage over Trump’s morality have seized on a convenient excuse to express contempt for an outsider who hasn’t “paid his dues” to the Party; he’s crashed their private party. Their mock moral indignation is transparent. It makes clear that there is really only one, multi-headed political party running the country.

The 2016 election is a fraud being perpetrated upon the American people by the leadership of both parties.

Republican leadership may have laid claim to the faith mantle before the 2016 election cycle, but if moral conviction really motivated the GOP elite, they would have taken values-driven candidates like former Gov. Mike Huckabee, Sen. Rick Santorum and Dr. Ben Carson more seriously. But for GOP elites, these candidates were too moral, too embarrassingly and uncompromisingly moral to play in the GOP sandbox.

Men of God in the political arena? Awkward. For the GOP elites, too much morality is unacceptable. Now, morality suddenly matters?

Carson captured the attention of millions of people of faith when he spoke out defiantly against the dangers of political correctness at the National Prayer Breakfast in 2013, daring to challenge President Obama to his face.

Despite his courage in that defining moment, and despite his willingness to enter the political lion’s den, GOP elitists with their deep pockets were unenthusiastic about supporting him. They were also unsupportive of Huckabee and Santorum. But because of his courage, Carson was the first to excite, for the first time in a long time, many people of faith about the possibilities for the political arena.

Not since Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. had a black Christian man excited such a broad audience of the faithful. And if that seems to ignore Obama’s two terms in office, Obama did not win elections because he was a black Christian man who excited faith-filled people. He was a black man who made sugar daddy promises to people who asked what their country could do for them, and did not worry too much about what they could do for their country.

Obama did not stand on the foundation of faith that supports the Black Christian community; he just claimed it. Yet it was the sacrifices of that community that made possible the Civil Rights victories in the 1960s. And for decades, people of faith have grown disenchanted with a political system that has ignored them and made them feel powerless. Obama has only aggravated a deep frustration.

Now it is Donald Trump, not a faith-filled person who represents people of faith. That’s an irony. Trump seems unlikely to draw the respect of people of faith or inspire their trust. Yet he does. They are awakening to his efforts to fight for them and against those of the political class who despise religious values and the truths of natural law the Founders considered self-evident.

A good number of Christians have awakened and are much more aware of what is at stake in this historic election. They view Trump as an instrument of God. Many Christian leaders and ministers are standing up, and fearlessly speaking out. Many realize if they do not exercise their First Amendment rights now, they will wish they had before the election.

If Clinton becomes the face of the Socialist-Communist agenda in America, freedom of religion will be at stake. Morality is important, but as George Washington said, “Let us with caution indulge the supposition that morality can be maintained without religion. Whatever may be conceded to the influence of refined education on minds of peculiar structure, reason and experience both forbid us to expect that national morality  can prevail in exclusion of religious principle.”

People of faith need to awake and speak up now, or they may “forever hold their peace!”

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Dennis Jamison reinvented his life after working for a multi-billion dollar division of Johnson & Johnson for several years. Now semi-retired, he is an adjunct faculty member at West Valley College in California. He currently writes a column on US history and one on American freedom for the Communities Digital News, as well as writing for other online publications. During the 2016 presidential primaries, he worked as the leader of a network of writers, bloggers, and editors who promoted the candidacy of Dr. Ben Carson. He founded the “We the People” Network of writers and the Citizen Sentinels Project to pro-actively promote the values and principles established at the founding of the United States, and to discover and support more morally centered citizen-candidates who sincerely seek election as public servants, not politicians.