Today I wish to direct your attention to a post by Charles Featherstone. His jumping-off point is a piece by Catholic blogger David Mills about the tendency of partisan politics to destroy even basic sympathy and empathy, all in the name of whatever cause you are supporting. You fight for your man or your cause without any concern for those on the other side or those in the middle. It is this tendency which causes the most ardent of Donald Trump’s supporters to double down even as the latest revelations of his misogyny make him increasingly toxic. “It’s just locker-room talk”, they say. “Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.” But would they say the same things if it was their own daughters who were subject to this treatment?
Ideology blinds us; it turns compassion and kindness and acknowledgement of our shared humanity into fatal weaknesses. It sees nothing but evil in ideological opponents and nothing but virtue in allies, no matter how corrupt they may be.
From here Featherstone goes on to a harsh tweet by Dinesh D’Souza which suggests that Obama’s parents abandoned him as a child because they knew something we should have known before electing him president. He goes off on those of the religious right who claim some sort of high ground by blaming the child Obama for his own abandonment and refusing to see any accomplishment or character in his ability to overcome that abandonment. This is the unspoken assumption behind our nation’s foster care system: If children have been abandoned for whatever reason then they are clearly not worth loving and we can do whatever we want to them. If this is what civilization-saving Christian conservatism has come to, then let those godless liberal heathens come in and burn down our crops and steal our livestock. That can’t happen soon enough.