My Momma always told me, “You’re known by the company you keep.” I’m not sure the origin of this phrase, but the sentiment comes from Proverbs 13:20. “He who walks with wise men will be wise, but the one who walks with fools will be destroyed.”
Last night, Ted Cruz won the 2016 Iowa caucus and Donald Trump came in second, but recently, these two have not kept the best company.
On his last few days of the campaign trail, Cruz brought along Duck Dynasty reality star Phil Robertson to fire up evangelical supporters, who made up 62% of the Republican caucus-goers.
Mr. Robertson’s insight into black history does not show him to be wise. In his 2013 GQ interview, the talked about how black people were happier before the Civil Rights movement, when he said that they were going across the field, hoeing cotton and singing and happy.
On the campaign trail, he focused his hatred on the LGBT community. In Iowa City, he blared, “When a fellow like me looks at the landscape and sees the depravity, the perversion — redefining marriage and telling us that marriage is not between a man and a woman? Come on Iowa! It is nonsense. It is evil. It’s wicked. It’s sinful.”
This is standard rhetoric from Phil. During a sermon in 2010, Robertson said, “[Gays are] full of murder, envy, strife, hatred. They are insolent, arrogant, God-haters. They are heartless, they are faithless, they are senseless, they are ruthless.”
In a 2013 interview in GQ, he got graphic in his disgust, “It seems like, to me, a vagina — as a man — would be more desirable than a man’s anus.” Robertson told GQ. “That’s just me. I’m just thinking: There’s more there! She’s got more to offer. I mean, come on, dudes! You know what I’m saying? But hey, sin: It’s not logical, my man. It’s just not logical.” He later added, “Start with homosexual behavior and just morph out from there. Bestiality, sleeping around with this woman and that woman and that woman and those men. Don’t be deceived. Neither the adulterers, the idolaters, the male prostitutes, the homosexual offenders, the greedy, the drunkards, the slanderers, the swindlers — they won’t inherit the kingdom of God. Don’t deceive yourself. It’s not right.”
Although Robertson apologized for these remarks, he later doubled down on these statements at a sermon he gave on April 20, 2014. “You want the verse? The news media didn’t even know it was a verse! They thought I was just mouthing off. Is homosexual behavior a sin? The guy asked me. I said, do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Don’t be deceived… Neither the sexually immoral, nor the idolators nor adulterers nor male prostitutes, nor homosexual offenders, nor thieves, nor greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.”
Phil Robertson is full of hate for those who have a different way of looking at the Bible on homosexuality. In my view, anyone full of hate for a whole group of people is not someone you should be hanging around.
On his last few days of campaigning in Iowa, Donald Trump brought along Sarah Palin and Rev. Jerry Falwell, Jr. Everyone already knows enough about Ms. Palin to know whether she is wise or foolish, so let’s take a quick look at Rev. Falwell.
Rev. Falwell is president of Liberty University and is a huge Trump supporter. He invited Donald Trump to speak at the student assembly on Martin Luther King day. In his introduction of Trump, Rev. Falwell claimed that the business mogul has demonstrated his Christian “fruit” by creating jobs and getting involved in philanthropic work, gushing that “Donald Trump lives a life of loving and helping others, as Jesus taught in the Great Commandment.” I agree with Michael Farris who once served as executive director of Jerry Falwell Sr.’s Moral Majority in Washington, D.C., who blasted Rev. Falwell on social media after this introduction of Donald Trump. Some highlights: Donald Trump is not a man of principle. That is a man who games the system for profit. . . Trump made history by opening the first strip club in a casino in New Jersey. . . Shame on you, Jerry Falwell, Junior for elevating success in business over the principles of right and wrong that flow from giving priority to the Word of God over the priority of a balance sheet.
Rev. Falwell has also compared Trump directly to Jesus Christ stating, “Jesus was vilified for his unpopular opinions and that makes Trump a man a lot like Jesus.” I agree with Farris’ reaction to this statement that comparing Trump to Jesus is as close to heresy as I chose to witness.
The Great Commandment is “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” Trump’s tirades against Mexicans, women, Muslims and anyone who would dare to disagree or challenge him on anything show that Trump does not practice anything close to the teachings of Christ. He is an egomaniacal opportunist who surrounds himself with people that kowtow to him despite the contradiction between their beliefs and his.
If the company they keep represents much about them, we ought to be looking for alternatives to the top two Republican candidates.