Menu Close

Tag: MAGA

When Democrats Sound Like MAGA Supporters

tinfoil hat

Supposedly, Democrats are (generally) people of science and reason. Conspiracy theories and cultism are largely the domain of the MAGA wing of the Republican Party. That is, until a man tried to assassinate ex-president Donald Trump. I am shocked by how many of my fellow liberals and progressives have turned into conspiracy theorists. They think that the attempted assassination of Trump was a false flag; a staged event. In their minds, the whole event was political theater orchestrated by the Hollywood actor Donald Trump.

Imagine, for a moment, how many people would have to be involved in the attempted assassination for it to be a staged event. Right up there with fake moon landings and a flat earth. Do you realize how absurd such thinking is?

Please stop. There’s enough crazy in the world without adding to it.

Bruce Gerencser, 66, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 45 years. He and his wife have six grown children and thirteen grandchildren. Bruce pastored Evangelical churches for twenty-five years in Ohio, Texas, and Michigan. Bruce left the ministry in 2005, and in 2008 he left Christianity. Bruce is now a humanist and an atheist.

Connect with me on social media:

Your comments are welcome and appreciated. All first-time comments are moderated. Please read the commenting rules before commenting.

You can email Bruce via the Contact Form.

No, God Didn’t Protect Ex-President Donald Trump’s Life

trump assassination

Over the weekend a twenty-year-old man perched on top of a building with a semi-automatic assault rifle attempted to assassinate ex-president Donald Trump. The shooter failed in his attempt, grazing Trump’s ear, wounding one bystander, and killing another.

Evangelicals, who are largely members of the MAGA cult, believe Trump was chosen by God to be the forty-seventh president of the United States. Worse, many Evangelicals think Trump won the 2020 presidential election; that Democrats stole the election. Eight out of ten voting white Evangelicals voted for Trump in 2016 and 2020, and recent polls suggest that they will vote for him again in November. No matter how many pussies he grabbed, how many women he sexually assaulted, or how many crimes he committed, Evangelicals are convinced that Trump is God’s man for such a time as this. As a result, Evangelicals see God’s providence in keeping a bullet from killing Trump. Evidently, God’s providence didn’t apply to the fireman, a family man, killed at the rally. All Evangelicals seem to care about is their cult leader.

God, of course, did not protect Trump’s life. Trump is alive for one reason and one reason alone; the shooter missed. The fireman is dead for one reason and one reason alone: the shooter didn’t miss. Trump was lucky. Sadly, the fireman was not.

“God protected Trump” is a faith claim, for which Evangelicals cannot provide a shred of evidence. If you believe in a hands-on personal deity who numbers the hairs on our heads and is the giver and taker of life, it stands to reason you believe God providentially kept Trump from having a permanent headache. However, until Evangelicals provide evidence for the existence of God, I am going to say that Trump is one lucky son-of-a-bitch.

Bruce Gerencser, 66, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 45 years. He and his wife have six grown children and thirteen grandchildren. Bruce pastored Evangelical churches for twenty-five years in Ohio, Texas, and Michigan. Bruce left the ministry in 2005, and in 2008 he left Christianity. Bruce is now a humanist and an atheist.

Connect with me on social media:

Your comments are welcome and appreciated. All first-time comments are moderated. Please read the commenting rules before commenting.

You can email Bruce via the Contact Form.

Dear Democrats, Does Support Require Loyalty?

democratic party

The Republican Party is pretty much a monoculture, with little, if any diversity, among its members. Thanks to the influence of fascist, criminally-indicted former president Donald Trump, MAGA (Make America Great Again) policies dominate and control the Republican Party. I suspect there are more than a few Republican politicians who personally despise Trump and the MAGA wing of the Party, but they know that without Trump’s and MAGA’s support, they can’t win. These spineless Republicans know that just one social media post from Trump can sink their election/reelection chances. So they say nothing when Trump espouses policies that are not only hateful, racist, and anti-democratic, they pretend the man is not a narcissist and pathological liar. (All politicians lie, but Trump lies multiple times every day, eight days a week.)

There was a time when the Democratic Party was considered a big-tent political group, but some within the Party are now demanding loyalty to President Joe Biden and any and every policy deemed “Democratic.” Granted, the Democrats don’t have people such as Marjorie “Moscow” Taylor-Green, Matt “Child Molester” Gaetz, Tom Cotton, Ted “Cancun” Cruz, Paul “Nazi” Gosar, Lauren “Hand Job” Boebert, and Josh “The Cowardly Lion” Hawley demanding fealty under pains of political execution, there are those within the Democratic Party who marginalize and denigrate those who dare hold positions contrary to those of the Biden Administration. Democrats such as John Fetterman, Jon Tester, Joe Manchin, Bernie Sanders, and The Squad (Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ilhan Omar, Ayanna Presley, Rashida Tlaib, Jamaal Bowman, Cori Bush, Greg Casar, Summer Lee, and Delia Ramirez) face increasing pressure from mainstream and centrist Democrats to toe the party line. For example, I oppose John Fetterman’s pro-Israel view, but I reject the notion that Fetterman is not a “real” Democrat.

Joe Biden needs the various factions within the Democratic Party to vote for him if he hopes to win the 2024 presidential election. Disparaging and marginalizing pro-Palestinian, anti-war, socialist, or pro-environment Democrats is a sure way to drive these voters to the open arms of the campaigns of Robert Kennedy, Jr., Cornel West, and Jill Stein (or could lead to protest votes for Marianne Williamson). Young voters, in particular, are more likely to be anti-war, pro-environment, and have socialist tendencies. Pretending these people don’t exist will only ensure that Biden goes down to defeat in November. Young voters may not have much real-world experience, but they know hypocrisy when they see it. They “hear” the pathetic challenges from Biden and his feckless cabinet to Israel’s genocidal slaughter of over 34,000 Palestinians in Gaza, while, at the same time, seeing the President and Democrats in Congress give Israel $18 billion to continue its immoral war. These young folks make, as they should, a direct connection between U.S.-funded and supplied bombs, bullets, drones, and missiles and daily reports of bloodshed, violence, and death in Gaza. They see the mutilated bodies of Palestinian children and know that the United States is directly responsible for their deaths.

I am a member of the local Democratic Party’s executive committee. I was elected to this position in March. I made it clear to Party leaders that while I am a proud Democrat, I have policy positions that run contrary to that of the Defiance County and State Democratic Party. I made sure they understood that I was an atheist; a humanist; a pacifist; and a socialist. They knew or should have known, anyway, that I am an outspoken writer who uses this blog and letters to the editor of the local newspaper to advance my cause. I will gladly support the Democratic Party at every level, but I will not silence my voice just to give the Party the appearance of MAGA-like unity. I grew up in a home with a mother who spoke her mind on political issues; and who was unafraid to voice her opinion in public forums. I continue to follow in her footsteps — thirty plus years after her suicide — albeit from the other side of the political aisle.

The Democratic Party has my support, but it does not have my loyalty. I refuse to say the Pledge of Allegiance because it is a loyalty pledge. I am grateful to be an American. I can’t imagine living in any other place than in the good ole USA. That said, I reject demands of political conformity and fealty. Nations and governments come and go. My objective is to work towards making the United States a better place to live. Most of all, I want my six children and sixteen grandchildren to have promising, prosperous, happy futures. When Democratic (or Republican) policies meet my desires and expectations, they can count on my support. When they don’t, the Democratic Party can expect to hear from me. Demands for Party loyalty will be rejected. If the Party’s tent is not big enough for someone like me, that’s their loss, not mine. I will do all I can to promote and advance Democratic policies and candidates, but what I will not do is abandon my political beliefs just so the Party can present to the public a facade of unity. Political debate and diversity are important for the health of the Democratic Party. The moment I’m told to be quiet or tone down my opinions or rhetoric is when I (and scores of other like-minded people) exit the tent.

Bruce Gerencser, 66, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 45 years. He and his wife have six grown children and thirteen grandchildren. Bruce pastored Evangelical churches for twenty-five years in Ohio, Texas, and Michigan. Bruce left the ministry in 2005, and in 2008 he left Christianity. Bruce is now a humanist and an atheist.

Connect with me on social media:

Your comments are welcome and appreciated. All first-time comments are moderated. Please read the commenting rules before commenting.

You can email Bruce via the Contact Form.

MAGA is Coming For Our Books, Kitchens, and Children, Especially the Ones Not Wearing Pants

katie britt

By Abby Zimet, Common Dreams, Used by Permission

Talk about a tale of two countries: This election year, with only fervid culture wars to offer, a fear-mongering GOP is hating on books, flags, migrants, rainbows, birth control, scary clown drag queens; electing zealots and bigots; drawing pants on goblins’ butts and turning teachers who support trans kids into sex offenders. And this week, they definitively rejected Biden’s nation of hope and decency with a lying, sociopathic White Mom On the Brink – “There’s bodegas on the corner!” – in “some deeply weird shit.”

With a shambolic GOP House flopping at everything – no evidence of a “Biden crime family,” Hunter’s laptop info came from a Russian spy, they can barely manage to fund the government – zealous patriots and lawmakers in multiple states have eagerly taken up the ugly task of stripping someone’s rights somewhere in the name of “freedom.” In don’t-say-woke Florida, a handful of enthused cranks, bigots and “Moms For Liberty” have challenged hundreds of books – including almost anything with an LGBTQ character and dictionaries, though DeSantis denies it. A recent, witless target was Maurice Sendak’s classic In The Night Kitchen, which they dubbed “pornographic” because little Mickey is naked as he bakes a cake. The solution: draw shorts on him. Ditto the bare backside of the disgruntled goblin in Unicorns Are The Worst – he got pants – and the grandfather in Sofia Valdez, Future Prez, who’s wearing a pin for LGBTQ rights, or was. This, despite lawsuits and enough bad press on threatening librarians with felony charges that even DeSantis has backed off, suggesting “random people” are objecting “to every single book under the sun,” which, yes, they are.

In Georgia, GOP lawmakers would also jail librarians who let kids check out LGBTQ books. In Missouri, which supports child marriage and school spankings, they’ve passed 43 anti-trans bills; a new proposed bill criminalizes teachers who call students by their preferred pronouns or otherwise “contribute to social transition,” if they do, they’d face four years in prison and have to register as sex offenders banned from schools or parks. Having outlawed abortion with no rape or incest exceptions – pregnancy “by God’s grace may (be) the greatest healing agent” – the A.G sued Planned Parenthood for “trafficking” minors out of state for abortions. In Tennessee, the GOP opposes rainbows but is all in on slaves: They banned Pride flags but in seconds declined to ban Confederate flags as proposed by Rep. Justin Pearson, who they also made it easier to expel next time. In North Carolina Holocaust-denying, anti-women’s suffrage, sort of black Mark Robinson, who calls LGBTQ and trans people “sick, deranged, sexual degenerates” and school shooting survivors who want gun control “media prosti-tots,” just got the GOP’s well-funded nod to run for governor.

In honor of and reflecting this worldview, in which the way to achieve greatness is to demean, marginalize and deprive of their rights anyone who looks/thinks differently from you comes dystopian masterpiece of “Patriotic AI Art” America Lives.The creation of “Veteran, Father, Patriot” Joseph Youngbluth and one Jason Coursey – “USA’s pronouns are USA” – they made their lunatic, histrionic video “to support the greatest president of our lifetime (yeah him) and “capture “the essence of (his) vision.” And wow, does it. “The idea of America lives in every one of us,” thunders the narrator. “But a storm has gathered at our shores, a tempest that seeks to tear apart the fabric of our nation.” Cue clouds, mobs, lightning, hobos, looming flames, shrieky music, jackboots, rubble, sandbags, wheat fields, blue-haired Antifa stalking through ruined cities, mohawked drag queens reading to kids (probably In the Night Kitchen) and a “hurricane of deceit and moral decay (that) Has Come for our Children.” Fortuitously, in this “true battle of good vs. evil,” “We are great men with a great leader (who) seeks the same ideals as we do, and sees the greatness in us.” Whew.

Many Americans, we are told, are going wild over this dumbfounding paean. “This literally moved me to tears,” wrote one. “Not just from what we have endured, but because there is still hope to Save America!” Strangely, though, their America was nowhere in sight last week at Biden’s “scrappy,” hopeful, much-praised State of the Union speech, wherein he summoned “the gravest threat to our democracy since the Civil War” and urged insurrectionist Republicans to “speak the truth and bury the lies.” Repeatedly critiquing “my predecessor,” He Who Shall Not Be Named, Biden touted his economic successes, insisted “political violence has absolutely no place in America,” celebrated the “core values” of “Honesty. Decency. Dignity. Equality” to “give everyone a fair shot” and “give hate no safe harbor” – what one optimist called “saving democracy so we can do cool shit” – and, refreshingly, delineated the Dems’ desire to offer “freedom for,” in contrast to paranoid right-wingers’ “freedom from” (voting rights, drag queens etc). Citing the GOP talk of a national ban on reproductive choice, Biden retorted, “My God, what freedoms will you take away next?”

Most shockingly to the right, Biden didn’t dribble, stagger, babble or die in accordance with their narrative he’s so old and dementia-ridden – irony alert – he’s almost comatose. Faced with the need to pivot, and reminding us how execrable they are, they quickly came up with a new, evidence-free, doused-in-irony-if they-knew-what-it-was narrative: Biden was “pumped full of god-knows-what drugs!” “Plot twist: It was Joe Biden’s cocaine in the White House!” one screeched, and, “What drugs have they shot him up with? This is not how normal people talk.” Hannity got into the act by conjuring up a new tagline, “Jacked-Up Joe.” Even friggin’ Dr. Ronny ‘Feel Good’ Jackson did – “Whatever they gave to Biden is wearing off! He is struggling big time!” – fresh off a Pentagon report that confirmed allegations he handed out drugs like Skittles at the White House, and his subsequent demotion from admiral to captain. Still Joe charged on, dismissing their “American story of resentment, revenge and retribution.” “That’s not me,” he said, rejecting “the oldest of ideas…You can’t lead (with) ideas that only take us back.” (Later, he did take back his “illegal,” so thanks for that.)

His predecessor, meanwhile, took himself back to a bored 14-year-old bully throwing a hissy fit in detention who nattered through four dozen rants online, sank to re-posting some MAGA moron’s spliced Snapchat filters turning Biden into a goofy cartoon, a girl with pigtails, a slobbery dog etc before finally, laughably declaring Biden “an Embarrassment to our Country!” R-i-g-h-t. There were many others, of course: MTG Three-Toes turned up in full, red, gaudy NASCAR/MAGA regalia, looking like “something pumped out of a trailer park septic tank. Pure trash.” But in the oh-lord-how-long-will-it-go-on GOP Ignominy Sweepstakes, nobody can compete with deeply weird, kitchen-bound, fundie-baby-voiced Worst Lifetime Movie Actress Ever Sen. Katie Britt, who in her SOTU “rebuttal” tearfully swept together Twilight Zone, Birth of a Nation, SNL and a KKK revival meeting to paint a florid MAGA portrait of Trump’s American Carnage, a hellscape of rampaging migrants, struggling families and terrified communities in what was savaged as “the worst acting, ever.” One plaintive query: “Can these people not even pretend to be normal for a few minutes on television?” Not.

The junior senator from Alabama, abortion opponent, Christian nationalist – “We need to get God back in our classrooms” – and former corporate lobbyist spoke from the evidently not real “kitchen” – women love kitchen – of the 6,300-square-foot home she shares with her former NFL player/now lobbyist husband Wesley, daughter Bennett and son Ridgeway – “My daughter Chippendale and my son Marblehead” – “living their American dream, but right now the American dream has turned into (yes!) a nightmare.” In the hushed, breathless whisper fundamentalist women use to convey their requisite, childlike submissiveness – but veering wildly to tearfulness and a creepy fake smile – she declared Biden “out of touch” with “what real families are facing around the kitchen table like this one, where we laugh together and hold each other’s hands and pray for guidance” as they see “the nation slipping away,” because brown people. Also, “We are steeped in the blood of patriots, we walk in the footsteps of pioneers who tamed the wild (and) got knocked down and Stood Back Up,” “Destiny’s Hand,” “moms and dads Just Like You”, “INNOCENT AMERICANS ARE DYING STOP THE SUFFERING.”

Her “handlers,” it was widely noted, “tried to give us ‘America’s mom,”‘ but got the crazy aunt at Thanksgiving who only wants to talk about sex dungeons under pizza parlors. The weirdness and fakery was too much. The response was withering, the parodies flew. She was giving Lifetime TV serial killer mom vibes. This lady is GOP AI. Holy cringe. Is this an infomercial? Is she crying Demonic drama. The kitchen whisperer. State of the carmelized onion. She nuts. She big mad. Is she still crying? Where are the normal people? Evil June Cleaver. Make actors great again. Fellow white moms, are you feeling me? That is the kitchen of a psychopath. Boiling rabbit is next. Stepford Wives. Handmaid’s Tale. Gilead. My Name Is Katie Britt and I Am SingingTomorrow From Annie. Goodness, y’all, bless her heart. Are we watching a hostage video? I wanna fight for you, and by you I mean people who look like me. The Young and the Congressional. Wesley come get your wife, my guy, she’s embarrassing you and your kids. Am I crying? If I am, it’s because of brown people at the border. Empty chairs tonight at kitchen tables Just…Like…This…One. Big finish, fadeout.

Most unforgivably, as uncovered by freelance journalist Jonathan M. Katz, her salacious story about Mexican cartels repeatedly raping a sex-trafficked 12-year-old girl was a cynical, exploitative, “beyond misleading” ploy to turn someone’s real-life pain and horror into a GOP talking point to convince other racists that every dark-skinned person who turns up at the border fleeing violence in their own country is a sex-trafficking cartel rapist and/or a fentanyl salesman. Britt charged Biden’s border policy had “invited” such atrocities; in fact, the story belonged to a Mexican woman who was trafficked and raped in Mexico during George Bush’s tenure, escaped, became an anti-trafficking activist, bravely testified to Congress in 2015 about her harrowing experiences, and today insists what she does should not be political: “The work I do is not a game.” Not only did Britt co-opt the story into “an out and out lie” to serve her own sordid political purposes; she did so on behalf of a sexually assaulting candidate whose policies, when in power, made it harder to curb trafficking and protect victims, pushing traumatized survivors “further into the shadows.”

Some good, however, did come of Britt’s grotesque duplicity: In divided and rancorous times, she brought both sides together in agreement that “her performance was the stuff of nightmares.” “Everyone’s fucking losing it,” said a GOP operative. “It’s one of our biggest disasters ever,” from a kitchen yet. Other reviews: “She was clearly over-coached,” “her delivery was parody-level terrible,” “the experience (of watching) was… experiential,” and from legal analyst Andrew Weissmann, “I don’t think Katie Britt is going to get the lead in the school play this year.” Since then, she got spoofed on SNL and asked to apologize for her lies: “God calls on us to do hard things.” But her spokesman defended the trafficking story as “100% correct,” she got fawning, surreal support from Fox and Friends – “Great job – it all seemed so natural” – and Hannity even as she smilingly doubled down on Biden’s “rage-filled, incoherent” speech, prattled, “We care about faith, family, freedom,” and blamed “liberal media” for…something: “It is disgusting of trying to silence the voice of telling the story of what is like to be sex-trafficked.” Behold, and beware: Alternative facts, worlds, universes are alive and well amongst a despicable people.

Bruce Gerencser, 66, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 45 years. He and his wife have six grown children and thirteen grandchildren. Bruce pastored Evangelical churches for twenty-five years in Ohio, Texas, and Michigan. Bruce left the ministry in 2005, and in 2008 he left Christianity. Bruce is now a humanist and an atheist.

Connect with me on social media:

Your comments are welcome and appreciated. All first-time comments are moderated. Please read the commenting rules before commenting.

You can email Bruce via the Contact Form.

Quote of the Day: Is Evangelicalism a Solution to MAGA?

quote of the day

An excerpt from Paul A. Djupe’s article We Should Probably Stop Thinking Religion is a Solution to MAGA.

In his latest piece for the New York Times, he [David French] describes the “Rage and Joy of Donald Trump’s MAGA America.” It’s a neat argument, backed by his personal observations while immersed in the South, that MAGA supporters are not just angry about the state of the world and the leftist/globalist/whatevers they believe are wrongly in charge. They are actually pretty happy in the MAGA communities they’ve inhabited in the traveling circus following Trump around the country and in their local communities. The importance of that observation is this: they will need a replacement for that communal joy to encourage them to sever their connection to MAGA, not just steps that would defuse their anger.

That’s all fine with me in the sense that it’s worth studying more systematically to see if there’s something to it.

What I’m concerned with is his extension to religion and especially evangelicalism. The parallel he draws is this: “Evangelicals are a particularly illustrative case. About half of self-identified evangelicals now attend church monthly or less often. They have religious zeal, but they lack religious community. So they find their band of brothers and sisters in the Trump movement.” I’ve heard this sort of argument A LOT in the Trump years, trying to make the argument that church-involved people are the good, well-behaved ones who wouldn’t support Trump, while the non-attenders who still identify as religious/evangelical/whatever are the ones doing the objectionable thing in the news at the moment. The implication is that if those MAGA types could just get back to church (or in some other community), then the MAGA problem would be solved.

I’ve addressed this several times before in several different ways and I’m surely missing some posts, but let me say it again: church attendance is linked to Trump support.

….

What I think French and many others are missing is that church involvement is not the crucial dividing line here, but instead the kind of religious beliefs that the people hold are. This is a particular blindspot among some scholars of religion who think of American society as divided between church attenders versus those who are not. Of course there’s some of that, but if you really want to understand who is MAGA and who isn’t, you need to be thinking about apocalypticism. The people fixated on dividing the world into the forces of good and evil (demonic, embodied evil), see Christians facing rampant persecution, and foresee (yep, prophecy belief is a big part of this) a final battle ahead are on a different plane of existence from other people. And they certainly do feel warmly toward Donald Trump, anointed to be their savior.

….

David French laid out a thoughtful approach to thinking about how to deradicalize MAGA folks, but he’s wrong in his assumptions about the role of religion here. Among some, church involvement as it shows through apocalyptic beliefs is an accelerant of MAGA, not a replacement for it. The dividing line is clear. Those with religious beliefs that draw sharp lines between good and evil and feature elites who are making the case that Trump is the anointed ruler of America (and whose indictments are demonic) are the most dangerous and powerful support structures of the MAGA movement. We need to stop thinking that religion is the antidote – particular forms of it, like the New Apostolic Reformation, may be the cause of the problem.

Professor Paul A. Djupe directs the Data for Political Research program at Denison University, is an affiliated scholar with PRRI, the series editor of Religious Engagement in Democratic Politics (Temple), and co-creator of religioninpublic.blog.

Bruce Gerencser, 66, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 45 years. He and his wife have six grown children and thirteen grandchildren. Bruce pastored Evangelical churches for twenty-five years in Ohio, Texas, and Michigan. Bruce left the ministry in 2005, and in 2008 he left Christianity. Bruce is now a humanist and an atheist.

Connect with me on social media:

Your comments are welcome and appreciated. All first-time comments are moderated. Please read the commenting rules before commenting.

You can email Bruce via the Contact Form.

Bruce’s Top Ten Hot Takes for August 18, 2023

hot takes

Wendell Berry taught me “Just because we can doesn’t mean we should.” Science says, “I can’t hear you.”

Wendell Berry also taught me that “good intentions can have unintended consequences.” Watching the machinations of humankind has shown me that we know this, but ignore it anyway.

My favorite David Foster Wallace quote is as follows: “Don’t let the truth get in the way of telling a good story.”

Famed IFB preacher Tom Malone said in a sermon “I’m not preaching now, I’m telling the truth.” Remember this the next time you hear a sermon.

I am tired of atheist podcasts and talk shows. I wonder if my atheism is evolving?

Best pop ever: Suncrest Cream Soda (childhood). Runner up: Jones Cream Soda (today).

I am an agnostic atheist, not an anti-theist. This pisses anti-theists off, but I live in a corner of the world where most people at least profess to be Christians. I choose a kinder, gentler path of progress.

Hummingbirds are draining our backyard feeder every day, Soon they will migrate south. I feel sad, yet grateful they graced us with their presence.

Ten days of daily cannabis use has proved one thing to me: every IFB preacher from my teen years who said “Pot is a gateway drug that leads to hard drug use” is a liar. I wonder if they were lying about premarital sex too? 🤣

Democrats who think indicting Trump will put an end to MAGA don’t understand the movement and its religious and cultural underpinnings.

Bonus: Dear Great American Ballpark (Cincinnati Reds): Most wheelchairs require up to 36-inch openings to pass. Setting your security scanner openings and elevator access gates at less than 36 inches means I couldn’t pass through them. You accommodated me. However, it made me feel singled out — the crippled guy spectacle. Buy a tape measure and get it right the first time.

Bruce Gerencser, 66, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 45 years. He and his wife have six grown children and thirteen grandchildren. Bruce pastored Evangelical churches for twenty-five years in Ohio, Texas, and Michigan. Bruce left the ministry in 2005, and in 2008 he left Christianity. Bruce is now a humanist and an atheist.

Connect with me on social media:

Your comments are welcome and appreciated. All first-time comments are moderated. Please read the commenting rules before commenting.

You can email Bruce via the Contact Form.

There is No Hope for MAGA World

maga world
Cartoon by Pat Bagley

Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away . . . And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie. (2 Thessalonians 2:3,11)

Millions and millions of MAGA Republicans have come under a strong delusion, believing that the twice impeached ex-president Donald Trump actually won the 2020 election. Many residents of MAGA (Make America Great Again) World think Trump is actually still the president; that he is actually controlling the military.

Recently, Daily Show correspondent Jordan Klepper went to a “Trump Rally, Not a Rally” to interview Trump’s most avid supporters. Listen, laugh, and weep.

Video Link

We are at a dangerous point in American history. Millions and millions and millions of Americans believe things that are not true. From Trumpism to QAnon to Creationism, large swaths of our country have bought into lies. And don’t think for a moment that if Trump isn’t the 2024 Republican presidential candidate, we are out of the proverbial woods. Candidates such as Ron Desanctimonous DeSantis, Mike Pompeo, and Nikki Haley are hardly any better. If anything, these candidates are even more dangerous. They don’t have the temperamental problems that Trump does, yet they are every bit as racist and bigoted as the ex-president. One need only watch what is going on in Washington D.C. with Republicans to see Christian nationalism and white supremacy on full display. My God, congressmen are espousing racist, bigoted, homophobic beliefs and conspiracy theories right on the floor of the House of Representatives. It is hard, at least for me, to see a better tomorrow in the short term. I fear our Republic is hanging by a fraying thread.

Bruce Gerencser, 66, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 45 years. He and his wife have six grown children and thirteen grandchildren. Bruce pastored Evangelical churches for twenty-five years in Ohio, Texas, and Michigan. Bruce left the ministry in 2005, and in 2008 he left Christianity. Bruce is now a humanist and an atheist.

Connect with me on social media:

Your comments are welcome and appreciated. All first-time comments are moderated. Please read the commenting rules before commenting.

You can email Bruce via the Contact Form.

How Does God Do It?

all powerful god

Warning! Honey wagons full of snark ahead, sure to offend Evangelicals, MAGA supporters, and prayer warriors.

Have you ever wondered how God does what he does — allegedly, anyway? God is omnipotent, omnipresent, and omniscient. According to Evangelicals, their deity is an all-powerful God who is present everywhere, and sees, hears, and knows everything. Think about all the things we humans do each and every day, including the stuff we don’t want anyone to see. No matter where we are, the Evangelical God is watching us, and recording our thoughts, words, and deeds — pen and paper, digital or VCR? This God is also, supposedly, in the prayer-answering business. Now, the Evangelical God doesn’t answer Muslim, Buddhist, Jewish, Catholic, or Mormon prayers; that is unless their prayers are for forgiveness of sin and salvation. God only answers the prayers of True Christians®. Think, for a moment, about the billions of prayers that are sent Jesus’ way every day; every prayer a demand for a blessing, help, forgiveness, or travel directions. And if Evangelicals are to be believed, EVERY prayer is answered one of three ways by God: yes, no, not now.

It seems to me that there is not enough time each day for God to get his work done. Maybe that’s why most prayers go unanswered, and those that “seem” answered sure look a lot like self-fulfilled answers. Perhaps God is too busy watching our every move and recording each of them with indelible ink into the Book of Life or some other divine book to be bothered with feeding the hungry, ending war, stopping mass shootings, and healing the sick. Are not cemeteries flashing advertisements that remind us that God is a lousy faith healer; that God is best known for being deaf, blind, and indifferent?

President Donald Trump — a Christian and frequent metaphorical sex partner of Jerry Falwell, Jr. — believes he is the hardest working man to ever live at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. Yet, we know better. Trump is a slacker who spends his days watching Fox News, tweeting, eating fast food, playing golf, and undoing everything President Obama did during his presidency. So much Trump should be doing, yet he spends most of his time saying and doing things that help no one, ignoring the pleas of the poor, sick, and homeless. Much like God, wouldn’t you say? God doesn’t heal your dying loved ones, but blessed be the name of the sweet baby Jesus, he sure helps countless grandmas find their lost keys or snag parking spots by the front doors of their favorite grocery stores.

praying pope francis
Cartoon by David Granlund

Catholics say that Pope Frank is the vicar of Christ — Jesus’ representative on earth. Now, according to Evangelicals, Catholics aren’t Christians, so the Pope CAN’T be Jesus’ right-hand man. That got me thinking. Maybe, Donald Trump is Christ’s representative on earth. He’s a Christian man. Eighty-two percent of voting white Evangelicals voted for him in the 2016 presidential election. Trump’s been compared to some of the great leaders of the Bible; a man who is unusually blessed and empowered by the triune God of Christianity. And if Trump is the God-ordained CEO of planet Earth, is he not, as God is, accountable for all the unanswered prayers? Trump can do anything but fail. Evidently, anything doesn’t include the prayerful pleas of immigrants. Surely, this is enough of a reason to vote the man out of office in 2020. Not that anything will change, prayer-wise. If God is anything, he’s fair when it comes to ignoring prayers. Democrats, Republicans, Libertarians, and Independents alike find that God is nowhere to be found.

It’s possible, I suppose, that God uses his angels to keep the machinery running. He might even use Satan and demons to help. Is that not what God did when he wanted to teach a man named Job a lesson? It was Satan who meted out God’s punishment of Job, including afflicting him with boils, killing his children, and destroying his residence and means of income. The Bible says Satan walks about the earth seeking whom he may devour. Evangelicals don’t believe that Satan can hear their prayers, but what if Jesus and Lucifer — brothers according to Mormonism — have an old-fashioned country party-line; and Lucifer is always on the line listening to the secret prayers of Evangelicals. This might explain why so many Evangelical preachers plead with God to deliver them from pornography and other sexual sins, yet they keep committing the same bad behaviors over, and over, and over again. These men of God ask Jesus to keep them pure, but sneaky Lucifer hears their prayers and somehow, some way, causes their holy fingers to type hotchristianbabes.com in Chrome and click GO. If only God had a private line.

Bruce, you are quite a snarky smart ass tonight. What point are you trying to make? Do I always have to have a point? Okay, you got me. Yes, I have a point. I want Evangelicals to think about the claims they make when it comes to their God. Is God really an all-powerful deity who is present everywhere, and sees, hears, and knows everything? What evidence do they have for making such claims? Doesn’t the evidence suggest that God is not omnipotent, omnipresent, and omniscient; that the only God answering prayers is us? Doesn’t the evidence tell us that the change we want in the world will only come through our actions, and not those of an invisible, non-involved God? If we want Trump removed from office, it’s up to us to do it. Hunger, poverty, war, global climate change, sickness, disease, and the Cincinnati Bengals winning the Super Bowl? None of these things is the purview of the Gods — be it the Evangelical God or any other deity. We alone have the power to make the earth a better place to live. We alone have the power to restore sanity to Washington. We alone have the power to provide every child with a better tomorrow. We know, based on the evidence at hand, that the Evangelical God is not the answer. And it’s a pretty safe bet that none of the other extant Gods is the answer either. Perhaps it is time to chuck organized religion in the dustbin of history and chart a new course. If scientists are right about global warming and unchecked population growth, time is running out for the human race — and dogs and cats too. Perhaps it is time to give the humanistic ideal a spin. Christianity, along with its Abrahamic brothers Islam and Judaism, has had centuries to make the earth a better place to live. Surely, it is fair to say that on balance these religions have failed, and they know it.

About Bruce Gerencser

Bruce Gerencser, 62, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 41 years. He and his wife have six grown children and twelve grandchildren. Bruce pastored Evangelical churches for twenty-five years in Ohio, Texas, and Michigan. Bruce left the ministry in 2005, and in 2008 he left Christianity. Bruce is now a humanist and an atheist. For more information about Bruce, please read the About page.

Are you on Social Media? Follow Bruce on Facebook and Twitter.

Thank you for reading this post. Please share your thoughts in the comment section. If you are a first-time commenter, please read the commenting policy before wowing readers with your words. All first-time comments are moderated. If you would like to contact Bruce directly, please use the contact form to do so.

Donations are always appreciated. Donations on a monthly basis can be made through Patreon. One-time donations can be made through PayPal.

Bruce Gerencser