Yesterday Trump’s spiritual advisor, Paula White made a ridiculous statement (During a deadly flu epidemic) to her followers that God is the only flu shot they need. This kind of thinking is dangerous to us as a society and is unfortunately becoming more mainstream since we elected the Golden Calf and his legion of Bible Trumpers to power in the 2016 election. One Peabody prize-winning journalist has a theory as to why fantastical ideas such as this have gained traction with the Republican party and their voters.
Kurt Anderson author of the book, Fantasyland: How America Went Haywire details his ideas in an episode of Big Think on YouTube. He states that the American Christian Protestant religion has become extreme and prone to believing in supernatural and magical forces that are oftentimes not based in truth or science. He claims that in response to the hard push right of the Protestants, the Republican party has been obliged to follow suit to keep the support of that loyal base. While many of these politicians believe within themselves that these falsehoods and downright fairy tales are not true, they give lip service to appease the voting block that does.
This sets a dangerous precedent, when ideas and conspiracies that would have been laughed at as ridiculous even 20 years are enabled, investigated, and legislated, simple things such as avoiding a public health epidemic by vaccination are seen as a conspiracy. Anderson says it best with:
Believe whatever you want in the privacy of your home, in the privacy of your family, in the privacy of your church, but when it bleeds over (as it has inevitably done in America) to how we manage and construct our economy and our society, we are in trouble.
I agree with Anderson, and think allowing the religious dogma of one faith to dictate how we all live our lives and create policy is not how a democracy is supposed to work. Our founding fathers added the no establishment clause in our constitution for this very reason. When will Republicans stop thirsting for power long enough to allow facts and evidence-based thinking back into the discussion? When is the country going to come before the party? They all know things like evolution and climate change are real, but play along to get the win with people who believe in a talking snake. We all need to wake up and stop this from happening before we all fall into a theocracy that would make The Handmaids Tale look tame.