A few months ago, when news broke that President Donald J. Trump had given classified information to the Russians, I asked why Religious Right groups were remaining silent. They surely would have spoken up if a Democratic president had done that.
Today I have to ask that question again, in light of two recent incidents – Anthony Scaramucci’s profanity-laced rant to The New Yorker and Trump’s completely inappropriate speech to the Boy Scouts.
Scaramucci, Trump’s newly hired communications director, for some reason saw fit to call Ryan Lizza, a New Yorker reporter, and unleash a barrage of criticism against White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus and advisor Stephen K. Bannon.
Religious Right groups aren't saying anything about Anthony Scaramucci's profanity-laced rant.
The Washington Post said of the interview, “It’s vulgar, vindictive and volatile. Scaramucci muses about killing people. He talks about his new White House colleagues performing sex acts upon themselves (metaphorically, of course). It’s the kind of interview you expect from someone who is leaving their job in a blaze of glory – not someone who just accepted a job in an already-embattled White House.”
Indeed, Scaramucci’s remarks were so vulgar that it would be inappropriate to reproduce them here. If a top official working for a Democratic president had said these things, it would be on Fox News 24/7, and the Religious Right would be blasting it as an example of the president’s lack of morals and probably demanding that he or she resign.
Similarly, if a Democratic president had appeared before a Boy Scout rally and unleashed a highly partisan speech laced with disturbing sexual innuendo, weird stories and demands that members of the audience boo prominent Republicans, the Religious Right’s perpetual outrage machine would have kicked into overdrive. (And they would have had been right. The speech was utterly inappropriate for that audience. How hard is it to say that?)
To give Religious Right groups the benefit of the doubt, I visited a few of their websites this morning. They’ve had plenty of time to denounce these actions, but they’re saying nothing critical. Their sites are instead full of praise for Trump’s mean-spirited decision to ban transgender people from the military. According to Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council, Trump is a “brassy, politically incorrect outsider” who has offered “gutsy leadership.”
Watching recent events unfold, many of us have reached a different conclusion: Trump is a reckless egomaniac who appears to lack even the most basic of internal controls and who is running the government like a crude reality TV show.
These recent actions are hardly an example of “moral” government in action, and many Americans – from the devoutly religious to the avowed atheist – are increasingly growing repulsed by this vulgar debasement of our nation.
Religious Right leaders, by contrast, remain as quiet as church mice, refusing to even mildly criticize actions from a Republican president that they would bitterly attack if they came from a Democrat.
Why, it’s almost as if they are hypocrites.