A Racist President

“I will say then that I am not, nor ever have been, in favor of bringing about in any way the social and political equality of the white and black races — that I am not, nor ever have been, in favor of making voters or jurors of Negroes, nor of qualifying them to hold office, nor to intermarry with white people; and I will say in addition to this that there is a physical difference between the white and black races which I believe will forever forbid the two races living together on terms of social and political equality. And inasmuch as they cannot so live, while they do remain together there must be the position of superior and inferior, and I as much as any other man am in favor of having the superior position assigned to the white race.”
Does that sound like something Donald Trump would say? Well he didn’t! Look it up! Lincoln made this statement at Charleston, Illinois, September 18, 1858. Does it mean Lincoln, possibly our greatest president and the “Great Emancipator” was racist? What it means is that He would say whatever it took to get elected. Is it possible that many of the so-called bigoted statements Trump made were of similar character?
We need to let go of the stereotypes and judge the presidents by what they actually do. Lincoln is a great case in point. He signed an amendment that would have protected slavery in the states where it already existed, the un-ratified 13th Amendment. He proposed sending freed slaves to Haiti but decided it was too expensive. Yet he is considered the greatest president for civil rights. JFK is considered to be a great civil rights president but in 1961 He sent unarmed federal marshals to protect James Meredith when he attempted to register at Ole Miss. Contrast that with Eisenhower who sent an airborne division to protect the Little Rock 9 as they integrated Central High. Eisenhower also appointed Earl Warren, chief justice of the Supreme Court who’s rulings made the Civil Rights movements success possible. Johnson got the Civil Rights Act and Voting Rights Acts passed but JFK gets all the acclaim.
Give Trump a chance. Most presidents do not do what they promised. Often the job and responsibility changes them. He is our president, for better or worse. Give him your support and pray like crazy for him. He will need your prayers.

We Need Advent!

The other day, November 29th I drove past a neighbor’s house all lit up for Christmas. In recent years I’ve seen people decorating their house on Thanksgiving Day. I even saw a Methodist Church all decorated for Christmas. Yet all my parish church has is an advent wreath.
There is a reason for that. Christmas isn’t here yet. We need to take the time to focus on the spiritual aspects of the season and to think about the real meaning of Christmas not just trees, decorations, gifts and a cute baby in a manger. Christmas is about so much more than a baby and presents. It is about the God who loves us and wants what is best for us. It is about the God who desperately wants a relationship with us and passionately desires for us to spend eternity with him. It is about the God who came to earth in utter humility as an infant so that He could grow up and suffered the most painful death in history to free us from our sins.
Advent is a reminder that there is much more to this life than the temporal that we see. We are more than highly intelligent animals. we have eternal souls that need care and spiritual nourishment. It calls us to lift our eyes out of the cesspool we live in and focus on the God who loves us. We remember that we are called to something greater than the world we live in, a better way of life, a life free of the harmful effects of sin.
We live in a world of pain and selfishness, where everyone is hurting in one way or another. Advent calls us to reflect on a better world, a world of infinite love and mercy. It calls us to focus on Jesus’ infinite love and to bring that love to a world desperately in need of that love.