The opinion piece titled “This Reformation Day, keep reforming” was primarily about problems the author saw with beliefs and practices of different Christian groups. While I agreed with some points and disagreed with others, I think it is beneficial to have discussions and to think critically about important issues, such as religion.
However, there was a portion of the article that does not encourage those discussions. The article stated:
“The majority of Christians and the overwhelming majority of white evangelicals voted for Donald Trump, therefore signaling at least some approval of his morally repugnant policies that discriminate against differences, disregard the common man and ignore those dependent on the government to simply survive.
“You don’t have to be a New Testament scholar to realize this isn’t in line with the philosophy of a biblical Jesus.”
These statements are akin to saying, “If you voted for Trump, then you are a bad person and not following the Bible.” These types of comments seek to silence people of opposing views, not encourage thoughtful discussion. This is one of the greatest problems in our political discourse today. How can we have discussions about tough issues where we disagree when each side accuses the other of being bad people? Why should I look for common ground with a bad person? Instead, it’s better to assume people are decent human beings who have bad ideas if we are hoping to change their minds about something.
The author calls for people to “ask hard questions,” and I think that is good advice. I just think people might be more open to asking those hard questions if they’re not first accused of being bad people.
Weston Locastro is a civil engineering graduate student from Collierville, Tennessee.