Opinion: Trump’s ‘alternative Christians’: What would the Founding Fathers say?

Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta, Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price, Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson and Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin pray in the Rose Garden of the White House on May 4.
(Evan Vucci / Associated Press)

To the editor: My thanks for Phil Zuckerman’s questioning of the modern evangelical movement and calling it “alternative Christianity.” (“The Trump administration’s alternative Christianity,” Opinion, Aug. 11)

Having four major members of the Trump administration, including the vice president, openly belonging to and promoting that sect is disturbing.

The founding fathers wisely framed our Constitution to ensure our fragile experiment in democracy would only have a chance of survival were it to remain secular. It protects us from a theocracy. Not only does the infusion of “Alternative Christianity” into our secular democratic decision-making process at the highest levels violate our Constitution, this cult also continually borders on heresy regarding the true Christian message. There is no room in our government for evangelical ayatollahs.


I speak as a highly informed, cradle-to-grave, practicing Roman Catholic Christian. I swear on the Bible.

Dave Cronkey, El Cajon


To the editor: Zuckerman doesn’t understand conservatives or Jesus.

First, let me say that Vice President Mike Pence is not “the most piously anti-gay politician in America.” He simply believes that marriage is meant for a man and a woman.

Second, Jesus was not anti-money; he warned only of the love of money, which would make a person desire to serve wealth instead of God.

Zuckerman is correct about Christians being required to support the most vulnerable people. However, a study by Arthur Brooks at Syracuse University found that liberals gave far less to charity than conservatives, even taking into account religious giving. The reason for this is they understand Jesus to be speaking to individuals and not the government to be the ones who provide for the poor.

The Apostle Paul wrote, “The one who is unwilling to work shall not eat.” Those who are not able to work are the ones who should be helped. Government programs have encouraged people to rely on them rather than discover the satisfaction of honest work. So please don’t accuse conservatives of creating “suffering and misery in His name.”

I agree that we fall short when it comes to displaying mercy and forgiveness, but again Jesus was talking about individuals and not the government.

Connie Veldkamp, San Clemente

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