Thursday, January 17, 2019


It's time for Christians to oppose President Trump's shutdown of the federal government. The shutdown is unchristian and immoral on several levels. First, the motivation is racist. It is to build a wall that is in fact only meant to enhance racial animosity in America. The wall is meant as a symbol to keep out brown people from Mexico and Central America. This in itself is reprehensible. In addition, it is wrong to cut off pay to 800,000 government employees and contractors through no fault of their own. The government is breaking its commitment to these people. Too, in time the poor will be harshly affected as money for food stamps and housing assistance will dry up. Millions of unemployed, disabled, and working poor in America depend on food stamps to feed their families and on housing assistance to house their families. When the HUD funding dries up, people now living on assistance are likely to be ejected from their residences, again through no fault of their own.

Yesterday, a couple of dozen friends and I (in blue baseball cap) marched to protest at the federal building in Anniston AL. All southern states are likely to be hard hit soon if the shutdown continues much longer. 

It is wrong for President Trump to hold the nation hostage for his symbol of division. In fact, a wall on the border of Mexico will have little to do with the supposed problem of illegal immigration. There was never a wall that people could not go under, through, or over. Besides, most undocumented people, and illegal drugs, enter the U.S. by boat or airplane, or by vehicles at legal points of entry. A wall would be a very expensive irrelevancy. What we need is sensible national security.

We Christians have a moral obligation to stand up for those who cannot stand up for themselves, the poor, the disabled, the ill. It is our mission, our calling. We are here to reconcile and heal, not to divide and destroy.

See also the excellent article of the Episcopal News Service on responses to the shutdown. Find it here . Read, too, the eloquent letter from the faith communities of Virginia here .