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Christian writer slams Jerry Falwell Jr. for ‘twisting Scripture’ to give Trump ‘mulligan’ on film star affair

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The editor in chief of Christianity Today had some harsh words for Jerry Falwell Jr., who hit the cable news shows to defend Donald Trump after it was revealed the president  allegedly carried on a year-long affair with an adult movie star. 

In an editorial, in which Mark Galli admitted he was hesitant to “enter the political fray,” the editor claimed that “when fellow evangelicals start exegeting [expounding]  and applying Scripture in the public square, we think we have something to add to the conversation.”

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Noting that Falwell stated, “All these things [Trump’s affairs] were years ago, and he has apologized,” Galli called out the evangelist for getting his facts wrong in an effort to provide cover for Trump.

“In fact, the payoff for one of the alleged affairs was offered a mere 14 months ago; meanwhile, Trump has never apologized for his affairs, only for his lewd remarks in one video,” Galli wrote. “He’s never asked forgiveness as far as I can tell. But even if we charitably assume he has privately apologized to these women and to his wife, Falwell’s exegetical justification for Trump’s adulteries is startling.”

In an interview with CNN’s Erin Burnett, Falwell defended Trump saying, “Jesus says that if you lust after a woman in your heart, it’s the same as adultery. You’re just as bad as the person who has … Our faith is based on the idea that we’re all equally bad and we’re all sinners and we all need Christ’s forgiveness.”

Galli termed Falwell’s defense, “twisted.”

“One does not have to have a doctorate in ethics to see the problem here. Jesus is saying that outward behavior needs to be matched by inward attitudes, that a fully righteous person does more than attend to external behavior. He’s not saying—and no Christian ethicist I know of would say—that lusting is morally the same as adultery, or similarly that anger is the moral equivalent of murder,” Galli wrote. “The reason we succumb to such poor exegesis at such times is not hard to fathom. We do this sort of thing whenever we are in a tussle with our spouse or church or friend, and we need to justify ourselves or our views. We twist Scripture to make ourselves look virtuous and to condemn our opponent.”

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As for the Trump “mulligan,” he wrote: “I’m unclear, however, as to whether we should give people who ought to know better a mulligan. But it’s wrong, and when a brother or sister does it, especially in the public square, we should note it.”

You can read the whole piece here.


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There’s no respite from Trump’s vindictiveness and foolishness

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As we know, even in the midst of a national emergency, Donald Trump could find time and bandwidth to continue his retribution campaign.

He dismissed Michael Atkinson, the inspector general for the intelligence agencies, for doing “a terrible job,” satisfying his own thirst for vengeance for anyone who actually adhered to law and practice over blind loyalty to Trump himself. Indeed, asked about it the next day, Trump underscored his action by saying, Atkinson “was no Trump supporter, that I can tell you.”

It was an act that we once would have labeled corruption, by Democrats and Republicans – that is using the office for personal purposes – if Congress and too many Americans had not since become inured by so many like instances.

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This is how Taiwan and South Korea bucked the global lockdown trend

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As the coronavirus pandemic sparks global lockdowns, life has continued comparatively unhindered in places like Taiwan, South Korea and Hong Kong after their governments and citizens took decisive early action against the unfolding crisis.

At first glance Taiwan looks like an ideal candidate for the coronavirus. The island of 23 million lies just 180 kilometres (110 miles) off mainland China.

Yet nearly 100 days in, Taiwan has just 376 confirmed cases and five fatalities while restaurants, bars, schools, universities and offices remain open.

The government of President Tsai Ing-wen, whose deputy is an epidemiologist, made tough decisions while the crisis was nascent to stave off the kind of pain now convulsing much of the rest of the world.

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Republican ex-lawmaker with coronavirus scolds Wisconsin GOP for forcing voters to risk their health

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On CNN Tuesday, former Rep. Charlie Dent (R-PA), who is himself dealing with a bout of COVID-19, chastised the Wisconsin GOP for doing everything in their power to block the state elections from being moved — and forcing many voters to stand in line and risk exposure to the virus to cast their ballot.

"I have to tell you, here in Pennsylvania we have a Democratic governor and Republican legislature," Dent told host Don Lemon. "They postponed the election here from April 28 until June 2. Without any controversy. Everybody agreed it was the right thing to do and they moved on. I'm surprised Wisconsin took this risk, knowing they don't have to."

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