Category Archives: election

BreakPoint: Who Cares How Taylor Swift Votes? Our Silly Obsession with Pop Stars’ Politics

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I never thought in my wildest dreams I’d talk about Taylor Swift on BreakPoint. Just look what you made me do.

It’s not exactly a secret where the entertainment industry stands on conservative politics, especially President Trump. With few exceptions, this president has only intensified the full opposition by actors, producers, singers, and performers of all stripes to the GOP. But one pop singer—the world’s most successful pop singer, in fact—has remained strangely quiet.

A recent editorial in The Guardian called Taylor Swift an “envoy for [Donald] Trump’s values,” not because she’s ever expressed public support for the president, but because she hasn’t said much of anything about him at all. Swift, you see, isn’t much for politics. She hasn’t joined other entertainers in denouncing Trump with sufficient enthusiasm. And so that’s gotten her in trouble.

Her critic in The Guardian writes that “[Swift’s] silence is striking, highlighting the parallels between the singer and the president: their adept use of social media to foster a diehard support base; their solipsism; their laser focus on the bottom line; their support among the ‘alt-right.’”

This is just the latest in a drumbeat of demands that the 27-year-old singer take a side in this current political scrum. Some have gone much further, suggesting that she’s a secret admirer not only of President Trump, but of the less savory among his supporters. Reports surfaced last year that Neo-Nazis and other racist groups have adopted the tall, blonde pop artist as an unofficial mascot. Some even called her an “Aryan goddess,” and claim that she has secret Nazi sympathies—a charge she has flatly denied.

Still, with no college education and no political experience, this young woman is expected—purely because of her fame—to tell her millions of fans not only how to vote, but which side of the political aisle are the good guys and which are the bad.

Swift, for her part, has consistently refused. “I chose to do music,” she’s said before. Last year before the election, Swift clarified, “I don’t talk about politics because it might influence other people. And I don’t think that I know enough yet in life to be telling other people who to vote for.”

Well, good for her!

But the burning question through all of this is why on earth we should care about Taylor Swift’s political views! It’s ridiculous that so many people are obsessed with getting celebrities to take sides on candidates and policies. But we’ve got to move beyond this.

First, celebrities aren’t specially endowed with insights into good government. They have the right to express their views like everyone else. But the idea that somehow what they say matters more—well that just proves Neil Postman was right, we are amused to death.

So our celebrities have become our experts and our heroes. That’s a bad idea.

Also this unrealistic expectation of celebrities reveals our culture’s terrible spiritual thirst. Particularly its lack of religious and moral authority. Celebrities are, for too many, the closest things we have to gods.  They are idols, pure and simple.

But there’s still another, and yet more practical reason why setting our political and social compasses by the opinions of entertainers is a bad idea: It poisons entertainment itself. There must be a space that exists outside of politics if our culture is to remain sane—a place where we can set aside our debates and just live together as human beings.

I’m no fan of most pop music, but we do need cultural places where we can live together civilly in our society that are not dominated by political rancor. If everything becomes just another place for a party power struggle, we’ll stop seeing each other first as friends, neighbors and fellow citizens, and only look at one another instead as members of opposing armies.

If we can’t figure out a better source for political insights than Taylor Swift or the other celebrities that we already pay too much attention to, we’re in trouble, trouble, trouble. See what I did there?!

 

Who Cares How Taylor Swift Votes?: Our Silly Obsession with Pop Stars’ Politics

As John has pointed out, our culture’s obsession with celebrities betrays a spiritual hunger that only Christ can quench. Why not talk about that, winsomely, in one of your conversations with family, friends, or neighbors?

 

 

Resources

The Case for Civility: And Why Our Future Depends on It

  • Os Guinness | HarperOne Publishers | January 2008
Time for Truth: Living Free in a World of Lies, Hype & Spin

  • Os Guinness | Baker Books | February 2002
Amusing Ourselves to Death: Public Discourse in the Age of Show Business

  • Neil Postman | Penguin Books Publisher | December 2005
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Cal Thomas says EVANGELICALS are wrong to support Roy Moore ( he is spot-on )

SUPPORTERS OF MOORE SAY HE IS PRO-LIFE AND JONES IS NOT, AND THAT IS A LITMUS TEST FOR MANY. BUT A MOORE VICTORY WILL NOT AFFECT ABORTIONS IN AMERICA, WHICH ARE DECLINING THANKS IN PART TO THE EXCELLENT WORK PERFORMED BY PREGNANCY HELP CENTERS.

         THE LEFT PLANS TO COME AFTER PRESIDENT TRUMP, USING HIS SEXUAL HARRASSMENT ACCUSERS TO GAIN TRACTION IN NEXT YEAR’S CONGRESSIONAL ELECTIONS.

 

         ARE REPUBLICANS AND ESPECIALLY EVANGELICAL CHRISTIANS, WHO ARE SUPPOSED TO STAND FOR FAMILY VALUES, WILLING TO MAKE THIS KIND OF BARGAIN TO WIN A SENATE SEAT? JUST ASKING. I’M CAL THOMAS IN WASHINGTON.

( Read the whole commentary by Cal Thomas , or listen to the audio of it. )

Trump’s timely evangelical appeal

There hasn’t been a time more important in recent history to clearly support traditional Christian values and unabashed American patriotism – and President Trump is stepping up. That’s why his relationship with evangelicals is growing stronger.

President Trump addressed this year’s annual Values Voters Summit in Washington, DC. He is the first sitting U.S. president to do so. (See related story)

The Values Voters Summit is hosted by the Family Research Council, an organization whose mission is addressing public policy and culture from a Christian point of view. My organization CURE works closely with FRC and I have been a regular speaker at this Summit for years.

Its base is largely evangelical Christians, and this is why President Trump deemed it appropriate to appear.

Eighty-one percent of white evangelicals voted for Trump in 2016, the highest percentage of evangelical support for any Republican in the last four presidential elections.

 

According to the Pew Research Center, 36 percent of the electorate self-identifies as evangelical Christian, so it’s indicative of Trump’s strong political instincts that he has gone out to actively engage this important and significant base of support.

( Read the rest  of this column by Star Parker. )

Evangelicals support of Trump is a matter of self- defense

Why the difference, when few fervent Christians viewed Trump as a paragon of virtue, or a person of deep faith?
The answer involves pervasive fear about threats to religious liberty—with people of faith alarmed at attacks on individuals, businesses and even religious organizations that espouse politically incorrect views on same sex marriage, abortion, or public prayer. Unless liberals begin standing up for religious liberty and freedom of conscience, and stop treating religious believers as the enemy, people of faith will continue to swing elections to the GOP as a matter of self-defense.
( Read, or listen to the rest of this commentary right here.)

President Trump needs to focus on the bench, not on folks who are looking into the Russia issue

Republicans have enough problems on their hands. There are 20 vacancies on the circuit court of appeals and over 100 vacancies on the lower courts for which there has not been a nomination put forward yet. This is unacceptable. It’s a failure of governance.

( Read, or listen to the rest of this commentary. )

Obamacare has become McCain, Murkowski ,Collinsu law

A few days ago I posted something that all of us regardless of party should be praying for Senator John McCain in his battle with cancer. I meant it, and have prayed for him since then.

Today I am more than a little upset at McCain. You see he cast a key vote at 1:00 A.M. which killed a bill that would at least started the process to end Obamacare.

It would appear he at least misled the American people, and the voters of his state. He said in a TV add when he last ran for election that he would help to end Obamacare.

McCain in my humble view can no longer call himself a loyal member of the Grand Old Party. If he ever was one. He was joined by two other members of the GOP in voting against ending Obamacare. They were Lisa Murkowski,and Susan Collins. All of them should answer when they are up for election.
It is time for McCain to retire, and focus on his health.
Folks do not blame the GOP blame three GOP Senators for this failing. It is time to elect folks from the GOP who are truly on the right.It is not enough to be part of the Grand Old Party. We must elect GOP members who are truly from the right.
Thanks John McCain, Lisa Murkowski and Susan Collins.

Here is a man who needs his mouth washed out with soap. He also needs to learn something about respect.

I believe those who don’t respect President Trump, and did not respect President Obama are really not respecting God. It tells us in the Bible God is the one who puts leaders in power, and he is the one who removes power from leader. You may not agree with a leader on an issue, or behavior in his life. That is ok. You are free todo that, but you must do it in a way that shows honor to the leader.

Last night there was a story on a local channel about ( guy kicked out for anti Trump shirt ) a man who was kicked out of an eating place for having a F…..Trump shirt on. This guy I believe had his kids with him. That man showed disrespect to President Trump, and the Lord. It used to be kids would get spanked, or have soap put in their mouths for doing something like this. How sadly times have changed that adults wear shirts which read blank the President.

GOP only have themselves to blame ( voters should recall their broken promise on Election Day )

Over seven years ago, Democrats in Congress joined President Obama to create a massive expansion of Washington’s role in our health care system. And in the time since then, we’ve witnessed the many ways in which Obamacare has hurt the American health system.
Republicans in the United States Senate had the opportunity this week to repeal large parts of that law and to set health policy in America on a different course. The GOP legislation wasn’t perfect, but was certainly an improvement on the status quo. It was also the best chance Republicansand  have ever had to substantially repeal and replace Obamacare.
( obamacare-enshrined )

Orthodox Jewish grade school in UK fails inspection for refusal to teach about sexual orientation

An orthodox Jewish girls’ elementary school in London has failed a government inspection for the third time because it refuses to teach students, who range in age from 3 to 8, about homosexuality and gender reassignment.

( Read the rest of this story.)

His sticker supporting Trump troubled me ( if the sticker read down with President Trump I bet it would not trouble your friends on the left )

Dear Amy: We would like your insight into a moral dilemma that we recently faced. We are a progressive, Democratic household.

Being in need of the services of a contractor, we called to obtain advice and to get an estimate from a contractor who we have been doing business with for years (he is locally regarded as the best and most knowledgeable in his field).

When he arrived for his consultation the other day, we noticed that his work truck had a bumper sticker in support of the current president.

We did not say anything, but were disappointed to learn of his political affiliation. We spent the next few days trying to decide if we should use the contractor’s services or take our business elsewhere (there are few, if any, alternatives in the area).

We ultimately decided to use his services, but we held our nose while signing the contract.

Is it wrong to apply a political litmus test?
( Read the answer Amy gave here. )