During the 2016 presidential election, white evangelicals went to the polls at a record high to push Trump over the finish line, some say. Conservatives claim their vote for Trump wasn't about Trump. It was about the Supreme Court seat -- a pro-life Supreme Court justice. Others argue they just weren't ready for a woman president. And others merely did what their pastor instructed them to do.
As a left-leaning Christian, I believe the term "evangelical" has come to define a politicized version of Christianity; therefore, those calling themselves evangelical Christians have become tools of the Religious Right. Right-wing pastors artfully use a victim mentality to air their grievances and perceived threats of the abolishment of religious liberty, gun rights & the ability to discriminate against people whose lifestyle with which they disagree. But it's also more profound than that; white evangelical Christians see themselves as becoming an ethnic minority. And there is no shortage of bias confirmation in independent media to confirm their fears.
The term white evangelical has multiple meanings depending on who you're talking to, but most of the time the verbiage used is political. Since the '60s, the religious politicization of the Republican Party, first based on racial segregation now, plays on a victimization philosophy.
Even today, most evangelicals rationalize their support for Trump by saying "no one is perfect" and "we all sin." Let's change the names of the president to President Obama. If Obama tweeted one-half of what Trump did, he'd be out of office by now. Conservatives went nuts when Obama wore a flashy tan-suit and used once used mustard on a hamburger. Just to be clear: no one in the Obama administration went to jail. Obama didn't need lawyers to represent him for, possibly, colluding with a foreign government to win an election. Or talks of prostitutes urinates on a bed in Moscow.
Racial anxiety and fears of religious oppression guide conservatives to make choices some of us see as counterproductive. Supporting a racist, bigot, someone who believe a segment of the population doesn't deserve the same respect, i.e., his political opponents disturbs sane people.
But Donald Trump followers operate on fear and complete dependence on a strong-man to lead them. While projecting tough guy bravado, conservatives entertain an unrealistic fear. When Trump said at the Republican National Convention that he 'alone' could fix their problems, they believed him. And. Trump controls the Republican Party. The nostalgia, pocketed racism, and radical right-wing religious ideology for him to protect.
People don't know that the initial call for religious, political activism started on the desire to maintain segregation, which in the '70s wasn't as, overtly, popular; so the right-wing leaders pushed for conservatives to fight abortion rights. And then gay rights. Religious Right figures get cash while leading sheep to fight nonsensical cultural battles. The latest, besides the previously mentioned issues, is gun rights. An NRA spokesman said gun rights come from God. Of course, this verbiage is nonsense, but conservatives believe it.