Someone Please Explain This to Me!

The State of Alabama. Please explain the support for Roy Moore, in particular. I see television interviews of individuals and of press conferences where Alabamans routinely invoke religious principles and concepts to justify their support for an “alleged” pedophile.

I understand those who simply deny the reality of the claims of the victims. It’s not uncommon for a man of his stature and reputation as a religious man (however contrived or manufactured a reputation) to get the benefit of the doubt. After all, people denied that for decades that many Catholic priests and bishops systematically sexually abused children. It’s hard to accept a person you have trusted for years is a monster. It’s scary to people that they failed to see the signs of a pedophile, and it’s easier to deny the claims of an individual(s), especially if they are made long after the fact. However, Moore has already admitted to dating underaged girls in the past.

I can understand people who see Moore as a champion of their “religious rights”. After all, he was twice removed from office for refusing to honor the Constitution and legal Court orders related to matters of his religious beliefs. He is a man who openly admits that his “religious” beliefs are more important than the law and the Constitution. To those people, their religion is a convenient cover for their bigotry (e.g. is there any doubt that Moore would be gone already if Moore had sexually assaulted boys?), and from the days of Reconstruction the Constitution has been ignored in Alabama until forced to comply. The fact that Moore was removed as a judge by a Federal Court makes him all the more electable in Alabama.

What I can’t understand is how people who define themselves as “Conservative” or “Christian” or “Evangelical Conservatives” can believe the evidence that Moore is a sexual predator of children and reward him with their vote because he will promote their political agenda. I thought the whole thing about Evangelicals is that spiritual principles are more important than anything else, even politics. I have heard some say that “God forgives every sinner”, but I understand enough to know that forgiveness is the end-result of confession (admitting you sinned) and repentance (changing behavior). Moore has done neither.

The religious support for Moore is especially galling to those who have actually read Scriptures and understand that Jesus was especially protective of children. What would electing Moore do to those hidden and future child victims of sexual abuse if a pedophile is allowed to attack his victims and be rewarded with public trust? Granted, some of his supporters step right up to the threshold of saying that in Alabama its OK to date children (e.g. the State Representative that justified the behavior by saying that Moore always asked for parental permission), but Moore did not ask for permission. Can a pedophile actually be banned from shopping malls in Alabama but still be elected Senator?

The reality is that Moore is likely to win, primarily because in Alabama religion and politics are fused. Moore has set himself up to represent those “good vs. evil” people and many churches appear to consider a pedophile to be more representative of their religious beliefs than any Democrat.  That kind of hatred is hard to overcome.

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