Christian philosopher William Lane Craig has recently triggered the few remaining never-Trumpers by recommending—albeit by implication— that Christians ought to vote for Donald Trump. You can listen to the audio here (beginning at 5:50).
Craig blasts the view (held by many Christians) that we should refuse to vote for the lesser of two evils as being a “very immature and even childish view of moral decision making.” It is a “common moral experience,” Craig maintains, to be “confronted with moral choices in which neither choice is a good choice.” He continues: “And in that case, the ethical thing to do is to choose the lesser of two evils.”
The self-righteous Christians criticizing Craig as a compromiser would do well to remember that the moral position espoused by Craig here is ably represented in the Protestant tradition by theologians like Dietrich Bonhoeffer and Reinhold Niebuhr. They held—contrary to certain Catholic thinkers—that there are genuine moral dilemmas: situations where we ought to chose among options all of which are morally problematic. The idea that there aren’t such situations is an unrealistic and naïve understanding of morality. Life sometimes gets morally messy, and when it does, being a responsible moral actor requires getting our hands dirty. When asked by Nazis whether you’re harboring Jews, for example, you ought to lie, even if it is always morally wrong to lie. Would Christian never-Trumpers lie to the Nazis at the door, or would they turn their Jewish friends over to be carted off to the gas chambers? And if you think this analogy is unfair, consider how Clinton would not just perpetuate but exacerbate the silent Holocaust.
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